film The Best Female Leading Movies of 2018  

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126 votes 41 voters 39 items

As the demand for equality in Hollywood rises, there are plenty of strong female lead movies of 2018. Ongoing issues in the movie industry - such as harassment and the pay gap - have made moviegoers aware of the importance of telling women's stories. This list of 2018 female lead movies catalogs the best movies of the year that elevated female voices. 

What were some of the best strong female lead movies this year? A number of women-centric franchises and books saw adaptations. The video game character Lara Croft came to life onscreen in Tomb Raider. A Wrinkle In Time - known for its compelling women characters - was adapted into a film starring much beloved female celebrities like Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon, and Oprah Winfrey. Some original films also made up the best strong female lead movies of 2018. The darkly humorous Thoroughbreds tells the story of two high school students plotting murder. Zoey Deutch stars in the suspenseful independent film Flower. Other 2018 movies with a mostly female cast include Annihilation, Red Sparrow, and Proud Mary.

Which of these female lead movies are the best of 2018? Vote for your favorites below and add anything you feel is missing. 

list ordered by

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Annihilation Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez Annihilation is a 2018 science fantasy action horror film directed by Alex Garland, based on the novel by Jeff VanderMeer. A biologist (Natalie Portman) signs up for a dangerous, secret ...more

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Tomb Raider Alicia Vikander, Dominic West, Walton Goggins Tomb Raider is a 2018 American action adventure film directed by Roar Uthaug. Lara Croft (Alicia Vikander), the fiercely independent daughter of a missing adventurer, must push herself beyond ...more

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Flower Zoey Deutch, Kathryn Hahn, Tim Heidecker Flower is a 2017 American drama film directed by Max Winkler. A sexually curious teen (Zoey Deutch) forms an unorthodox kinship with her mentally unstable stepbrother (Joey Morgan).

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Winchester Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke, Sarah Snook Winchester is a 2018 American-Australian supernatural horror film directed by Michael and Peter Spierig. Sarah Winchester (Helen Mirren), whose husband William and their child died suddenly, is ...more

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The Strangers: Prey at Night Christina Hendricks, Martin Henderson, Bailee Madison The Strangers: Prey at Night is a 2018 American horror film directed by Johannes Roberts, and the sequel to the 2008 film. A family staying in a secluded mobile home park for the night are ...more

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Proud Mary Taraji P. Henson, Billy Brown, Danny Glover Proud Mary is a 2018 American action-thriller directed by Babak Najafi. Successful hitwoman Mary (Taraji P. Henson) meets a young boy whose path she crosses when a professional hit goes wrong, ...more

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Insidious: The Last Key Lin Shaye, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell Insidious: The Last Key is a 2018 American supernatural horror film directed by Adam Robitel, and the fourth installment in the Insidious franchise. Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) goes on to ...more

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Roxanne Roxanne Chanté Adams, Mahershala Ali, Nia Long Roxanne Roxanne is a 2017 American drama film directed by Michael Larnell. In the early 1980s, a fierce teenage girl (Chanté Adams) is rapidly on her way to becoming a hip hop legend as ...more

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Red Sparrow Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Edgerton, Matthias Schoenaerts Red Sparrow is a 2018 American spy thriller film directed by Francis Lawrence, based on the book by Jason Matthews. A Russian spy (Jennifer Lawrence) falls for a CIA officer (Joel Edgerton) and ...more

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Thoroughbreds Olivia Cooke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Anton Yelchin Thoroughbreds is a 2018 American drama thriller film directed by Cory Finley. After years of growing apart, upper-class teenagers Lily (Anya Taylor-Joy) and Amanda (Olivia Cooke) rekindle their ...more

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Gemini Lola Kirke, Zoë Kravitz, Greta Lee Gemini is a 2017 American mystery thriller film directed by Aaron Katz. A heinous crime tests the complex relationship between a tenacious personal assistant (Lola Kirke) and her Hollywood ...more

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Acrimony Taraji P. Henson, Lyriq Bent, Tika Sumpter Acrimony is a 2018 American psychological thriller film directed by Tyler Perry. Tired of standing by her devious husband (Lyriq Bent), a faithful wife (Taraji P. Henson) becomes enraged when it ...more

The Best Movies Directed By Women In 2018

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Furlough Melissa Leo, Tessa Thompson, La La Anthony Furlough is a 2018 comedy-drama film directed by Laurie Collyer. When an inmate (Melissa Leo) is granted one weekend out of prison to see her dying mother, a rookie correction officer (Tessa ...more

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Please Stand By Dakota Fanning, Toni Collette, Alice Eve Please Stand By is a 2017 American comedy drama film directed by Ben Lewin. A young Asperger syndrome autistic woman (Dakota Fanning) runs away from her caregiver in an attempt to submit her ...more

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Disobedience Rachel Weisz, Rachel McAdams, Alessandro Nivola Disobedience is a 2017 British-Irish-American drama film directed by Sebastián Lelio, based on the novel by Noami Alderman. A woman (Rachel Weisz) returns to her Orthodox Jewish home ...more

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Tully Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass Tully is a 2018 American comedy-drama film directed by Jason Reitman. Marlo (Charlize Theron), a mother of three including a newborn, is gifted a night nanny (Mackenzie Davis) by her brother ...more

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I Feel Pretty Amy Schumer, Michelle Williams, Emily Ratajkowski I Feel Pretty is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein. Upon waking up from a fall, the once-insecure Renee Barrett (Amy Schumer) now believes she is the most ...more

Is Black Panther Really The Modern Day Version Of Lion King, Or Is Everyone Just Tripping?

