It's been a great year for film! I made a list of my favorite films and narrowed it down to ten. Here is my list of top ten movies of 2014.
10. Blue Ruin
One of the best low budget indie films I saw this year. I had no knowledge of the film when viewing it. I heard great things about it from several movie podcasts and ended up loving it. I won't say much about it but it's a brutal revenge film with blood to fill your screen.
Ways to Watch: Netflix, VOD, Blu-ray
9. Starred Up
This is one of the lasts films I watched before I put my list together and it snuck in at number 9. A prison film about the relationship between a father and son. Amazing performances from Jack O'Connell and Ben Mendelsohn. Mendelsohn is a very underrated actor and shines in this film. Another great indie to check out but I recommend putting on subtitles because a lot of the cast use heavy British accents.
Ways to Watch: Amazon Instant Video, VOD
8. Edge of Tomorrow
I would say this is the most underrated and underappreciated movie of the year. It was marketed horribly and did terrible at the box office. This is a smart, funny and action packed movie that is designed like Groundhogs Day where a man is living the same day over and over having the chance to save humankind. Please give this movie a chance!
Ways to Watch: VOD, Blu-ray
This is a unique film that does something that is rarely seen movies. It was shot as if its one continuous take. The camera work is absolutely stunning, complete with great performances from its ensemble cast especially Michael Keaton. I'd say he is the frontrunner for Best Actor at the Oscars this year.
Ways to Watch: In Theaters
6. The Babadook
It was a very disappointing year for horror movies but one stood out above them all, The Babadook. It is a low budget indie horror/thriller that came from Australia that almost didn't finish getting made if it wasn't for a last minute Kick starter campaign. Don't let him in...
Ways to Watch: VOD
This is the most ambitious movie of 2014 that took an incredible 12 years to make. The story follows a young boy and his family over the course of a decade or so. You watch these actors mature throughout the movie, aging right before your eyes. Richard Linklater, writer and director, is a great storyteller and this film will go down as one the greatest cinematic achievements ever. This is currently the frontrunner for Best Picture for the Oscars.
Ways to Watch: VOD, Bluray
Christopher Nolan is a director that isn't afraid to go big. Interstellar was big in every way possible creating one the best science fiction films this year. The visual effects still amaze me because Nolan wants it to look as real as possible by using as little CGI as he can. I had that chance to watch Interstellar on a 70mm IMAX screen and holy shit was it amazing. Nolan wants to give the audience an experience when watching his movies and he certainly delivers with this film.
Ways to Watch: In theaters
3. Guardians of the Galaxy
At the beginning of the 2014, I would have never guessed this movie would be the highest grossing film of the year with $333 million. Guardians of the Galaxy was so entertaining that it brought me back to the theater a second time. It was hilarious and gave a great introduction to these unknown Marvel comic book super heroes. I can only hope that one day we will see them on the same screen as the Avengers.
Ways to Watch: VOD, Bluray
I didn't care for Jazz music until I watched this movie about a guy enrolled in an elite music school in hopes to become a great jazz drummer. He is pushed to extreme by a prestigious teacher who wants nothing but the best. Miles Teller and JK Simmons are electric on screen together and Simmons gives a powerful yet scary performance. The director, Damien Chazelle, is very young at the age of 29 and he is a bright future ahead of him.
Ways to Watch: VOD soon, Bluray 2\24
What a year for Jake Gyllenhaal! He was in two great movies giving 3 fantastic performances. Yes, 3. He had two roles in Enemy which was an honorable mention. He was amazing in Nightcrawler and it was my favorite performance this year. He character was scummy, creepy and manipulative which made him so interesting to watch. Nightcrawler is a satire of the media and how they report the news. I knew after I saw this film that it would be hard to beat as my favorite film in 2014.
Ways to Watch: VOD soon, Bluray 2\10
There are my top ten films of 2014. Here are some honorable mentions.
The Lego Movie, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Cheap Thrills, Under the Skin, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Locke, Neighbors, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Snowpiercer, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Frank, Gone Girl, St. Vincent, John Wick, American Sniper