By the_purgatory_station 0 Comments
There didn't seem to be a lot of movies that made an impact in 2014. There were a lot of good ones and ones that I enjoyed. But I didn't have a lot of feelings after watching some of them.
Not a lot of home runs in my opinion. But, is that a bad thing? During the late 90s, the local team Dodgers used the home run offense. Look at where that got them. Nowhere. Why am I talking about baseball?
Maybe it's just greed on my part of wanting more impactful stuff. It's all opinion, maybe 2014 was really a good year. Here are the movies I made a prioritized list of.
2014 Top 10 Movies
1. American Sniper
I was blown away when I saw the teaser trailer for this movie. Then trailer 1 came out and I thought this looks like the most stereotypical American made U.S.A. is #1 movie. Next was actual watching of the movie. Wow. This movie was just amazing. I am a fan of military stuff. I don't know why, it's stupid when you think about it. Maybe it's the little kid in me since I always liked that stuff when I was little.
So, I obviously was interested in the military portion going into the movie. It was so interesting to watch a Hollywood movie made about Chris Kyle's time in Iraq.
What was just as interesting were the non-military parts of the movie. I love drama genre but just from the trailer I thought this would be the low points of the movie. Both non-military and military portions were so amazing to watch.
Since this is written when the Oscar nominations have been announced I was surprised when Clint Eastwood didn't get a nomination. I thought he did an amazing job making this movie. He did such a great job during the high tension parts.
The part where that little kid picks up the RPG. My stomach just sank to the floor. I was just thinking you cannot put Kyle in that position again. Please don't make him have to do this action. And then that mess of a feeling afterwards. Which leads to
Bradley Cooper has an amazing performance in this movie. Really in character. The same could be said for Sienna Miller.
If I can nerd out on Clint Eastwood's directorial skills for a little bit. I watched a lot of Japanese movies. Rented a lot of them from Blockbuster Video and a few from the library. One of the most amazing things about Letters from Iwo Jima was the pacing of the movie. If you had taken all the credits out of this movie I would have thought it was made from Japan. Also, great screenplay. The combination of all of those with cinematography made this movie like whoa where did that come from.
Put American Sniper up there with the likes of Gran Torino, Letters from Iwo Jima as my favorite Eastwood directed movies. I think Clint Eastwood has done a good job of directing lately. I actually thought about going to see Jersey Boys just because he was the director.
I thought this was going to be my number one movie until American Sniper came along. Surprise in two ways. How amazing American Sniper was. The movie Whiplash itself.
I've only knew a little bit about Whiplash right before Sundance. I just read that little synopsis about J.K. Simmons being some demanding Jazz teacher. I never watched the trailer. I decided to go ahead and watch this movie because I heard it was about being pushed to the limitt.
Yeah, this movie is about pushing your hardest to be the best in some way or another. This movie gave me the most emotions. The whole range from fear, shock, embarrassment etc. It was so interesting to see this movie character's journey through a top music school. The movie itself was a joy to watch. I loved all the little side drama parts. I LOVED that ending and where it transitions into the end credits. This and American Sniper are the two movies I would recommend for 2014.
If I can get off track a little. I started paying a little more attention to drums after this. If there was a jazz song I come across on the car radio I listen it and think about the drum parts. I listened to Tank! from Cowboy Bebop again and while I always liked that song I had more appreciation of it after this movie.
3. Guardians of the Galaxy
The first trailer made this movie look great but I was skeptical if it would live up to that. It did. It totally did and blew away expectations. I think the skepticism came in it's James Gunn trying to make this big budget comedy action comic book movie. Maybe it was the Marvel directives. But he totally made it work. Great job to him and the crew.
4. X-Men: Days of Future Past
It was between this movie and Guardians of the Galaxy as the top comic book movie of 2014. I kept thinking I saw X-Men first, I like X-Men more comic book wise, I should like this more than Guardians of the Galaxy. When it came down to it I guess i just liked Guardians more. Maybe it's that Marvel way. I still really enjoyed X-Men. You got your "time traveling", both Xavier and Magneto in the past and the future, and even some Wolverine fanservice for alls yous.
San Diego Comic Con moment at the theater (again I have never been to SDCC)
the Quicksilver slow motion sequence. When Wolverine's claws came out in super-slow motion. Stick a fork in me. I was done. The theater was Hall H when that scene was done.
Amazing X-Men movie. Really close up there with X-Men 1 and 2.
5. Big Hero 6
Big Hero 6 is the biggest shock for me. I never thought this movie would end up on my top 10 list. When I first read about this movie about a collaboration between Disney and Marvel I was the biggest cynic. Great, that Disney Marvel synergy we should do this to make a lot of money and we need that Asia region market.
Big Hero 6 opened on the same weekend as Pacifc Media Expo. When it comes to conventions I usually stick to the cons and nothing else. One of the good things about PMX is how laid back it is so after reading a bunch of people that liked it I decided to go see it on a Sunday morning.
So yeah it was really that good. It did feel like watching a Disney movie with Marvel's collaboration. Cool set of characters. Good story.
