My top 25 movies of the last decade


Iíve decided to make my first draft of a list of top 25 movies of the 2010s. Itís been a few months since the 2010s ended so I decided to make a first version if this list. Iíll probably revise it again in the coming months and years but this is a first version. Also there are a few movies that came out this decade I have not seen that may take spots on this list.

25 Anatomy of a love seen-

Not a very famous movie nor exceptionally well reviewed but I found it quite excellent. A subtle, sophisticated movie. You could really feel the emotions in the actorís performances. A nice little, offbeat film.

24 La la land-

A film marred by controversy due to the Oscars but that doesnít stop it from being amazing. It is probably the best, most realistic portrayal of an unsuccessful love story I have ever seen. And Emma Stone is as usual fantastic.

23 Boyhood-

Maybe it didnít quite live up to the hype of a movie 20 years in the making but it had true deep meaning and it is a film that stays with you. It really sums up life or at least a small slice of it. You see growth and change, not only in the main character but also Hawke and Arquette.

22 Joker-

This movie had a lot of hype and it mostly delivered. Maybe it was a bit problematic in parts and a movie glorifying a serial killer isnít exactly the best thing. But it really shows a manís decent into madness and cleverly portrays the insanity of the times weíre living in. Joaquin Phoenix is masterful, bettering his performance in the Master (which was really Phillip Seymour Hoffmanís movie and is a near miss for this list).

21 Summertime-

A simple and elegant French movie. Bittersweet but beautiful. Not very famous and underrated in my view. Its portrayal of its characters is fascinatingly realistic.

20 Guardians of the galaxy-

A bit of an oddball choice to open the top 20 but it is hands down of the best superhero, or sci-fi movies Iíve ever seen. Itís just effortlessly cool, funny and just plain fun. Characters are relatable and very funny. It really is a team of friends that you want to hang out with. But there is also dramatic depth here, the cast is more than two-dimensional and strangely relatable for a bunch of aliens.

19 Moonlight-

Like La la land, the controversy over the oscars sort of marred this movie but that doesnít stop it from being a masterpiece. Itís a powerful tale, a coming of age story bettered by few Hollywood has ever made. It tells the importance of family being who you fit in with and not where you come from.*

18 Rush-

Iím a big fan of cars and racing and had to include one film about these topics in this list. It was between Rush and Senna and in the end, this film won over. Partly because I wasnít sure a documentary belonged here and partly because I think Amy was Kapadiaís superior work. But mostly because Rush it isnít really a racing movie. It is a character study of 2 flawed but incredible and most importantly, very different men and the relationship between them and the mutual respect they gained for each other, and 2 men who changed each otherís lives completely. More than that it is a look at how life can be lived that truly stays with you.

17 3 Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri-

Like Joker this film has its problematic elements but still stands out as an exceptional film. It is an intriguing portrait of small town America in our polarised times. There is real depth to its sometimes very flawed characters. Itís brutal and scary in a way, but also incredibly heartfelt. And Frances McDormandís performance was nothing short of masterful. Itís a different kind of movie than what Hollywood normally makes.*

16 Once upon a time in Hollywood-

This is just the perfect period piece. Itís a little bit weird, a little bit creepy, kind of funny and very, very good. Leonard Dicaprio pulls out one of his all-time best performances, arguably as good as Phoenixís in joker. The film harkens back to a different era in films. Both literally and figuratively. And a bit of Tarantinoís ultraviolence is always fun.*

15 Scott Pilgrim vs The World-

Scott Pilgrim is the ultimate alternative/ counter-culture movie. Itís trippy and funny, stupid in all the right ways and Brie Larson is great as a bitchy villain. Itís also a real treat for lovers of video games. The cast is absolutely jam-packed with excellence. Itís one if those weird, darkly funny movies that shouldnít work but just does.

14 The tale of Princess Kaguya-

No list of great movies is complete without a Studio Ghibli entry. The Princess Kaguya is a beautiful movie that feels like reading a storybook. Itís a wonderful story and just an experience to watch. It brings new meaning to movies as an art form.

