10 Best Movies From The First Half Of 2022, According To Rotten Tomatoes

Summer is usually a big season for movie releases, and cinephiles have had a taste of greatness with the most recent hit of 2022, Thor: Love and Thunder. Taika Waititi’s latest contribution to the God of Thunder’s filmography is a fun and different experience for those familiar with him, but it proves to be a summer hit of 2022 that has everyone talking.

The first half of 2022 also didn’t disappoint. Blockbuster hits like Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and indie breakout movies like Everything Everywhere All At Once have provided the first half of 2022 with amazing films for consumption. Looking at the ratings on Rotten Tomatoes, a few movies have stood out above the rest.


10 Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood – 91%

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Apollo 10 1/2, Richard Linklater.

Richard Linklater might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but his recently animated coming-of-age story, Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood, is a spectacularly creative retelling of the popular moon landing story. Many films in the past have attempted to capture the historic wonder that was the moon landing, but only one has told the story from the split perspective of an astronaut and a boy in Houston watching it all happen.

RELATED: 10 Best Movies Like Apollo 10.5: A Space Age Childhood

With sincerity and cosmic genius, Linklater gave the movie world a glimpse of the beyond, through the lens of a hometown Texas boy’s experience. This film comments on 1960s America, social life, the strides that NASA made during that time, and what it looks like growing up with history in the skies around you. A refreshing, deeply meaningful story makes Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Childhood so gripping and serving of praise.

9 RRR – 91%

Stream On Netflix

At the end of March 2022, an incredible, action-packed drama was released into the world. The Telegu-language film soon took movie fans by storm and had everyone talking, even trending on Twitter for a time. This 3-hour movie has it all: action, drama, intensity, loyalty, big moments, and the matter of overcoming obstacles to protect oneself and friends—all set in the 1920s.

ultimately, RRR is proof that long films can still be engaging every second, and have something for every viewer. The film is gruesome at times—deserving of its “R” rating—but still has heart and meaning. It pulls off one of the greatest challenges to action movies: having a plot that isn’t just fighting and explosions.

8 Turning Red – 94%

Stream On Disney+

Turning Red Disney Pixar Rosalie Chiang

Early in 2022, an animated movie was released with Disney and immediately caused chatter. Turning Red is a coming of age story like no other. With impressive Pixar-style animation, the movie captures a supernatural family heritage and Mellin’s ability to manage the wild journey of growing up.

Turning Red is a heartfelt, emotional, and meaningful story that will have kids and adults alike feeling encouraged by a family learning to love each other—and themselves. In a fun way, it shares big messages about life, love, and the power of being, unapologetically, yourself.

7 Good Luck To You, Leo Grande – 95%

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A recent spectacle of philosophy and film is Good Luck To You, Leo Grande, a movie that explores romantic partners with a considerable age gap. Nancy Stokes (Emma Thompson) was once an actively religious teacher and spouse to one man—that apparently liked monotony in the bedroom. As a widow reminiscing on the good times she could have missed out on, she begins exploring her sexuality for what feels like the first time.

Related: 10 Best Movies Like Good Luck To You, Leo Grande

Good Luck To You, Leo Grande divulges myriad themes such as religion, sexuality, age, race, and ultimately, the meaning of pleasure. Sophie Hyde’s directing and Emma Thompson’s acting shine in a fresh dramedy with an innovative spin. In all, the movie is fun, enjoyable, thought-provoking, and heartwarming.

6 Everything Everywhere All At Once – 95%

Rent On Apple TV

Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All At Once

A24 and The Daniels collaborated to produce one of the most interesting, diverse, and heartfelt movies of 2022—oh, and it features people with hot dog fingers. Everything Everywhere All At Once is a fun movie that proves it doesn’t need a big budget or extensive Marvel storyline to contribute to good multiverse content.

Everything Everywhere All At Once is so well-rounded and astounding that it could easily contend for an Oscar for Best Picture in 2023. It has action, suspense, and ultimately, weirdness, to prove that it is universes apart from any other film in 2022. Its central family, the Wangs, remind viewers that in a world so vast, it can still feel cozy in the loving embrace of each other.

5 Top Gun: Maverick – 97%

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Miles Teller Great Balls of Fire Top Gun Maverick

After a 36-year hiatus, Tom Cruise finally landed in his role as Lt. Pete “Maverick” Mitchell again. This time, though, most of his comrades were new—fresh out of training. Top Gun: Maverick is epic, high-flying, and ultimately a masterful continuation of the legacy Maverick established in Top Gun.

The wildly popular Top Gun: Maverick combines easter eggs, callbacks, and emotional moments with a new, intense story that sees Maverick stretched in ways he wasn’t before. Not only is Top Gun: Maverick Tom Cruise’s highest-grossing film, it’s a quality, action-packed joyride for every moviegoer.

4 Hell Bender – 97%

Stream On AMC+ & Shudder

hellbender ambitiously combines the coming-of-age story form with horror—something rarely done before—and pulls it off successfully. The movie is made on a low budget, but proves that high hopes and visionary concepts can soar on the (indie) big screen.

As a horror film with a bite (“Growing up is hell”), hellbender chronicles the life of Izzy as she learns to reckon with a rare illness. She makes rash decisions that eventually lead to her learning about her family’s dark past and her place in it. It is well-deserving of a high Rotten Tomatoes rating, though it may not have reached a wide audience.

3 The Innocents – 97%

Rent On Vudu

Another highly-rated horror film to land in the top movies according to Rotten Tomatoes is The Innocents. This film offers another unique contribution to the horror genre rarely seen: a group of children with special abilities and superpowers.

RELATED: 10 Best Horror Movies Set In The Summer, According To Ranker

The Innocents, more than anything, is a haunting survey of what it would look like for children to have unlimited power. What they do with it could be devastating or harmless. But, as the movie’s title suggests, they are innocent at heart. That concept alone carries throughout the film to add a psychological horror element like no other, making it highly deserving of its Rotten Tomatoes rating.

2 Jujutsu Kaisen O: The Movie – 98%

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After two years of manga-to-anime TV, Jujutsu Kaisen 0 made a successful big screen debut. The anime movie came and was widely accepted in the saga of Jujutsu Kaisen as a strong feature-length contribution to the series.

Some of the best aspects of Jujutsu Kaisen 0 are its originality in an over-crowded genre and its ability to avoid anime tropes. The movie is massive for Nanami’s use of the black flash record. Overall, the movie avoids many of the pitfalls that anime movies have seen in the past and provides an important continuation of the young anime series. It is surely one of the best anime movies to date.

1 Marcell The Shell With Shoes On – 99%

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Marcel the Shell With Shoes On movie

Jenny Slate and Dean Fleischer-Camp posted a creative, comedic video on Vimeo in 2010. 12 years after its viral sensation—perhaps on the brink of being forgotten—A24, Slate, and Fleischer-Camp decided to give Marcel the biggest life he’s ever had in Marcel the Shell with Shoes On. The movie revives Marcel as an iconic tiny character on a massive journey.

Stop motion effects and creativity shine in the movie. Marcel finds innovative ways to traverse the plains of what humans would call “everyday life.” The story is not completely wholesome, as some might expect. But it gives Marcel a more real nature and begs the question of what it would look like for a shell with shoes on to hold onto hope. Marcel the Shell with Shoes On is a creative masterpiece and a heart-churning adventure as big as Marcel’s own heart.

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