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10 December 2020updated 14 Sep 2021 2:09pm

The ten best films of 2020

New Statesman critic Ryan Gilbey chooses his top movies of the year. 

By Ryan Gilbey

Parasite (15)

dir: Bong Joon-ho

For once, the Best Picture Oscar really did go to the best picture: this witty, cunning upstairs-downstairs thriller.


Babyteeth (15)

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dir: Shannon Murphy

Teenager with cancer falls for junkie ne’er-do-well. Moving Australian debut with a perfect cast.

[See also: The best films for Christmas 2020]


End of the Century (18)

dir: Lucio Castro

Time and memory play tricks during a gay hook-up. Think Last Year at Marienbad.


The Invisible Man (15)

dir: Leigh Whannell

Toxic masculinity goes unseen in an exemplary horror, with Elisabeth Moss at her terrorised best.

[See also: How Netflix changed the channel]​


Dark Waters (12A)

dir: Todd Haynes

Contamination and corruption, part one: Mark Ruffalo versus chemicals giant DuPont in a chilling conspiracy thriller.


Collective (15)

dir: Alexander Nanau

Contamination and corruption, part two: crusading journalists versus Romanian healthcare in a sobering documentary.


Portrait of a Lady on Fire (15)

dir: Céline Sciamma

Eighteenth century artist and sitter experience a brush with obsession.


Mank (12A)

dir: David Fincher

All is not Welles: the writing of Citizen Kane.

[See also: The ten best TV shows of 2020]


Lynn + Lucy (15)

dir: Fyzal Boulifa

Tragedy, blame and betrayal imperil the bond between two Essex school-friends in a controlled, disturbing drama.


His House (15)

dir: Remi Weekes

Highly original horror about south Sudanese asylum seekers trapped in a haunted house.

This article appears in the 08 Dec 2020 issue of the New Statesman, Christmas special