The 25 Best Films of 2015

1. Brooklyn

Home. Few words hold as much importance, few ideas as many connotations, yet the notion of home and all that it entails is rarely dramatized, and certainly not with the elegiac feel and emotional force of John Crowley’s adaptation of Colm Tóibín’s novel. The plotting isn’t overly complicated: a young woman emigrates from Ireland to New York, begins to make her way, finds herself called back home after a tragedy, and must reappraise who she is and what she wants her life to be. But it’s a film that lives in the poignant immediacy of its moments; star Saoirse Ronan’s tremendous, open performance lets you in to the pain of this young woman’s transition, the relief of that pain’s evaporation, and the confusion of what follows. No film this year made me feel more a part of a journey, or more happiness for a character finding her way to the end of it – and the beginning of her next one.