Lots of good scenes in this movie. Man, that climax. I was saying to the movie... Disney please. Don't do this to Hiro. He has already lost so much. And when there was only one route that they could go. And Baymax initiates that sequence. I love all things Madokaness, Star Trekness. I..... yeah. Pretty amazing what a movie can do.
All around good comic book movie from Disney.
6. The Drop
I can't even remember why I went to go watch this movie. But, I'm glad I did because I didn't expect this movie to come out the way it did. This is a crime genre movie but there was a lot of oddity to it. Not too much to scare away a mainstream audience. Just enough to not make me pass this off as just another movie.
This one I don't want to spoil but I enjoyed all the surreal moments in this movie. Like why, what... is this. I'm not the only one that think this is a bit off right?
Great stuff from Tom Hardy and the rest of the cast. An enjoyable movie that was a change of pace.
7. A Walk Among the Tombstones
I have really enjoyed Liam Neeson since Taken. When I saw the trailer for this I initially did not want to see it. It seemed really dark, not the popcorn summer action type movies. While A Walk Among the Tombstones still go into some really dark subject matter it is also a detective movie. I am a fan of the detective genre and this was a really good one. Good detective story and characters.
Props to the director for that first scene. Joe Carnahan tried to do that with the opening of Narc. Scott Frank did a much better job.
Hey it's another Tom Hardy movie. I heard about this movie during an ad on KCRW radio. Oh. One of those snotty indie movies huh? I looked it up a little, maybe a little too much (the website spoiled a lot of the plot). Thought the concept seem interesting.
At first I didn't think too much of this movie but as more time passed I had greater appreciation. The story puts Tom Hardy in a car for the entire movie and it really works because it's like what one person would be doing. A movie like this lines are important and without going into it too much some of my favorites are talking about an object and about traffic. I also like all the camera work done in this movie even if it's just to show an image of cars traveling on a highway.
After the movie I went to watch a youtube video about this movie. They said it was like Hamlet. Um, I never read or watched that but that sounds pretty cool.
I had no interest in watching this movie based on the first trailer. But, the second trailer came out it was main character Lou Bloom talking about wanting to work. When it comes to movie that has something to do with work I will have some interest in it. Jake Gyllenhaal does an amazing job with this character. The characters and a story of the highly competitive business of local news make this movie a worth watch.
10. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Really good Marvel movie. Marvel has just been doing a great job with their movies after Avengers. I really enjoyed this Captain America and became more of a fan of the character after this movie.
Here are some movies I watched that didn't make the list. There were big movies in 2014 that I enjoyed just like everyone else. I'll just mention the ones that might have gotten overlooked.
Million Dollar Arm came really close to the top 10. It's a Disney sports movie so expect what you expect. But for this movie that is also why I liked it. Watch this movie just so you can see one of my favorite movie characters of 2014 Amit.
Non-Stop is another of those Liam Neeson movie. It is a great popcorn action movie. At one time there was going to be two Tom Hardy and two Liam Neeson movies on my top 10.
A Most Wanted Man is a really good movie in the spy genre. Such a good written story.
I liked The Expendables 3 more than The Expendables because it was just this straight forward run-of-the-mill PG-13 action movie. Made me want to see what 2 is about even though it would probably be more different than 3.
The Maze Runner was actually good. I think this is one of those movies trying to capture the teens Hunger Games market. So it's kind of what you expect from that genre. That Thomas Brodie-Sangster though. I think it's because the setting of the movie and how they're wearing these makeshift clothes. If they ever make a movie or some side TV thing about Lost they should cast Thomas Brodie-Sangster as one of the leaders early on in the Others. He looked the part in this movie. I liked his acting in this.
Notes about other movies.
So I did watch Interstellar. I enjoyed watching Christopher Nolan's sci fi movie but nothing really blew me away which should not be a requirement. It was just this good sci fi movie.
The Oscar movies. I was able to watch Foxcatcher, Birdman, and The Imitation Game. I had high expectations for Foxcatcher. Maybe too high? I thought the cast did a good job but the movie was just plodding along. Birdman and The Imitation Game was alright. Birdman has a good score.
Godzilla. What happened to that movie? Yeah it's just a trailer. But I did not enjoy the direction they went with Godzilla.
What happened to Draft Day? It was a movie that's right up my alley but was not that good. It even had the proper NFL license. I think it was trying to be both a movie for the masses and HBO's Hard Knocks.
I think I read that Sin City: A Dame To Kill For was suppose to made not too longer after the first. I didn't enjoy this movie. I don't know if it was the cast or the story.
Well, that's it for 2014 movies. This year I wrote down the most but just wanted to talk a little about. I think there may be industry chatter out there about all these comic book movies. My opinion, I think they're cool. When I grew up reading comics I think everybody thought about hey what if Hollywood made this movie. Or in the letters to the editor section there was that hey the actor that should play the Punisher is Dolph Lundgren. (I'm no casting director. I'm not smart enough to come up with that. Yes, I feel the same way about that movie as everybody else.)
Most comic book movies are being made with high quality these days. We do finally get to see how some of these would translate into live action movie. As someone who enjoys all kinds I think that's alright.