There were a lot of great movies that came out in 2014, but only 10 could make the final cut for Walton’s Movie World’s best movies of the year. If you are wondering where certain notable movies are, chances are I have not seen them. Some movies with great reviews like “The Imitation Game”, “Whiplash”, “Boyhood”, or “The Theory of Everything” are not included, as this list is instead comprised of my favorite films that I have been able to attend and thoroughly enjoy.
10. “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies”- There are a lot of other movies that are technically better than this one, but I’ve always loved going to Middle Earth. To be able to go there one last time with this film was quite the ride, and I’m sad it had to come to and an end. The film does a good job of transitioning to “The Lord of Rings” trilogy’s story line, as well as an emotional ride perfect for the conclusion of an epic saga.
9. “Nightcrawler”- In this character-based movie, Jake Gyllenhaal gives, without a doubt, the best performance of any actor this year. He is nearly unrecognizable in the role of a video reporter willing to cross any lines. His performance is unsettling, but, strangely, the film still makes you root for him despite his demented qualities.
8. “Interstellar”- Christopher Nolan is one of the best filmmakers in the business, and with this movie it really shows. This was the most original film of the year, telling a harrowing, emotional story. In typical Nolan fashion, this film features a complex mind-teasing and thought-provoking story that lasts beyond the credits. The visuals are what truly make this movie fantastic, as the recreations of outer space were spectacular. To top it all off, Matthew McConaughey gives an gripping and remarkable performance.
7. “The Raid 2”- Most movie-goers have not heard of this foreign Indonesian film, and I went into this movie expecting very little. But by the end of it, I was blown away. This is undoubtedly the best action movie I have seen all year. It may top all other action movies I have ever had the chance of viewing. The fighting sequences are amazing, and the action this movie packs will knock you out of your seat.
6. “Edge of Tomorrow”- An Alien invasion action version of “Groundhogs Day,” this film lives up to the most badass of descriptions. This was one of the most original science fiction movies that I had seen in quite some time, which has become a rarity in the genre today. This is refreshing take on the concept of reliving the same day over and over again and adds some much needed intrigue to the whole ordeal. Getting to see Tom Cruise’s character refine the same situation each time for the better is fun and interesting to see.
5. “X-Men: Days of Future Past”- Director Bryan Singer returned to the franchise and righted the wrongs of what was “X-Men: The Last Stand. ” He brought the series back to superiority with its best entry yet. The story is magnificent and heartfelt but still maintains that exciting action needed for this type of movie. For a film that has so many characters involved, it handles all of them remarkably well. It gives each of them their own unique feel, making them further relatable for the audience and central to the plot’s core. It also humanizes a lot of classic characters from the franchise, ultimately telling a beautiful story about hope.
4. “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”- I had almost lost faith in Marvel after the disappointments that were “Iron Man 3” and “Thor: The Dark World.” However, the Captain brought me back to being a Marvel fan boy in a big way. The Winter Solider wasn’t just a great superhero movie, but it was also a great espionage movie, which showed that all superhero movies are not necessarily the same. This movie had a lot of good twists and turns that flipped the Marvel cinematic universe on its head. It did everything a sequel should do: It took what made the first one so good, expanded upon it and made it better.
3. “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”- Speaking of terrific sequels, this movie proved to be, by far, the best sequel of the year. This is “The Empire Strikes Back” of sequels. It improves upon everything that made original so great, with a magnificent, unexpected story. The performance of Andy Serkis as Caesar is spectacular as he is able to shine through the barriers placed by motion capture to deliver a strong performance. The way he is able to capture the raw emotion of Ceasar is fantastic and, in the end, it makes you empathize with him and his cause. This movie will certainly leave you pumped and excited for what the next installment of the series may hold.
2. “Guardians of the Galaxy”- Watching this film was the most fun that I had at the movies all year, which was incredibly surprising. I would argue that this movie is just as much of a comedy as an action adventure. This was the funniest movie of the year. With its witty dialogue, it had me keeling over at times. The ensemble cast that they were able to gather for this rag-tag, unlikely group of superheroes is incredible. This was Star Wars meets Star Trek and is my favorite Marvel movie to date. I can’t wait to see this improbable group of heroes return.
1. “Gone Girl”- This was by far the most disturbing and unsettling movie I have seen in quite some time. Director David Fincher creates a dark, eerie world, setting the stage of what is to come. Viewers are only let in on facts portrayed by the fictional media, creating a powerful tone for the film as a whole. The representation of the media in situations like this is spot on. Our media today, in cases like this, always jumps to assumptions, and that is what the film is really able to bring onto the screen. The countless twists and turns within the film’s plot will keep you guessing up until the very end. This is a movie that will stay with you long after its over.