The Alamo Drafthouse Staff’s Top 10 Films Of 2015

You can probably guess what #1 is.

Every year, the Alamo Drafthouse staff - including all locations, Drafthouse Films, BMD, Fantastic Fest and Mondo - vote on their favorite films of that year. Drafthouse Films COO James Shapiro compiles them and weighs the results, and we pass them on to you! 

Without further ado: 

dir. Gregory Jacobs

"MAGIC MIKE XXL comes from a place of pure, unadulterated joy and then transfers that joy directly to the audience. This is a film that's not afraid to be fun, and the result is a celebration of men and women that feels like the best cinematic party ever. Seeing this film at the Alamo was my favorite theatrical experience of 2015, because every single person around me was having the fucking time of their lives. As we filed out of the theater, the giddy euphoria that filled the air was even more intoxicating than Channing Tatum's abs." - Sarah Pitre, Director of Programming and Promotions

dir. Peter Strickland

"The tagline should have been 'Love means never having to say you're sorry... unless I ask you to... But it'd be nice not to have to ask.' Works some sort of hypnotic spell that convinces audiences to look past the scandalous aspects of the central romance and focus instead on the relationship dynamics. The sum effect is a movie that is romantic and melancholy in a totally relatable, arguably universal way, even as we giggle at the pee jokes and pat ourselves on the head for recognizing the nods to Brakhage and sleazy European movies of the '70s. The score by Cat's Eyes is one of the best original soundtracks of the year!" - Laird Jimenez, Preshow Editor/Weird Wednesday Programmer

dir. Quentin Tarantino

"I'll admit, I'm a mark for Quentin Tarantino's films. Whenever I get asked which of his films is my favorite, my answer is always the one I've seen most recently. Tarantino is making movies gutsier and more exciting than just about every other director out there and THE HATEFUL EIGHT is no different. It's a movie that takes the past to talk about the injustices of the present. It's a movie that is told with restraint and patience because it knows that the dessert will taste better because of it. It's a movie that utilizes pop culture legacy (filmstock, music, actors' past work) to act as shorthand for an audience, getting them quicker and cleaner into a world and story that Tarantino wants to tell. THE HATEFUL EIGHT is mean, ugly and full of piss and anger - but I wouldn't want it any other way." - Robert Saucedo, Programming Director, Houston, Lubbock, El Paso

dir. Joshua Oppenheimer

"It's not just the best documentary of the year but damned near the best film. Joshua Oppenheimer is everything we strive to be." - Christian Parks, Chief Brand Officer

dir. Tom McCarthy

"A quietly confident film forgoing flash to focus on good old-fashioned solid acting and storytelling." - Sumyi Khong Antonson Drafthouse Films VP, Marketing & Distribution

dir. Ryan Coogler

"Ryan Coogler is THE director to watch. What initially sounded like a quick cash grab to milk a series that had lost all of its steam turned into something fresh and new and completely unexpected. Coogler made a sincere and poignant 21st century ROCKY relevant." - Aaron Prescott, Creative Manager, DC

dir. Sean Baker

"After a couple of startlingly good small-scale character dramas, Sean Baker went from DV-core to Diva-Core with TANGERINE, a heart-wrenchingly hilarious Xmas Eve epic for the ages. Bonus points for seeing this with the squarest weekday matinee audience possible – 'THIS is SHAMEFUL!'" - Mike Keegan, Creative Manager, San Francisco

dir. Alex Garland

"You know what they say about love at first sight… From the first time I saw this film I knew it would be my favorite of the year and one that I will continue to revisit for years to come. Alex Garland (SUNSHINE) has done it again and created a sci-fi film that is both refreshing to the genre and reminiscent of what made it great in the first place. 

The music, the visuals, the characters and that Oscar Isaac (THE FORCE AWAKENS, INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS) dance scene! There isn’t one thing that I don’t love about EX MACHINA." - Ryan Davis, Creative Manager,  Kansas City

dir. Duke Johnson, Charlie Kaufman

"Funny and melancholy in equal measure, this fantastic film by Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson is inventive filmmaking with a heart: Kaufman's ability to grasp at the heart of men pairs beautifully with Johnson's mastery in staging with stop-motion and puppets." - Evrim Ersoy, Head Programmer, Fantastic Fest

dir. George Miller

"And as the world fell, each of us in our own way was broken, and George Miller came to save us. It is by his hand we will rise from the ashes of this cinematic wasteland." - Greg MacLennan, Video Editor, Drafthouse Films