Sunday, January 4, 2015

The Very Best and Worst of 2014

My Favorite Films of 2014

Every year is a good year for cinema... if you're prepared to look high and low for the best.

For me, cinema inspires adventure (physically and mentally), and provides a myriad of surprises, joys, and disappointments.

Some of these were seen at the theater, and some were seen for the first time on DVD, BluRay, or VOD.

A feature is a feature whether it is experienced with the public or at home.

The list is alphabetical:

Avant L'Hiver (France)

Black Coal, Thin Ice (China) 

Blue Ruin (US)

Calvary (UK)

Citizenfour (US)

Corn Island (Georgia)

The Life and Mind of Mark DeFriest (US)

Goodnight Mommy (Austria)

Tales of the Grim Sleeper (US)

Ida (Polish)

Jodorowsky's Dune (USA/France)

The Bastards (France)

Leviathan (Russia)

Lost Soul (US) 

Moebius (South Korea)

Nightcrawler (US)

Only Lovers Left Alive (US)

Pieces of Talent (US)

The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears (France))

The Drop (US)

The Immigrant (France)

The Overnighters (US)

The Search for Weng Weng (Australia)

The Wind Rises (Japan)

The Guest (US)

Under The Skin (UK)

Whiplash (US)

The World of Kanako (Japan)

Least Enjoyed

Admired, but didn't quite get there for me...


  1. Good to see a post from you! Interesting to see some controversial choices on your worst of the year list that are on so many people's best of lists (including mine) like Snowpiercer and GotG. Wasn't As Above So Below a bore. So much potential in that idea totally squandered.

  2. Aylmer -- I had very high expectations for both films. They were certainly well made. But I couldn't connect with them. I'm quite fascinated by just how subjective film appraisal is. AS ABOVE, SO BELOW was terribly boring. The irony is that the poster is beautiful, and evokes everything the film couldn't deliver. I appreciate your comment very much.

  3. Excellent lists! As always, a lot of exciting and unexpected choices--also, I'm glad to see I wasn't the only one who was underwhelmed by BOYHOOD.

  4. Phantom, As ever I'm off the pace with new releases, but I did see Blue Ruin thanks to this list. Loved it, superb film. Great to see love for The Guest and The Wind Rises too. I really like Guardians, and for most of it's running time thought The Midnight After was excellent. I'll endeavour to catch up with some of your other picks too.

  5. Yay, new posts! I always liked how you organize your lists. I haven't seen many of these movies. I'll have to look them up!

  6. Aylmer -- Yes, AS ABOVE SO BELOW was snail slow and dull as shit. Great to hear from you.

    Adamrg -- I was very underwhelmed by BOYHOOD. I don't like Linklater's romantic films, either (the trilogy). Just dull.

    And I'm not anti-romantic. But I'd prefer real quality like the French MY FATHER'S GLORY and MY MOTHER'S CASTLE.

    A Hero -- Glad you enjoyed BLUE RUIN. I tried to like GUARDIANS, but it wasn't for me. Just personal.

    Jesse W -- thank you.