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Most Popular Films of 2020

Lies, ties and samurais: the films that rang out from the last 12 months...

Mind-bending plants, Japanese classics and sun-kissed thrillers all hooked our subscribers during this most challenging of years.

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Little JoeLittle Joe

Science Fiction2019105 minsDirector: Jessica Hausner

Jessica Hausner’s cool, witty and unsettling sci-fi starring Emily Beecham and Ben Whishaw.

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A Bigger SplashA Bigger Splash

Thriller2015125 minsDirector: Luca Guadagnino

Ralph Fiennes delivers a sensational performance as one of four passionate souls sharing a villa in the Sicilian sunshine, with jealousy, intrigue and violence simmering beneath the surface.

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RomanceRomance

Drama199998 minsDirector: Catherine Breillat

Shockingly explicit, Catherine Breillat’s critically acclaimed Romance is one of the most controversial films of modern cinema.

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Lynn + LucyLynn + Lucy

Drama201988 minsDirector: Fyzal Boulifa

A lifelong friendship is tested by tragedy in this atmospheric and intense first feature from acclaimed British shorts director Fyzal Boulifa.

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Paris, TexasParis, Texas

Drama1984145 minsDirector: Wim Wenders

The late, great Harry Dean Stanton's finest role came as the near-mute Travis, on a journey across America to reunite his family, in Wim Wenders' moving tale of loss and redemption.

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One Deadly SummerOne Deadly Summer

Crime1983134 minsDirector: Jean Becker

A summer of love turns into a dark tale of revenge. This compelling film by Jean Becker features a stunning Isabelle Adjani in one of her most extraordinary performances.

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King of New YorkKing of New York

Crime1990103 minsDirector: Abel Ferrara

Christopher Walken is the dogged drug-lord determined to keep his empire together, in Abel Ferrara's brutally gritty crime thriller.

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Women Make Film: A New Road Movie Through Cinema Part 1Women Make Film: A New Road Movie Through Cinema Part 1

Documentary2019179 minsDirector: Mark Cousins

Mark Cousins' epic odyssey through female filmmaking represents one of the most ambitious and in-depth documentaries ever made.

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Picnic at Hanging RockPicnic at Hanging Rock

Period drama1975107 minsDirector: Peter Weir

The film that established Peter Weir as a major filmmaker remains one of the most chillingly atmospheric and beautifully enigmatic films ever made.

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Seven SamuraiSeven Samurai

Drama1954207 minsDirector: Akira Kurosawa

Farmers hire a band of samurai to defend them against marauding bandits in Kurosawa’s influential epic, a touchstone for action movies ever since.

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Tokyo StoryTokyo Story

Drama1953136 minsDirector: Yasujirō Ozu

A constant fixture in critics' polls, Yasujiro Ozu's most enduring masterpiece is a beautifully nuanced exploration of filial duty, expectation and regret.

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Appropriate BehaviourAppropriate Behaviour

Comedy201586 minsDirector: Desiree Akhavan

Desiree Akhavan directs and stars in this witty, razor-sharp and fearless comedy following the sexual misadventures of a bisexual Brooklynite.

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AniaraAniara

Science Fiction2018106 minsDirector: Pella Kågerman

The passengers on an interstellar space-liner are thrown into turmoil when their mission goes off course, in this compassionate and thought-provoking sci-fi drama.

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GirlhoodGirlhood

Drama2014113 minsDirector: Céline Sciamma

In the tough suburbs of Paris, sixteen-year-old Marieme decides to reinvent herself when she joins a girl gang.

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Belle de JourBelle de Jour

Drama1967100 minsDirector: Luis Buñuel

Luis Buñuel's provocative classic about a bored and neglected housewife (Catherine Deneuve) risks her reputation to take up a daring new hobby.

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Last and First MenLast and First Men

Animation & Artists Moving Image202070 minsDirector: Jóhann Jóhannsson

Two billion years ahead of us, a future race of humans finds itself on the verge of extinction. Tilda Swinton narrates this visually stunning lament for humanity by acclaimed composer Jóhann Jóhannsson (Sicario, Arrival).

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Koko-di Koko-daKoko-di Koko-da

Horror201989 minsDirector: Johannes Nyholm

If you go down to the woods today, you’re sure of a very nasty surprise…

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La belle époqueLa belle époque

Comedy2019115 minsDirector: Nicolas Bedos

Daniel Auteuil’s illustrator is given the chance to visit a different era to re-evaluate his life in this resplendent and absurdly enjoyable French comedy.

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LuckyLucky

Drama201688 minsDirector: John Carroll Lynch

Harry Dean Stanton gives the performance of a lifetime as an irascible nonagenarian maverick in a New Mexican town, grappling with his mortality.

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The Watermelon WomanThe Watermelon Woman

Comedy199785 minsDirector: Cheryl Dunye

Cheryl Dunye's smart and funny romance - thought to be the first feature directed by a black lesbian - remains a breath of fresh air decades on.

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Winter SleepWinter Sleep

Drama2014197 minsDirector: Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Modern master filmmaker Nuri Bilge Celyan’s Palme d’Or winner: an extraordinary, epic drama.