Tag Archives: Batman Begins

Best Movies of 2014

It has been quite a while since I posted anything on here. The last few months have been rather hectic. From school to work, I couldn’t find time to write reviews or continually post on this site. That doesn’t mean I didn’t see any movies since then. In fact I’ve seen most of the movies you could have seen, except the noticeably bad films released in the last few months.

A lot of movies that I really liked didn’t make my list and even with such a great summer with some impressive blockbuster, it was hard to keep some off my list.  The top three films where difficult because the could be interchangeable at any time.

There were some very welcome movies and also very disappointing movies that I was looking forward to. Making this list was rather difficult but I feel that it is a rather well constructed list.

10. Boyhood

image2resize

By the time I reached number 10, I realized that I didn’t include one of the best reviewed movies of the year. Everyone seems to be putting this at the top of their lists and I can’t deny that it is one of the best constructed movies of the year and a masterpiece, in my opinion. The story is timeless, the editing seamless, and the directing is top notch. The 12 years used to make this movie sets it apart from other movies of this caliber. Why is it at the bottom? When it comes to my list I put movies on it that I would rewatch in a heartbeat. After thinking about it, I haven’t really had the urge to watch Boyhood again. Now matter how impressive the movie may be, I never thought about watching it again.

9. The Grand Budapest Hotel

GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL_426.jpg

Early on in the year, I believed that no movie could top this movie. To my surprise this year has been a fantastic year for film. This movie combines everything I love about Wes Anderson. The aesthetic of the film is amazing, while Monsieur Gustave H. is by far the most fascinating character in Anderson’s filmography. The changing aspect ratios was another amazing addition to the movie. This isn’t my favorite of his film but it is certainly one of his greatest achievements.

8. Gone Girl

GONE-GIRL-Movie-HD-Trailer-Captures00004_1_1

David Fincher is one of my favorite directors working today. He always brings something new to an aged formula. That is one of the reasons that make Gone Girl so unique. Instead of having the major twists saved for the end, the movie decides to reveal it at the end of the first act. It is an intriguing factor that I give both Gillian Flynn and David Fincher for pulling it off so well. What makes this movie even more fascinating is the commentary on both marriage and the media. Everything about this movie is nearly perfect. Rosamund Pick proves her acting chops and even Tyler Perry was able to surprise me, for the first time in his career. Even if I like other of Fincher’s films more, I do think this is a great addition to his impressive filmography.

7. Locke

ct-cth-locke-l-fp-r4-050613-un-jpg-20140501

No other movie this has done more with less. So much goes on during the course of the runtime, that it is surprising that it was only 80 minutes long. Tom Hardy has impressed me lately. He is a powerhouse of an actor and he really shines as Ivan Locke. Throughout the movie more and more is revealed and it makes you question both his choices and reasons behind them. For a movie that takes place solely in one location, I couldn’t believe how much and how well they were able to pull it off.

6. Under the Skin

Under_the_Skin_23

I always thought that Scarlett Johansson was all looks and not really a good actor. I was proven wrong when I saw her in Under the Skin. The movies unique approach is impressive and the minimalistic style makes for a haunting and exhilarating experience. It asks questions that movies typically don’t ask. It asks what it is meant to be human but it doesn’t give you all the answers. The visuals are impressive and the score creates a chilling yet unique.

5. Filth

Filth-James-McAvoy

I don’t know why I loved this movie so much, it was just so damn fun. James McAvoy is like you’ve never seen him before. He plays the vile and disgusting character so well. The movie isn’t so much about plot but more about how insane his characters become over time. Often times the movie is hilarious but also very sad and depressing. You never truly sympathize with him, you mostly fell bad for him. The ending is so damn perfect for the movie and completely ends the film in a satisfying manner.

4. Interstellar 

Interstellar astronauts explore new planet

Christopher Nolan is one of the best blockbuster directors working today. He is able to make the movies that he wants and is able to create some impressive films. His visual eye is incredible. He may have some problems with female characters but this is the first time that I feel he has created some worthwhile female characters. This movie isn’t about space travel as much as it is about love, loss, and fatherhood. There are so many perfect scenes of action but it is the little scenes that Nolan was able to impress me. This is by far his most emotional film to date. You feel the stakes at hand and really sympathize with each character, except for one. Interstellar impressed me both visually and emotionally.

