Friday, December 31

Favorites From 2021 (Theresa's List)

I’m not one for New Year’s Resolutions and New Year’s Eve is my second least favorite holiday. But, after what seems like the two longest years in history, I’m ready to send 2021 out the door and am hopeful in welcoming a game changing, better year in 2022.

So, while you are shacked up on the couch, nursing a tiny hangover from good whiskey and sparkling wine (or maybe that’s just me) enjoy reading about my favorites from this interesting year.

And hey, if you disagree with me or want to start a discussion, hit me up on Twitter - @TheresaDillon.


How great was it that we could get back into theaters this year? The re-opening of our local big screens made the viewing of some beautiful blockbusters that much better.

However, there are so many better stories that don’t make it or don’t last long enough in theaters for the masses to enjoy. I really, really hope that changes in 2022. Streaming has been a God-send during these times but also a pain in the ass when it comes to figuring out how and where to watch certain films.

Enough gripping though. Here’s the films that really stayed with me this year.

My Top 3


Talk about a lingering aftertaste. Yes, that’s a fancy wine term but this films just embodies the definition of the word. I still get chills thinking about the dinner scene.


Anyone who knows me personally knows I would not shut up about this movie. It is so much fun and like I promised in my review, I did indeed dress up as Cecily for Halloween.

Me on Halloween.


Unlike most, I thoroughly enjoyed Ridley Scott’s stranger than fiction stories this year. Most notably, THE LAST DUEL. And what I appreciated the most – they brought in a female (Nicole Holofcener) to write the screenplay for the telling of Marguerite’s side of the story.

Runners Up

Live Action Disney

I’m not the biggest fan of live action Disney movies but low and behold they made CRUELLA, a film I didn’t need about a terrifying villain from my childhood and it was breathtaking.

Creature Features


This year also brought two amazing creature features that need more love - SHADOW IN THE CLOUD and NO ONE GETS OUT ALIVE. My mouth hung open for at least 5 minutes with the creature reveal in NO ONE GETS OUT ALIVE and SHADOW IN THE CLOUD was an intense ride with a twist you never see coming.

Beautiful Book Adaptations

Obviously one of the biggest films hyped this year was DUNE. I haven’t read the book personally but my partner has and watching/feeling his reactions to this legendary sci-fi thriller is what film is all about.

Another big book film adaptation was THE GREEN KNIGHT. I remember loving SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT from my British Lit class. While the film takes its own path with the story, it was still mesmerizing.

Fun, Interesting Stories


There were lots of unique stories told in film this year and I know I only watched the tip of the iceberg. But three that stuck with me are NOBODY, I CARE A LOT and BEST SELLERS. The acting in all three were phenomenal and the plots were eye-opening/heartbreaking.


Like Henry Bemis, I am a reader. My list of favorites for 2021 would not be complete without including some books.

MIDNIGHT LIBRARY (by Matt Haig) and THE HOUSE ON THE CERULEAN SEA (by TJ Klune)were hands down my favorite fiction reads of the year. Both provide fantastic getaways from life and offer much needed messages for today’s world.

I’m not a big non-fiction reader but Jenny Lawson (BROKEN -  IN THE BEST POSSIBLE WAY) and Dave Grohl (THE STORYTELLER: TALES OF LIFE AND MUSIC) put out new books this year – and they were both a fun ride.


Holy shit MARE OF EASTTOWN! Really, what else can you say about this limited series that just blew so many minds. Kate Winslet and Jean Smart were at their finest. And thanks to the uploading of episodes one week at a time, the anticipation just made the show that much better.

And of course, Mike Flanagan did it again with his beautiful horror series, MIDNIGHT MASS. This story was just chef’s kiss for a horror loving, non-practicing Catholic.

As for the mainstream shows the public loved, my partner and I also thoroughly enjoyed SQUID GAME and LOKI.

What I’m Looking Forward to in 2022

While I enjoyed looking back at the year, I can’t help but look forward to what is coming – and I’m already excited for these:


  • STUDIO 666


  • RAISED BY WOLVES - Season 2


  • A final PRACTICAL MAGIC book from Alice Hoffman, THE BOOK OF MAGIC
  • The start of a new Oz series from Gregory Maguire, THE BRIDES OF MARACOOR

Have a happy 2022 everyone and thank you for supporting The Coda!

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