Category Archives: 2014 Movie Review

My 10 Favorite Films from 2014

Now that I’ve posted my reviews for all the movies I saw in theaters last year, I thought I’d make a list of my 10 favorite films from 2014. Now these might not necessarily be the best films from 2014, these are just the 10 films that I found most entertaining and would recommend the most.

Let me know if you disagree with my rankings and why.

Top 10 Films in 2014

1. Guardians of the Galaxy – Hands down my favorite movie from 2014. Guardians had it all, great action, great drama, & hilarious comedy. There were a few things I would have changed but it’s about as close to a perfect summer blockbuster as it gets.

2. The LEGO Movie – My favorite animated movie from 2014. The LEGO Movie brought me great memories from my childhood. The film had an amazing cast of voice actors that gave life to a bunch of charming and loveable characters. The film’s story was very original and entertaining, the plot twists were great as well.

3. Big Hero 6 – Right up there with the LEGO Movie in terms of entertainment value. Big Hero 6 deals with a few more serious topics, but has a perfect balance of action, drama & comedy. The story was very unique aswell, and Bemax is one of my favorite film characters of the year.

4. Interstellar – Christopher Nolan’s latest movie didn’t quite live up to expectations but I still think it was one of the best movies of the year. The use of science and space travel in the film is 2nd to none. The movies themes were also very relate able, there were more than a few heart wrenching moments in the movie.

5. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 – The latest film in the Hunger Games saga was my favorite of the three. It didn’t focus on the hunger games as much as it did on the word that the characters live in, and how it came to be that way. The film is really the first part of a story but the movie is good enough to stand up on its own. One of the best action movies of the year.

6. John Wick – Without a doubt the best choreographed movie of the year. The action and fighting sequences were second to none. This was your prototypical action movie and it did everything right. The plot was simple but effective, it was a non stop roller coaster ride of entertainment. Now if only they had done something about those colored subtitles.

7. Edge of Tomorrow – One of the most underrated movies of the year. I thought Edge of Tomorrow was very creative and unique. I described it as a bled of groundhog day and independence day and I think its better than both of those movies. Tom Cruise did what he does best and Emily Blunt was amazing as usual.

8. Neighbors – My favorite comedy of the year (right up there with 22 Jump Street). Neighbors was simple yet hilarious. The story wasn’t too complex but it hit all the right notes. The chemistry between all the characters was great and it had some of the funnies fighting scenes I have ever seen.

9. Fury – The WWII drama was hard to watch, but it was still an excellently made movie that accurately portrayed the horror of war. The characters felt real and unique in their own way. The most realistic battle sequences in any war movie since Saving Private Ryan.

10. Nightcrawler – A very suspenseful and heart pounding thriller. The movie explores some very interesting issues about the media and Jake Gylenhaal delivers an award winning performance as a true sociopath.

Its hard to take all the movies I saw in a year and make a list of just 10 so here are some of my other favorite films of 2014:

The Maze Runner, Gone Girl, Lone Survivor, 22 Jump Street, Horrible Bosses 2, Snowpiercer, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Need for Speed, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, & Her (technicaly came out in 2013, but I saw it in 2014).

Advertisements

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies (12/23/14)

3.5 The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies

This is about a week late, but here is my review for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. I’ll start by saying that I am a big fan of both the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the previous 2 Hobbit movies. With that begin said I’m a little conflicted about this movie. Yes, it is the conclusion of the Hobbit Saga so it’s satisfying to finally see a resolution to the story that started with the first Hobbit movie. However there is something about the movie that just rubs me the wrong way. On one hand it has amazing action and battle sequences, however the actual plot of the movie leaves me wanting more. The drama seems at times a little too forced, the characters behave in ways that don’t really make sense and there are certain scenes that I felt were completely unnecessary. Honestly I would have much rather the first 15 to 20 minutes of this movie just been a part of the ending of the last Hobbit movie. I never liked how in the Desolation of Smaug the film ended on such a big cliffhanger. The battle with the dragon didn’t really seem to fit in with this movie and it bothers me that Peter Jackson just split the story like that just so more people would want to watch this latest movie. The rest of the film deals pretty much with just a single battle which is one of the reasons why I feel like the drama felt a little forced, there are so many parts of the movie that are just unnecessary in my opinion. I know it sounds like I’m being too harsh, but maybes it’s just because I had higher expectations after watching the previous 5 movies in the LOTR franchise. At the end of the day I feel like the film could have been much better but that doesn’t mean that I think it’s a bad movie, I was still very entertained, and I’ll probably watch it again (I really recommend watching the 2nd movie again before going to see this one, I personally didn’t remember a lot of the things that had happened and felt a little lost while watching this one, especially with all the lingo). It may not be a perfect movie but it is still worth it if you’re a fan of the Lord of the Rings movies and have watched the previous 2 Hobbit films. To sum it up in one sentence, the film was good, but it could have been much better. 3.5/5

