Five for the Fifth: DECEMBER 2014 Edition

FiveForFifth2014holiday

Welcome to FlixChatter’s primary blog series! As is customary for this monthly feature, I get to post five random news item/observation/poster, etc. and then turn it over to you to share your take on that given topic. You can see the previous five-for-the-fifth posts here.

Since this is the last FFTF of the year and award season has kicked into high gear, the questions will revolve around film awards and your choices of ‘best of’ or favorite in both films and TV. So let’s get started, shall we?

1. First off, I’m going to talk about A Most Violent Year, which was recently voted Best Picture by The National Board of Review. The NBR president Annie Schulhof was quoted as saying “‘A Most Violent Year’ is an exhilarating crime drama with a compelling story, outstanding performances and an elegant cinematic style,” per LA Times. I posted the trailer in the last Five for the Fifth post and it certainly does look VERY good, but also very intense. NBR also awarded its stars Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain in Best Actor and Actress category respectively, two extremely talented actors who are fellow Juilliard graduates.

AMostViolentYear

I was quite surprised by this pick, but at the same time, not really. I mean, sure it hasn’t gained as much traction as other films such as Birdman, Boyhood or The Imitation Game, but writer/director J.C. Chandor was an Oscar nominee for Margin Call so this could very well be Oscar’s dark horse. I read somewhere that this film is like Wall Street meets Scarface, hmmm I probably just rent this later as it might be way too violent for me.

So what’s your thought on MBR’s pick of Best Picture? Do you predict it’ll be nominated for Oscar too?

….

2. You might not know who she is yet, but I’ve mentioned Gugu Mbatha-Raw quite a few times in my blog based on her two excellent performances I saw this year in Belle and Beyond the Lights. In fact, I’d be sorely disappointed if she didn’t get at least a nomination for BAFTA’s Orange Rising Star Award next year, I mean she should have won one already by now.

I have only heard of her prior to this year from the JJ Abrams’ show Undercover that was canceled pretty quickly. I haven’t seen a single episode but I’d have watched it for Gugu! In fact, she makes my Honorable Mention on my list of 10 Actresses I’d Watch in Practically Anything.

So which actor/actress you’ve never seen prior to 2014 who left a huge impression on you this year?

3. Ok so the ‘Best of’ lists have started to pop up and though I’m still not sure what my Top 10 would look like, there is at least a few that I know WILL make the list: Belle, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men Days of Future Past.

Say what you will about Wolverine but Xavier + Magneto are what the X-Men prequels are all about for me
Xavier + Magneto are what the X-Men prequels are all about for me

Now my Top 10 is a personal one as it’s usually comprised of films that I both admire AND enjoy watching that I’d buy the Blu-ray, not something I appreciate but won’t ever want to see again. So it’s not always the most critically-acclaimed films out there, though these three are actually on Rotten Tomatoes’ Top 100 so far.

So I’m curious, tell me at least ONE film that surely will end up on your Top 10 of the year?
….

4. Now switching gears to those that won’t make your Top 10 list, unless it’s the WORST or Most Disappointing list of the year. I was actually making a list of ‘movies everyone seem to love that leave me cold’ from classic to contemporary movies. I’m excluding 2014 films as the one film that disappointed me most hasn’t even opened yet in most cities. But if I were to include it, WILD would make the list as it just bored me to tears.

WildMovieI was flabbergasted how high the rating is for that one and the fact that it’s been taunted as an Oscar contender just boggles my mind.

Now I’m curious which critically-acclaimed 2014 movie you didn’t enjoy or disappointed you most?

5. This month Five for the Fifth’s guest is Mark from Three Rows Back!

ThreeRowsBack

Inspired by yesterday’s announcement of SPECTRE, Mark has Bond on his mind. Now this topic has been discussed before even though Daniel Craig is still under contract to do one more Bond film after Spectre. I’ve listed some of my – and my pal Ted’s – choices of who we’d like to say play 007, but hey, there’s no reason why we can’t talk about it again. Here’s what Mark’s idea of who he thinks should be considered:

I would rule out a Yank to play the part; Bond is quintessentially British.

