The 10 Highest Rated Movies of 2021 | Culture


As 2022 is in full swing, we’re looking back on 2021 to bring you a roundup of the films our film reviewer gave the highest praise to. Since this roundup only includes movies available on streaming services, add them to your watchlist for movie night at home.

Soul (Disney+)

In Pixar’s latest masterpiece, Joe (voiced by Jamie Foxx), a talented jazz pianist trained around the world to teach a college band, gets his hit at the big time with a famous jazz combo, and is on his way back to retrieve his suit when it falls into a manhole.

Hell, the music alone – by Bob Dylan, Herbie Hancock, Erykah Badu, Charlie Mingus and Jon Batiste – is worth the ticket price. My only issue is that there could have been more. I can see him again.

Read the full review: Soul


The personal story of David Copperfield (U-NEXT)

It’s truly amazing what Scottish director Armando Iannucci (Stalin’s death) and co-writer Simon Blackwell did it here. They cut and reworked a nearly 700-page novel to create two raucous hours of filmed entertainment that stays true to, if a little less austere, the Charles Dickens classic.

It’s the kind of film where you see that the actors are having fun. You too.

Read the full review: The personal story of David Copperfield



minari (U-NEXT)

Navigating the American dream has been a common theme throughout the history of American cinema, but it has rarely been approached with such efficiency and economy. For Jacob Yi (steven yeun) that dream is embodied in 50 acres of rich lowland Arkansas in the 1980s, on which he is determined to grow Korean vegetables, so he and his skeptical wife Monica (Yeri Han) can quit their mind-numbing jobs as chicken sexers.

The cinematography is modest but stunning. Soon you forget the phrase “immigrant experience” — and even the subtitles — and see it for the universal commentary on the human condition that it is.

Read the full review: Minari


nomadland (Disney+/U-NEXT)

After the financial collapse of the Nevada corporate town she lives in, Fern (Frances McDormand – hard to imagine anyone else in this role) refurbishes her pickup truck and hits the road, taking small jobs here and there, sleeping where it’s cheapest and generally exploring life outside of normal society.

I can certainly understand some restlessness. It’s about looking for something, or maybe escaping something, without even being sure what it is. Different people will remember different things from this movie, but they’ll all probably mean something.

Read the full review: Nomadland



Palm Springs (hulu/U-NEXT)

A pair of wedding guests (SNL’s Andy Samberg and Gracefully Awkward Cristin Milioti in a long-awaited starring role) developing a budding romance have a day to remember — again and again and again — when they find themselves stuck in a loop mystical temporal.

As you laugh at the antics, you’ll be blinded by hidden metaphysics and find yourself introspecting your own life – reflecting on things like the elusiveness of happiness, or the effervescence and resilience of love, or the viability of long-term relationships. Do not miss.

Read the full review: Palm Springs


Cruel (Disney+/U-NEXT)

Alas, Disney does what it wants, so I dutifully went to see it, expecting another lame, intensely targeted cash grab. Well, here’s the surprise: I liked it! A totally committed Emma Stone, with her big eyes and expressive face, comedic timing and dramatic chops, is perfect in the title role, and costume designer Jenny Beavan (Mad Max: Fury Road) is a shoo-in for another Oscar nominee.

Read the full review: Cruella



Lighthouse (U-NEXT)

Two men (Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson) arrive at a desolate lighthouse for a month-long stint using the creaky old navigation device, and long story short, they go nuts.

Eggars breathes new life into the tired old horror genre. First, he did it in black and white, and in a masterful way, using light and contrast to create a jarring surrealism. Then, he frames his film in an almost square format that complements and enhances the vaguely 19th century vibe. It’s both old school and new age.

Read the full review: The Lighthouse



Supernova (U-NEXT)

Sixty-something Sam and Tucker (Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci) traveled across Britain in their aging camper van to see friends and family, and some places that had special meaning in their long and loving relationship.

Harry Macqueen has firmly established his dramatic chops with the 2014s Countryside. With Supernova, he created heartfelt, heartbreaking drama of rare grace and compassion. Not much happens, but it happens beautifully, and the emotional punch is as powerful as it is unexpected.

Read the full review: Supernova



The sound of metal (U-NEXT/Amazon Prime Video)

A traveling heavy metal drummer’s life is turned upside down when he discovers he is losing his hearing. While Ruben’s (career Riz Ahmed) first instinct is to ‘fix’, undergoing an extremely expensive and uninsured cochlear transplant operation, his girlfriend and bandmate (Olivia Cooke) finds him a secluded treatment center , where he is warmly welcomed by his deaf roommates.

The fascinating and resonant use of sound by Darius Marder (The Place Beyond the Pines, Loot) draws you into the world of Ruben. Nothing is predictable because the story always goes further, without a trace of artifice, until the final image. The ending is perfect.

Read the full review: Sound of Metal


Encanto (Disney+)

The story centers on Mirabel, the only child of the enchanted Madrigal family who is not endowed with magical power. Yet even such a wonderful family can have their human flaws, and when their core magic one day seems to wane, Mirabel’s disappointing and delayed gift becomes apparent.

Each character is well-developed, it’s funny where it belongs, there’s not a moment of slowing down, and the inevitable message about the importance of family manages to be sweet without being sickening. The plot will keep you guessing, it features a terrific voice cast, it’s gorgeous to watch, and eight stellar, hard-hitting songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda round out the story. Best Compliment: It doesn’t look like a Disney movie.

Read the full review: Encanto

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