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The 10 most critically acclaimed films of 2021



Recently here at CinePOP, we kicked off our article with the best movies of the year, according to our editorial team. The end of the year is always a busy time for film critics and journalists alike, as it is the time when we can celebrate and announce the best – and often the worst – that we have seen in another. twelve month trip. In 2021, things started to resume their course, getting closer to the “normal” before. And we must continue to take care of ourselves and get vaccinated to avoid the worst.

Along with making our own list, it’s always interesting to ‘swap stickers’, and see what other vehicles or personalities from the industry highlight as the highlight of the year. This is exactly what we are going to bring you in our new story. Here, we conducted a survey of the top releases from 2021, whether in theaters or streaming, that received the most praise from the press, scoring high marks in the Rotten Tomatoes aggregator. All above 90% approval. Check it out below and comment on your favorites.

The great Joaquin Phoenix’s debut film following his Oscar win for his devastating role in The Joker (2019). Written and directed by Mike Mills (All Forms of Love and Women of the Twentieth Century), the film, all in black and white, features the actor as a radio journalist having to do his sister a favor: take care of his little nephew. So the guy decides to travel with the boy across the country to show him more of the world, far from the city he knows. The film was a hit on festival circuits, and the press garnered 94% approval for the drama – which arrives in Brazil through Diamond Films in February, just in time for film awards season.

Presented at the Tribeca Film Festival, this vibrant and dancing novel hit Brazilian theaters on June 17, and a little later it was already in the HBO Max collection, where anyone who wants it can find it today. Created for the stage by Lin-Manuel Miranda – the “Midas” of Broadway musicals (which now also dominate cinema screens) – the work, as usual for the author, deals with the situation of immigrants. in the USA. This time, the focus is on a Dominican and Latino community residing in New York. The musical received a nomination for Best Actor for protagonist Anthony Ramos at the Golden Globes. Along with the critics, it also got 94% approval, proving to be one of the most beloved of 2021.

Enjoy watching:

With a debut promised later this year on Netflix, A Daughter Lost is the directorial debut for actress Maggie Gyllenhaal (Batman – The Dark Knight). The actress also signs the screenplay. The drama stars Oscar winner Olivia Colman as a middle-aged woman who finds herself in a brief moment of freedom after her daughters go to spend a season with their father in Canada. She then decides to go to a seaside town in Italy. But there, events will make him settle their accounts with the past. Screened at several festivals, the film received nominations for Best Actress for Colman and Director for Gyllenhaal at the Golden Globes, and 95% press approval.

Yes, we needed a very pop quality movie to rock this list, and no other has marked 2021 (or at least the end of it) like this super production which is a true audience freak, driving fans crazy, to tears, applause and ecstasy. It’s the kind of ‘event’ movie that reminds us why we are so passionate about cinema – escape and entertainment. Director Jon Watts and young Tom Holland certainly raised their market values ​​after scoring this “super”. But all of this blockbuster success isn’t just what the blockbuster achieved, as the press continues to rave about the film – and with nearly 300 reviews, the film gets 94% approval.

Netflix knows very well how to adjust its debut schedule, functioning like the exhibition market and the big studios have always done over the decades. That is, less impactful releases at the start of the year, big blockbusters in the middle of the year and more award-oriented films at the end of the year. This is exactly what the biggest streaming market has achieved, with films like The Irishman, Marriage Story and Chicago’s Seven, for example. This year, his big and prestigious film promises to be this The Attack of the Dogs, a western which marks the return of the famous Jane Campion (The Piano) on the front of the stage. In the plot, Benedict Cumberbatch walks away from Marvel a bit, to play a rough man, fighting with his brother after marrying a single mother. The film raves everywhere it goes and holds one of this year’s Golden Globes records, with seven nominations: Best Drama, Actor (Cumberbatch), Supporting Actress and Actor (Kirsten Dunst and Kodi Smit-McPhee), director, screenplay (Campion) and soundtrack. With the reviews, he has 95% approval.

