Letterboxd is a popular platform for moviegoers to weigh in on their favorite movies. Fans can “heart” their favorite movies, give them star ratings and feather reviews. The 2010s saw a number of groundbreaking drama films from international and domestic filmmakers, which were rated on Letterboxd.
The film landscape has never been richer and audiences have access to films from markets around the world. The 2010s saw instant classic dramas. Using Letterboxd’s ratings, audiences can find some of the most influential, groundbreaking, and gripping drama titles of the 2010s.
10/10 Shoplifters was a critical and commercial success
Shoplifters is a 2018 film by Japanese filmmaker Hirozaku Kore-eda. Shoplifters follows a family living on the edge of poverty. They decide to start stealing to make ends meet and survive. The family is both bonded and gradually separated by their illegal activities, and audiences have been moved by their touching story.
The film was both a critical and commercial success. Shoplifters received the prestigious Palme d’Or, the top prize at the Cannes International Film Festival. The film also received an Oscar nomination in the Best Foreign Language category and earned 73,000 likes on Letterboxd.
9/10 The chase fired Mads Mikkelsen to stardom
Mads Mikkelsen had a long acting career before 2012 The huntbut his work in this unsettling psychological drama put him on the map. The hunt follows a kindergarten teacher (Mikkelsen) falsely accused of molesting a child. The teacher struggles to vouch for his innocence as his island community closes in around him.
Mikkelsen received international recognition for his vulnerable and poignant performance and received the Best Actor award at Cannes. The haunting piece has clearly stuck with audiences in the years since its release, as it has earned 79,000 likes on Letterboxd.
8/10 Moonlight is visually striking and poignant
2016 Moonlight is the first blockbuster feature film from acclaimed director Barry Jenkins. The film is adapted from the play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue by Tarrell Alvin McCraney and retains its three-act theatrical structure. Moonlight follows the life of a young black man as he comes to terms with his sexual identity.
The visually arresting and deeply poignant work launched Jenkins’ film career and boasted outstanding performances from the young cast. Presenter Warren Beatty mistakenly awarded Best Picture to The Earth instead of Moonlight. The error was corrected live on television and will remain an unforgettable moment in Oscar’s history. Moonlight gained 333,000 likes on Letterboxd, a testament to its impeccable quality.
7/10 Prisoners keep the audience locked in suspense
Director Denis Villeneuve is synonymous with sci-fi after making recent hits Dunes and Blade Runner 2049. In 2013, Villeneuve directed the psychological drama taught Prisoners, which centers on a father’s quest for revenge after the kidnapping of his young daughter. As the mystery of her disappearance unravels, a detective races to uncover the dark truth behind the case.
Prisoners features an A-list ensemble cast portraying complicated characters and is masterfully shot by acclaimed cinematographer Roger Deakins. Prisoners remains a critically acclaimed entry in Villeneuve’s growing body of work, and Letterboxd viewers also rate it as one of the best of the 2010s with 250,000 likes.
6/10 The Grand Budapest Hotel is one of Anderson’s finest works
2014 The Grand Budapest Hotel is one of director Wes Anderson’s many acclaimed films. Anderson is known for his dollhouse aesthetic, tongue-in-cheek one-liners, and fable storytelling. The Grand Budapest Hotel is set in the titular hotel over several time periods, documenting the rise and fall of the once luxurious lodge and its dedicated staff.
The poignant comedy-drama boasts a tour de force performance from lead actor Ralph Fiennes and a set of frequent Anderson collaborators. Critics often recognize the film as one of Anderson’s best of all time, and Letterboxd audiences agree, as the film has garnered 588,000 likes.
5/10 Interstellar is out of this world
Interstellar is often considered Christopher Nolan’s most moving film. Nolan is best known for directing the Black Knight trilogy, but Interstellar is considered his most complex and personal work. The sci-fi space epic follows a group of astronauts who struggle to save Earth from a second Dust Bowl, which will eventually destroy the planet.
As NASA scientists struggle to find a new home for humanity, they must race against time as their space travels twist the passage of time. Interstellar gained 647,000 likes on Letterboxd.
4/10 The Handmaiden is an epic and terrifying love story
South Korean director Park Chan-wook is known for his disturbing and mind-bending films. The Dark Romance of 2016 The servant is no exception, which got 155,000 likes on Letterboxd. Based on the English novel finger cot by Sarah Waters, The servant follows the years-long affair between a Japanese heiress and her maid.
There’s no shortage of betrayals, twists and turns in the psychological drama, and audiences were floored by the scale and beauty of the play. The servant became an instant classic of South Korean cinema and cemented Park Chan-wook’s place among the greatest auteur directors of this century.
3/10 Whiplash created a critical frenzy
Whiplash, starring Miles Teller and JK Simmons, exploded into theaters in 2014. Damien Chazelle’s breakout film follows an aspiring drummer who struggles to earn his abusive instructor’s approval. Whiplash, based on a short film written and directed by Chazelle, garnered critical attention and acclaim.
Whiplash received critical acclaim for its rich musical soundscape and intense performances by its two leads. Simmons won his first Oscar for his portrayal of the jazz maestro, and the film earned 599,000 likes on Letterboxd.
2/10 Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a heartbreaking tale of forbidden love
2019 Portrait of a lady on fire by French director Céline Sciamma is a heartbreaking story of forbidden love. In 18th century France, a young female painter begins an affair with a wealthy woman whom she is commissioned to paint in secret. The heiress resisted sitting down for the portrait, as it would seal her engagement in an unwanted marriage.
As the two women fall in love, they also worry about the inevitable demise of their relationship. The romance sizzled on screens around the world, racked up a number of nominations and earned 244,000 likes on Letterboxd.
1/10 Parasite is an exciting drama
The biggest film of 2019 was undoubtedly that of South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-ho Parasite. The international genre hit follows a working-class family as they attempt to infiltrate the lives of a much wealthier household. The film is a social satire that comments on class, capitalism and upward mobility.
Parasite swept awards season and became the first foreign film to receive Best Picture at the Oscars. Letterboxd users agree with the film’s reception and rated it the defining drama of the 2010s, with 1.1 million likes.
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