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SpicyPulp’s Best Films of 2014

SpicyPulp’s Best Films of 2014

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2014 has almost come to an end, and it has certainly been a triumphant one for movie goers and everyone here at SpicyPulp. And now, the SpicyPulp team (Rachel, Shawn and myself) have gathered together our top five films of the year, as well as a few of our own guilty pleasures to share with you. Check them out for an awesome night in.

Boyhood

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Twelve years in the making, Richard Linklater’s Boyhood was met with near universal acclaim upon its release this year. Intimate and unassuming, Boyhood chronicles the childhood of a young boy (played by Ellar Coltrane) through a series of vignettes shot twelve months apart with the same actors.

The genius of this film is its realism and the joy Linklater takes in honouring the little moments which form the rich tapestry of life. This is not only the best film of the year but also a cinematic masterpiece that will stay with you for a long long time.

Guardians Of The Galaxy

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What does it take to the save the galaxy? Five criminal misfits, a whole lot of firepower, and one very cool mix tape. Director James Gunn’s Guardians Of The Galaxy took the world by storm with its larger than life heroics, and laugh out loud comedy in a film that was a major shake up for the Marvel Universe. Every single frame of this hit is perfect, marked by the passion of its director and cast. When the chips are down, and only thing that can save the universe is a dance off, you better call the Guardians of the Galaxy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aHUBlv5_K8Y

Gone Girl 
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Engrossing, provocative and haunting, Gone Girl was a brilliantly paced and thrilling cinematic triumph. Directed by David Fincher (The Social Network) and starring my new favourite leading lady Rosamund Pike, the film took the mystery genre to another level with its mid-way twist and shocking finale. Why it’s not getting more award season buzz is beyond us.

Edge Of Tomorrow

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One of the most adrenaline pumping films of 2014 was Edge Of Tomorrow, which threw audiences back in their seats and bombarded them with countless shells and explosions. Tom Cruise’s Bill Cage went from loser recruit to mechanised badass, and suffered multiple hits on screen (and at times very comedic death scenes). With Edge Of Tomorrow, you never knew what would happen next, and the shocks and action filled the screen until the very last frame.

The Lego Movie 

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On paper, The Lego Movie should not have worked – branded entertainment films rarely do, let alone ones about plastic building blocks with no clear narrative attached to them. However every frame of this irreverent film by writer-directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller is a delight.

The Lego Movie is beautifully rendered, impeccably paced, consistently funny and oddly profound. This is a lovingly constructed film that embraces creativity and the art of creation – an absolute triumph.

The Guest – Rachel’s Guilty Pleasure
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Director Adam Wingard (You’re Next) really spread his wings with this psychological thriller. The Guest follows the Peterson family as they become hosts to a mysterious stranger played by a super buff Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey), who attempts to help the family as they struggle with the loss of their oldest son in Afghanistan. However, Stevens’ character isn’t just your run of the mill nice guy…he also happens to be a cold and calculated killing machine with a penchant for serving justice in a very brutal way. For me this film firmly marked the beginning of Stevens’ departure from Matthew Crawley while opening him up to a new audience willing to accept him as a leading man.

Jodorowsky’s Dune – Sam’s Guilty Pleasure 

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Regarded as the greatest film never made, Alexandro Jodorowsky’s adaption of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi masterpiece Dune would have revolutionized cinema and taken its audience on the most amazing ride of their lives…had one roll of film actually been shot. This touching documentary showcases Jodorowsky’s true passion and hunger to enchant an audience through the power of storytelling, and takes you through everything from his groundbreaking ideas for production design to the film’s legendary cast which would have included David Carradine, Mick Jagger, Orson Welles and Salvador Dali, to the film’s soundtrack which Pink Floyd had been hired to compose. Jodorowsky’s Dune is a marvelous tribute to the power of cinema, and the way in which it moves audiences.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgvgS_s9DPU

The Grand Budapest Hotel – Shawn’s Guilty Pleasure 

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Grand Budapest Hotel finds master storyteller Wes Anderson at the top of his game, delivering what may be his best film to date. Each frame of this film has been meticulously constructed with the resulting effect being a film that is so beautifully realised that it truly needs to be seen to be believed.

While the cast boasts the likes of Jude Law, Edward Norton, and Tilda Swinton, it’s Ralph Fiennes portrayal of Monsieur Gustave that truly stands out. Fiennes attacked the role with relish and provided us with a timely reminder of just how gifted a performer he is, as well as how underrated he is as a comedian.