By Stephanie Schaefer
Sean Tuohy inspired me to share my favorite films of 2014, and one I wish I never watched...
Hands down, Richard Linklater’s film takes the gold medal, not only because of its brilliant direction, but also because of the raw and real dialogue coming from the mouths of actors like Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette. Filmed throughout the course of 12 years, the story follows Mason (Ellar Coltrane) morphing from a shy child to an angsty teenager to a college freshman dealing with life’s hurdles. The coming-of-age film is one-of-a-kind, and I’m hoping to see it pick up some hardware during this year’s award season.
What do you get when you pair soft-spoken Kiera Knightly, scruffy Mark Ruffalo, hipster Adam Levine and the New York City skyline? The charming rom-com “Begin Again.” The indie film quietly stole my heart with its hopeful themes and poetic soundtrack. Plus, I love that Levine didn’t take a penny for acting in the low-budget flick.
I’ll admit that I never actually read the book, but did see the movie on opening night. I was intrigued by all the hype of the film, and it didn’t disappoint. Although I’m usually not one to enjoy thrillers, it certainly kept my attention throughout. I personally believe that it was one of Ben Affleck’s most well-acted movies to date (even though I blinked and missed his “nude” scene), and Rosamund Pike gave a hauntingly good performance. The plot may have had a few holes, but if you’re one of the five Americans who haven’t seen it yet, I recommend watching.
“22 Jump Street”
Although this film probably won’t win any Oscars, I’m adding it to my list because defied all odds by
1. Being a good sequel (the list of good sequels is short).
2. Being a comedy that actually makes you laugh.
Let’s face it, comedies these days tend to be lackluster, but not when Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill are paired up. I laughed out loud numerous times in the theater, and have the Writer’s Bone crew Daniel Ford, Sean Tuohy, and Rachel Tyner as witnesses.
Bonus: The Worst Movie of 2014
I’ve walked out of the theater about three times in my lifetime, and one happened this year. Actually, I think I stormed out. When I hear the words, “That Awkward Moment,” the first thing that comes to my mind is misogynistic piece of crap. It may be too late for Zac Efron, but I hope that Miles Teller and Michael B. Jordan pretend that movie never happened, and go on to show us their full potential in 2015 (à la “Whiplash” and “Fruitvale Station”).