Josh Kupecki’s Top 10 Films of 2021
1) Drive My Car
No other film this year has enthralled, surprised, and moved me more. A wholly generous and unforgettable gift to cinema.
2) All Light, Everywhere
Mapping the flaws in our perception, and the ethically questionable uses of them, Theo Anthony's doc is eye-opening.
3) The Green Knight
"Great wonder grew in hall, at his hue most strange to see, for man and gear and all, were green as green could be."
4) The Souvenir: Part II
A pitch-perfect, intensely personal transmutation of grief into art.
The new gods of consumption have seized your devotion. Do you have enough influence to retrieve your life?
2021's most memorable love story, forged with a nihilistic energy that yields startling veins of compassion.
7) The Card Counter
As crisp and unpredictable as a freshly opened deck, Schrader once again deals an unforgiving hand.
8) The Humans
Familial browbeating brilliantly orchestrated to a vividly dreadful crescendo as the quotidian reveals the profound.
A winning and irrepressibly inventive tale that nimbly straddles comedy and nightmare with extremely entertaining results.
10) In the Earth
"People get a bit funny in the woods sometimes" is exactly what you want to hear at the beginning of a Ben Wheatley film.
Azor; C'mon, C'mon; Pig.
The Beta Test, Last Night in Soho, Licorice Pizza.
CODA, The Macaluso Sisters, Riders of Justice.
Viewers' inability to find closure in complete stories, spurring creators to return to the well/bank.
Acting Kudos (Male)
Benedict Cumberbatch (The Power of the Dog), Richard Jenkins (The Humans), Simon Rex (Red Rocket)
Acting Kudos (Female)
Kirsten Dunst (The Power of the Dog), Alana Haim (Licorice Pizza), Riley Keough (Zola)
Roy Andersson (About Endlessness), Ryûsuke Hamaguchi (Drive My Car), David Lowery (The Green Knight)
Best Original Screenplay
Julia Ducournau (Titane), Andreas Fontana and Mariano Llinás (Azor), Anders Thomas Jensen (Riders of Justice)
Best Adapted Screenplay
Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog), Ryûsuke Hamaguchi and Takamasa Oe (Drive My Car), Stephen Karam (The Humans)
Can’t Get You Out of My Head: No one so artfully examines the rabbit warrens and Möbius strips of the modern world’s perpetual existential crisis than Adam Curtis.
Nothing was more tone-deaf or lazily inaccurate than the pandering addiction drama Four Good Days.
The Little Film That Could
It’s been a winding festival road for The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain, but it now has a streaming home at HBO (for now). A must-see.