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On the road with some fascinating people in film, including Kate McKinnon

On the road with some fascinating people in film, including Kate McKinnon
Timothée Chalamet, from left, Lily Rabe, Anthony Quintal and Lili Reinhart in the movie "Miss Stevens." (The Orchard)

Our reviewers weigh in with lists of under-seen movies from 2016, as well as trends they'd like to see more and less of.

"Miss Stevens": Julia Hart's tender and wry comedy is an unexpected take on teacher-student friendships, buoyed by knockout performances by Lily Rabe and Timothée Chalamet.

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"The Land": This urban drama may have been overshadowed by the seemingly similar "Kicks," but Stephen Caple Jr.'s low-key teen skater take on "Scarface" has a sense of gritty hyperreality steeped in the culture of his hometown Cleveland.

"Valley of Love": There's just something fun about watching iconic French actors Isabelle Huppert and Gérard Depardieu tool around Death Valley in Guillaume Nicloux's drama. Huppert brings her ever-present cool elegance, which she slowly peels away to reveal a devastating vulnerability, and Depardieu hasn't been this great in years.

“Maggie’s Plan”: In Rebecca Miller’s delightfully rich tale of falling in and out of love, and trying to exert too much force on fate, the writer-director draws career-best work out of Greta Gerwig, Julianne Moore and Ethan Hawke.

"Neon Bull": A surreal, sensual and intoxicating journey with a Brazilian rodeo crew, Gabriel Mascaro's astonishingly stark and sexual film is an exploration of an unknown world and its corporeal delights.

More, please: Kate McKinnon had a breakout year in 2016, running away with “Ghostbusters” and earning an Emmy for her work on “Saturday Night Live.” Even in the rather middling holiday comedy “Office Christmas Party,” McKinnon is magnetic, elevating the world around her with her specific brand of weird. I’d watch and enjoy her in just about anything, so here’s hoping there’s more of her on the big screen soon.

No más: Almost every superhero/comic-book movie this year featured a third-act sky-vortex tornado thingy that threatened to suck the entire world into the heavens. This was usually accompanied by some kind of villain who takes the form of an apocalyptic dust storm. It's bad enough we have so many of these movies, but do they all have to be the same?

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