Associated Press film writers Jake Coyle and Lindsey Bahr's favorite movies of the year span blockbusters, art house and, yes, even "Star Wars."

JAKE COYLE

1. "Carol," Todd Haynes' gorgeous 1950s film with a dreamy score about hidden romance.

2. "About Elly," an Iranian psychological thriller from Asghar Farhad set at a Caspian Sea resort.

3. "Phoenix," a haunting, Hitchcockian drama set in post-World World II Germany, directed by Christian Petzold.

4. "Spotlight," Tom McCarthy's workmanlike procedural about the Boston Globe's investigation into the Catholic Church.

5. "Chi-Raq" and "99 Homes," issue films from Spike Lee and Ramin Bahrani that bristle with palpable rage.

6. "Stray Dog," a documentary by Debra Granik about a haunted, motorcycle-riding Vietnam veteran with American history written all over him.

7. "Anomalisa," stop-motion animation from screenwriter Charlie Kauffman that captures more soulful emotions than most films even contemplate.

8. "Creed" and "The Force Awakens," fun yet respectful restorations of the durable American myths "Rocky" and "Star Wars," born six months apart in the late 1970s.

9. "45 Years," Andrew Haigh's disquieting drama about a long-together couple.

10. "Diary of a Teenage Girl" and "Testament of Youth," two tender coming-of-age stories, worlds apart, led by tremendous newcomers.

Honorable mentions: "Heart of a Dog," ''Bridge of Spies," "'71," ''Mad Max: Fury Road," ''Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter," ''Going Clear," ''Inside Out," ''It Follows," ''The Salt of the Earth."

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LINDSEY BAHR

1. "Mad Max: Fury Road," George Miller's riveting, post-apocalyptic action film.

2. "Clouds of Sils Maria," Olivier Assayas' brilliant and atmospheric drama about art, life and aging.

3. "Ex Machina," a thrilling and intense sci-fi spectacle from Alex Garland.

4. "Tangerine," Sean Baker's boisterous and alive story about transgender sex workers.

5. "Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter," the spellbinding tale of a Japanese girl who believes the movie "Fargo" is real.

6. "Brooklyn," about an Irish immigrant girl in early-1950s New York just figuring out what she wants in life.

7. "The Diary of a Teenage Girl," Marielle Heller's story about a girl who gets swept up in an affair with her mother's boyfriend.

8. "Carol," Todd Haynes' exquisitely composed romance involving a 1950s shop girl and the housewife she falls for.

9. "The Big Short," a darkly humorous film from Adam McKay about the collapse of the housing bubble.

10. "Spy," Paul Feig's riotously funny comedy with heart that serves as a perfect showcase for the talents of Melissa McCarthy.

Honorable Mentions: "The Hateful Eight," ''Steve Jobs," ''Spotlight," ''The Mend," ''Love & Mercy," ''Sicario," ''I'll See You In My Dreams," ''45 Years."

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Follow Jake Coyle on Twitter (and mock his choices) at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP

Follow Lindsey Bahr at: http://twitter.com/ldbahr