In this year’s awards season, the film O Som do Silêncio – about a musician with hearing loss and facing the world of the deaf – stood out. Now, a similarly themed film promises to enter the upcoming season in early 2022. In the film, young Ruby (Emilia Jones) is the only listener in her deaf family. She dreams of music and wishes to invest in this career; but when her family’s fishing business does not go well, she must choose between her dream and the people she loves. The AppleTV + film is the remake of the French film A Família Bélier (2014), which was successful in Brazil a few years ago. One of the draws of the American version is the presence of Marlee Matlin, a deaf actress in real life who won the Oscar in 1988 for the film Children of Silence. The Golden Globe nominated The Rhythm of the Heart in the categories of Best Dramatic Film and Supporting Actor for Troy Kotsur, who plays the Patriarch. The film gets 96% approval.

Impressive biography on one of the most controversial cases of the American racial emancipation movement, this production was a success earlier this year, and managed to win the Oscar 2021 after its release in February in most regions of the world, including Brazil. The work tells the true story of an infiltrator in one of the “cells” of the extremist group Black Panthers, which fought for black equality in the 1960s. Bill O’Neal was arrested and forced to surrender his “brothers” in the US federal government. agents in particular the revolutionary leader Fred Hampton. On screen, a talent duel between Oscar nominee Daniel Kaluuya and LaKeith Stanfield, the evening’s first winner. With a 96% approval rating from critics, the film is now available on the HBO Max Collection.

Who knew that a film with Nicolas Cage would again appear in the spotlight of the specialized press in a positive way? It only proves that there is still time and that there is still hope for Bruce Willis. Among Cage’s recent follies, Pig has fallen into critical favor, becoming one of the most acclaimed films of 2021. Believe it or not. Joe, in 2013, is perhaps the last in Cage’s career to achieve such a feat. For this, Cage always relies on small independent productions, which are successful in festivals, but totally outside the mainstream market. And that seems to be exactly the path Pig needs to take. In the plot, Cage plays a guy trying to get his kidnapped pig back. With this simple plot, the film garnered an impressive 97% approval rating with 250 journalist reviews. Well done, Cage.

02) 7 prisoners

Who says we won’t have Brazilian movies on the list. Best of all, a Netflix movie. It’s true, the platform is investing more and more massively in productions of all kinds and all types, and is opening up more and more to international productions, produced in several countries around the world outside the USA. Brazil has also conquered its space with Netflix. And here, with this work by Alexandre Moratto, the name that works like a decoy is that of the most international Brazilian and of all, Rodrigo Santoro. In Santoro, Luca, owner of a scrapyard, employs 18-year-old Mateus (Christian Malheiros) so that he can help his family. However, soon the boy will find himself in the middle of the dangerous world of human trafficking. 7 Prisoners gets an impressive 98% approval rating, being one of the most popular of the year, already running on Netflix.

The new film by the prestigious Coen brothers (Fargo and Where the Weak Can’t Go) is an adaptation of one of William Shakespeare’s greatest classics; and we can’t wait to see what the “crazy” filmmakers did with the adaptation. The wait is coming to an end, since on December 25 the feature will be available on the AppleTV + platform. What we do know is that this is more of a black and white production and stars the great Denzel Washington in the title role. The latest Oscar winner, Frances McDormand, plays Lady Macbeth. The film received a nomination for Best Actor for Washington at the Golden Globes and garners 98% critical approval.


In the field of animated films, two productions stand out. The first and most praised of the year, with a whopping 98% review approval rating, is a Netflix debut – in partnership with Sony Pictures: The Mitchell Family and the Revolt of the Machines. And to show that times have changed, who would have thought that an animation from Sony would ever surpass that of almighty Disney in the praise of the press. But that’s exactly what happened in 2021. In the plot, on their way to take their eldest daughter to film school, a family finds itself in the middle of a global event that drives all tech crazy, in the style of Terminator, causing an attack by machines against humans.

In second place, with 94% approval, we now have a Disney production. And the one that received most critical acclaim in 2021 was Raya and the Last Dragon, a fantasy that speaks to a magical land of mystical creatures but serves to celebrate Asian culture – just like the studio alongside Marvel did. that year with Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings.

Make sure you watch:

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