3. Whiplash

tumblr_n9fdfk11dt1ts6gi0o3_1280-new-york-film-festival-2014-whiplash-movie-review

I wasn’t expecting much from this movie. I never really liked Miles Teller and a movie about a jazz drummer didn’t make me want to see it. Once I saw the trailer, that changed. The final product is so intense and awe inspiring that I loved it the minute I walked out. J.K. Simmons gives one of the best performances of the year, he is volatile and intense but somehow relatable. Even Miles Teller impressed me. The final ten minutes had me at the edge of my seat and is incredibly satisfying after all that happens in the movie.

2. Nightcrawler

nightcrawler review

This was one movie that surprised the hell out of me. The movie created a character that is both psychotic and wise. He is a man who know what he wants and takes it, no matter what. Jake Gyllenhaal gives the performance of his life. The story is always surprising and you don’t know where it is going to go in the end. The commentary behind this movie is strong and very out there but it works so well. The directing is perfect and the cinematography is breathtaking. More than anything this is a character study and it showcases a character that is completely original and is also a work of genius.

1. Birman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

_AF_6405.CR2

The most surprising and delightful movie of the year goes to Birdman. Alejandro González Iñárritu created such a fascinating experience. He one of the best dramatic directors working today. He is able to get the best performances out of some of the most unexpected actors. Every actor in this movie are going the extra mile. Michael Keaton is revolutionary. He essentially playing a warped version of himself and he convinces everyone that he still does matter. What sets this movie apart from any other film this year is the fact that it is manipulated to look like one take. It is a technical revolution and is impressive in it’s cinematography. A lot had to go into this movie to achieve this feat and boy does it achieve it. There is also a lot of commentary involving the state of hollywood today, critics, and the will to matter. I loved this movie and think it is the best made movie this year.

Honorable Mentions

Edge of TomorrowAn original and fun blockbuster. Not your typical blockbuster but it breaks the model and makes something unique.

EnemyAn interesting and intelligent thriller that leaves you asking question long after it’s over.

Guardians of the GalaxyA very different Marvel movie and really shows that they can make an interesting movie out of unknown characters.

The RoverFueled by amazing performances and a simplistic story. This movie creates a landscape fully developed and tension that is equally fascinating and grim.

Blue RuinA movie that came out of nowhere and managed to create a fascinating and personal portrayal of revenge.

 

 

Advertisements

Intersteller Trailer

interstellar-trailer-07302014-111409 Christopher Nolan has been on a hot streak since Batman Begins. He has now become one of the most well known directors working today. His fresh take on the Batman saga has influenced blockbusters since. Intersteller looks to be something completely different than we are use to. Like Inception it takes an interesting concept and makes it into a blockbuster. Science Fiction has become increasingly popular and last year is probably one of the most successful year of the genre. Gravity was so close to winning Best Picture and Her was not far behind. Intersteller may have a similar run. The trailer is brilliant and showcases the incredible visuals that this movie is bound to have.

It may turn out to be too experimental for the crowd that tends to go to these types of movies. The premise sounds insane but not exactly something that people will understand. He makes his audience think and if this film is anything like the film that influenced it, 2001: A Space Odyssey, than we might have the next great science fiction film.

When a wormhole (which theoretically can connect widely-separated regions of spacetime) is discovered, explorers and scientists unite to embark on a voyage through it, transcending the limits of human space travel. Among the travelers is a widowed engineer (McConaughey) who has to decide to leave behind his two children to join the voyage to another galaxy with the goal of saving humanity.

Directed by Christopher Nolan. Starring Matthew McConaugheyAnne HathawayJessica ChastainBill IrwinEllen BurstynMichael CaineCasey AffleckTopher GraceJohn LithgowDavid Gyasiand Wes Bentley.  Produced by Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures.

Christopher Nolan and Matthew McConaughey make Comic-Con debut with ‘Interstellar’

SDCC-PANEL-INTERSTELLARI’m surprised by the fact that Christopher Nolan hasn’t been to San Diego Comic Con yet. Given that he directed three of the most popular comic book movies to date and this is the place that these movies thrive. I’m excited for Intersteller and to see what Nolan brings to the table. I’m not a fan of San Diego Comic Con in general but the amount of movie news that debut here is astonishing.

When a wormhole (which theoretically can connect widely-separated regions of spacetime) is discovered, explorers and scientists unite to embark on a voyage through it, transcending the limits of human space travel. Among the travelers is a widowed engineer (McConaughey) who has to decide to leave behind his two children to join the voyage to another galaxy with the goal of saving humanity.

Intersteller is set to be released November 7th, 2014. Directed by Christopher Nolan and released by Warner Brothers Picture.

