Saturday, December 27, 2014

The 10 Best, No, the 100 Best Films of 2014

The 10 Best, No, the 100 Best Films of 2014
by Kam Williams

Kam’s Annual Assessment of the Cream of the Cinematic Crop

            2014 has produced a cornucopia of great films, at least a dozen of which has an excellent shot of taking home the Academy Award for Best Picture, including Boyhood, Birdman, The Imitation Game and Whiplash, to name a few. However, all the stars seemed to be aligned for my personal favorite, Selma, the searing civil rights saga, set in March of 1965, about the historic march led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Directed by Ava DuVernay, the film is arriving in theaters at a moment when race is once again an urgent issue threatening to rip asunder the fabric of the country. So, it might serve as a timely reminder about the effectiveness of adopting a philosophy of non-violence.
Furthermore, this is the first feature-length biopic about Dr. King, which is hard to believe since the revered national icon was assassinated way back in 1968. Thirdly, the picture’s wide release practically coincides with his birthday, which has been celebrated as a federal holiday since 1986.
With Black History Month following close on its heels in February, it’s easy to envision Selma building up a head of steam over the course of awards season, when momentum dictates the favorites and often determines the winners in the Oscar sweepstakes.

10 Best Big Budget Films

1.      Selma
2.      Nightcrawler
3.      Birdman 
4.      The Equalizer
5.       The Imitation Game  
6.       X-Men: Days of Future Past
7.       Fury
8.       Kill the Messenger
9.       22 Jump Street
10.  This Is Where I Leave You 

Big Budgets Honorable Mention

11.  American Sniper 
12.  The Grand Budapest Hotel
13.  Edge of Tomorrow
14.  The Theory of Everything
15.  The Judge
16.  A Most Violent Year
17.  Godzilla
18.  Top Five
19.  Non-Stop
20.  Earth to Echo
21.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2
22.  The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
23.  Noah
24.  The Gambler  
25.  Beyond the Lights

10 Best Independent Films

1.       Whiplash
2.       Boyhood
3.       Wish I Was Here 
4.       Calvary
5.       Dear White People
6.       Life's a Breeze
7.       Two-Bit Waltz
8.       Belle
9.       The M Word
10.  Begin Again 

Independent Films Honorable Mention

11.  The Retrieval
12.  Obvious Child
13.  Chef
14.  Half of a Yellow Sun
15.  Snowpiercer
16.  1,000 Times Good Night
17.  The Two Faces of January
18.  Coherence
19.  St. Vincent
20.  Happy Christmas
21.  Believe Me
22.  Alan Partridge
23.  Hector and the Search for Happiness
24.  The Machine
25.  One Chance

10 Best Foreign Films

1.       Web Junkie (China) 
2.       The Way He Looks (Brazil) 
3.       Ilo Ilo (Singapore)
4.       Zero Motivation (Israel)
5.       The Tale of Princess Kaguya (Japan)  
6.       The Almost Man (Norway)
7.       Metro Manila (The Philippines)
8.       Abuse of Weakness (France)
9.       Two Days, One Night (Belgium)
10.  Wetlands (Germany)

Foreign Films Honorable Mention

11.  Dancing in Jaffa (Israel)
12.  Stranger by the Lake (France)
13.  Pioneer (Norway)
14. The Circle (Switzerland)
15.  The Missing Picture (Cambodia)
16.  Demi-Soeur (France)
17.  Fifi Howls from Happiness (Iran)
18.  Grand Depart (France)
19.  Jews of Egypt (Egypt)
20.  Guilty of Romance (Japan)
21.  Soul of a Banquet (China)
22.  Big Bad Wolves (Israel)
23.  Plot for Peace (South Africa)
24.  Journey to the West (China)
25.  We Are the Best (Sweden)

10 Best Documentaries

1.  The Barefoot Artist
2.   Life Itself
3.   Ivory Tower
4.   The Internet’s Own Boy
5.   Mobilize
6.   American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs
7.   Vanishing Pearls
8.   America the Beautiful 3
9.   Pump 
10. Second Opinion

Documentaries Honorable Mention

11. Citizen Four
12. Keep on Keepin’ On  
13. Little Hope Was Arson
14. Breastmilk
15. Tales of the Grim Sleeper
16. Kids for Ca$h  
17. I’ll Be Me
18. Spanish Lake
19. Altina
20. The Great Invisible
21. I Am Eleven
22. Tanzania: A Journey Within
23. Advanced Style
24. 12 O’Clock Boys
25. Take Me to the River

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