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From Spider-Men to Candymen, here are some of the Best Films of 2021.

By: Adam Beam SUTV News

2021 was a fascinating year for movies, as a lot of the films that came out this year were really meant for the year prior. Studios played a risky game this year as the pandemic continues to rage all over the world. It was an experimental year of theatrical releases mixed with streaming debuts. Despite these elements going against the films released there were still some fantastic new releases for for the 2021 slate. Here are some of my personal favorites...


*The following list of films are my personal choices, the opinions reflected in this article are exactly that, opinion. *


Number 10: Luca

While some studios struggled to keep their heads above water this year (pun intended), Disney and Pixar held their own as one of the big success stories both financially and critically. "Luca" is one of Pixar's most charming films in years, as it delivers a fun story of friendship that comes with that extra Pixar subtext we all know and love. The animation also is truly beautiful to look at and the more round designs make this film one of the studio's best.


Number 9: King Richard

Will Smith and biopics are usually a mixed bag. He delivered a great performance in "Ali", but also confused many with his turn in "Concussion". Now, Smith delivers easily his best performance in years. Believe the award season hype surrounding this film. Smith is pitch perfect as the loving, if sometimes misguided, father of two of the greatest athletes to ever live.


Number 8: Zack Snyder's Justice League

After the disaster that was the 2017 theatrical cut of "Justice League" any alternate version was bound to be an improvement. While I'm not the biggest fan of Snyder's previous DC outings, I will be the first to admit just how strong his version of the iconic superhero team is. The visuals are much more striking, the characters are far more fleshed out and interesting, the action is much more engaging, and it truly means something when you can make a four hour film interesting for the whole of that runtime.


Number 7: Nobody

The last person you'd expect to lead a "John Wick" style action film is Bob Odenkirk, but that's what makes this action-packed comedy even more entertaining. While similar in terms of story, the film sets itself apart by having some really solid comedy chops. Even though it's much more comedic, it doesn't mean the action isn't as brutal and bone-crunching as those who inspired it.


Number 6: In the Heights

If 2021 was anything, it was the year of the movie musical. One of the first to hit cinemas and streaming was "In the Heights". Similar to other Lin Manuel Miranda outings from this year ("Encanto" and "Vivo" ) this film is just pure fun. While the film touches on some heavier issues, the film is mainly just a feel good time from beginnig to end. One of the only two times this year I found myself crying in the theater.


Number 5: tick...tick...BOOM!

Another movie musical, another Lin Manuel Miranda joint, this time being his directorial debut and it was quite the debut to say the least. Andrew Garfield proves that he's truly capable of anything as his first ever singing performance will leave you speechless everytime. The film is a beautiful portrait of being an artist and working under the expectations that both you and others set for yourself.


Number 4: Inside

While technically not a movie, "Bo Burnham: Inside" was by far the most poignant piece of media from this year. A comedy special filmed entirely at home, it's a true time capsule of the mental toll the pandemic can take on person. One top of that, the music is some of Burnham's catchiest, funniest, and most heartbreaking lyrics. This is now the gold standard for comedy specials moving forward.


Number 3: The Suicide Squad

Another redemption for a DC Comics team, James Gunn's take on the Suicide Squad is unlike any comic book film before. Take the team dynamic of the "Guardians of the Galaxy" and mix it with the R-rated insanity of "Super" and you get one of the most consistently entertaining films of the year. Great action, great characters, great comedy, great gore and a great soundtrack, what more do you need?


Number 2: West Side Story

Ansel Elgort and box office aside, "West Side Story" takes the crown as the best movie musical of the year, as well as one of the best movie musicals ever. Steven Spielberg creates a truly magic experience, one that captures the heart of the original while being able to stand on its own as a spectacle for the eyes and ears. I truly struggle to think which one film is the superior film.


Number 1: Spider-Man: No Way Home

While not the strongest on a technical or storytelling level compared to some of the other films that came out this year, "No Way Home" is a movie I never thought I would ever see in my lifetime. There is no other movie like "No Way Home", nor have I had a theatergoing experience like this movie. The pure entertainment and excitement this movie created is worth ignoring some of the film's minor faults. It's an experience I'll remember for the rest of my life.


Honorable Mentions:


Candyman

Ghostbusters: Afterlife

Encanto

Operation Varsity Blues: The College Admission Scandal

No Time to Die



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