Top 30 Films of the Last Decade

Hello loyal Drakkarium fans. Um, I mean Celebrate Geek fans. Um wait, I mean, hello loyal Pants Pending Fans. I miss you. It’s been a long time since my last article. I have been thinking about this article for over three years, and now that the decade is closing, I can’t help but jump the gun by putting it out.


Movies has meant so much to me in the last decade. After my Grandpa passing away, I remember how movies had such a profound impact on me. It seems as if it was just yesterday how I met Andrew and we talked about EVERYTHING, but specifically Hunger Games. I remember John, how we were both so obsessed with the film Polarpiercer. I remember Amanda making me dinner and telling me I should read Looking For Alaska. I remember falling in love with Jennifer Lawrence. I also remember betraying her for Brie Larson and breaking her heart. It’s been a turbulent decade; but it’s definitely been one worth remembering.


I’m obviously going to be as objective as possible with this list, but I am a subjective human being. And I obviously haven’t seen every film nominated for every award in the last decade, but I want to say I’ve come close!!! Without further ado, here is the list (the formula for the list is at the bottom of the article. Also I can neither confirm nor deny that this list might change by the end of the decade).


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30. Conte d'été (A Summer’s Tale) 2014


A Boy Runs into some problems with love on his summer vacation at the beach.


A Summer’s Tale is the perfect type of french romance - relatable, warm, comedic, frustrating, unexpected and completely realistic as it dives into its ridiculous scenario.


Objective Accolade:

Acteurs à L'Écran Winner Best Actress



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29. Green Book 2018


A classically trained black musician gets a bigoted white man to drive him into the deep south for a music tour.


Green Book has no business being as good as it is, but it somehow manages to walk the tightrope of contrived scenarios, ideas, and cliches perfectly to bring something truly meaningful and special to the big screen.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Picture



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28. Beast 2018


A serial killer is on the loose on an island village in the UK, as a mysterious man and a young woman fall in love.


Beast is one of those films that is constantly asking you questions, keeping you on the edge of your seat, not letting you rest until the propulsive finale.


Objective Accolade:

BAFTA Winner Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer



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27. The Gift 2015


A posh couple’s lives are turned upside down when a visitor from their past starts showing up in their lives.


The Gift has one of the most intelligent screenplays I’ve ever seen as it’s always three steps ahead of you, as its thriller premise keeps getting better and better.


Objective Accolade:

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA Nominee Best Thriller Film



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26. La tortue rouge (The Red Turtle) 2017


An island castaway finds himself on an island with a turtle.


I had the weirdest sensation watching The Red Turtle - the sensation that all avid movie goers look for - I had never seen this type of film before.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Nominee Best Animated Feature



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25. Spotlight 2015


The real life journalistic investigation of molestations of catholic priests in the early 2000’s.


This is a harrowing film, with a brilliant script, editing and acting.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Picture

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24. Mommy 2015


A mom tries to raise her troubled teen son.


Similar to the also supremely exceptional foreign film Frantz, Mommy pushes the boundaries of filmmaking forward with its fascinating take on cinematography, but what truly saves the day is the year’s best performances by Anne Dorval and Antoine-Olivier Pilon.


Objective Accolade:

Argentinean Film Critics Association Awards Nominee Best Foreign Film





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23. Jodaí-e Nadér az Simín (A Separation) 2011


A man separates from his wife.


This is in the running for the best screenplay for the last ten years - being so nuanced, relatable and, ultimately, gripping.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Foreign Film



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22. Black Swan 2010


A ballet performer pushes herself to her physical and mental limits for a role.


Whiplash before Whiplash, Black Swan is one of those disturbingly beautiful films where you can’t help but keep your eyes glued to the screen through its dark twists and its once in a lifetime performance.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Actress



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21. Get Out 2017


A black man is kidnapped by a white supremacist cult.


I won’t ever forget the feeling I felt walking out of the theatre after watching Get Out for the first time: a feeling I won’t spoil for those who haven’t seen it.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Original Screenplay



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20. Locke 2014


A man must make life changing decisions on a fateful night time drive.


This is Tom Hardy’s best performance in a film that was shot in less than a week.


Objective Accolade:

British Independent Film Awards Winner Best Screenplay



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19. The Witch 2016


An early 1600’s New England family’s lives are thrown out of balance when a witch is suspected to have infiltrated the area.


Truly moving.


Objective Accolade:

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA Nominee Best Horror Film



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18. Silence 2017


Two spanish missionaries go on mission to save one of their comrades in early 1600’s Nagasaki, Japan during the height of christian persecution.


This is the most impressive faith based movie I’ve ever seen, and likely the most challenging as well, letting neither party off the hook with questions that might just be too difficult to answer.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Nominee Best Cinematography



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17. Manchester By The Sea 2016


A man must learns to take care of his nephew and confront his past after his brother dies.


