1. Snowpiercer – A high-concept dystopian sci-fi parable, our choice for Movie of the Year is likely to leave you with more questions than answers. However, if you avoid getting wrapped up in the literal mechanics of how its world functions or in its generic political philosophy, there’s an excess of violence, absurdity, and genuine heart bending over backwards to entertain you. It’s a wildly exciting ride for those who stop questioning its methods and instead submit to its charms.
2. The Babadook – The best horror film of 2014 is flooded with genuine scares essential to the genre, but its true threat is more intimate & psychological than what you’d find in a traditional monster movie. The Babadook will linger in your mind for days, months. Maybe forever.
3. Gone Girl – The Lifetime movie this film pretends to be in its first half is merely a cover-up of the excessive, sociopathic spectacle lurking under the surface. Fincher proves again that he can do no wrong.
4. Interstellar – Grand, epic, visually striking. The volume & variety of complaints surrounding this wonderful film has got to be the most hilarious joke of 2014.
5. Blue Ruin – A grim, realistic, edge-of-your-seat revenge thriller that hits familiar beats carved out by directors like Jeff Nichols & The Coen brothers without ever feeling redundant.
6. We Are the Best! – A heartwarming story about three adolescents discovering their inner punks. These kids are the best.
7. Under The Skin – Haunting. Sparse yet loaded with unforgettable images & sounds. Glazer is a genius.
8. The Grand Budapest Hotel – Wes Anderson seems to be testing just how much Wes Anderson people can take with his last couple of features. When he’s working with images this strong & performances as hilarious as Ralph Fiennes’ is here, we can take a lot.
9 The One I Love – A romantic trip into The Twilight Zone that’s both hilarious & thought-provoking. We’re not sure if Romantic Horror is a genre, but this film might qualify if it were.
10. Venus in Fur – Disregarding Polanski’s personal life, you have to give him credit here for turning a delicate premise into such a humorous, sensual, and metatextual success. Venus is brilliantly acted, masterfully escalated, and wonderfully critical of both sex politics & theater as an art form.
HM. Obvious Child – Approaching a sensitive subject from a sincere & deeply empathetic place, this film deserves to be recognized as one of the all-time great romantic comedies. Or at least one of the best in recent memory.
-The Swampflix Crew