In a truly bizarre year for cinema, we had three months of normal service and then a wasteland of closed cinemas and online screenings. It will be interesting to see what state the industry is in when things finally start moving again. Will all the big studios survive? The cinema chains? Only time will tell.
Here are the best films that we’ve seen this year.
10. Soul – Pixar doing what they do best! A good mix of humour and insight into the world around us. It’s only available on Disney+ but it is well deserving of a place on this list!
9. The Assistant – After her performance in Ozark over the last few years, it was long overdue to give Julia Garner a role as a leading lady. She’s nearly perfect in this film about an assistant to the unseen boss. The hints of abuse and harassment are all too obvious but who wants to destroy their career to point them out?
8. Parasite – It feels a long time ago since this was released (actually it was February) and it has received many plaudits along the way, but it’s still more than deserving of a mention here.
7. The Lighthouse – This film was just a world of fun from start to finish. Willem Dafoe at his absolute best in this tale of isolation and madness.
6. Shirley – It was a great year for Elisabeth Moss between this and the Invisible Man. While you could argue that the latter was fairly conventional, Shirley was a wonderfully intense and flamboyant tale of the unorthodox writer and her husband.
5. Jojo Rabbit – This film received a number of mixed reviews. Some argued that it made light of the atrocities in the second world war, but in my mind it danced the line very well and the ending will last long in my memory.
4. Calm with Horses – The only Irish film on the list but it should be remembered for years to come. The double act of Cosmo Jarvis and Barry Keoghan was hard to ignore!
3. Uncut Gems – The pace of this film was unrelenting! From start to finish you had no idea where it would go next. The Safdie brothers have hit the big time.
2. Les Miserables – We welcome a cop from a rural background to the mean streets of Montfermeil. He gets a lot more than he expected!
1. Portrait of a Lady on Fire – There is not much to fault in this tale of forbidden love in the wilds of an an isolated island in Brittany. Sit back and enjoy the stunning cinematography and the intense characters.