Mr. Reed’s Metaphysical Neighborhood Presents the Best (and Worst) Films of 2019

[For an explanation of my blog-post title, check out my “best of” list from 2013.]

To be honest, I am suffering from “best of” fatigue, having already published a variety of thoughts on the cinema of 2019 at Film Festival Today (where I am Associate Editor), Hammer to Nail (where I am lead film critic) and The Fog of Truth (the documentary-themed podcast which I cohost), not to mention voting in the Washington DC Area Film Critics Association’s annual awards poll. But none of those particular lists showcased the full range of my thoughts on the films of the year, so below, you will find more comprehensive lists of my favorites, divided by documentary (nonfiction) and narrative (fiction) formats. Most of these received some kind of theatrical or online release in 2019, though some of them perhaps did not (hard to keep it all straight when I see so much at film festivals). Where I have previously written reviews of a movie (whether for Film Festival Today or Hammer to Nail), the title of that movie is hyperlinked to my original review. If I have not reviewed a film, I hyperlink the title to the movie’s official website.

If there are films that you saw and loved this year which are not included in my list, then it is possible that either I did not see them, or liked them but not enough to include among my favorites. I also may have seen them and not liked them. As per my thoughts last year, I felt it was an excellent year for both nonfiction and fiction films, though my absolute favorites were among my top documentaries: Los Reyes (see below) may well be the movie I love the most from 2019. Enjoy my list! At two later points, hopefully within the next month, I will publish other “best of 2019” lists, for acting and technical/artistic achievements.


TOP 10 DOCUMENTARIES (in alphabetical order):

TOP 10 NARRATIVES (in alphabetical order):


10 DOCUMENTARY RUNNERS-UP (in alphabetical order):

10 NARRATIVE RUNNERS-UP (in alphabetical order):


HONORABLE MENTIONS (in alphabetical order):

WORST MOVIES OF THE YEAR (in alphabetical order):

Happy New Year, and may 2020 bring you all the cinematic joy you want and need!

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