It’s time for Jake Brown’s top five movies of 2014:
Snowpiercer: The riveting tale of people stuck in coach fighting to move up to first class. In this Bong Joon-ho masterpiece, Captain America (Chris Evans) spars with the always vaguely androgynous Tilda Swinton and an army of bourgeois goons on a train that contains the last remnants of humanity after trying to fix global warming went wrong and triggered a new ice age. Constantly gorgeous, intense and extremely intelligent, snowpiercer has become the film that I try to shove down people’s throats whenever anyone asks me what movie they should watch, a higher compliment, I could not give it.
Begin Again: I walked into Begin Again knowing nothing and expecting nothing. What I got was a fantastic movie/musical that feels more like a collection of music videos populated throughout the plot. The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) reignites his music producing career when he finds Keira Knightley singing in a bar. Though it has one of the most uninteresting movie titles out there, Begin Again will simply make you happy you saw it. I bought the soundtrack.
Boyhood : A movie that took twelve years to film and feels like it almost takes that long to watch it. Though Boyhood can feel long, there is no doubt that is one of the most ambitious projects I’ve ever heard of. The movie follows a boy, starting at age five, filming until he reaches eighteen. The audience literally watches these actors and actresses grow older. The boy happens to be about the same age as I am, in the film he experienced many of the things I did growing up, from Harry Potter book opening days, to tamagotchis. I saw this with a friend, and we both agree that the boy did go through a “hot” phase at sixteen, which was uncomfortable, as two hours before that, he was five.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Marvel made a movie about the Guardians of the Galaxy, a group that I, a man with encyclopedic knowledge of the marvel universe, had only a passing idea of what they were. Two of the main characters are a talking raccoon and a tree that can only say three words. I watched this movie five times in theaters, bought the soundtrack, bought the movie, and searched Etsy (to no avail) for a starlord helmut. I can’t stop the feelings I have for this movie.
The Grand Budapest Hotel: My favorite movie of the year, by my favorite director. It was just nominated for 9 Oscars, which both surprised me and made me supremely happy. Wes Anderson somehow manages to make movies that are supremely positive while also having dark undertones. The Grand Budapest Hotel follows legendary hotel concierge Gustave H. and his lobby boy Zero as they traverse a delightfully delicate situation deriving from the contents of Gustave H.’s former lovers will. If you’re going to see a movie from 2014, make it this one.
I am not perfect, I have not seen every movie of 2014, and as a result this list is entirely subjective. I have not seen many movies that have come out in the past few weeks, though they include some that I definitely expect to enjoy, some may even have beat out members of this list. A few of these movies include: Selma, Inherent Vice, A Most Violent Year, Big Eyes and The Babadook. Hopefully I get a chance to watch them and can fully add to this list.