Looking back over this last year none of the faves really stood out for me so for my number one pick I went with what I remember actually enjoying. That’s not to say that if I made this list again any other day it wouldn’t come out quite differently. And though I didn’t see everything you can see what I did see from the critics’ picks.
- Guardians of the Galaxy – I generally like a good comic book romp but this movie unburdened by any knowledge of the characters or stories managed to draw me into the world of the band of misfits led by the charming Chris Pratt.
- Whiplash – Seriously uncomfortable, this was the movie whose performances most stayed with me raising questions of the tutelage of greatness, and insanity put to a nice jazz track.
- Bad Words – I dig a random Jason Bateman and this flick hit the nail right on the head with an inappropriateness that was laughable and surprisingly touching.
- Skeleton Twins – Wiig and Hader looked into the past and the present of these estranged siblings with a realness and a randomness that brings them beyond their SNL sketches.
- Big Eyes – The period setting in the lovely San Francisco made the look at this unbelievable artistic duo and the woman behind the man in this odd rise to fame all the more compelling.
- Selma – Beautiful portrayals of King and those around him in this look back at the pivotal civil rights, I appreciate an historic drama that has me in disbelief of the activities for the right reasons.
- The Imitation Game – Smart and socially inept has become all the rage but this look at the mathematicians behind cracking code and the social mores of sexes and sexuality kept me engaged, and who doesn’t enjoy some Cumberbatch.
- Grand Budapest Hotel – While this wasn’t my favorite Wes flick it had the beautiful visual style and quirkiest of characters that will always keep me coming back.
- Edge of Tomorrow – Who doesn’t like a good action flick, and while I’m not the hugest of Cruise fans this movie strikes a great balance of action and the progression of story by repeating it over again in a way that isn’t repetitive.
- St Vincent – Bill Murray as a curmudgeon has become how I think of him but the dysfunctional daily life that he and his somewhat willing circle of folks leads to somewhat unexpected bad and good sentimental journey.
Any standouts for you this year?