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The 2010s brought us some of the best movies in recent history. From blockbusters to indie films, this decade saw a wide range of cinematic masterpieces that captivated audiences worldwide. Here are the top picks for the best movies of the 2010s.
Top critically acclaimed movies of the early 2010s
The Social Network
The Social Network, directed by David Fincher and written by Aaron Sorkin, was released in 2010 and was an instant hit with both critics and audiences. The film tells the story of Facebook’s creation and the legal battles that followed. It received eight Oscar nominations and won three, including Best Adapted Screenplay.
The movie is known for its sharp dialogue, fast-paced editing, and outstanding performances from its cast, including Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg and Andrew Garfield as Eduardo Saverin. The Social Network not only captured the zeitgeist of the time but also became a classic example of modern filmmaking.
Directed by Richard Linklater, Boyhood is a coming-of-age drama that follows a young boy named Mason (Ellar Coltrane) over the course of 12 years. The movie was filmed intermittently between 2002 and 2013, allowing viewers to watch Mason grow up on screen in real-time.
Boyhood received universal acclaim upon its release in 2014 and was praised for its unique concept and execution. The film was nominated for six Oscars and won one for Best Supporting Actress (Patricia Arquette). Boyhood is considered a groundbreaking achievement in cinema due to its innovative approach to storytelling.
List of other critically acclaimed movies:
- Black Swan (2010)
- The King’s Speech (2010)
- Hugo (2011)
- Drive (2011)
- Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
- Gravity (2013)
How movie themes and styles evolved in the mid-2010s
The mid-2010s saw a shift in movie themes and styles, as filmmakers began to explore new ideas and experiment with different genres. One of the most significant changes was the rise of socially conscious movies that tackled issues such as racism, sexism, and inequality.
Movies like Moonlight (2016), Get Out (2017), and Black Panther (2018) were not only critically acclaimed but also became cultural touchstones due to their representation of marginalized communities. These films broke box office records and won numerous awards, including Oscars for Best Picture (Moonlight) and Best Original Screenplay (Get Out).
Another trend that emerged during this time was the use of unconventional storytelling techniques. Movies like The Lobster (2015) and Swiss Army Man (2016) used surrealism and absurdity to tell their stories, while others like La La Land (2016) and Baby Driver (2017) incorporated music into their narratives in innovative ways.
List of notable mid-2010s movies:
- Moonlight (2016)
- Get Out (2017)
- Black Panther (2018)
- The Lobster (2015)
- Swiss Army Man (2016)
- La La Land (2016)
- Baby Driver (2017)
Blockbuster hits of the late 2010s: Which movies made the most money?
The late 2010s saw some of the biggest blockbusters in movie history, with several films grossing over $1 billion at the box office. The Marvel Cinematic Universe continued its dominance with Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Avengers: Endgame (2019) becoming the highest-grossing movies of all time.
Other notable box office hits include The Lion King (2019), which became the highest-grossing animated film ever, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), which kicked off a new trilogy and earned over $2 billion worldwide.
The success of these films can be attributed to their ability to appeal to a wide audience and their massive marketing campaigns. These movies were not only entertaining but also had built-in fan bases that eagerly awaited each release.
List of highest-grossing movies of the late 2010s:
- Avengers: Endgame (2019)
- The Lion King (2019)
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
- Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
- Jurassic World (2015)
The impact of technology and special effects on movies in the 2010s
The 2010s saw significant advancements in technology and special effects, which had a profound impact on the movie industry. Filmmakers could now create more realistic and immersive worlds than ever before, allowing them to tell stories that were previously impossible to bring to life.
Movies like Avatar (2009) and Gravity (2013) used cutting-edge technology to create stunning visuals that transported audiences into other worlds. Other films like Inception (2010) and Doctor Strange (2016) used special effects to bend reality and explore new dimensions.
However, this increased reliance on technology also led to concerns about its overuse. Some critics argued that movies were becoming too reliant on special effects at the expense of storytelling and character development. Nevertheless, it is clear that technology has had a significant impact on movies in the 2010s and will continue to shape the industry for years to come.
List of notable movies that utilized technology and special effects:
- Avatar (2009)
- Gravity (2013)
- Inception (2010)
- Doctor Strange (2016)
- The Jungle Book (2016)
The movie that had the greatest cultural impact of the decade
The 2010s were filled with movies that had a significant cultural impact, but one film stands out above the rest: Black Panther (2018). The Marvel superhero movie not only broke box office records but also became a cultural phenomenon due to its representation of black culture and its celebration of diversity.
Black Panther was directed by Ryan Coogler and starred Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, the king of Wakanda. The film’s all-star cast included Lupita Nyong’o, Michael B. Jordan, and Danai Gurira. Black Panther was not only a critical success but also resonated with audiences around the world who saw themselves represented on screen in a positive light.
The movie’s impact went beyond just entertainment; it sparked discussions about race, identity, and representation in Hollywood. Black Panther proved that movies with diverse casts could be both commercially successful and culturally significant, paving the way for more inclusive storytelling in the future.
The 2010s produced some of the most exceptional movies in recent history, showcasing the incredible talent and creativity of filmmakers across various genres.