The Best and Worst Movies of 2010

  • Publish Date: January 7, 2011
  • Comments: ↓ 54 user comments

Limited releases: Nothing but the truth

155,102,29
Breakdown of 2010 Limited Releases (Min. 7 Reviews)
Good (Metascore ≥ 61) 155 films
Mixed (40-60) 102 films
Bad (≤ 40) 29 films
Average Metascore 60.5

Though highly acclaimed 2010 dramas Winter's Bone and A Prophet tell original stories (the former, based upon a novel), the bulk of the year's 10 best-reviewed limited release films turn to real life for their inspiration. In fact, six of the top 10 films are documentaries, while the year's best-reviewed limited release -- Carlos -- is based on the true story of terrorist Carlos the Jackal.

In total, critics enjoyed 54% of the year's limited releases, down from 58% the previous year, but still well higher than the 26% approval rate for 2010's wide releases. And only 10% of limited releases last year received truly bad reviews; the worst 10 of those films are listed below, after a quick look at releases by month and a list of the year's best-reviewed limited releases.

Limited Releases by Month, 2010

In the chart above, Green represents the number of positively-reviewed movies (Metascore of 61 or higher). Yellow represents movies receiving mixed or average reviews (40-60). Red represents negatively-reviewed movies (0-39).

The Best Limited Releases of 2010
  Title Genre(s) Netflix Metascore Users
1 Carlos Foreign/Drama + Queue 94 8.1
2 A Prophet Foreign/Drama + Queue 90 8.9
3 Winter's Bone Drama + Queue 90 6.6
4 Inside Job Documentary + Queue 88 8.8
5 A Film Unfinished Documentary + Queue 88 6.3
6 45365 Documentary + Queue 88 n/a
7 The Tillman Story Documentary + Queue 86 7.1
8 Last Train Home Foreign/Documentary + Queue 86 8.8
9 Lebanon Foreign/Drama + Queue 85 7.3
10 Exit Through the Gift Shop Documentary + Queue 85 8.5
11 Vincere Foreign/Drama + Queue 85 6.8
12 Restrepo Documentary + Queue 85 8.0
13 Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench Musical/Drama + Queue 84 n/a
14 Boxing Gym Documentary + Queue 83 n/a
15 Animal Kingdom Drama + Queue 83 8.6
16 Neil Young Trunk Show Documentary + Queue 83 n/a
17 Mademoiselle Chambon Foreign/Drama + Queue 83 8.5
18 Ajami Foreign/Drama + Queue 82 8.6
19 127 Hours Drama + Queue 82 8.3
20 Marwencol Documentary + Queue 82 n/a
21 White Material Foreign/Drama + Queue 81 n/a
22 The Secret in Their Eyes Foreign/Drama + Queue 81 8.7
23 The Secret of Kells Animation + Queue 81 8.3
24 Fish Tank Drama + Queue 81 8.5
25 The Illusionist Foreign/Animation + Queue 81 n/a

Only movies with seven or more reviews released between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2010 were considered. Re-releases are excluded. The Metascore is a weighted average of scores from top professional critics, on a scale from 0 (bad) to 100 (good). Although scores have been rounded to the nearest whole number, movies are ranked prior to rounding. User scores represent an average of scores assigned by Metacritic.com site visitors on a scale from 0 (bad) to 10 (good).

The Worst Limited Releases of 2010
  Title Genre(s) Metascore Users
1 The Nutcracker Family/Fantasy 18 n/a
2 To Save a Life Drama 19 6.8
3 Crazy on the Outside Comedy 21 5.0
4 Alien Girl Foreign/Thriller 21 n/a
5 Twelve Drama 22 6.0
6 Happiness Runs Drama 24 n/a
7 Knucklehead Comedy/Drama 24 n/a
8 Burzynski Documentary 24 n/a
9 I Spit on Your Grave Horror 27 n/a
10 Hemingway's Garden of Eden Drama 28 n/a

What are your favorites?

What are your picks for the best or worst movies of 2010? Let us know in the comments section below.

We're sorry, but comments are closed for this article.

Comments (54)

  • Liana  

    my favorite 1à
    RIO
    MONSTERS AND CO
    PERCY JACKSON AND THE LIGHTING THIEF
    BARON VAN MUNCHAUZEN
    NARNIA
    HARRY POTTER NR 7
    ...

  • anon  

    My 10 Favorites:

    1: The Social Network
    2: Inception
    3: The Town
    4: Toy Story 3
    5: Harry Potter/ Deathly Hallows
    6: 127 Hours
    7: Buried
    8: Shutter Island
    9: Jackass 3D
    10: Easy A
    9:

  • tj  

    my top 10 film of 2010 were.
    inception
    the town
    127 hours
    shutter island
    kick ass
    toy story 3
    animal kingdom
    the kings speech
    the social network
    exit through the gift shop
    [also red and grown ups were fun movies to watch]

  • lee3542  

    Worst? Toy story 3, Inception, Last Airbender, Vampires suck..Best? Winter's bone, Despicable me, young actress in True Grit...2010 was a disappointing year..2011 so far looks to be no better.

  • Antoine  

    My favorites movies (in order, 1 is my favorite).

    10. Buried
    9. Toy Story 3
    8. True Grit
    7. 127 Hours
    6. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
    5. Kick-Ass
    4. The Social Network
    3. The King's Speech
    2. Shutter Island
    1. INCPETION

    Honorables mentions: Machete, Black Swan, Harry Potter ans the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.

    Note: I have to see: The Fighter, Winter's Bone, The kid are All Right.

    Note 2: You have to see Incendies, the Canadian's movie who will win the oscar.

  • Armond White is incr  

    My top 10 of 2010 : 10. Winter's Bone 9. Somewhere
    8. Inception
    7. 127 Hours
    6. Greenberg
    5. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
    4. The Kids Are All Right
    3. Black Swan
    2. Blue Valentine
    1. The Social Network

    Honorable Mentions : It's Kind Of A Funny Story , Never Let Me Go , Youth In Revolt , Cyrus , Toy Story 3 , Mother , Exit Through The Gift Shop , Catfish.

  • Chris G  

    1. Winter's Bone
    2. The Social Network
    3. Toy Story 3
    4. Inception
    5. Exit Through the Gift Shop

  • andrew  

    oh and Kick-Ass.
    movies I discovered in 2010 that arent 2010:
    Stardust-the same director as kick-ass made a fun lighthearted fantasy based on a book by Coraline author Neil Gailman
    My Neighbor Totoro: A Japanese animated classic. Even the dub is excellent. from Studio Ghibli and directed by Miyazaki.
    Ponyo-also Miyazaki. this film is so deceptively simple and revels in its own cuteness. some things are left to the audience but that's usually easy blanks to fill in. very easy
    Castle In The Sky-also Miyazaki. best way to describe this movie: if it were made today in America, it'd be a live-action summer blockbuster. the dub is miscast though.

  • andrew  

    My top movies(in no specific order):
    Toys Story 3
    Tangled
    How to Train Your Dragon
    The Social Network
    Harry Potter 7.1
    Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
    Inception

    And I really wanna see all the other oscar nominees

  • Mewtwo465  

    The top three movies released this year for me were Toy Story 3, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and Grown Ups. Yeah I actually liked Grown Ups. I'm probably one of the only people who does. My top three worst films of 2010 are Cop Out, Vampires Suck and the horrendously horrible title, The Last Airbender. The cartoon of it is so awesome! The movies just sucks!

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