As always, counting down to #1. Perhaps I'll do descriptions at a future date.
20. On Body and Soul (Hungary, Ildiko Enyedi)
19. First Reformed (USA, Paul Schrader)
18. A Simple Favor (USA, Paul Feig)
17. Happy as Lazzaro (Italy, Alice Rohrwacher)
16. Widows (UK, Steve McQueen)
15. Beats Per Minute (France, Robin Campillo)
14. Sorry to Bother You (USA, Boots Riley)
13. Annihilation (USA, Alex Garland)
12. Burning (South Korea, Lee Chang-dong)
11. BlackKklansman (USA, Spike Lee)
10. First Man (USA, Damien Chazelle)
9. Sweet Country (Australia, Warwick Thornton)
8. A Quiet Place (USA, John Krasinski)
7. Leave No Trace (USA, Debra Granik)
6. The Favorite (UK, Yorgos Lanthimos)
5. November (Estonia, Rainer Sarnet)
4. Roma (Mexico, Alfonso Cuaron)
3. Hereditary (USA, Ari Aster)
2. A Star Is Born (USA, Bradley Cooper)
1. The Tale (USA, Jennifer Fox)
Runners-Up: Mission Impossible - Fallout, Searching, Mandy, You Were Never Really Here, A Fantastic Woman, The Shoplifters, Blindspotting, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Loveless, Foxtrot, Upgrade, The Hate U Give, Vice, The Death of Stalin, Revenge, Support the Girls, Spider-man: Into the Spiderverse, Capernaum
Overall: I might be in the minority, but I think 2018 was a great year for films! It was hard to cut off the runners-up list there were so many more I could have included. Two surprise actors-turned-directors made my top 20. Women had a solid showing. Almost every genre had something worth seeing. Some of this got overshadowed by easily the worst nominee winning the best picture Oscar. And while a politically dark time, Obama's impressively eclectic best-of-the-year list reminded me of better days.
I liked Estonia's gorgeous and original folktale-fantasy-horror November so much and it was so under-recognized that I've used only screenshots from it for this post. But other than that, I think I missed a lot of the more obscure and foreign films from 2018. Any recommendations?