The Best of 2018 The Best Female Leading Movies Of 2018  

Ranker Film
2.1k votes 269 voters 17.7k views 103 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 almost all-female casts include Widows, Ocean's 8, and Annihilation.

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

1
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Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, Rachel Weisz The Favourite is a 2018 biographical historical film directed by Yorgos Lanthimos. The close relationship between Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) and Sarah Churchill (Rachel Weisz) is threatened by ...more

2
64 34
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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

3
47 22
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Nicole Kidman, Toby Kebbell, Tatiana Maslany Destroyer is a 2018 crime thriller film directed by Karyn Kusama. A police detective (Nicole Kidman) reconnects with people from an undercover assignment in her distant past in order to make

4
46 23
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Felicity Jones, Armie Hammer, Justin Theroux On the Basis of Sex is a 2018 American biographical drama film directed by Mimi Leder. Young lawyer Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Felicity Jones) teams with her husband Marty (Armie Hammer) to bring a ...more

5
51 28
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Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter Ocean's Eight is a 2018 American heist comedy film directed by Gary Ross. Danny Ocean's estranged sister Debbie (Sandra Bullock) attempts to pull off the heist of the century at New York City’s ...more

6
48 27
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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

7
26 10
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Mila Kunis, Kate McKinnon, Sam Heughan The Spy Who Dumped Me is a 2018 American action comedy film directed by Susanna Fogel. Best friends Audrey (Mila Kunis) and Morgan (Kate McKinnon) get involved in an undercover mission after ...more

8
27 12
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Amy Boal added Elsie Fisher, Josh Hamilton, Emily Robinson Eighth Grade is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Bo Burnham. An eighth grader (Elsie Fisher) struggles to finish her last week of classes before embarking for high school.

9
24 10
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Lana Condor, Janel Parrish, Anna Cathcart To All the Boys I've Loved Before is a 2018 American teen romance film directed by Susan Johnson, based on the 2014 novel by Jenny Han. Lara Jean Song Covey (Lana Condor) writes private love ...more

10
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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

11
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Amandla Stenberg, Regina Hall, Anthony Mackie The Hate U Give is a 2018 American drama thriller film directed by George Tillman Jr., based on the novel by Angie Thomas. Constantly switching between the poor, mostly black, neighborhood where ...more

12
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Viola Davis, Cynthia Erivo, André Holland Widows is a 2018 heist thriller film directed by Steve McQueen, based on the 1983 TV series. Four armed robbers are killed in a failed heist attempt, only to have their widows step up to finish ...more

13
20 11
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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

14
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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

15
11 4
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Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak Halloween is a 2018 horror film directed by David Gordon Green, and the 11th film in the Halloween franchise. Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) comes to her final confrontation with Michael Myers ...more

16
14 7
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Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, Henry Golding A Simple Favor is a 2018 American mystery thriller film directed by Paul Feig, based on the novel by Darcey Bell. Stephanie (Anna Kendrick), a mommy vlogger, seeks to uncover the truth behind ...more

17
10 4
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Sandra Bullock, Sarah Paulson, Rosa Salazar Bird Box is a 2018 American post-apocalyptic film directed by Susanne Bier, based on the novel by Josh Malerman. A woman (Sandra Bullock) and a pair of children are blindfolded as they make ...more

18
10 4
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Jennifer Aniston, Danielle Macdonald, Odeya Rush Dumplin' is a 2018 American musical comedy film directed by Anne Fletcher, based on the young adult novel by Julie Murphy. Willowdean (Danielle Macdonald), the plus-size teenage daughter of a ...more

19
16 10
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Daniel Carin added Claire Foy, Joshua Leonard, Jay Pharoah Unsane is a 2018 American psychological horror-thriller film directed by Steven Soderbergh. A young woman (Claire Foy) is involuntarily committed to a mental institution where she is then ...more

20
24 18
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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

21
27 21
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Meryl Streep, Lily James, Amanda Seyfried Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again is a 2018 jukebox musical romantic comedy film directed by Ol Parker, and a sequel to the 2008 film. Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) learns more about how her mother fronted ...more

22
20 15
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Matilda Lutz, Kevin Janssens, Vincent Colombe Revenge is a 2017 French 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 on her

23
17 12
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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

24
9 4
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Emily Blunt, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Whishaw Mary Poppins Returns is a 2018 American musical fantasy film directed by Rob Marshall. In 1935, during the era of the Great Depression in the United Kingdom, the now grown-up Jane (Emily ...more

25
10 6
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Keira Knightley, Dominic West, Eleanor Tomlinson Colette is a 2018 British biographical drama film directed by Wash Westmoreland. Pushed by her husband to write novels under his name, Gabrielle Colette (Keira Knightley) fights to make her ...more

26
8 4
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Claire Foy, Sverrir Gudnason, Sylvia Hoeks The Girl in the Spider's Web is a 2018 American-Swedish crime thriller film directed by Fede Álvarez, based on the novel by David Lagercrantz. Computer hacker Lisbeth Salander (Claire ...more

