Despite the ever-prevalent "Netflix and Chill”— and its increasing number of variations (“Amazon Prime Video and Chill” doesn’t really have the same ring to it)— 2015 was a relatively recent reminder that people apparently still really like going to the movies. Furious 7 made over $1 billion, then Jurassic World topped that total, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens followed suit, exceeding box office expectations with the biggest worldwide opening on record. Big movies like these have gotten— well, BIG, and several studios—Disney (which owns Marvel) especially—seem to have figured out how to get people off their couches and into theaters.

But the blockbuster fever just scratches the surface in defining 2015’s year in movies. As always, aside from the massive titles, the real quality was a little further down on the marquee. In our usual fashion, the team at Complex assesses the cinema by slightly less conventional standards than the uppity committees of the big awards. While the true Oscar Bait of the year didn't live up to expectations, that left a hole for other movies to come in and truly impress, and giving room for underrated or independent films to shine.

2015’s film roster had expertly told stories and films with fully realized vision and emotion, and action that came out of nowhere to melt faces. Comedies made on shoestring budgets shot with iPhones (no excuses, people), chilling documentaries on the culty, veiled secrets of Hollywood’s favorite “religion”, and unconventional strip club romances, in addition to a couple of the previously mentioned studio megahits, emerged as some of our favorites. The internet’s movie options may be thriving, but 2015 proved the cinema is still around to give Netflix a run for its money.

Without further ado, here are the best movies of 2015.

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