Much as I liked him, I would have discounted Tom Hardy until I saw him in ‘Locke;’ an underrated performance full of range in my book, so he would be right up there for me. I’ve always loved Idris Elba too; that guy hasn’t found his true calling yet and Bond could well be it.

Hardy_Elba_Rocknrolla
Tom & Idris in Rocknrolla!

I LOVE both Hardy and Elba (hey both are Rocknrolla alums!), but I give Elba the edge as he’s tall. I dunno, I kind of prefer Bond to be at least 6 feet tall. Nothing against Craig as he does a great job in the role, but I wish the next Bond actor would be tower above most people. Heck I don’t care what race, I mean I think the world is ready for a Black Bond (I wanted Colin Salmon as Bond at one point), heck even Asian Bond, someone like British/Korean actor Daniel Henney who’s 6’2″ and is a decent actor. As for the argument that Bond actor should be British, I can see that and I have no problem with that though for me, if another non-Brit can pull off a British accent convincingly, it doesn’t bother me. In fact, I did put Danish actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau on my wish list.

So, Mark [and I] would like to know … who would you like to see replace Craig after he hangs up his Walter PPK?


Well, that’s it for the last Five for the Fifth edition of the year! Now, please pick a question out of the five above or better yet, do ‘em all! 😀

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49 thoughts on “Five for the Fifth: DECEMBER 2014 Edition

  1. Awesome questions Ruth!
    1. I don’t know what to make of A Most Violent Year. The clips bore me to tears, and usually I’m excited for anything Jessica does – but it just looks, sorta meh. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was nominated though.
    2. Watching interviews of Gugu Mbatha-Raw, she is so lovely – I look forward to seeing her movies. Jenna Coleman and Karen Gillan from Doctor Who left big impressions on me. I was really only familiar with Billie Piper as a Companion but they are both super talented women.
    3. Edge of Tomorrow and The Fault In Our Stars will be in my top ten, otherwise it feels like a really boring year.
    4. Sorry to year Wild wasn’t enjoyable. After reading the book and seeing the trailer, I’ve been extremely obsessed to see it and now it’s not playing in my state -at all. 😦 I want to say Gone Girl (?). I really liked it but didn’t wow me.
    5. Totally supportive for Idris Elba taking over for Bond. He is so charismatic and smooth. I feel like he would be good portraying the steely-mysterious side and do great with the action sequences too.

    1. Hello Katy! Glad to see you stop by.

      Hmmm, I haven’t seen the clip but I thought the trailer for A Most Violent Year looks pretty darn intense. I love the pairing of Oscar & Jessica too.

      You should check out Gugu Mbatha-Raw in BELLE, oh I so love that movie!!

      Interesting that you said it’s a boring year, I actually think it’s a good one but I think next year it’s gonna be pretty darn cool w/ the new Bond coming out. I’m such a Bond geek 😛

      I was expecting to love WILD but no, sadly I’m not er, wild about that one.

      I really think the Bond folks missed the boat not casting Elba as he’d be too old by the time Craig’s done in 2018. I agree he could nail both the tough and mysterious side that the role requires.

  2. I am insanely excited to see A Most Violent Year, but as with many films like this I have no idea when it will arrive in our area. That really stinks. I love my state, but this is one of my frustrations.

    Which movie do I know will be on my ‘Best of’ list? I’m standing with ya on Captain America. Such a great movie (not just a superhero movie). Also, I LOVE what you said about how you do your lists. I totally agree. Mine are personal as well which is why they sometimes don’t match the popular picks. This year will certainly be no different! 😉

    As for disappointments, there have been a few. Noah comes to mind although it wasn’t necessarily critically acclaimed. The Grand Budapest Hotel disappointed me even though I liked it. Just didn’t love it like I wanted to. I have a post that went up earlier this week on this very topic. Would love to hear some of your thoughts on some of the picks people had. I know a couple you will agree with! 😉

    1. I’m hoping A Most Violent Year would open here too, but if it did it’ll be only for a few weeks. I wish indie films are released in more states, but I guess it’s driven by demands and until smaller markets respond well (as in buy tickets to indie films), they simply won’t have enough funds to expand in those areas 😦

      Glad we share our love for The Winter Soldier! I know lots of people would probably put Guardians of Galaxy on their Top 5 but I’m not even sure it’ll even make my top 10. Oh I missed that post, I’ll check it out right now!