27
7 3
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Saoirse Ronan, Margot Robbie, David Tennant Mary Queen of Scots is a 2018 British-American historical drama film directed by Josie Rourke, based on John Guy's biography My Heart Is My Own: The Life of Mary Queen of Scots. After failing to ...more

28
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Jennifer Garner, John Gallagher Jr., John Ortiz Peppermint is a 2018 American action thriller film directed by Pierre Morel. When the husband and daughter of Riley North (Jennifer Garner) are killed in a drive-by shooting by members of a ...more

29
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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

30
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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

31
12 11
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Kelly Macdonald, Irrfan Khan, David Denman Puzzle is a 2018 American drama film directed by Marc Turtletaub, based on the 2010 Argentine film. Agnes (Kelly Macdonald), taken for granted as a suburban wife and mother, discovers a passion ...more

32
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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

33
6 5
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Melissa McCarthy, Richard E. Grant, Jane Curtin Can You Ever Forgive Me? is a 2018 biographical comedy-drama film directed by Marielle Heller, based on the memoir by Lee Israel. When bestselling celebrity biographer, Lee Israel (Melissa ...more

34
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Maggie Gyllenhaal, Parker Sevak, Anna Baryshnikov The Kindergarten Teacher is a 2018 American drama film directed by Sara Colangelo, based on the 2014 Israeli film. A kindergarten teacher (Maggie Gyllenhaal) in New York becomes obsessed with ...more

35
5 4
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Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, Robert Forster What They Had is a 2018 American drama film directed by Elizabeth Chomko. When her Alzheimer's-suffering mother wanders into a blizzard on Christmas Eve, Bridget Ertz (Hilary Swank) travels back ...more

36
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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).

37
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Chloë Grace Moretz, Sasha Lane, John Gallagher The Miseducation of Cameron Post is a 2018 American-British drama film directed by Desiree Akhavan, based on the 2012 novel by Emily M. Danforth. In 1993, a teenage girl (Chloe Grace Moretz) is ...more

38
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Kristen Bell, Kelsey Grammer, Seth Rogen Like Father is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Lauren Miller Rogen. A workaholic woman (Kristen Bell) who is left at the altar takes her honeymoon trip anyway with her overachieving ...more

39
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Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Christian Slater The Wife is a 2018 drama film directed by Björn Runge, based on the novel by Meg Wolitzer. A wife (Glenn Close) questions her life choices as she travels to Stockholm with her husband ...more

40
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Chloë Sevigny, Kristen Stewart, Jay Huguley Lizzie is a 2018 American biographical thriller film directed by Craig William Macneill, based on the true story of Lizzie Borden. When young maid Bridget Sullivan (Kristen Stewart) comes to ...more

41
5 5
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Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Raffey Cassidy Vox Lux is a 2018 American music drama film directed by Brady Corbet. The film follows the rise of Celeste (Natalie Portman) from the ashes of a major national tragedy to pop superstardom, ...more

42
5 5
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Vanessa Hudgens, Sam Palladio, Nick Sagar The Princess Switch is a 2018 American Christmas romantic comedy film directed by Michael Rohl. When a down-to-earth Chicago baker and a soon-to-be princess discover they look like twins, they ...more

43
5 5
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Sanaa Lathan, Ernie Hudson, Lyriq Bent Nappily Ever After is a 2018 American romantic comedy film directed by Haifaa al-Mansour, based on the novel by Trisha R. Thomas. Tired of waiting for her longtime boyfriend (Ricky Whittle) to ...more

44
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Jennifer Lopez, Milo Ventimiglia, Vanessa Hudgens Second Act is a 2018 American romantic comedy film directed by Peter Segal. A big box store worker (Jennifer Lopez) reinvents her life and her life-story and shows Madison Avenue what street ...more

45
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Shay Mitchell, Stana Katic, Grey Damon The Possession of Hannah Grace is a 2018 American horror thriller film directed by Diederik Van Rooijen. When a cop (Shay Mitchell) who is just out of rehab takes the graveyard shift in a city ...more

46
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Melissa McCarthy, Bill Barretta, Maya Rudolph The Happytime Murders is a 2018 American puppet comedy thriller film directed by Brian Henson. In a world where puppets co-exist with humans as second class citizens, puppet private eye and ...more

47
9 10
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Shannon Purser, RJ Cyler, Noah Centineo Sierra Burgess Is a Loser is a 2018 American teen comedy film directed by Ian Samuels, and a modern retelling of the Cyrano de Bergerac story. A case of mistaken identity results in unexpected ...more

48
3 4
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Aubrey Plaza, Jemaine Clement, Emile Hirsch An Evening with Beverly Luff Linn is a 2018 American-British comedy film directed by Jim Hosking. Lulu Danger's (Aubrey Plaza) unsatisfying marriage takes a turn for the worse when a mysterious ...more

49
9 11
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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

50
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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