2020 was an unexpected year in film for obvious reasons, and with many of the most anticipated blockbusters - such as Black Widow and No Time to Die - ultimately getting pushed into 2021, audiences were encouraged to seek out more left-field offerings on streaming services.
But the sheer volume of movies released in any year makes watching everything impossible, and there are always going to be great films that end up slipping through the cracks.
2020 saw the release of many terrific films that arrived with few positive expectations, whether due to an unremarkable series of trailers, a lack of marketing presence, or the dubious credits of the cast and crew.
These 10 films represent the most pleasantly surprising releases of 2020 that most likely passed you by.
Despite flying low on the cinematic radar over the past year, these movies all deserve your attention for subverting expectations and delivering far more than just about anyone ever expected.
If 2020 boasted a lower-than-usual quotient of glossy tentpoles, it was at least great to see a number of films surpass what just about anyone expected from them...
For many, the prospect of Kevin James playing a murderous neo-Nazi was just too ridiculous to take seriously, and so Becky basically came and went without a peep this past summer.
Yet Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion's deliciously nasty action-thriller about the titular young girl (Lulu Wilson) fighting back against James' villainous Dominick and his army of ex-cons proved an uncommonly gut-wrenching spin on a familiar setup.
Wilson gives a spirited performance as the put-upon teenager, though James' transformative turn is truly what makes Becky worth the price of admission.
Menacing in ways you'd never expect from the man who brought us sure-fire classics like Paul Blart: Mall Cop and Zookeeper, James leans fully into the part and proves himself a far more versatile performer than anyone could've ever guessed.
If you can accept a few storytelling cliches, it delivers the grisly, unsettling goods from start to finish, with sharp cinematography and a crackling musical score to boot, all inside of a tight 100 minutes no less.