      I still haven’t seen NOAH yet but it already put a bad taste in my mouth that the filmmakers chose not to put God as a pivotal element in his story. Similar to how Unbroken is from what I read, even though it’s a key factor in the character’s emotional transformation that he could forgive his war captors.

        1. Yeah, one blogger actually got so defensive when I said he’s so enamored w/ it like most critics. Needless to say I won’t be commenting on his blog anymore. It’s funny how people get upset over their faves and this one is one of those that will get that kind of adoration I think.

  3. 1. Hell, at this point I really don’t even know what’s going to get nominated at the Oscars. Haven’t heard much talk myself about this one, but it still feels a bit too early to tell. I’ll see it when it releases here, but it’s already feeling like it’s gonna be one of those years where all the big Oscar movies don’t actually get released in my town til January. 😛

    2. Hrm, good question, and most years I actually have a solid answer. This year, not so much, though, so I guess I’m gonna go with Eva Green. After looking it up, I’ve technically seen her in other roles prior to 2014, though I can’t say she ever stood out or that I ever took note of her until this year. Her films themselves weren’t great (300 and Sin City sequels), but her performances in both were top notch, 300 especially, where she genuinely gives one of the best all around performances I’ve seen this year so far, and she’s certainly left her mark and made a name for herself.

    3. I’m not sure what my full Top 10 is gonna look like just yet, though I do have a pretty solid Top 6 so far, haha! You can probably guess at least a couple of my picks, so I’ll through one out there that I haven’t been quite as vocal about and say that John Wick has a good chance of staying on the list. 😉

    4. Still waiting on Wild to release here. 😛 As for my pick of most highly acclaimed movie that disappointed me? Captain America: The Winter Soldier, without question. I know everyone loves it, but it’s seriously one of the biggest let downs I’ve ever experienced in a movie theater, ’cause I expected SO much from it having loved the first and really loving the direction of the Phase 2 movies up to that point, but it didn’t live up to a single one of my expectations. :\

    5. Honestly, quite possibly the only person who could play Bond and would actually get me to see it would be Michael Fassbender, but only because I will see ANYTHING that man does. XP

    1. Hi Chris, I haven’t thought about which films will be nominated but it surprised me that this one won NBR, that’s why I’m curious what others think.

      I suppose since you’re not a Bond fan you might’ve missed Eva Green as Vesper in Casino Royale. It’s worth seeing just for her I think as she’s one my fave Bond girls now. Haven’t seen the 300 sequel but I heard she’s the best thing about it.

      I’m sure Interstellar will make your Top 5 right? 😉

      Well I guess we’re in complete opposite in terms of that Nolan movie and The Winter Soldier. I LOVE LOVE that one, it’s a great film, not just a great superhero film IMO.

      I think Fassy would’ve been great as Bond though he’s a bit too um, conventional I’d say.

  4. 1. Saw this trailer when I took in WHIPLASH. Looks good. I’ll hold judgment till I see it though for Best Picture, though (the former high on my list for that one).

    2. Mireille Enos who did Lizzy Murray in “Sabotage” got my attention over the summer.

    3. Like you, Captain American: The Winter Soldier will be on it, but as I said, WHIPLASH will be there, too.

    4. I’m sure there were some who enjoyed it, but Amazing Spiderman 2 disappointed me the most.

    5. Idris Elba has my vote, as well.

    Can’t believe this will be the last one of these for the year, Ruth. Always fun.

    1. I’ve been hearing great things about WHIPLASH, will definitely rent that one. I’m just excited that Oscar Isaac just might get an Oscar nom this year, I mean the man deserves it and not only because it’d live up to his name, ahah.