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The Miracle Season Helen Hunt, William Hurt, Danika Yarosh The Miracle Season is a 2018 sports drama film directed by Sean McNamara. After the tragic death of star volleyball player Caroline "Line" Found, a team of dispirited high school girls ...more

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First Match Elvire Emmanuel, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Colman Domingo First Match is a 2018 American drama film directed by Olivia Newman. A teenage girl (Elvire Emmanuel) signs up for an all-boys wrestling team at her high school, causing more trouble than she ...more

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Half Magic Heather Graham, Stephanie Beatriz, Jason Lewis Half Magic is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Heather Graham. Three women use their newly formed sisterhood to fight against sexism, bad relationships, and low self-esteem.

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Life of the Party Melissa McCarthy, Molly Gordon, Maya Rudolph Life of the Party is a 2018 comedy film directed by Ben Falcone. After a surprise divorce from her husband (Matt Walsh), forty-something mom Deanna (Melissa McCarthy) decides to attend the same ...more

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Revenge Matilda Lutz, Kevin Janssens, Vincent Colombe Revenge is a 2017 French rape and revenge horror film directed by Coralie Fargeat. After being assaulted by three married men and left for dead, a young woman (Matilda Lutz) returns with revenge ...more

The Greatest New Female Vocalists of the Past 10 Years

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RBG Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Gloria Steinem, Nina Totenberg RBG is a 2018 documentary film directed by Julie Cohen and Betsy West. At the age of 84, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has developed a breathtaking legal legacy while becoming ...more

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Izzy Gets the F*ck Across Town Mackenzie Davis, Alia Shawkat, Lauren Miller Izzy Gets the F*ck Across Town is a 2017 American comedy-drama film directed by Christian Papierniak. A woman at rock bottom (Mackenzie Davis) must find her way across Los Angeles in order to ...more

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Kings Halle Berry, Daniel Craig, Lamar Johnson Kings is a 2017 romance film directed by Deniz Gamze Ergüven. A South Central recluse (Daniel Craig) helps a woman's working-class mother (Halle Berry) during the 1992 civil unrest in Los

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The Seagull Saoirse Ronan, Annette Bening, Corey Stoll The Seagull is a 2018 American drama film directed by Michael Mayer, based on the novel by Anton Chekhov. During one summer visit to her brother and her son (Billy Howle), an aging actress ...more

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Book Club Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen Book Club is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Bill Holderman. Four lifelong friends (Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen and Diane Keaton) have their lives forever changed after ...more

Mythical Creatures That Were Found in Real Life

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Breaking In Gabrielle Union, Billy Burke, Richard Cabral Breaking In is a 2018 thriller film directed by James McTeigue. After the sudden death of her father, Shaun (Gabrielle Union) taker her two kids to her father's Malibu mansion to settle his ...more

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Traffik Paula Patton, Omar Epps, Missi Pyle Traffik is a 2018 thriller film directed by Deon Taylor. During a romantic getaway at a cabin in the woods with her boyfriend (Omar Epps), investigative journalist Brea Stephens (Paula Patton) ...more

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A Wrinkle in Time Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling A Wrinkle in Time is a 2018 American science fantasy adventure film directed by Ava DuVernay. After learning that her astrophysicist father is being held captive on a distant planet, Meg Murry ...more

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Truth or Dare Lucy Hale, Tyler Posey, Violett Beane Truth or Dare is a 2018 American supernatural horror film directed by Jeff Wadlow. College students are haunted by spirits after playing the supernatural version of Truth or Dare.

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The Female Brain Whitney Cummings, Sofía Vergara, Toby Kebbell The Female Brain is a 2017 American comedy film directed by Whitney Cummings, based on the 2006 book by Louann Brizendine. When a female scientist (Whitney Cummings) studies the differences ...more

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The Boy Downstairs Zosia Mamet, Matthew Shear, Deirdre O'Connell The Boy Downstairs is a 2017 American comedy-drama film directed by Sophie Brooks. A young woman (Zosia Mamet) is forced to reflect on her first relationship when she inadvertently moves into ...more

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Like Me Addison Timlin, Ian Nelson, Larry Fessenden Like Me is a 2017 American film directed by Robert Mockler. A loner (Addison Timlin) sets out on a crime spree that she broadcasts on social media.

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Scorched Earth Gina Carano, John Hannah, Stephanie Bennett Scorched Earth is a 2018 Canadian-American post-apocalyptic science fiction/action film directed by Peter Howitt. A bounty hunter named Atticus Gage (Gina Carano) tracks down criminals in a ...more

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Claire's Camera Isabelle Huppert, Kim Min-hee, Chang Mi-hee Claire's Camera is a 2017 drama film directed by Hong Sang-soo. A French photographer (Isabelle Huppert) befriends a Korean sales agent (Min-hee Kim).

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Basmati Blues Brie Larson, Scott Bakula, Donald Sutherland Basmati Blues is a 2017 American romantic comedy musical film directed by Danny Baron. A scientist (Brie Larson) who creates genetically modified rice with her father (Scott Bakula) is sent to ...more

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Love After Love Chris O'Dowd, Andie MacDowell, James Adomian Love After Love is a 2017 American independent drama film directed by Russell Harbaugh. Following the death of their father, brothers Nicholas (Chris O'Dowd) and Chris (James Adomian) deal with ...more

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A Fantastic Woman Daniela Vega, Francisco Reyes, Luis Gnecco A Fantastic Woman is a 2017 Chilean drama film directed by Sebastián Lelio. Marina (Daniela Vega), a waitress who moonlights as a nightclub singer, is bowled over by the death of her ...more