5 Anya Taylor-Joy movies you should watch right now

Furiosa leans back on a wall of fire in Furiosa.
Warner Bros. Pictures

Anya Taylor-Joy is one of the most talented actors of her generation, with her performances cementing her status as a compelling movie star. Following her breakthrough role in director Robert Eggers’ The Witch, which showcased her acting chops in the horror genre, Taylor-Joy would go on to act in a variety of films and shows in diverse genres.

The versatile actor has been in some must-see critically acclaimed movies that higghlight her captivating range, with her most recent stint as the protagonist of Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga already proving to be an impressive success. Fans should consider these best Anya Taylor-Joy movies as essential viewing, as they underscore her undeniable ability to command the screen and elevate any film she’s a part of.

Last Night in Soho (2021)

A man and a woman run in Last Night in Soho.
Focus Features

Last Night in Soho is a thrilling psychological horror film that follows Eloise (Thomasin McKenzie), an aspiring fashion designer, who mysteriously finds herself transported back to 1960s London in her dreams. During these vivid dreams, she starts to see visions of Sandie (Taylor-Joy), a dazzling singer whose glamorous life soon reveals itself to be much more sinister than it appears. The lines between past and present blur, and Eloise must face the horrors that haunt both eras to uncover the truth behind Sandie’s fate.

Although it isn’t director Edgar Wright’s best movie, Last Night in Soho gets points for trying to capture a bygone era through atmosphere and sound. The 2021 movie boldly attempts to mix music, fashion, and suspense, and while it doesn’t quite hitting all the marks, it still garnered generally positive reviews from critics and fans alike. It is worth seeing if only for Taylor-Joy’s mesmerizing performance as the ambitious Sandie.

Last Night in Soho is streaming on Amazon Prime.

Emma. (2020)

Anya Taylor-Joy in Emma.
Focus Features

Director Autumn de Wilde’s Emma. is a charming adaptation of Jane Austen’s 1815 eponymous novel that stars Taylor-Joy as the title character. Set in Regency-era England, it depicts Miss Emma Woodhouse (Taylor-Joy), a wealthy and confident young woman who fancies herself a matchmaker. She meddles in the romantic lives of her friends, particularly Harriet Smith (Pearl‘s Mia Goth), with things not always turning out the way she hopes. Throughout her misadventures, Emma’s own feelings are put to the test, especially when the handsome Mr. Knightley (Johnny Flynn) comes along.

Emma is a visual delight, with its vibrant colors, lavish costumes, and detailed sets transporting viewers to an opulent period. This impeccable production design and the impressive performances from all actors make Emma an enchanting and creative period drama. Of course, the film soars thanks to Taylor-Joy’s take on the cunning, yet relatable protagonist, whose arc is refreshingly modernized, but still faithful to Austen’s sharp social commentary.

Emma is streaming on Amazon Prime.

The Menu (2022)

Anya Taylor-Joy and Nicholas Hoult stand on a dock together in The Menu.
Searchlight Pictures

The Menu is a darkly comedic thriller directed by Mark Mylod that uses the world of high-end dining to deliver biting social commentary. It follows an uneasy Margot (Taylor-Joy) and an overly eager Tyler (Nicholas Hoult) as they travel to an exclusive restaurant on a private island run by the famous, but elusive Chef Slowik (Ralph Fiennes). As the night progresses, it becomes clear that this dining experience is far from normal, with the chef and his staff having something truly special in mind for their rich guests.

From its tense beginning to The Menu‘s fiery ending, this eat-the-rich movie proves itself a worthy addition to the growing subgenre. The 2022 film is a fantastic example of hilarious satire done right, as it mocks the elitism of fine dining in funny, but often also genuinely scary ways. Though cast alongside industry veteran Ralph Fiennes as the cunning villain, Taylor-Joy holds her own as the clever unexpected guest, who must make her own tough choice before the night ends.

The Menu can be rented or purchased on Amazon.

The Witch (2015)

Thomasin looking at the camera with a satisfied expresion on her face in The Witch.
A24 / A24

The Witch is a folk horror movie set in 1630s New England, where a devout Christian family has recently been banished from their colony. They then struggle to start over on their own on the edge of a remote forest. The family is made up of the stern father, William (Ralph Ineson), his wife, Katherine (Kate Dickie), and their five children, including teenage daughter Thomasin (Taylor-Joy). When their infant son Samuel vanishes while under Thomasin’s care, all hell breaks loose.

Directed by Robert Eggers, The Witch quickly became a favorite among fans of the genre and is now remembered as one of the best A24 horror movies. Eggers immediately showcases his signature style in his feature directorial debut, including the dark atmosphere and tense escalation of horrifying events seen in his later works like The Lighthouse. It’s only fitting that The Witch stars Taylor-Joy in her film debut, with the director and actor demonstrating a synergy that would set the tone for their impressive careers ahead.

The Witch is streaming on Max.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga (2024)

A woman hides in shadow in Furiosa.
Warner Bros. Pictures

Among 2024’s most eagerly awaited films, Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga is the latest exhilarating action film from director George Miller. The prequel to the widely beloved Mad Max: Fury Road dives into the backstory of the titular character, with Taylor-Joy taking on the role previously portrayed by Charlize Theron. The plot traces Imperator Furiosa’s origins, starting with her capture and enslavement by a merciless warlord, Dementus (Chris Hemsworth). Torn from her peaceful home, Furiosa hopes to find her way through all the chaos and back where she belongs.

Furiosa is a stunning achievement and a great addition to the Mad Max saga, thanks to its high-octane action and spectacular set pieces reminiscent of the best parts of Fury Road. The 2024 prequel also distinguishes itself as something else entirely through somewhat divisive pacing and a more explosive approach. Taylor-Joy is the perfect choice for the protagonist, whose transformative arc adds layers of complexity to the character without taking away from Theron’s version.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga is currently showing in cinemas.