Song of the Day #4,218: ‘We Belong Together’ – Randy Newman

Best Movies of the 2010s
#9 – Toy Story 3 (2010)

Yesterday’s film was the most recent on this list, and today’s is the oldest. Toy Story 3 just made the decade cut, premiering in 2010.

2019 provided a nice opportunity to revisit it, given the release of the fourth film in the series. The popular consensus on Toy Story 4 (before anyone saw it) was that it was entirely unnecessary because Toy Story 3 was such a perfect ending for these characters. TS4 ended up being pretty darn great in its own right, managing to find new metaphors to mine for humor and pathos, but it still paled in comparison to this masterpiece.

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Song of the Day #4,217: ‘Christmas Morning’ – Alexandre Desplat

Best Movies of the 2010s
#10 – Little Women (2019)

Alas, we have arrived at the much-anticipated Top Ten films of the 2010s. The top five titles have been cemented in place for awhile, but I’ve been all over the place with the rankings of numbers six through 10. I’ve changed a couple even as I’ve written these posts. But the order is unimportant; what matters is that these ten films spoke to me more than any others over the last decade.

Greta Gerwig’s Little Women is the most recent title on this list. I watched it for the first time on Christmas Day, less than a month ago. But to hell with recency bias, I was so touched and inspired by the film I knew right away it would find a place high on this list.

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Song of the Day #4,216: ‘Immigrant Song’ – Led Zeppelin

In lieu of today’s Random Weekend selection, and ahead of my top ten movies of the 2010s kicking off tomorrow, I thought I’d offer up a few thoughts on the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

I considered putting one of the Marvel films on my Top 20. I likely would have gone with Avengers: Endgame and used it as a catchall representing the whole 11-year achievement. I decided not to get cute with just one slot on the list when the rest was honoring individual films. And none of the individual Marvel movies placed in my top five in a given year.

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Song of the Day #4,215: ‘Hold That Thought’ – Ben Folds Five

‘Hold That Thought’ is a standout track from Ben Folds Five’s reunion album, 2012’s The Sound of the Life of the Mind.

This track’s vibe sounds a lot like some of Folds’ solo work, such as ‘Jesusland’ from 2005’s Songs From Silverman. But Darren Jesse’s drumming and especially Robert Sledge’s bass work add something that Folds has never been quite able to capture the same way on his own.

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Song of the Day #4,214: ‘Hate It Here’ – Wilco

Best Movies of the 2010s
#11 – Boyhood (2014)

How often do you see a movie that is unlike anything else ever made?

The unique achievement of Richard Linklater’s Boyhood — that it was shot over 12 years, capturing its main character’s entire childhood in two and a half hours — would make it worthy of this list almost regardless of its quality.

But Linklater used his storytelling conceit to tell a deep, poignant story about the life of an ordinary kid without succumbing to sentimentality or melodrama. He found poetry in the everyday moments that build up to shape a life.

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Song of the Day #4,213: ‘Sweet Virginia’ – The Rolling Stones

Best Movies of the 2010s
#12 – Knives Out (2019)

It’s tough to consider the most recent year when compiling a ‘best of the decade’ list. The films both benefit from being freshest in your mind and suffer from not having enough time to really sink in.

I’ve read a couple of decade recaps that set aside 2019 altogether for that reason, which I find silly. How can you assess a movie decade while looking at just nine years’ worth of films?

Another alternative would be to hold off on creating this list until 6 months or a year from now, when 2019 has the benefit of a little more hindsight. But I’m not that patient.

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Song of the Day #4,212: ‘Up’ – Sing Street

Best Movies of the 2010s
#13 – Sing Street (2016)

I didn’t deliberately set out to make a Top 20 of the Decade list that looks a lot different than all the ones I’ve read across the web. But only a handful of my titles are showing up on those “professional” lists.

John Carney’s Sing Street wasn’t properly appreciated when it came out three years ago and it’s certainly not getting its due now, but for my money it’s one of the greatest coming-of-age tales and one of the greatest music movies ever made.

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