Marvel Will Not Move ‘Captain America 3’ for ‘Batman V. Superman’

This could either be a good thing or a bad thing. Snagging release dates this early is somewhat important now and the first weekend of May is probably the most important one to snag early on. It now looks like the first weekend in May 2016 is going to be the most crowded day of the year. Captain America 3 seems like a sure thing to gross over a 100 million that weekend but at the same time Batman V. Superman comes out the same day and that might cause some problems. Superhero movies are the cornerstone of box office revenue now a days and when you have to competing on the same weekend and appealing to the same audience than one is going to make and the other will fail or both with fail. I don’t see it happening any other way. The both would do big business but not if they are competing on the same weekend with the same crowd. This is the problem with the marketplace today, you either go big or go home and with two big studio unwilling to change the release date they both are going to lose a load of potential business.

Batman Begins Review

Batman Begins

Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Starring: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Cillian Murphy, Liam Neeson, Morgan Freeman, Katie Holmes, Tom Wilkinson

After the bad taste left in the mouths of every Batman fan after the extremely painful, from my experience with, Batman & Robin. After that the studios tried everything to reboot the franchise and make a movie that both satisfies the fan base and connects well with the audience. Enter Christopher Nolan, a man who directed such noir films as The Following, Memento, and Insomnia but who had yet made a name for himself blockbuster wise, a man perfectly suited to tackle the Batman franchise making him a haunted, dark, and chilling character who is still tormented by the fact that he witnessed his parents death. Putting the character in the noir genre or style for which the director and the studio made the wisest decision to do so. When the movie was finally released and I had finally saw it, it completely changed how I viewed film and afterwards I started watching much darker movie and opened up my eyes to a much different style of film that I was use to, at the time I was only 13 and only just started to expand on my horizons into films that I have never seen before. Batman Begins changed me and I experienced a new kind of film that to this day remember the experience in the movie theater, something I can’t say for Harry Potter or Transformers.

Screen shot from Batman Begins

As a boy a young Bruce Wayne watched in horror as his millionaire parents were slain in front of his eyes, a trauma which led him to become obsessed with revenge but his chance is cruelly taken away from him by fate. After disappearing to the East where he seeks counsel with the dangerous but honorable ninja cult leader known as Ra’s Al-Ghul, he returns to his now decaying Gotham City overrun by organized crime and dangerous individuals manipulating the system whilst the company he inherited is slowly being pulled out from under him. The discovery of a cave under his mansion, and a prototype armored suit leads him to take on a new persona, one which will strike fear into the hearts of men who do wrong – he becomes, Batman. In the new guise, and with the help of rising cop Jim Gordon, Batman sets out to take down the various nefarious schemes in motion by individuals such as mafia don Falcone, the twisted doctor/drug dealer Jonathan ‘The Scarecrow’ Crane, and a mysterious third party that is quite familiar with Wayne and waiting to strike when the time is right.

Screen shot from Batman Begins

Everything about this movie I really enjoyed. The original Batman never featured an origin story, which really bugged me because I wanted to know how he became who he is. I think one of the biggest strengths of this movie is the fact that they included Ras al Ghul as the primary villain and also mentor, he has never gotten the chance to shine on screen till now and Liam Neeson was the perfect choice for the character. Christian Bale was another good choice to portray Bruce Wayne, I never knew who he was until this movie, and he brings layers to the character that where never present in any of the other movies. Including Scarecrow was another good idea because he was always an interesting character in the comics that never got shine on the big screen, and at first I thought he would be the primary villain but he instead used as a pawn, which is good because physically he can’t do much against Batman. Gary Oldman is able to make Jim Gordon his own, which he always does because he is just that great an actor, and made him a very human character that has to struggle like the rest of us but is not corrupt but more humble than some of the other characters. The only real weak part of the cast is Katie Holmes who is not convincing or at all interesting in the role, she feels like she is forced to the role and had no fun at all in the part. There is a lot to be said about this movie, such as themes and what not but I already posted an article about that and I will post a link below because I don’t feel like getting to deep into that in this review.

https://thevisionaryfilmfanatic.wordpress.com/2012/07/19/712/

All in all this is by far one of the greatest superhero films of all time and is definitely a step up from what Tim Burton and Joel Schumacher put out. It is dark, tragic, and definitely more cynical than any other superhero franchise out there and that is what makes this movie what it is and shows that it is possible to have superheroes exist in real life, even though it is highly unlikely.

10 out of 10