The Author's Best Films of 2020 (ranked)

Some of the films on this list were officially released in 2019 but shown at film festivals in 2020. The year bodes well for cinema from the African continent. Six are from USA including four independent films (as opposed to studio, big budget films), three are from Italy, one each from Iran, Russia, Denmark, Germany, Korea, Lesotho, Cote d’Ivoire, and Chile. Listed in order of merit:

  1.       There Is No Evil (2020, Iran) Dir. Mohammad Rasoulof (Golden Bear for Best Film at Berlin Festival and other awards)
  2.     Dear Comrades! (2020, Russia) Dir. Andrei Konchalovsky (Special Jury Prize at Venice Film Festival, Silver Hugo for Best Director at Chicago Film Festival)
  3.      Nomadland (2020, USA) Dir. Chloe Zhao (Golden Lion award at Venice Festival and Rare Pearl award at Denver Festival)
  4.      Mank (2020, USA) Dir. David Fincher
  5.      Thou Shalt Not Hate (2020, Italy) Dir. Mauro Mancini (Pasinetti Award for Best Actor and other awards at Venice Festival)
  6.      This Is Not A Burial, It's A Resurrection (2019, Lesotho) Dir; Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese (19 awards worldwide, including Best Film at Athens, Haifa, Hamptons and Kerala Festivals, Best Actress awards at Montreal, Hong Kong and Durban Festivals)
  7.      Martin Eden (2019, Italy) Dir. Pietro Marcello (Volpi Cup for Best Actor at Venice Festival)
  8.      Siberia (2020, Italy/Germany) Dir. Abel Ferrara
  9.      The Atlantic City Story (2020, USA) Dir. Henry Butash (Independent debut film)
  10.      Another Round (2020, Denmark) Dir. Thomas Vinterberg (Best Film, Director, Actor and Screenwriter awards at the European Film Awards)
  11.       I Was At Home, But...(2019, Germany) Dir. Angela Schanalec (Silver Bear for Best Director at Berlin Festival and other awards worldwide)
  12.      Residue (2020, USA) Dir. Merawi Gerima (Independent debut film) (Acting Award and Audience Award for Best Film at Slamdance Festival)
  13.      Ema (2019, Chile) Dir. Pablo Larrain (UNIMED award at Venice Festival)
  14.      Tesla (2020, USA) Dir. Michael Almereyeda (Alfred P Sloan Feature Film Prize at Sundance Festival)
  15.      The Woman Who Ran (2020, South Korea) Dir. Hong Sang-Soo (Silver Bear for Best Director at Berlin Festival) 
  16.      Night of the Kings (2020, Cote d’Ivoire) Dir. Philippe Lacote (Silver Hugos for Best Sound and for Cinematography at Chicago Film Festival)
  17.      First Cow (2019, USA) Dir. Kelly Reichardt (Jury Prize at Deauville Festival, 2020)

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