Best Movies of the Year
I have not seen every movie that has come out this year or even seen the potential Oscar movies like FoxCatcher, Whiplash, or a few others. This list will the best films of the year in opinion that I have seen; however, doesn’t mean they’re my favorite films of this year. My judgment of these will be based on my experience watching them in a theater and judging all aspects of the film.
- Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
- Snow Piercer
- Edge of Tomorrow
- X-Men Days of the Future Past
10. The Babadook
The Babadook is one of the best horror movies to terrify audiences since Poltergeist. I don’t like horror movies because I ignore questions about going to see in the theater. The story follows a recently widowed single mother and her son’s aggressively disruptive behavior. He has dreams a of a creature called the Babadook, and their home life suddenly becomes strange with a paranormal activity constantly. For example, The Babadook, the creature, has a creepy voice that saids “The Babadoook” and it is freaky as hell to be riding in a backseat of the car while that voice is constantly talking to you. The film has a underlying theme of the difficulties of being a single mother. The Babadook is shot beautifully, and the setting is very dark and grim. The film was directed by Jennifer Kent who also wrote the screenplay. The Babadook is certainly the marquee horror film of a new generation.
9. The Grand Budapest Hotel
The Grand Budapest Hotel stars Ralph Fiennes and an ensemble cast that includes: Adrien Brody, Jeff Goldblum, William Defoe, and several other famous actors. The movie follows Gustave H who is the concierge at the Grand Budapest Hotel. He gets framed for a murder and his loyal lobby boy, Zero Moustafa, helps him prove his innocence. The film is a dark comedy and the cinematography makes the prison outbreak scenes hilarious. The dialogue is witty and clever. The tone and pacing of the film builds tension but Ralph Fiennes gives a hell of a comedic performance. The film has earned several nominations from the Critics Broadcast Society, Golden Globes, and the Screen Actors guild.
8. Guardians of the Galaxy
Originally Snow Piercer was going to make the list; however, I couldn’t let Guardians be left of my list. Guardians is the second best marvel movie ever made, and one of the most entertaining movies of the year. Guardians is probably one of the best box office successes of the decade. This little known comic book property has made over 770 million worldwide, spawn the creation of a new animated TV show on Disney XD’s channel which will premiere this spring, and number 1 soundtrack. Guardians is about the a rag team of outlaws who come together to sell a orb after they stole from a tyrant named Ronan the Accuser. The movie is completely entertaining, and is filled with pop culture references like Kevin Bacon, Footloose, John Stamos, and other references. James Gunn directed the film and is currently writing the sequel. Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, and Bradley Cooper star or provide the voices of the Guardians. Groot and Rocket, Vin Diesel and Bradley Cooper, do steal most of the scenes of the movie. This is probably Marvel’s biggest hit so far. (although not financially)
First time I saw Birdman and thought it was ok. However, I keep thinking about scenes about this movie; therefore, it means that I do really think it is one of the best movies of the year and one of my favorites. Birdman arguably has the best acting, cinematography, and the best dark comedy of the year. The film is super funny but it drives the point that some actors get pegged for one role for their entire life. Michael Keaton will always be recognized as Batman and some people say he is their Batman. Keaton plays an actor Reagan Thomson is starring in his own play that he wrote and directs. No major critic takes him seriously and neither do the other actors that work with on the play. Birdman is shot to make it look like the film is one continuous take. Alejandro González Iñárritu wrote and directed the film. Emma Stone and Edward Norton are part of the supporting cast.
Locke is Tom Hardy at his best. He plays Ivan Locke an architect that made a mistake several months ago. He had an one night affair with a woman who is giving birth to their child. Ivan has the biggest job tomorrow but decides to travel to London from Birmingham to present at the birth of his child. The film is set in a car, and Hardy gives a hell of an acting performance. Locke was written and directed by Steven Knight. Steven Knight is currently writing World War Z II. Tom Hardy is Tom Hardy that nails any role which stars in. He is going to star in Mad Max: Fury Road and playing Elton John in Rocket Man. Hardy is one of the best actors in Hollywood. His performance of Locke is very compelling. He won the LA Critics best acting award for his performance as Locke. Hardy nails every emotion that Ivan goes with midlife crisis and it makes the film super suspenseful and compelling. Hardy should be nominated for a best actor but that category is filled with good actors this year.
