In my end of the year list, I look for films that hit me with a wow factor on the initial viewing and make me excited for the next viewing. Dramas don’t get too much of my time, so you won’t find many Oscar contenders here. Just films that are a treat to watch!
X-Men: Days of Future Past
I know my obsession about this movie has become sort of a joke, but now that my viewing of 2014 films it complete, this is the first movie I want to go back and watch. When a commercial for it shows up on our local cable companies on-demand service, I wonder to again myself “Do I have enough time to squeeze in a viewing?” The film shows several of the characters at some of their darkest moments, which only better conveys the idea of hope that it so central to the story. It manages to bring new life to the original X-Men franchise tied in the First Class universe, and was overall (wait for it) x-cellent!
Your typical girl-gets-dumped, girl-has-one-night-stand, girl-gets-pregnant, girl-decides-to-have-abortion story. Wait, that’s not a thing, which is one reason this movie is so great. It goes against the grain in so many ways, and tells the story it wants to tell, without reservation or apology. Set against the backdrop of a New York comedy club, Obvious Child is cast perfectly from the stars of the film to its well thought out minor characters.
Guardians of the Galaxy
I had my doubts about this film. The heroes aren’t well known, and the humor of the trailer seemed to be lost on audiences. After my initial viewing, I’m wondering if Marvel can make a misstep at this point. How can this movie be so much fun? Why do I feel so attached to a computer generated character that only speaks three words? What does it take for Karen Gillan to not be attractive?
The LEGO Movie
Everything is Awesome about this movie, but the Milhouse cameo is just a bit more awesome then everything else!
What made this movie so much fun for me was the travel to the different LEGO lands, and the end that actually made the premise make sense. I love family movies that really feel like they are written for the whole family, and The LEGO Movie achieves this with animation that is fun to watch, and an engaging story.
Seems like I didn’t watch that many horror films this year. And while The Babadook wasn’t typical horror fare, it told a good story and had a Boogyman of super creepy proportions. I also can’t shake the scene where a news report shows the mom with her ultra crazy stare leering from the window. (Goosebumps, right now, just writing about it!)
A landmark in the coming of age tale, Boyhood was shot over a 12 year period, because Richard Linkletter doesn’t dick around. Brilliantly acted with a score that portrays the passing of time as well as the actual age of the actors.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Perhaps the best story that we’ve gotten from the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date. Each Marvel film folds super hero action nicely into other genres, and Captian America: The Winter Soldier is not only a great super-hero movie, but also a taut policial thriller
Horrible Bosses 2
I saw a few great comedies this year, and I was torn between this and 22 Jump Street for this position. When it comes down to it, this cast is just too good together not to earn a spot on my list. For a comedy, this movie is able to tell a decent heist story as well. I’ll be first in line for Horrible Bosses 3!
The One I Love
Sci-fi pseudo rom-com from the people who brought us Safety Not Guaranteed. Quirky and unlike anything else I’ve seen this year.
It’s on here just so I don’t have to put up with crap from everyone!