Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014 Best of the year and favorites Part 2: BEST OF THE BEST

I don't care where you're from being quoted in a movie trailer is wickedly cool and one of the highlights of 2014
These are the Best of the Best. They are the films, the moments and other things that are as close to a ten best list as I can muster. Normally I don't break the list like this but these are just so amazing that they leaned forward a bit and demanded their own list. There is no order, these are all the best of the best.

I AM BIG BIRD- watching the life of Caroll Spinney play out I had my own replay as well. Tears  flowed from everyone at the screening and the entire audience at the BAM screening wanted to hug him. One of the most joyously emotional films...nay experiences of my entire life. This is what movies should do.

THE SEVEN FIVE- true life tale of corruption plays better than any fictional drama. Wow and wow and wow. I can't wait to see it again

THE BODY- brilliant horror film is dead on perfect. All films of any length should be this perfect.

SLAYING THE BADGER-What happened to Greg LeMond makes for the best thriller of the year. I've seen it several times now and I'm riveted every damn time

NEXT GOAL WINS- This movie will make you feel good. Its not so much about winning but being simply able to do what you of the best film going experiences of the year.

GREAT PASSAGE- a group of people make a dictionary and change themselves for the better. I have no idea what to say but it sounds dumb but is truly magical.

BATTERED BASTARDS OF BASEBALL-when the film ended everyone in the screening room, all ten of us, looked at each other and wondered where the hell this film had come from and why hadn't we heard of it. A film about doing what you love because thats what you have to do. I smiled for weeks after seeing this film.

The PASOLINI screening was one of those legendary experiences people will talk about for decades afterward. One guy in the audience decided to take Abel Ferrara to task for his portrait of Pasolini and the fireworks that resulted were the stuff of New York Film Festival legend.

THE MINIONS- Jeremiah Kipp is a horror genius. His short film about following the Witch's Path is as scary a film as you'll see all year. Mark my words he is going to be huge.

Eddie Rouse in RAT PACK RAT give a performance for the ages. It has to be one of the greatest performances I've ever seen and the bitch of it is it will never be noticed by anyone especially Oscar

Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo in FOXCATCHER give career defining performances that let you know just how good they really are

DAUGHTER- a touching drama thats' also an nail biting action film. Who would have thought it could happen?

SALT OF THE EARTH  seeing the pictures of SebastiĆ£o Salgado larger than life and explained by the artist is just awe inspiring.

BANK LADY- Form over content mixes with great content to make for one hell of a crime drama. 

STARRED UP- probably one of the best prison films ever may have a soapy story but it doesn't matter its ballsy enough to make you sit up and take notice.

DAM KEEPER- Short animated film about a dam keeper who is makes a friend and well--this is just amazing

SONG OF THE SEA- Thomm Moore is a genius. This follow up to BOOK OF KELLS will have your mouth hanging open. It will break your heart and then heal it.

LOOK OF SILENCE- Joshua Oppenhiemer's follow up to THE ACT OF KILLING floored me both times I saw it. It maybe better than the earlier film but I'm not sure since four months on I'm still numb from it. May be this time he'll get an Oscar

SHE'S BEAUTIFUL WHEN SHE'S ANGRY screening at DOC NYC was magic. Not only did the film carry me along hearing all the women in the audience react to the film drove many of the films points home

Julian Richings in everything. Why had I never heard of him before he appeared in so many movies at Fantasia? He's one of the best actors ever.

BIRDMAN-form  reinforces content. Quite possibly a perfect example of cinematic art. Perfect or nearly so on every level

Bill Plympton's CHEATIN- as lyrically beautiful a film as you will ever see. The best thing that Plymton has ever done which makes it one of the best animated films you'll ever see.

Meeting Mark Breland at the CHAMPS screening was just really really cool. I followed his career since before the Olympics and to get to set next to him and just talk was an absolute cool thing.

The second half minus the return to the Shire of THE HOBBIT BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES. If only Peter Jackson had focused this much on character over spectacle the other 7 hours of Hobbit film would have been the equal to his LOTR

Lastly my favorite movie moment of the year was when for the first time in a long time I got my dad to the movies to see ON ANY SUNDAY:THE NEXT CHAPTER. I had seen the film before but its about motorcycles so I had to take my dad. We got popcorn and sodas and sat down in a completely empty movie theater and had a blast. No one in the place meant we could talk and joke and provide a running commentary. It was wonderful and a something I will always treasure.

For now that's it. As this posts I've already seen some 2015 films that will end up on this list. Hopefully that's a good sign for the next cinematic year.

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