      I’ve only seen Mireille Enos in World War Z and Gangster Squad and she’s great in both.

      Glad to hear we both love The Winter Soldier, yay! And yeah, Amazing Spidey 2 is nothing but amazing, heh.

      Idris is one suave Brit, really he should probably have his own franchise!

      Thanks for your loyalty in participating in FFTF, really appreciate it Michael!

  5. 1.This looks pretty great. I wish Mark played a part like that – he got interested in acting because of Brando in Streetcar, I’d love to see him playing a dangerous type Oscar Isaac is probably playing in this, though I am seeing What Doesn’t Kill You tomorrow and he looks intense there. But yeah getting back to this one, Scarface meets Wall Street sounds awesome

    2. Carrie Coon in Gone Girl, James Corden in Begin Again and that 4th crew member in Interstellar – David Gyasi, is it? I don’t know where Nolan found him but he brought as lot of heart to the role

    3. Gone Girl, it’s the only 2014 movie so far I give 10/10 to

    4. Boyhood, it just didn’t move me at all and it was kinda boring

    5. Oh, Idris, definitely.

    1. Oh I think Mark could totally play a dark role like this, surely he has, no? I didn’t know he’s acting because of Brando in Streetcar. Boy imagine if he played that role on Broadway, you might pass out seeing him dark, brooding in tight t-shirt and with his loose curls untouched 😉

      Which one is Carrie Coon in Gone Girl? Is she Ben’s sister? I LOVE James Corden since he played Paul Potts in One Chance. Yes David Gyasi was good in Interstellar but he’s gone way too soon!

      I’d be disappointed if you didn’t have Gone Girl on your list, Sati!

      Hmmm, I haven’t seen Boyhood but I heard it’s super long so I’ll wait for rental.

      Yep, Idris would make sexiest Bond ever, too bad it’s never gonna happen ;(

      1. Well I’m close to passing out as it is 🙂

        Yep, she played Margo, Nick’s sister. A shame she is not getting more critics attention while Arquette is winning so much for her mediocre work. It is a very long movie and it really bored me.

  6. Stu

    Good questions as always!
    1. I do like the look of this but can’t really say for sure as there are so many supposed Oscar contenders I haven’t seen yet. Sounds intriguing though.
    2. I’m gonna go with Macon Blair, the star of Blue Ruin. I thought that was a really good performance; not the best I’ve seen all year by any means but I hadn’t heard of him before.
    3. Not quite sure about my top 10, I’m desperately trying to plug a few gaps before the year end, but Boyhood is the film I’ve enjoyed the most to date. I keep banging on about it and it will probably still be my number 1 when I put a list together.
    4. Although I enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy it won’t make my top 10 either! But in terms of a movie that disappointed me that was acclaimed…probably Interstellar. Didn’t hate it but just got fed up with certain elements of it and can’t really understand why so many people thought it was great.
    5. I think Hardy is a great shout for Bond. I can’t really improve on that answer but a few years ago Clive Owen was touted and I always thought he’d be a good fit. They’ve taken it in a different direction since and I think you need to be a bit beefy these days which is why Hardy would be a good option. Actually isn’t Roger Moore available? Would Monica Bellucci be up for it?

    1. Hi Stu! Yeah I haven’t seen a bunch either, and many won’t even open until early next year.

      Ah I think I know who Macon is from the reviews I’ve read of Blue Ruin. It’s way too bloody for me though.

      Interesting that you said Boyhood might make your #1, as Sati just said it disappointed her. I haven’t seen it yet so we’ll see where I’d fall.

      Yep Interstellar certainly doesn’t wow me, but I don’t know if it disappointed me as there still things I like about it.

      I’d have LOVED to see Clive Owen as Bond, I mean he’s practically Bond-like in those BMW short films. Ahah, are you saying Monica Bellucci should be a female Bond? If so, I’m SO on board w/ that idea!! But no, sir Roger should just be in a Bond spoof if he’s up for it.