13 The Help-

The help is a funny movie donít get me wrong. Itís hilarious. But itís also an extremely powerful story. At the beginning you think itís gonna be a white saviour story but then it pulls a bait and switch and Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer completely take over the show. Itís a film that shows us both the best and the worst of humanity. It doesnít glorify the past with nostalgia like too many movies do. It paints a realistic, critical picture.

12 Django Unchained-

Django Unchained is just classic Quentin Tarantino. Ultraviolence, comedy, it has it all. While some anime and manga are good at writing poetry with their characterís fists, Tarantino is a master of writing great epics with bullets. Itís a spectacular western but without the racism that sometimes occurs in that genre. Leo and Christopher Waltz are both fantastic and Jamie Foxx is also a very good lead even though he is more of an avatar for the viewer than a distinct character. Itís also great as a suspenseful thriller. Sam L Jackson makes a very weirdly relatable villain.

11 Carol-

I had to think long and hard about whether Carol or Mirai deserved the last spot in the top 10 and in the end I decided on Mirai because one animated movie had to be in the top 10 but honestly theyíre equally good movies. You can consider them joint No. 10 if you want. I think Carol was simply the greatest love story of this decade. Itís a heartfelt, beautiful movie. Cate Blanchet is the personification of perfection as always in a tour de force performance. Itís a truly special film. Among the top 25, the top 11 are all particularly amazing and I would be ok with them being placed in any order, thought this is how I would personally order them. But all 11 are masterpieces that will be remembered for a long time.

10 Mirai-

Remember how I called Moonlight the best coming of age movie Hollywood had made this decade ? Well, Mirai is the best coming of age movie anyone has made this decade. The last decade was full of many, many amazing animated movies and Mirai stands at the very top of them all. It is a movie unstuck in time. You need to watch it several times to really appreciate it. And I think you can watch it any number it times and still appreciate it. It as an interlaced network of many beautiful stories. Itís the story of many members of a family throughout the ages. The meaning you want to take from the film is up to the viewer. It is an artistic masterpiece, beautiful in its own right, even if not quite as pretty as Princess Kaguya. It is delightfully weird and imaginative. And it is a worthy opening to the Top 10.

9 Rogue One: A Star Wars Story-

Rogue One is in my humble opinion, nothing less than the best action movie ever made. And that alone is worthy of a spot on this list. The fact that you know that all of the characterís fates are sealed should be a bad thing but it enhances the movie and gives it a truly unique vibe. The characters are lovely and dynamic, and in this shaky-can obsessed world, the cinematography is a revelation. It doesnít waste time with a stupid romance subplot when it could and gives us a grown up and wonderful story. And the final moment with Darth Vader was the most incredible, badass display of power by a Sith Lord in a movie ever. I know Sith have galaxy-busted and whatnot in the books but we rarely see incredible displays of power like this in the films. It was one-upped recently by Sidious in ROS (and I fall into the camp that Vader is weaker than Sidious but not much weaker so I think he could have done large scale destruction like that too) but at the time it was the most incredible display of power ever and it really took my breath away.

8 Interstellar-

Interstellar is a movie that really makes you think, in a good way, even more so than is typical with Christopher Nolan. It is deeply intellectual and you really have to think to follow itís plot. The film has no qualms doing the unexpected. Itís plot twists are truly unexpected which is hard to do for me personally since I am normally very good at seeing things coming. It is an epic tale that also manages to be relatable, hard to do I know, but Nolan manages it.*

7 1917-

I didnít walk into the theatre with big expectations for this one. Though I could easily have, because it blew me away. It is a technical masterpiece. I wouldnít really call it an action movie, itís more of a thriller. The suspense is palpable and scary every second of the way. You donít really know what to expect with it. I greatly benefitted from not knowing anything about the movie before going to see it and I think that enhanced the experience. It is a study of the human condition. It truly brought forth the horrors of war better than damn near any movie I have ever seen. The ending is the first in a long time that truly brought tears to my eyes.