Big Hero 6 (12/17/14)

5 Big Hero 6

I watched Big Hero 6 today and I loved it. It is a fun, exciting, & very well made movie. The film has an excellent cast, all the actors bring their characters to life with excellent voice acting. The story is pretty straight forward, it has a few plot twists but nothing I didn’t see coming. The film has great characters and a very heartwarming story, it’s filled with a ton of dramatic moments and it has its fair share of really hilarious scenes. Big Hero 6 is without a doubt one of my favorite films of 2014, I can’t think of a single thing I didn’t like about it, I can’t recommend it enough 5/5

Dumb and Dumber To

3.5 Dumb and Dumber To

This is a little late but better late than never. I watched Dumb & Dumber To the other day and I laughed my ass off, the humor is without a doubt very silly/stupid but I still enjoyed it. Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels have excellent chemistry together, they are without a doubt one of the best pair of friends in movie history. The film’s story is nothing to write home about and some of the supporting cast is underused but at the end of the day the stars of the movie are the two loveable idiots that can’t help but screw up and make me laugh. It’s surprising that it took 20 years for them to make a sequel to the first Dumb and Dumber. You don’t necessarily need to watch the first one to enjoy this one, but if you’re a fan of the stupid humor in the first movie you’ll like this one. If you’re just looking for a good laugh I recommend checking out Dumb and Dumber To 3.5/5

Horrible Bosses 2 (11/29/14)

4 Horrible Bosses 2

The second movie I saw today was Horrible Bosses 2, and as expected it was hilarious. I laughed from the first scene all the way to the blooper reel during the credits. It is just as good as the first movie if not better. It’s similar in a lot of ways to the first film but what’s great about it is that the filmmakers didn’t change what was good from the first movie and definitely improves on the parts that weren’t. The cast is amazing, and the three main characters have great chemistry, it wouldn’t surprise me to find out that they’re all friends in real life. Charlie Day was especially hilarious, he had me laughing the entire time. Jamie Foxx and Jennifer Aniston are great as well, they steal every scene that they’re in. The movie had a couple of good twists, although nothing I didn’t really see coming. I can’t really think of anything major that I didn’t like about the movie, it was frustrating to see the main characters fuck up so often, but I guess that’s part of their charm. This movie is probably not going to win any awards but it does exactly what you expect from a comedy, it makes you laugh. My only real criticism is that I felt that Christoph Waltz’s character was criminally underutilized. Walz is a great actor, and he’s really funny too, but the writers didn’t really give him anything to work with or any memorable lines. Other than that the film was great, I found it very entertaining and laugh out loud funny. If you were a fan of the first one or just like a good R-rated comedy then I highly recommend watching this one. 4/5

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (11/29/14)

4 The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (11/29/14)

Just got back from watching Nightcrawler, and I have to say it is a very well made movie. It has a very unique plot, it’s beautifully shot, and it’s thoroughly entertaining. The director did a great job at shinning a light on the dark side of TV news, and of the blurred line between news and entertainment. I can’t say that I’ve ever seen a movie like this one, its unique in so many ways. The film is very suspenseful, you really don’t know what is going to happen next, I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. The supporting cast did a good job, but in the end it’s Jake Gyllenhaal that steals the show. He does an excellent job portraying his character, who is about as creepy as they come. He does such an amazing job, you really do believe that he is a sociopath. The one thing I didn’t like about the movie was how it ended, but I loved everything up until that point. Overall, Nightcrawler is a very well made movie that keeps you guessing at every turn and leaves you entertained. I don’t know how much longer it’s going to be in theaters, but if you get a chance I recommend watching it, it’s worth it just for Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance alone. 4/5

