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2021: World Premieres
2021: U.S. Releases
2021: Still Left to See

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The Movies of 2021: U.S. Releases
 By Title // By Grade // By VOR Rating  (what's this?)

Full Listing of Films Screened

⑤  Indispensable to film fans, even if it's flawed

Annette Dir. Leos Carax. Adam Driver, Marion Cotillard, Simon Helberg B
Ascension Dir. Jessica Kingdon. Documentary about labor and culture in China B+
Days Dir. Tsai Ming-liang. Lee Kang-sheng, Anong Houngheuangsy A–
Dear Comrades! Dir. Andrei Konchalovsky. Yuliya Vysotskaya, Vladislav Komarov A–
The Disciple Dir. Chaitanya Tamhane. Aditya Modak, Arun Dravid A–
Drive My Car Dir. Ryūsuke Hamaguchi. Hidetoshi Nishijima, Tōko Miura B+
Dune: Part One Dir. Denis Villeneuve. Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson B+
The Fever Dir. Maya Da-Rin. Regis Myrupu, Rosa Peixoto, Lourinelson Vladmir B+
Licorice Pizza Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson. Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman B+
Memoria Dir. Apichatpong Weerasethakul. Tilda Swinton, Elkin Díaz B+
No Ordinary Man Dir. Aisling Chin-Yee, Chase Joynt. Documentary B+
Notturno Dir. Gianfranco Rosi. Documentary about the modern Middle East A–
The Orphanage Dir. Shahrbanoo Sadat. Qodratollah Qadiri, Masihullah Feraji A–
Parallel Mothers Dir. Pedro Almodóvar. Penélope Cruz, Milena Smit B+
Passing Dir. Rebecca Hall. Tessa Thompson, Ruth Negga, André Holland B+
El Planeta Dir. Amalia Ulman. Amalia Ulman, Alejandra Ulman, Chen Zhou B+
The Power of the Dog Dir. Jane Campion. Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst B
Prayers for the Stolen Dir. Tatiana Huezo. Ana Cristina Ordóñez González A–
Quo Vadis, Aida? Dir. Jasmila Žbanić. Jasna Djuričić, Izudin Bajrović, Boris Ler A–
This Is Not a Burial, It's a Resurrection Dir. Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese A–
Titane Dir. Julia Ducournau. Agathe Rousselle, Vincent Lindon, Garance Marillier B
West Side Story Dir. Steven Spielberg. Rachel Zegler, Ansel Elgort, Ariana DeBose B
What Do We See When We Look at the Sky? Dir. Aleksandre Koberidze B+
What We Left Unfinished Dir. Mariam Ghani. Documentary about Afghan cinema A–
Zola Dir. Janicza Bravo. Taylour Paige, Riley Keough, Colman Domingo A–

④  Good or bad, this is risky and original work

About Endlessness Dir. Roy Andersson. Bengt Bergius, Conny Block, Lisa Blohm B
Anne at 13,000 Ft. Dir. Kazik Radwanski. Deragh Campbell, Dorothea Paas B
Attica Dir. Stanley Nelson, Traci A. Curry. Documentary about uprising A–
Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn Dir. Radu Jude. Katia Pascariu, Claudia Ieremia B–
Beginning Dir. Dea Kulumbegashvili. Ia Sukhitashvili, Rati Oneli B
Benedetta Dir. Paul Verhoeven. Virginie Efira, Daphne Patakia B–
C'mon C'mon Dir. Mike Mills. Joaquin Phoenix, Woody Norman, Gaby Hoffmann B+
Cusp Dir. Parker Hill, Isabel Bethencourt. Documentary about teen girls in Texas B–
Ema Dir. Pablo Larraín. Mariana Di Girólamo, Gael García Bernal B–
The Father Dir. Florian Zeller. Anthony Hopkins, Olivia Colman, Olivia Williams B
Faya Dayi Dir. Jessica Beshir. Documentary about khat growers in Ethiopia B
The French Dispatch Dir. Wes Anderson. Benicio Del Toro, Adrien Brody B–
The Green Knight Dir. David Lowery. Dev Patel, Alicia Vikander, Sean Harris C
The Humans Dir. Stephen Karam. Richard Jenkins, Jayne Houdyshell B
The Killing of Two Lovers Dir. Robert Machoian. Clayne Crawford, Sepideh Moafi B+
The Lost Daughter Dir. Maggie Gyllenhaal. Olivia Colman, Jessie Buckley A–
małni – towards the ocean, towards the shore Dir. Sky Hopinka. Documentary B
Memory House Dir. João Paulo Miranda Maria. Antônio Pitanga, Aline Marta B–
MLK/FBI Dir. Sam Pollard. Documentary about surveilling Martin Luther King, Jr. B+
New Order Dir. Michel Franco. Samantha Yazareth Anaya, Dario Yazbek Bernal B+
Nightmare Alley Dir. Guillermo del Toro. Bradley Cooper, Rooney Mara C+
Petite Maman Dir. Céline Sciamma. Joséphine Sanz, Gabrielle Sanz, Nina Meurisse B–
Preparations to Be Together for an Unknown Period of Time Dir. Lili Horvát B
Procession Dir. Robert Greene. Documentary about sexual assault survivors B
Sweat Dir. Magnus von Horn. Magdalena Kolesnik, Julian Swiezewski A–
Test Pattern Dir. Shatara Michelle Ford. Brittany S. Hall, Will Brill, Gail Bean B+
There Is No Evil Dir. Mohammad Rasoulof. Baran Rasoulof, Kaveh Ahangar B
The Tragedy of Macbeth Dir. Joel Coen. Denzel Washington, Frances McDormand B
Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy Dir. Ryūsuke Hamaguchi. Kotone Furukawa B+
The Woman Who Ran Dir. Hong Sang-soo. Kim Min-hee, Song Seon-mi B+