Chef stars Jon Favreau who plays Chef Carl Casper. Chef Casper is a prominent chef at LA restaurant who is terminated because of a outburst with a nationwide film food critic. Casper struggles to find himself but with the help of his ex wife, son, and best friend. Casper reinvents himself by starting a food truck that makes Cubanos. Chef is a R comedy but very hilarious. It was my favorite film of the year until Edge of Tomorrow came out. This movie is a heartfelt indie flick that will make you go hungry while watching it. Jon Favreau wrote one of the best screenplays of the year and directed a wonderful entertaining film.
Jake Gyllenhaal gave the best acting performance of the year. He played an unethical bastard named Lou in Nightcrawler. He will do anything for a story and that means anything. The beauty of Nightcrawler is that show how much the local and national press has changed over time. The Slogan “if it bleeds then it leads” is pretty much the major theme in this movie. Nightcrawler examines the press and shows how despicable they have become. Dan Gilroy wrote and directed the film. Gyllenhaal himself lost weight to play the role of Lou and is probably a lock to get an Oscar for the role. (Michael Keaton for Birdman is the favorite right now).
3. Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier
Captain America 2 is the best Marvel movie ever and arguably the second best comic book movie since the Dark Knight is number 1. Steve Rodgers, Captain America, (Chris Evans) is working for SHIELD and doing their dirty work. Rodgers has Nick Fury, Samuel L. Jackson, show up at his apartment and sees the Director of Shield get assassinated. Rodgers becomes an outlaw and uncovers that his longtime foe has taken over SHIELD. The movie has is filled with great action, humor, and is a great spy story. It is a superhero movie that a has Jason Bourne plot. The movie also leaves you to question the authority and power of national spy organizations like the CIA and the NSA. Honestly, the realistic plot is one of the reasons why this movie hit a homer with a worldwide audience.
2. Gone Girl
Oh Gone Girl! This film has everything and arguably the best movie of the year when it came out. It is an Oscar favorite. Gone Girl is about Nick Dunne who is having an affair with one of his students but comes home to find his wife missing. He contacts the authorities and their investigation points to Nick Dunne killing his wife, Amy. Nick, Ben Affleck, is follows his wife’s treasure hunt for their 5th year anniversary and discovers that Amy, Rosamund Pike, has framed him for her murder. The movie is two and half hours of pure suspension with plot twists galore. Gillan Flynn wrote the screenplay and will win an Oscar for adapted screenplay for it. She is the author of the best selling book Gone Girl. David Fincher could be a lock for Best Director and Rosamund Pike for best actress. Trent Renzor might win an Oscar again for best score. Gone Girl will make you question marriage or even being in a relationship. Ben Affleck also delivers a performance that is his best ever, and also proving that he can be Batman.
Calvary is an independent British film that no one has seen in America except the big movie markets or the crew from AMC Movie Talk. I decided to go see Calvary on the Redskin’s bye week because of Breedan Gleeson. Breedan Gleeson is known for as Mad Eye Moody from Harry Potter to most of the American viewing public. Calvary deals with the catholic child molestation issue. Gleeson is one of my favorite actors and his son, Domhnall Gleeson, is one of the best young actors in Hollywood. Calvary is Gleeson’s film and his performance was the best dramatic performance that I have seen all year in a foreign film.
Father James, Gleeson, is sitting in his confessional when one of his weekly members of his congregation tells him that he is planning to kill him in seven days. The member was a victim of child abuse from a catholic priest who is dead. The member tells him that his reasoning to kill Father James is shock the world and cause the Catholic Church finally do something about the on going child molestation within the Catholic Church. Father James also has to deal with his daughter who tried to commit suicide. He also is the leader of the town that he lives in. James deals with many problems that the town’s people have.
Calvary emphasizes the importance of Catholic or other religious priests in the small town life. The film is pretty blunt that not all Catholic Priests are child molesters but are really down to earth good hearted people. The sexual abuse victim and their struggles helps the viewer what these people go through for their entire life. James is seen as the leader and many townspeople turn to him for guidance. John Michael McDonagh directed a suspenseful and moving story that would be a Oscar buzz film if more people got to see it. Calvary is the best film of the year to me.