Nightcrawler (11/28/14)

4 Nightcrawler

Just got back from watching Nightcrawler, and I have to say it is a very well made movie. It has a very unique plot, it’s beautifully shot, and it’s thoroughly entertaining. The director did a great job at shinning a light on the dark side of TV news, and of the blurred line between news and entertainment. I can’t say that I’ve ever seen a movie like this one, its unique in so many ways. The film is very suspenseful, you really don’t know what is going to happen next, I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. The supporting cast did a good job, but in the end it’s Jake Gyllenhaal that steals the show. He does an excellent job portraying his character, who is about as creepy as they come. He does such an amazing job, you really do believe that he is a sociopath. The one thing I didn’t like about the movie was how it ended, but I loved everything up until that point. Overall, Nightcrawler is a very well made movie that keeps you guessing at every turn and leaves you entertained. I don’t know how much longer it’s going to be in theaters, but if you get a chance I recommend watching it, it’s worth it just for Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance alone. 4/5

Insterstellar (11/10/14)

4.5 Interstellar

Just got back from watching Interstellar and it lived up to the hype. It really is one of the best movies I’ve seen in a while. It is creative, imaginative and like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Like most Christopher Nolan movies it has a pretty complex plot filled with twists and turns and callbacks. It is a weird roller coaster journey and it has its fair share of emotional moments, a large part of the plot centers around the bond between a father and his daughter and I’m always a sucker for parent/child drama. Matthew McConaughey was excellent as usual. Most of the cast was great as well, there was even an unexpected appearance by a pretty famous actor towards the end of the film. Overall there are a few little things that I would change about the movie, but in the end, it was creative, unique and most of all entertaining so I would recommend that anyone who is interested in space travel, astrophysics, or just plain old great stories to go see this movie. 4.5/5

Fury (11/3/14)

4 Fury

I went to the movies this past weekend and I saw Fury starring Brad Pitt. The film is a very gritty and somewhat dark story that follows a group of American soldiers and the tank they operate as they move across Nazi Germany towards the end of WWII. The film is beautifully shot and edited. The entire cast delivers excellent performances that truly make you see what the horrors of war are really like. No one actor stands above the rest and they all do an amazing job at showing the bond that all the soldiers in the tank share with one another. The best parts of the movie have to be the fighting scenes, this may be the most realistic WWII movie as far as what the battles where actually like. You can see and hear every shot being fired and every explosion that goes off in the background. Another thing that I liked about the film is that it has no end goal or main mission it just follows a tank and its soldiers through one day in the hell that is war. There are horribly graphic scenes throughout the movie that do a good job in showing just how terrible war really is. There are a good amount of emotional heart wrenching scenes especially towards the end of the movie that the actors involved really nail. There are a few questionable decisions that the characters make in the movie but I give them a pass seeing as how the rest of the movie is so well made. Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the film, but I would have to put it in the same category as 12 Years a Slave or Schindler’s List in that while they are all excellent movies that need to be seen, they are all hard to watch because of the subject matter that they deal with. In the end if you haven’t seen Fury I would recommend that you watch it, but if you’re like me and have already seen it then you probably won’t want to watch it again any times soon. 4/5

John Wick (10/27/14)

4 John Wick

The second movie I saw this weekend was John Wick with Keanu Reeves and I really really liked it. It’s a great revenge tale, there isn’t much dialogue and the acting isn’t anything to write home about, but if there is one thing that this movie does right it’s the action. John Wick had some of the best fight scenes I’ve ever seen, they were expertly choreographed and shot. The film is non-stop action for the majority of the story and it is really fast paced. Another thing I liked about the movie is the fact that it’s set in a world where every character seems to know something you don’t, which I always enjoy. Keanu’s character is the ultimate badass, he doesn’t say much because he doesn’t have to, he talks with his weapons, and to say the he kicks ass would be putting it lightly. The one thing that I really didn’t like about the movie was the weird style of subtitles that they used. There’s a good amount of dialogue in Russian but for some reason whoever designed the subtitles would emphasize certain words with color which to me just looked weird. The best thing about the movie by far though is the puppy. If you see the movie you’ll know what I’m talking about. Overall, I thought it was a fantastic action movie that did everything it was supposed to do, I was thoroughly entertained. 4/5