I enjoyed compiling my 10 favourite films of 2014 so much, that I thought I would step back one more year and do the same with 2013. It is only when you look back at the list of great movies that you realise there are some that are classics already. Hope you spot one or two of your own favourites, if not, then shout at me in the comments!
It’s not easy to create a truly original take on a horror sub-genre such as zombies, but Warm Bodies delivers a touching and heart felt romance within the absurdity of the undead. Hoult is superb despite the restrictions of his role and although I had major problems with the consistency of its story, the film cleverly avoided the cliché- ridden basement of the horror house and opens the door to the spare room instead.
Iron Man 3
It isn’t perfect and even murdering the Mandarin and underusing Kingsley aside, it is still a step down from the slick first instalment. But I firmly believe that Iron Man 3 is really underrated as a Marvel movie and suffers from the same scepticism that Revenge of the Sith faces due to its poor predecessor. Above all else its surprisingly funny and arguably has better Downey jokes than the first film, delving into the post-trauma of Avengers. Plus Pepper is looking hot throughout.
Boy has this movie grown on me from when I first watched it! Once you get past the woeful acting and over-dramatic cinematography you quickly realise that it has much more to offer. Del Toro it seems knew exactly what he was doing when he went all out to replicate the sense of fun and awe that really classic monster movies had at the cinema when he was growing up. It’s simply already a classic for many movie fans and I always stick it on now and again for a Friday night movie.
Howard’s surprisingly gripping biopic was a real break from the norm in 2013 and deserved all the plaudits it garnered. Hemsworth and Bruhl battle to outshine each other both on screen and on the racetrack, as they go wheel to wheel in some brilliantly realistic race scenes. The film’s achievement to balance entertainment with revealing the necessary truths found in racing’s past, is testament to its downright greatness.
This is probably my favourite film of 2013. The casting is mindbogglingly good and it drives itself forward with relentless speed. Harrowing performances from all involved, the cinematography matches the film’s dark tone and sinister motives. Gyllenhall is especially watchable as he wrestles with emotion and investigation amidst a father’s anger. It may not have turned many heads at the time, but it has to go down as one of the best psychological thrillers of the twenty first century.
Hanks’ performs the role of his life in Greengrass’ indisputably realistic tale of Somali pirates. It’s all about the characters in this movie and the viewer finds their assumptions torn apart as the cast do battle in hauntingly gritty scenes. Serves as a necessary lesson about these dangerous waters whilst also showcasing Greengrass’ determination to capture more than just a bunch of bad guys stealing a boat. Brilliant film.
Not many people saw this movie when it came out, which is simply a shame as it captures a sense of cheesy sci-fi fun with a fairly serious undertone lingering underneath. Blending some mature themes with a mostly adolescent cast, is something the eighties did so well, and I only hope that kids of today look back at Ender’s Game with the same fondness I do to other coming-of-age classics like Last Starfighter. Worth a watch if you haven’t already.
I have watched this on blu-ray at home after seeing it for the first time in the cinema in 3D and I was quite taken aback by how much more of an aural (that’s hearing you dirty lot) experience it was than before. Perhaps I wasn’t distracted by the stomach-flipping sense of vertigo this time, but it enhanced the whole experience to a different plane. A strange and ethereal movie that has not only remained one of my favourite films of 2013, but a real game-changer in terms of cinematic scope.
Absolutely brutal. Lone Survivor is literally there to prove how far the human body can go when unfaltering spirit is instilled in the most elite of soldiers. The film rolls down the hills, picking up pace as the bones break and the bullets fly. Whalberg is only outshone by Ben Foster, who is fast becoming one of my favourite actors. A visceral and stirringly realistic portrayal of war. Must watch.
The Wolf of Wall Street
It was a rare thing to find someone, especially a guy, that didn’t absolutely love this movie. How much that had to do with the boobs and midget throwing is anyone’s guess, but it became the most talked about movie in the workplace for months. Its lesson of the perils and power of greed is partly lost in the whirl of drugs, drinks and inspiring speeches. While not Scorcese’s greatest work, teaming up with Dicaprio has proved a winning formula once again. I f**king love you Jordan!