The Solzy Awards for 2020: The Best in Film

The Solzy Awards

An annual tradition, Solzy at the Movies presents the Solzy Awards for 2020 as a way of honoring the best achievements this year in film.

When it comes to the Solzy Awards, my criteria are usually the same as the Oscars with the traditional 7-day minimum release in Los Angeles and New York.  What differs this year is that I am not adding on January and February.  Personally, I would prefer that my awards-voting groups wouldn’t be tacking on the extra two months.  When the Academy made their decision, they probably were not expecting that cases would be at an all-time high at the end of December. Basically, a film isn’t eligible if I don’t have a way of seeing it before December 31.  My first-watch viewings this year were well over 350 films.  To be fair, some of those films are classics that I just saw for the first time in 2020.  However, these awards are strictly for new releases.

Once again, I am picking my top 25 films and top comedies.  None of these include the documentaries because I’ve already awarded those.  The awards I issue today are strictly for narrative features only.  What follows are my acting awards–split into drama and comedy.

Below the main Solzy Awards, I’ll be honoring the best films and performances that screened at film festivals.  These awards honor the films that haven’t been distributed yet.  Unlike prior years, I did not get approved for Toronto this year because they went from 1600 to only 500 approved press.  If I wanted to see a film screening during Toronto, I had to inquire individually with the film publicist.

The Solzy Awards for 2020

Top 25 Narrative Features

  1. The Trial of the Chicago 7
  2. I’m Your Woman
  3. The Vast of Night
  4. Soul
  5. Save Yourselves!
  6. Palm Springs
  7. Hamilton
  8. To The Stars
  9. Bit
  10. The Garden Left Behind
  11. Da 5 Bloods
  12. The Father
  13. The Midnight Sky
  14. Wonder Woman 1984
  15. Tenet
  16. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  17. News of the World
  18. One Night in Miami…
  19. Irresistible
  20. Onward
  21. The 24th
  22. Never Rarely Sometimes Always
  23. Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss
  24. Saint Frances
  25. Sound of Metal

Honorable Mentions

  1. How to Build a Girl
  2. On the Rocks
  3. The Way Back
  4. Greyhound
  5. Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  6. An American Pickle
  7. Emperor
  8. Enola Holmes
  9. Spontaneous
  10. Sea Fever
  11. Unpregnant
  12. Buffaloed
  13. Olympic Dreams
  14. The Assistant
  15. Promising Young Woman

Top Comedy Features

  1. Soul
  2. Save Yourselves!
  3. Palm Springs
  4. Irresistible
  5. Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss
  6. How to Build a Girl
  7. On the Rocks
  8. Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  9. Spontaneous
  10. Unpregnant
  11. Buffaloed
  12. Olympic Dreams
  13. Promising Young Woman
  14. Godmothered
  15. Go Back to China

Best Documentary Features
Please see my Documentary Awards


Best Actor: Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Runner-ups: Delroy Lindo, Da 5 Bloods; George Clooney, The Midnight Sky; Ben Affleck, The Way Back; Riz Ahmed, Sound of Metal)
Best Actress: Rachel Brosnahan, I’m Your Woman (Runner-ups: Sierra McCormick, The Vast of Night; Nicole Maines, Bit; Liana Liberato, To The Stars; Sidney Flanigan, Never Rarely Sometimes Always; Viola Davis, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom)
Best Supporting Actor: Sacha Baron Cohen, The Trial of the Chicago 7, (Runner-ups: Paul Raci, Sound of Metal; Chadwick Boseman, Da 5 Bloods)
Best Supporting Actress: Talia Ryder, Never Rarely Sometimes Always


Best Actor (TIE): John Reynolds, Save Yourselves!; Andy Samberg, Palm Springs; Steve Carell, Irresistible
Best Actress: Cristin Milioti, Palm Springs (Runner-ups: Rose Byrne, Irresistible, Beanie Feldstein, How to Build a Girl; Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman; Haley Lu Richardson, Unpregnant; Zoey Deutch, Buffaloed)
Best Supporting Actor (TIE): J.K. Simmons, Palm Springs; Bill Murray, On the Rocks
Best Supporting Actress: Maria Bakalova, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

Best Director (TIE): Aaron Sorkin, The Trial of the Chicago 7; Julia Hart, I’m Your Woman


  • The Vast of Night
  • The Garden Left Behind
  • The Father
  • Seven Stages to Achieve Eternal Bliss
  • Saint Frances
  • Emperor
  • Enola Holmes
  • Spontaneous
  • Promising Young Woman*

Best Original Song
“Hear My Voice,” The Trial of the Chicago 7

Best Action Film
Da 5 Bloods

Best Comic Book Film
Wonder Woman 1984

Best Drama (Tie)
The Trial of the Chicago 7, I’m Your Woman

Best Comedy (Tie)
Save Yourselves!, Palm Springs

Best Apocalyptic Comedy On Brand For 2020
Save Yourselves!

Best Romantic Comedy
Palm Springs

Best Comedy That We’ll Be Talking About In 10 Years
Palm Springs

Best Horror Drama

Best Horror Comedy

Best Foreign Language Film
Collective (And honestly, this should have been with the Documentary Awards)

Best Musical or Music-Driven Film

Best Animated Feature
Soul (Runner Up: Onward)

Best Live Action Short
Please see my Short Film Awards

Best Unreleased Films That I Saw At A Film Festival in 2020
Shiva Baby
Nine Days
Pink Skies Ahead
Dinner in America
I Care a Lot

Best Acting Performances in Festival Films Not Released In 2020

  • Jessica Barden, Holler/Pink Skies Ahead
  • Rachel Sennott, Shiva Baby
  • Michael Keaton, Worth
  • Winston Duke, Nine Days
  • Kyle Gallner, Dinner in America
  • Emily Skeggs, Dinner in America
  • Rosamund Pike, I Care a Lot

Best Supporting Acting Performances in Festival Films Not Released In 2020

  • Molly Gordon, Shiva Baby
  • Peter Dinklage, I Care a Lot
  • Amy Ryan, Worth
  • Stanley Tucci, Worth

Most Likely To Be In Everything:  With so many films delayed, I’m not even going to bother!

Worst Films of the Year
It’s been a dumpster fire of a year so I’m not going to piss on anyone’s parade this year.

* Promising Young Woman is in my Top 40 and automatically qualifies for Best First Feature in that regard but the film had me up until the third act. Even with a rewatch this week, my feelings are still the same because I’m still not a fan of the ending.



Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.