Even with a staff of 30, we weren’t able to see all of the films released this year, but of the ones we caught, here our choices for the best of 2014.
It’s a rarity that a movie comes out that – for better or for worse – changes an entire cinematic universe. Captain America: The Winter Soldier managed to do just that. With HYDRA infecting S.H.I.E.L.D. from within, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), along with Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson), Sam Wilson, a.k.a. Falcon (Anthony Mackie), and Maria Hill, are forced to tear down everything S.H.I.E.L.D. had accomplished since its early beginnings. This also had a far-reaching effect on Marvel’s TV show Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. It managed to make an already good show great, and the repercussions are being felt to this day. – ProFan Joseph
Battle of the Five Armies is the final and best entry of the three Hobbit films. Despite the title, it’s not all war. There is a lot of focus on character development. This film’s journey is more about Thorin’s than it is Bilbo’s, and there’s the growing love between Tauriel and Kili’s fine ass. There’s plenty of victories, losses, tears, laughs, and a ginger dwarf with a mullet riding a pig. – ProFan Patti
Everything was awesome in spring of 2014 with the release of The Lego Movie. Unlike its toy-hocking predecessors of the 80s – I’m looking at you, GI Joe – The Lego Movie had interesting and fun characters, great cameos, original visual effects and the catchiest song of the year. A wonderful movie with a heartfelt twist was worth the trip to the theater. – ProFan Kituria
Halfway through the novel, Gone Girl, the book flips you over, fucks you, and then dares you to stop reading. Don’t stop reading. David Fincher directed the hell out of the film adaptation (with the screenplay written by the book’s author, Gillian Flynn) starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike as a married couple – Nick and Amy Dunne – who seem to have it all. That is until Amy goes missing and charming, handsome Nick becomes the prime suspect. More than a whodunit, Gone Girl examines the dark side of marriage and society’s obsession with coverage of bad things happening to All-American people. The score perfectly punctuated some of the film’s grittier moments and Affleck, Pike, and Carrie Coon (The Leftovers) turned in solid performances. The book had a love-it-or-hate-it ending, and while the film’s final scene is also polarizing, I wish they’d kept the book’s ending. Still, one of the best movies I saw this year. – ProFan Nina
With its cast of unlikely but endearing heroes, one of the most lovable characters to come along in a very long time, bright visuals and exciting plot line, Big Hero 6 is not just one of the best kids movies of the year, it’s one of the best period. It will make you shed a tear and laugh out loud and definitely leaves you wanting more; sequels are inevitable and I can’t wait. It was bright and refreshing and one of the most pleasant surprises I’ve gotten all year. – ProFan Maya