Some films have that special something, and some films seem like they stepped in something. Allow me to help you know the difference, and maybe find you something good to watch.
Well, it’s February now, so I feel like it’s finally safe to post my Top Ten of 2014 list. So many good films wait until the last second to come out, so if I had done this on the first of January, my list would have been a bit different.
I want to add that there were two films that I did NOT see that I am reaaaaally regretting dragging my feet on: ‘Birdman’ and ‘The Babadook’. They looked great, people had nothing but good things to say about them, and I just plain waited too long. Oh well. Obviously there were more films I didn’t see, but those are the two that I feel might have forced their way onto the list. But who knows?
Anyways. My Top Ten Films of 2014:
1) Grand Budapest Hotel — Hands down, favorite film of the year. I love everything director Wes Anderson has done, and I love how he has brought so many elements from his previous films, and woven them into this perfect story.
2) Blue Ruin — A story of vengeance, but with a twist. The cinematography is gorgeous, and the tone that is achieved is enthralling. It is a drama, and a thriller, and a comedy. Unique and gritty, I loved it.
3) Under the Skin — Director Brian Glazer has created a film that creeps along at its own pace, and doesn’t give you answers, but still I found myself completely absorbed by this cerebral sci-fi thriller. Beautiful cinematography.
4) Mood Indigo — This one didn’t get a lot of hype, despite being the new film by Michel Gondry (the guy that made ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’). It is a love story, but it is super crazy. Surreal, absurd, and following a schizophrenic’s dream-logic, it still manages to be completely adorable, and infinitely creative. Be aware that it is a French-speaking film. Oh, and Audrey Toutou (the girl from ‘Amelie’) stars in it, too.
5) Only Lovers Left Alive — I know vampire films are a tired sub-genre, but New York Indie director Jim Jarmusch has put his own flavor in this, and he’s got the support of power-houses Tilda Swinton and John Hurt, not to mention Tom Hiddleston, who everyone and their mother loves. I know, I know. You’re sick of vampire films. But give this one a shot.
6) Guardians of the Galaxy — What can I say? I like all kinds of films. I can like abstract art films AND mainstream blockbusters. And I liked this one a lot. I laughed my ass off. The action was great, the humor was just right, and it looked terrific. I had a great time, and I look forward to each and every one of the sequels.
7) The Congress — This is another film that seemed to be ignored by everyone. A mix of live-action and animation, a mix of fantasy and sci-fi thriller. A drama that becomes a dystopic future with surreal alternate realities, and drugs that choose which reality you perceive. This was an awesome film. Check it out and be one of the cool kids that knows how great it is.
8) Nymphomaniac — This two volume set of films is an incredible experience. Sure, there’s sex, a lot of it actually. But beyond that is a character study of an truly intriguing woman. We see her past, the things that make her who she is. And if you didn’t know that Charlotte Gainesbourg is magnificent, you will. Not to mention all the other people involved in this. If you can move past the titillation and the provocation, there is definitely substance to be found. And, also: boooobs.
9) The Double — Based off a Dostoevsky story, directed by Richard Ayoade (SUBMARINE 2010), this is a quirky little story about a meek little nothing of a man, that meets his doppelganger, who turns out to be everything that he’s not. Great film. A little dark and grim, but it made the moments of humor that much richer.
10) Snowpiercer — Just a fun post-apocalyptic action film that isn’t afraid to go dark when it needs to, and is capable of balancing the humor with the drama and the action. Lots of talent involved, and it all comes together in a unique and entertaining film.
Well, that’s ten. Some honorable mentions are: Obvious Child, The Grandmaster, The Raid 2, and Inherent Vice. All of which could have easily made the list without too much crying.
I didn’t see Boyhood. And I didn’t see Interstellar. I’ll watch both eventually, but I just couldn’t get excited about either one.
Let me know what your list looks like. I wanna know.