Film and TV Highlights of 2020

29 January, 2021

Screen and Film School Brighton’s student blogger Lauren Louise shares her Film and TV highlights from 2020.

Needless to say 2020 was a strange year for the TV and Film industry with release dates being pushed back and cinemas being closed. But regardless of this, there was an abundance of brilliant films and shows released. Below is a list of my 2020 highlights.

I May Destroy You

Synopsis: After being sexually assaulted in a nightclub, Arabella’s life changes irreversibly and she is forced to reassess everything, including her career, friends and family.

Why it made the list: It’s honest, raw and unapologetic. This is definitely one of the best British TV shows to come out of 2020.

Killing Eve: Season 3

Synopsis: Eve Polastri, a MI5 office worker becomes obsessed with an elusive psychopathic female assassin, Villanelle. Eve and Villanelle begin a game of cat and mouse that is not only thrilling, but at times hilariously funny. Season 3 follows on dramatically and hilariously delving into more backstories and games.

Why it made the list: I binge watched Killing Eve during the first lockdown and it was my saving grace. This is funny and thrilling all at the same time with some of the best quick-witted writing.

Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

Synopsis: After being thrown out in the streets by Joker, Harley Quinn struggles to pick herself up. However, Harley teams up with Huntress, Black Canary and Renee Montoya to defeat a gangster and protect a girl.

Why it made the list: This movie is fun, vibrant and well worth the watch if you haven’t already. This movie exudes girl power, and honestly I’m here for it.

The Old Guard

Synopsis: A group of mercenaries, all centuries-old immortals with the ability to heal themselves, discover someone is onto their secret, and they must fight to protect their freedom.

Why it made the list: The Old Guard is the perfect action movie that I didn’t expect to love as much as I did. I haven’t seen action scenes done this well in a while, but that’s not a shocker when you know Charlize Theron is on board the project. Plus this movie has a black female lead…in an action movie. Amazing.

Grand Army

Synopsis: Five students at the largest public high school in Brooklyn take on a chaotic world as they fight to succeed, survive, break free, and seize the future.

Why it made the list: Grand Army is harsh, real, and sometimes hard to watch, but totally amazing and worth every minute.

Snowpiercer

Synopsis: Set more than seven years after the world has become a frozen wasteland, this series centres on the remaining people, who inhabit a gigantic, perpetually-moving train that circles the globe.

Why it made the list: Okay, so 2020 was a great year for diversity on screen, especially in lead, well-written characters. Snowpiercer was no exception: an intense sci-if murder mystery that dropped its second season at the beginning of this week!

Euphoria: Trouble Don’t Last Always

Synopsis: A special episode set in the aftermath of Rue’s relapsing as she tries to celebrate Christmas.

Why it made the list: Euphoria slowed down a little for this Christmas episode and it was amazing. Sam Levison is equally as talented without all the glitter. The cinematography is beautiful and the writing even better. Coleman Domingo and Zendaya give strong, gut-wrenching performances.

Wonder Woman 1984

Synopsis: Diana Prince lives quietly among mortals in the vibrant, sleek 1980s — an era of excess driven by the pursuit of having it all. Though she’s come into her full powers, she maintains a low profile by curating ancient artifacts, and only performing heroic acts incognito. But soon, Diana will have to muster all of her strength, wisdom and courage as she finds herself squaring off against Maxwell Lord and the Cheetah, a villainess who possesses superhuman strength and agility.

Why it made the list: Wonder Woman 1984 was definitely worth the wait. Diana Prince is the moraled superhero I’ve been dying for. Patty Jenkins knocked it out of the park again with her great storytelling.

Brave New World

Synopsis: In an idyllic utopia whose peace and stability hinge upon control of monogamy, privacy, money, family and history itself, everyone belongs to everyone else and the residents of New London use medication to avoid any negative feelings. As members of society’s upper echelons and those on the marginalized fringes begin to question the so-called faultless rules of their reality, perfection gets flipped on its head. Based on Aldous Huxley’s prophetic 1932 novel

Why it made the list: Brave New World was rebooted by Peacock and Sky for this new sci-fi tv show. The world of New London was fun and exciting with great characters that made me want more and more.

The Wilds

Synopsis: Teenage girls from radically different backgrounds find themselves stranded on a remote island, unaware they’ve just become the subjects of an elaborate social experiment.

Why it made the list: The Wilds was the show I didn’t know I needed to top off my 2020 list. These characters are intricate and fearless. The story is fun and addictive- Sarah Striecher can write a script! I hope Amazon Prime can keep running in this direction.

The Queen’s Gambit

Synopsis: Set during the Cold War era, orphaned chess prodigy Beth Harmon struggles with addiction in a quest to become the greatest chess player in the world.

Why it made the list: The Queen’s Gambit is hands down my favourite thing to come out in 2020. Anya Taylor Joy is phenomenal and delivers the already amazing script to new levels. Alan Scott and Scott Frank made a masterpiece that I’ve binge watched an embarrassing amount of times!

 


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