③  Try to make time, but don't cry if you miss it

Being the Ricardos Dir. Aaron Sorkin. Nicole Kidman, Javier Bardem, Tony Hale B–
Bruised Dir. Halle Berry. Halle Berry, Sheila Atim, Danny Boyd Jr., Adan Canto C+
CODA Dir. Siän Heder. Emilia Jones, Marlee Matlin, Troy Kotsur, Daniel Durant C–
Don't Look Up Dir. Adam McKay. Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence C
Encanto Dir. Jared Bush, Byron Howard. Voice of Stephanie Beatriz B–
Flee Dir. Jonas Poher Rasmussen. Documentary about gay Afghan refugee B
A Hero Dir. Asghar Farhadi. Amir Jadidi, Sahar Goldoust, Mohsen Tanabandeh B–
Hive Dir. Blerta Basholli. Yllka Gashi, Çun Lajçi, Aurita Agushi, Kumrije Hoxha B
I'm Your Man Dir. Maria Schrader. Maren Eggert, Dan Stevens, Sandra Hüller B
In the Heights Dir. Jon M. Chu. Anthony Ramos, Leslie Grace, Melissa Barrera C+
Isabella Dir. Matías Piñeiro. María Villar, Agustina Muñoz, Gabriela Saidón B–
Judas and the Black Messiah Dir. Shaka King. Lakeith Stanfield, Daniel Kaluuya C+
Kala Azar Dir. Janis Rafailidou. Penelope Tsilika, Dimitris Lalos, Michele Valley B–
The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain Dir. David Midell. Frankie Faison B–
King Richard Dir. Reinaldo Marcus Green. Will Smith, Saniyya Sidney B
The Last Forest Dir. Luiz Bolognesi. Documentary about an imperiled tribe C+
Little Girl Dir. Sébastien Lifshitz. Documentary about a young trans girl in France B–
The Many Saints of Newark Dir. Alan Taylor. Alessandro Nivola B–
Mass Dir. Fran Kranz. Reed Birney, Ann Dowd, Jason Isaacs, Martha Plimpton B
The Matrix Resurrections Dir. Lana Wachowski. Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss C–
Moffie Dir. Oliver Hermanus. Kai Luke Brummer, Ryan de Villiers, Matthew Vey B–
Night of the Kings Dir. Philippe Lacôte. Koné Bakary, Steve Tientcheu B
No Sudden Move Dir. Steven Soderbergh. Don Cheadle, Benicio Del Toro C+
No Time to Die Dir. Cary Joji Fukunaga. Daniel Craig, Léa Seydoux, Rami Malek C
Pig Dir. Michael Sarnoski. Nicolas Cage, Alex Wolff, Adam Arkin, David Knell C+
Plan B Dir. Natalie Morales. Kuhoo Verma, Victoria Moroles, Michael Provost C+
Red Rocket Dir. Sean Baker. Simon Rex, Suzanna Son, Bree Elrod, Ethan Darbone C+
Saint Maud Dir. Rose Glass. Morfydd Clark, Jennifer Ehle, Lily Frazer, Lily Knight B
Sequin in a Blue Room Dir. Samuel Van Grinsven. Conor Leach, Ed Wightman B
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Dir. Destin Daniel Cretton C+
The Souvenir, Part II Dir. Joanna Hogg. Honor Swinton Byrne, Tilda Swinton C
Spencer Dir. Pablo Larraín. Kristen Stewart, Jack Farthing, Sally Hawkins C
Summer of Soul Dir. Questlove. Documentary about Harlem music festival B–
Supernova Dir. Harry Macqueen. Colin Firth, Stanley Tucci, Pippa Haywood B
tick, tick...BOOM! Dir. Lin-Manuel Miranda. Andrew Garfield, Alexandra Shipp B–
Twilight's Kiss Dir. Ray Leung. Tai-Bo, Ben Yuen, Patra Au Ga Man, Lo Chun Yip B
The United States vs. Billie Holiday Dir. Lee Daniels. Andra Day, Trevante Rhodes B–
The Velvet Underground Dir. Todd Haynes. Documentary about the alt-rock band B
The White Tiger Dir. Ramin Bahrani. Adarsh Gourav, Rajkummar Rao B
The Worst Person in the World Dir. Joachim Trier. Renate Reinsve C+

