1. Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Childhood: Richard Linklater’s Rotoscope-Animated Look Back At His Youth Growing Up In NASA’s Shadow Is The Kind Of Lively Exercise In Nostalgia That Really Shows What Life Was Like, During an era when TVs were small and before that everyone carried a phone everywhere.
2. Avatar: The Way of Water: 13 years after overcoming skepticism, James Cameron again takes a very basic story and turns it into an epic, cutting-edge performance. Movie magic that practically demands you get off the couch, put down the remote, and drive to the theater to watch it on the biggest screen.
3. Everything Everywhere at Once: Not everything about this foray into alternate universes and paths worked, but this action-comedy-sci-fi mashup represented one of the most inventive efforts of the year and won audiences while performing the remarkable Michelle Yeoh and Hui Quan’s uplifting comeback of a one-time Indiana Jones Kid.
4. The Fabelmans: Steven Spielberg’s deeply personal window into how his youthful experiences forged him as a filmmaker is clearly filled with nostalgia, but it also provides a welcome reword to the power of movies. does. A bit scattered in its format, the film nevertheless works as a superhero origin story from a director whose half-century of filmmaking has created so many moments in our memories.
5. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery: Writer-director Rian Johnson has managed to reload and still capture the whimsy, wit and fun of his original whodunit in a film with Daniel Craig as the lone holdover, Which really should have spent more time in theaters before landing on Netflix.
6. Good Luck to You, Leo Grande: Streamed Directly to Hulu, Emma Thompson as a widower for this two-hander who maintains a se*x worker (Daryl McCormack) and tells him about his life and work Sweet, funny and generally delightful, a little gem in a year with heaps of rhinestones. (Thompson, as a footnote, is also making a splash in “Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical.”)
7. RRR: Like “Avatar,” don’t let the three-hour-plus running time scare you (besides, you’ll be watching it on Netflix anyway). This Indian historical fantasy has it all, with energy galore, wild action sequences and exhausting dance numbers. A film that riffs on any number of genres, from superhero to western, and still manages to feel fresh and invigorating.
8. Till: Danielle Deadweiler’s harrowing performance as Mamie Till Mobley grappling with the murder of her son Emmett in Mississippi in 1955 brings this tragic story to focus in a film that sensitively tackles murder Elevated and brought anew. How it gave a voice to a civil-rights activist.
9. Top Gun: Maverick: Despite coming 36 years after the original (obviously time flies too), this sequel waited through the pandemic to share the experience with moviegoers and take them on a stirring flight. Rewarded with a perfectly tuned encore that featured Tom Cruise flying a rescue mission to movie theaters. Frankly, it would be nice to be pretty much left alone after that, but anything making that much money can’t be allowed to stay grounded for long.
10. Turning Red: Pixar hasn’t been treated particularly well by its parent studio in the Disney+ era, which explains why it’s a surprisingly warm and very funny coming-of-age story — a genre so much Works that are really hard to do well – were funneled straight to streaming. The film works on many levels, but turning into a giant panda becomes a wonderful metaphor for the humiliation and confusion associated with puberty.