Sometimes pain is just too nuanced for film to tackle, but for some reason Manchester By The Sea is able to do just that.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Original Screenplay



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16. The Book of Eli 2010


A man must protect a precious book in a post apocalyptic landscape.


Remember when I said Silence is the most impressive faith based film I’ve ever seen… well, I don’t lie, but The Book of Eli is probably better.


Objective Accolade

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA Nominee Best Science Fiction Film


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15. Kimi no Na wa (Your Name) 2017


A boy’s and a girl’s bodies/minds begin to swap places at random times.


This second half of this list begins to become starkly more light hearted with this lovely, sweet romance mystery (I recommend both the original version and the dubbed version as both are amazing.).


Objective Accolade:

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA Nominee Best Animated Film



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14. Sing Street 2016


Young teens put together a punk rock band in 1980’s Dublin.


The expert of music films, John Carney, puts together his most charming and lovable film.


Objective Accolade:

Golden Globes Nominee Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy



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13. The Artist 2011


A silent film artist begins to struggle as “Talking Pictures” begin to become relevant.


This is truly a timeless film that probably deserves to be higher on the list.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Picture



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12. Blade Runner: 2049 2017


An artificial intelligence cop uncovers a secret that might change the way we view consciousness forever.


I am prone to exaggeration, but this is probably the most beautiful looking film I’ve ever seen (One of the only ten films to ever win both visual effects and cinematography at the Oscars); but it is much more than that, with a gut-wrenchingly beautiful story which should be watched in two sittings, half by half, just to process its deserved length and weighty ideas.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Cinematography



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11. The Descendants 2011


A man’s wife gets into a tragic boating accident.


I’ll probably have this higher on the list by the time I’m done as there is just something so unspeakably beautiful, surprisingly funny and timeless about this movie.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Adapted Screenplay



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10. Nightcrawler 2014


A highly ambitious loner gets sucked into the dark side of the news, video taping violent crimes and horrific accidents.


Jake Gyllenhaal gives his best performances in the most disturbing and darkly funny takes on the American Dream I’ve ever seen.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Nominee Best Original Screenplay



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9. Room 2015


A young woman who’s been kidnapped and kept and held hostage in a room for seven years must break free with her five year old son.


I left a changed person after seeing this film.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Actress



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8. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World 2010


A boy must fight the seven evil exes of the love of his life to win her heart.


This film holds a special place in my heart; there’s just too much to say about it.


Objective Accolade:

Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA Nominee Best Fantasy Film


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7. Whiplash 2014


A college drummer is put to his wits’ end by his extreme instructor.


The fact that I was listening to the soundtrack of Whiplash just earlier today, six years after it was released, before writing this shows how timeless this film is.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Editing



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6. Short Term 12 2013


A temporary foster care facility worker struggles to balance her personal life with work.


Short Term 12 was a game changer for me in terms of recognizing how good film can be and that I should actively look for more indie gems.


Objective Accolade:

Adu Dhabi Film Festival Nominee Black Pearl Award



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5. Moonlight 2016


A black kid struggles to come to grip with his sexuality, told through the three stages in his life.


There is a reason this won best picture over the groundbreaking and game changing La La Land; Moonlight is one of the most revolutionary pictures about growing up and sexuality ever made.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Picture



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4. Enemy 2014


A man’s life is disturbingly turned upside down when he finds someone who looks exactly like himself.


Enemy is the most important film on fidelity I’ve ever seen.


Objective Accolade:

Abu Dhabi Film Festival Nominee Black Pearl Award



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3. Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) 2014


A washed up actor tries to rejuvenate his career by creating a Broadway play.


If you held a gun to my head and told me to tell you what the best film in this decade was, I’d say Birdman, but in order for this list to make any sort of objective sense I had to come up with a formula (ironically the film is completely against artistic judgements like this, so I’ll concede to defeat).


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Picture



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2. Toy Story 3 2010


A group of  living and breathing toys attempt to break out of a child care facility.


This was the perfect end to a story and one of the most poignant movies about moving on and growing up in the history of cinema.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Animated Film



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1. Inception 2010


It’s a movie about dreams.


It’s the best movie of the last decade.


Objective Accolade:

Oscar Winner Best Cinematography








**The methodology for the list is as follows: there is flawless films and masterpieces. A flawless film is one that I would consider to not have any noticeable flaw, nothing that would take you out of the viewing experience upon first viewing. You might be able to nitpick it to the highest degree to find something imperfect; but for all intents and purposes, it is without flaw. It might not be superlative in every way, but there is really nothing wrong with the film; it did exactly what it set out to do. A film doing exactly what it set out to do and it having something truly special at its core (whether it be a performance, script, visuals, tone etc.) is what I am looking for. A masterpiece, on the other hand, in my view is something that did all of that and more. The film was also completely groundbreaking, revolutionary, and had something timeless and profound to say. I only placed five films on this list as masterpieces. Then to sort out the madness, I organized the films by how many times I had seen them. This is not the most perfect way to organize what is better, but I do believe that if a film is timeless it is a film you can go back to again and again.

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