②  Even if it's good, it's hardly groundbreaking

Belfast Dir. Kenneth Branagh. Jude Hill, Caitríona Balfe, Jamie Dornan C
Bergman Island Dir. Mia Hansen-Løve. Vicky Krieps, Tim Roth, Mia Wasikowska C–
Beyto Dir. Gitta Gsell. Burak Ates, Dimitri Stapfer, Ecem Aydin C
Breaking Fast Dir. Mike Mosallam. Haaz Sleiman, Michael Cassidy, Amin El Gamal C–
The Card Counter Dir. Paul Schrader. Oscar Isaac, Tye Sheridan, Tiffany Haddish C–
The County Dir. Grímur Hákonarson. Arndís Hrönn Egilsdóttir, Hinrik Ólafsson B–
Cruella Dir. Craig Gillespie. Emma Stone, Mark Strong, Emma Thompson, Joel Fry C–
Dachra Dir. Abdelhamid Bouchnak. Yassmine Dimassi, Aziz Jbali, Bilel Slatnia C–
Eternals Dir. Chloé Zhao. Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Salma Hayek D
The Eyes of Tammy Faye Dir. Michael Showalter. Jessica Chastain C
The Hand of God Dir. Paolo Sorrentino. Filippo Scotti, Teresa Saponangelo D–
Language Lessons Dir. Natalie Morales. Mark Duplass, Natalie Morales B–
The Mauritanian Dir. Kevin Macdonald. Tahar Rahim, Jodie Foster C–
Port Authority Dir. Dir. Danielle Lessovitz. Fionn Whitehead, Leyna Bloom C
The Rescue Dir. Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi, Jimmy Chin. Documentary B–
Saint-Narcisse Dir. Bruce La Bruce. Félix-Antoine Duval, Tania Kontoyanni C+
Shiva Baby Dir. Emma Seligman. Rachel Sennott, Molly Gordon, Danny Deferrari C
Stillwater Dir. Tom McCarthy. Matt Damon, Camille Cottin, Abigail Breslin C–
Summer of '85 Dir. François Ozon. Félix Lefebvre, Benjamin Voisin C–
Swan Song Dir. Benjamin Cleary. Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Glenn Close C–
Truman and Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation Dir. Lisa Immordino Vreeland C

①  Low ambition, little originality, easy to forget

Boy Meets Boy Dir. Daniel Sanchez Lopez. Alexandros Koutsoulis C+
The Guilty Dir. Antoine Fuqua. Jake Gyllenhaal, Riley Keough, Ethan Hawke D+
House of Gucci Dir. Ridley Scott. Lady Gaga, Adam Driver, Al Pacino D–
Respect Dir. Liesl Tommy. Jennifer Hudson, Marlon Wayans, Forest Whitaker C
Sublet Dir. Eytan Fox. John Benjamin Hickey, Niv Nissim, Miki Kam C–
The Tender Bar Dir. George Clooney. Tye Sheridan, Ben Affleck, Lily Rabe C–