      1. Stu

        No, I’m not sure about a female Bond … I think we have our wires crossed there! I might have to write a Roger Moore appraisal soon, he’s the Bond I remember most from the period I grew up so I’ve always had a soft spot for him, even though some of those films are almost relentlessly cheesy!!! Haha.

  7. Ted S.

    1. Definitely want to see The Most Violent year since it’s a genre that I love but don’t care if it will get Oscar noms or not. 🙂

    2. The only other film I saw her in was Tree of Life but after Interstellar, I thought Jessica Chastain is a good actress.

    3. I don’t think I’ve seen the best film this year yet but my favorites are Interstellar, Snowpiercer, Captain America: Winter Soldier and Days of Future Past. I’m looking forward to Inherent Vice and Battle of Five Armies.

    4. I have big zero interest in seeing WILD, another movie about a good looking person who needs to discover his or herself in the wild, YAWN!! The one movie that I was surprised how many people really enjoyed including critics was Edge of Tomorrow. I thought it’s entertaining but it’s a movie I don’t want to see again soon.

    5. I’m sticking with Luke Evans even though he’ll never get the role since he’s openly gay. This is a now multi billion dollars franchise and I hate to say it, SONY and MGM will NEVER cast a gay or color actor as 007. But we can all dream about whoever gets to play the super spy next. 🙂

    1. I was gonna give the screening of A Most Violent Year to you but it was in the AM. I think it’s so right up your alley, Ted!

      Oh yes, I LOVE Chastain and I’m glad she’s getting so many good roles.

      Oh I saw Battle of Five Armies earlier this week and it was just meh to me, definitely not as good as the second one but I guess if you’re expecting tons of battle scenes you won’t be disappointed. I’m glad the trilogy is over now though.

      “…another movie about a good looking person who needs to discover his or herself in the wild, YAWN!!” Ahah, you took the words straight out of my mouth!! That’s why it’s so darn boring!

      Y’know, he doesn’t seem as openly gay as others and even if he did, Hollywood seems to embrace them more and more. I do think he can do the part well, though he’s more brutish than the elegant Bond I like in Dalton. At the same time, he’s Welsh just like Dalton, so that’d be cool to see another Welsh actor playing Bond!

      1. Ted S.

        Yeah I can’t go to the morning screening and I can’t watch movies early in the morning, it’s gotta be afternoon or night time.

        Pretty much that’s what I’m expecting to see in Battle of the Five Armies, lots of battle scenes. In the book, Tolkien only mentioned the battle in like one paragraph so I want to see action in the movie.

  8. 1. I’m excited since I do like both Margin Call and All is Lost as I want to see if J.C. Chandor is for real.

    2. Ellar Coltrane of Boyhood.

    3. Gone Girl which is currently #1 of 2014 as of now.

    4. None because I haven’t seen any of them.

    5. Idris.

    1. Haven’t seen All Is Lost yet but based on Margin Call, Candor is one VERY talented writer/director.

      Still need to see Boyhood!

      Ah, you and Sati it seems, but it really is a good one.

      Love your short & sweet answers, Steven. Hope you’re feeling better & better everyday!

  9. Ooh, great questions!

    1. I think AMVY could be nominated for a few Oscars but I don’t think it’ll be able to dethrone Boyhood. Yes, it won BP from NBR, but it hasn’t registered with many other groups.
    2. I had seen him before but one actor who completely blew me away was Zach Galifianakis in Birdman. A very restrained, effective performance. Also, Evan Peters in X-Men: DOFP.
    3. Birdman, without a doubt.
    4. Interstellar.
    5. Clive Owen, Tom Hardy, Michael Fassbender

    1. Hi Fernando! Yeah I have a feeling Boyhood will be the one film to beat this season. I still need to see it though.

      Y’know I wasn’t fond of Zach before but I have to admit he was good in Birdman and he lost some weight hasn’t he? Which one is Evan in DOFP? Was he Quicksilver?

      Nice to see we’re on the same page about Birdman and Interstellar though I don’t hate the latter as much as I do about Wild.

      Boy seeing those three names together makes me wish there’s a movie starring Owen, Hardy & Fassbender, what a trio!!

