The Best and Worst in 2014

The Best & Worst Movies in 2014!

I saw a total of 105 films in the theater last year, and all in all, I’d say it was a pretty decent year at the movies. We had entertaining superhero flicks, dramatic biographies, crazy action and some cool animated films. Naturally, lists start to form as people ask, ‘what were your favorite films this year?’ Which then in turn also gets you thinking about the films you didn’t enjoy? So, without further ado, here are 5 films a really enjoyed in 2014, and 5 more that made me want to ask for my money back!

Best 5
1: Whiplash
Whiplash 2014The performances from Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons are simply amazing, but not the only reason you need to see this film. Director Damien Chazelle does a great job of immersing the viewer in this world, and you can almost smell the brass polish, spit and sweat! And the music? Oh boy, once the band starts performing, you’ll find that rhythm permeating through your soul as your foot involuntarily taps out the beat and your heart starts to race. Especially during the epic final performance.
2: Snowpiercer
Snowpiercer 2014If I were in charge of handing out awards, I would immediately without a second thought, hand over trophies to Kyung-pyo Hong for cinematography, Joon-ho Bong for direction, and the absolutely amazing Tilda Swinton would get honored for her fantastic supporting performance.
3: Wild
Wild 2014From watching the trailer, you’d be forgiven for assuming Wild was going to be a shallow film about self-discovery and healing. That a death in the family, drug use, promiscuity and a failed marriage can all be fixed with a quick trip to REI, and a very long walk with mother nature. Only in a movie is life that simple and easily fixed. Wild however, was anything but shallow, and turned out to be one of the best movie going experiences I’ve had this year.
4: Birdman
Birdman 2014The single shot style of film making never feels gimmicky or overused in Birdman, as Alejandro González Iñárritu never gets too carried away with the idea. The camera serves the really great script, moves when it’s time to find another element in this drama, and stays put when it’s time to focus on the film’s superb cast. Michael Keaton’s performance is almost certainly going to get some attention during the next award season, as will Edward Norton’s, and maybe even Emma Stone’s.
5: The Raid 2
The Raid 2 (2014)In the first Raid movie, writer, director, and editor, Gareth Evans scores with his simply structured and superbly choreographed action epic. In The Raid 2, Mr. Evans hits the back of the net again, and proves he’s capable of more than just well shot action. All I can say is, I can’t wait for his hat-trick! Just keep ‘em coming Gareth, because you’re my shining light, my new John Woo!
Honorable Mentions: The Imitation Game, Chef, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Lego Movie and The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Worst 5
1: Let’s be Cops
Let's Be Cops 2014How about, let’s not? How about, let’s create a situation that could plausibly exist inside the world it’s based? How about, let’s show some respect for the men and women who are actual police officers, and do protect and serve regardless of the risks? This movie quite frankly is an affront to good taste.
2: Brick Mansions
Brick Mansions 2014This was an awful and pointless remake of the French film, District B13. Brick Mansions is badly edited, and the action is sloppily arranged with way too much camera shake. The dialog is woefully bad bordering on painful to listen to, and who on Earth keeps putting RZA in front of a camera? Because acting is not one of the man’s strengths!
3: Sex Tape
Sex Tape 2014Sex Tape is a 94 minute advertisement for Apple’s iPad. Product placement in movies is nothing new, but here it’s taken to a new extreme, with characters talking about technical specs and even admiring the build quality of the device. This isn’t even done in a fun self-aware way for comic effect. It’s just blatant advertising, which you have to buy a movie ticket to watch!
4: Tammy
Tammy 2014Tammy wastes the talents of Susan Sarandon and Kathy Bates, and delivers its bogus morality with all the subtlety of a brick to the face. Melissa McCarthy is a very funny woman, and I loved her in Bridesmaids and The Heat, because in those movies she was unapologetically loud and brash. In films like Tammy and Identity Thief, those comedic gifts are mostly ignored in favor of a bizarre need to make the audience pity her characters and for me at least, it doesn’t work and it certainly isn’t funny.
5: No Good Deed
No Good Deed 2014How on Earth did this Lifetime TV show get in MY movie theaters? Stock characters in a stock plot. A bad man, and a strong single woman (well, she has a husband but this film doesn’t want you to focus on that too much), plus her adorable kids, in jeopardy. Oh NO! An easily avoidable hostage situation contrived to create a sandbox for this psycho cat and bad-ass mouse to play in. A film it seems, designed to communicate one thing – all men are pigs!
Dishonorable Mentions:The Legend of Hercules, Blended, I, Frankenstein, The November Man, Earth to Echo.

These are my lists, and your lists will likely be different. Each to their own as they say. If you agree or disagree, feel free to comment. I would just ask you keep any talk about the movies in 2014 respectful and polite. Many thanks for your time.

Looking Forward to 2015 at the Movies!

4 comments

  1. wpadmin
    Stewart

    Those are the worst – Movies that are not just merely bad, but actually so crap they make you leave the theater angry. I hated Let’s be Cops. Beyond stupid, and if I didn’t have a movie blog to report to, I would have walked out of the theater. Exodus – didn’t hate it – 2.5/5 – Didn’t care for all the myth busting of the deadly plagues and red sea phenomena. It was also too short, and rushed through the story in my opinion.

  2. THE WORST MOVIE OF 2014 AND THE ONE WITH THE MOST LIES: EXODUS: GODS AND KINGS! First off, before getting to the BLUE EYED PHAROAH, I want to say it was blasphemous to make like the Nile turned to blood by way of the crocodiles EATING THE EGYPTIANS! Second: The Director of the movie, RIDLEY SCOTT, was very wrong for saying he could not get funding IF HE GOT A MUSLIM ACTOR, why would he have to? There are SO MANY British Indian actors–like BEN KINGSLY (who isn’t Muslim) THAT COULD HAVE PLAYED PHAROAH–AND HE KNEW THAT! They would have looked the part and being from Britain where they have the best historical museums, He knew that. I really believe he knew that. I don’t know what his agenda was but it was wrong and for this movie to be up for any award is tacky. THIRD: Why bring ostracism upon yourself by making out that God is A small Child and that Moses was a Warrior! and last but not least—NO PRESENT, PAST AND ANY TIME DURING THE HISTORY OF MANKIND HAS THEIR EVER BEEN A BLUE EYED EGYPTIAN, NEVER! Why would they do that? This is like getting Denzel Washington to play ALEXANDER THE GREAT–THAT WOULD BE A MOCKERY. The worst movie of 2014.

  3. wpadmin
    Stewart

    No Good Deed was bad – but often the bad ones are the most fun to write about. No Good Deed would be in my top 10 favorite reviews on my site!

  4. No Good Deed was the best movie I’ve seen this year, haha. My top 10 worst will be up Wednesday. It’s my favorite time of the year cause it’s one last swing of the bat at these crap-bombs just for good measure.

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