The Solzy Awards for 2021: The Best in Film

The Solzy Awards

An annual tradition, Solzy at the Movies presents the Solzy Awards for 2021 as a way of honoring the best achievements this year in film.

You might notice some films that you forgot about but that’s only because I did include the first two months of the year.

The Solzy Awards for 2021

Top 36 Narrative Features

  1. Don’t Look Up
  2. Belfast
  3. The Mitchells vs. The Machines
  4. CODA
  5. Spider-Man: No Way Home
  6. No Time To Die
  7. Shiva Baby
  8. The Power of the Dog
  9. tick, tick…BOOM!
  10. Jungle Cruise
  11. Malcolm & Marie
  12. Holler
  13. Free Guy
  14. Black Widow
  15. In the Heights
  16. Here Today
  17. Dating & New York
  18. Raya and the Last Dragon
  19. Red Notice
  20. Gunpowder Milkshake
  21. Dig
  22. Ghostbusters: Afterlife
  23. Eternals
  24. Cinderella
  25. The Lost Daughter
  26. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
  27. West Side Story
  28. Dune
  29. Spencer
  30. King Richard
  31. The Harder They Fall
  32. Licorice Pizza
  33. Passing
  34. The Beta Test
  35. Werewolves Within
  36. Old Henry

Top Comedy Features

  1. Don’t Look Up
  2. Shiva Baby
  3. Free Guy
  4. Ghostbusters: Afterlife
  5. Here Today
  6. Dating & New York
  7. The Beta Test
  8. Werewolves Within
  9. Vacation Friends
  10. Queenpins

Best Documentary Features

Please see my Documentary Awards.


Best Actor (TIE): Benedict Cumberbatch, The Power of the Dog; Will Smith, King Richard
Best Actress (TIE): Kristen Stewart, Spencer; Emilia Jones, CODA
Best Supporting Actor: Ciarán Hinds, Belfast; (Runner-ups: Jamie Dornan, Belfast; Troy Kotsur, CODA)
Best Supporting Actress: Kirsten Dunst, The Power of the Dog (Runner-ups: Caitríona Balfe, Belfast; Judi Dench, Belfast)


Best Actor (TIE): Ryan Reynolds, Free Guy; Leonardo DiCaprio, Don’t Look Up; Jim Cummings, The Beta Test
Best Actress: Jennifer Lawrence, Don’t Look Up
Best Supporting Actor: Jonah Hill, Don’t Look Up
Best Supporting Actress: Jodie Comer, Free Guy


Best Actor (TIE): Andrew Garfield, tick, tick…BOOM!
Best Actress: Rachel Zegler, West Side Story
Best Supporting Actor: David Alvarez, West Side Story
Best Supporting Actress: Ariana DeBose, West Side Story

Best Director (TIE): Adam McKay, Don’t Look Up; Kenneth Branagh, Belfast
Best Original Screenplay (TIE): Adam McKay, Don’t Look Up; Kenneth Branagh, Belfast
Best Adapted Screenplay: Siân Heder, CODA
Best Cinematography: Ari Wegner, The Power of the Dog (Runner-ups: Haris Zambarloukos, Belfast; Linus Sandgren, Don’t Look Up; Alice Brooks, tick, tick…BOOM!)
Best Editing (TIE): Hank Corwin, Don’t Look Up; Úna Ní Dhonghaíle, Belfast
Best Original Score (TIE): Nicholas Britell, Don’t Look Up; Hans Zimmer, No Time to Die
Best Original Song (TIE): “Just Look Up” from Don’t Look Up (Written by Nicholas Britell, Ariana Grande, Scott Mescudi (Kid Cudi), and Taura Stinson); “Beyond the Shore” from CODA (Written by Nick Baxter, Siân Heder, Marius de Vries, and Matt Dahan; Performed by Emilia Jones)


  • The Mitchells vs. The Machines
  • Shiva Baby
  • tick, tick…BOOM!
  • Holler
  • The Lost Daughter
  • Passing
  • Mass
  • The Novice


  • Emilia Jones, CODA
  • Rachel Zegler, West Side Story
  • Rachel Sennott, Shiva Baby
  • Jude Hill, Belfast
  • Woody Norman, C’mon, C’mon
  • Sasha Knight, Cowboys

Best Action Movie: No Time to Die

Best Comic Book Movie: Spider-Man: No Way Home

Best Comedy: Don’t Look Up

Best Drama: Belfast

Best Animated Feature: The Mitchells vs. The Machines

Best Action Comedy (TIE): Free Guy, Red Notice

Best Buddy Comedy (TIE): Vacation Friends, Queenpins

Best Heist Comedy: Red Notice

Best Romantic Comedy: Dating & New York

Best Horror Comedy: Werewolves Within

Best Classic Hollywood Throwback: Jungle Cruise

Best International Feature: Asia (technically, a 2020 Oscar submission but because the US release didn’t happen until 2021, I’m allowing it)

Best Music-Driven Film: CODA

Best Musical: tick, tick…BOOM! (Runner-ups: In the Heights, Cinderella, West Side Story)

Best Hollywood Satire: The Beta Test

Best Western: The Power of the Dog (Runner-ups: The Harder They Fall, Old Henry, Cowboys)

Best Live-Action Short: The Other Morgan (Runner-Ups: Sisters, The Mohel, GraceLand)

Best Cameo: Did you seriously think I’m going to spoil one of the best films this year? No way!

Most Likely To Be In Every Movie You Saw: Lil Rel Howery

Best Unreleased Films I Saw During A Film Festival

  • The Survivor
  • The Fallout
  • Montana Story

Even though I have my own list of films that I absolutely did not like, I will not list them here nor issue a list of worst films. There’s so much negativity online that I believe it’s time that we, as a collective, do away with listing the worst films of the year.

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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.