6 Inception-

Oof... Inception. I donít think there are words that can possibly describe this movie. One way to look at it is the ultimate heist movie. But that is far too reductive. It is a deeply psychological look into the human mind. It asks existential questions that I still donít know the answer to and likely never will. The characters are all so marvellously complicated, the action tight-paced, the drama, the story... oof. Only a mind like Chris Nolan could think of a movie like this. This movie really shows why he is the modern-day Stanley Kubrick.

5 Winterís bone-

The movie that arguably launched Jennifer Lawrenceís career. After perhaps Saiorse Ronan, she is the best new actress that this decade brought us. For some reason almost no one has seen or heard of this movie, which is a shame because itís a real gem. Itís really a modern-day Mumblecore movie. Itís also one of the most feminist movies ever. Jennifer Lawrenceís character is the best strong independent female lead since Mulan. It is a truly, deep, mature, beautiful and profound film. It shows a setting that is almost never explored in movies and is all the better for it. It is a savagely brutal, worthy opener to the Top 5.

4 The Dark Knight Rises-

I think The Dark Knight Rises is possibly Christopher Nolanís masterpiece. No movie before or since has shown us Batmanís vulnerability, both physical and mental, compare this to the invincible juggernaut from Assault on Arkham. It humanised itís superhero. Iím not just talking about the scenes in the prison but also the broken man one sees in the beginning. As well as when he gets stabbed by Talia Al Gul, at that point we thought that Batman had gotten over it, had become strong again and then to be done in like that ? And itís ending I think was the most complex perhaps in cinema history. People often talk about Inceptionís ending but TDKRís is what makes my head spin after all these years. And the performances were just so outstanding throughout the board. Itís a movie that blew my mind the first time I watched it and will continue to blow my mind every time I watch it. Itís just so powerful.

3 Parasite-

I went into the theatre without any huge expectations. Sure it had won the best picture Oscar and many friends had spoken highly of it to me but a part of me felt that no film could possibly top 1917 in the same year. How wrong I was. I still am not really sure what Parasite is about. The capitalist in me says that is about how crime never pays and how one should work hard. The communist in me says this is an example of how the rich classes exploit the poor. But really itís none of these things. In the scene where it seems like everyone has died and you hear laughing I thought that that was some god looking down at us stupid humans and laughing and that maybe sums up the whole movie. Is it trying to say that man is bad ? Maybe, maybe not. Even the ending feels weird, does the sonís dream come true or does it not ? The chaos, the complex topics being addressed here, I donít think the meaning behind this movie will be understood by us for at least a few years, if ever.

2 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy-

What a perfectly executed movie. While the book this film was based on was a masterpiece, the film was arguably even more so. This is the best performance of Gary Oldmanís career, not The Darkest Hour. He is really the only solid thing in this continuously shifting movie. It is beguiling cat and mouse game, not just between George Smiley and the mole but also the movie and the viewer, it always keeps you guessing. And the conclusion is oh so satisfying. It also ends up being a deep study into the mind if its protagonist himself. Say what you will about him as a person but Gary Oldman can act. What a film it is, maybe it doesnít delve into topics as deep as some other films on this list, but not every film needs to. This film achieves what it sets out to do flawlessly and that is something that is always worthy of praise.

1 Blade Runner 2049-

In hindsight, it could only have been this. Thos is easily the best film of the decade, if not the best film ever made. This movie is a deep analysis on what it means to be human. It is based on Phillip K. Dickís work but adds so much to it. The original Blade Runner is a masterpiece and this is a worthy continuation of that story. A hauntingly complex film that is as much about the viewer as the characters on screen. Every single aspect of this movie is at the apex level. The acting, the special effects, the story, the plot twist, the dialogue and the cinematography- oh the cinematography ! A reviewer once said it is worth rewatching the movie just to admire the special effects and I wholeheartedly agree. It is an epic that will stay with you for the rest of your life. An example of what a movie can be. Watching this film is an experience that is truly humbling. This has to be at the no. 1 spot. No other film can make you feel the things this film makes you feel. I donít think it can even be faulted, at least not by the likes of me. What a transcendent work of filmmaking... I donít think words can begin to describe it. To truly understand the brilliance, the sheer genius of this movie, you have to watch it. And even then...

So this is my list as of March 2020, it may change but for now this is my Top 25 movies if the past decade.

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