    1. Love your short & sweet answers Cindy! I have no interest in Noah based on what I’ve read. It’s a *Biblical* tale that’s been done to suit the filmmaker’s taste and belief, I doubt I’d enjoy it.

  10. 1. Can’t wait to see A Most Violent Year. I’m sure I’ll enjoy most of it but I don’t think it will make a splash with the awards. There isn’t enough buzz about this film. I don’t care about buzz myself but unfortunately this is how it works with these awards. But there is stil enough time. I think we’ll get a confirmation next week with the Golden Globes nominations.

    2. Essie Davis’ work in The Babadook left me speechless. One of the best performances of the year. She’s been in films for a while but only know I’ve seen her for the first time.

    3. Life Itself, Boyhood and Under The Skin are three films that I’m sure will make my top ten. I’ll have to be impressed by too many films for them to be taken out of the countdown.

    4. I still haven’t seen many films that will make it big this season. However I chose two films that will go unnoticed in terms of awards but that a lot of people liked: What If and The Guest. What If has some charm but at the end of the day it’s just a typical romantic comedy. And The Guest is too silly for me to get involved in the story. It’s apparently a spoof of action films. I didn’t get it. But the soundtrack is amazing.

    5. Well, I can’t really think of anyone else good for that role. I guess it’s time for a black Bond. I’d go with Idris Elba. He needs a big role to kickstart his movie career. I wouldn’t mind Tom hardy either. But besides them I can’t think of anyone that would do the role justice.

    1. Hi Christian! Welcome to FC and thanks for the great answers!

      You’re right there’s not a lot of buzz for A Most Violent Year, but I think the NBR win gets some notice.

      I actually just read what The Babadook is about but boy it looks way too scary for me. I don’t really do horror.

      Boy I still have some catching up to do as I haven’t seen any of the three on your top 10!

      The Guest never made it over here but I really want to see that one to see Dan Stevens’ performance. Too bad you think it’s silly.

      I think Idris’ film career is going well so far, but yeah, he’d be awesome as 007!

  11. Is Wild really that bad. I was hoping for a top performance from Witherspoon – from what I’d read it was an interesting character study. Still one I’ll check out but my expectations are now wary!

    1. Hi Dan, well unfortunately I found her and the movie to be boring here. I might be in the minority though as most people seem to love this one.

  12. Tom

    Lots of stuff to masticate on here Ruth.

    1) I have no thoughts or even impressions really about A Most Violent Year, since I’ve only seen its trailer once and haven’t been moved enough to watch it again and again. So, we’ll see how that goes I suppose. It does look tense and quite thrilling, but for whatever reason it’s not jumping out at me right now.

    2) Fantastic call with Mbatha-Raw, she’s really quite something even tho I’ve only had the privilege of seeing her in Belle so far! Hmm. . .for me, (and this is definitely a part I’m going to struggle with for my own DigiBread Awards coming up at the end of the month/year) I would have to call Riz Ahmed up for my most surprising “debut” performance of this year. He was new to me and did an absolutely outstanding job in ‘Nightcrawler’ alongside the towering Gyllenhaal

    3) Hmm. . .my top ten is definitely going to take some time to organize. It’ll likely include ‘Nightcrawler,’ ‘Birdman,’ ‘Boyhood,’ ‘Locke,’ and ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.’ So many titles to choose right now!!! 🙂

    4) Actually drawing a blank on any heavily-praised and possible Oscar-contenders that have really left me cold inside. Hmm….I would say ‘Interstellar,’ as it wasn’t as good as I would have wanted it to be but it by no means was bad enough for me to consider it a disappointment. I’ll have to get back to you on this. . .

    5) Oh man, the Bond picks are very curious! I’m not sure if I could see Tom Hardy playing the role honestly. I’d have a hard time separating his brute force of the likes of Bronson and The Dark Knight as well as his amazing capacity for brooding in things like ‘Locke’ and ‘Warrior.’ By those merits it would sound like he’s an ideal candidate, but I just don’t know. He’s almost *too* prominent. But I could get behind Idris Elba, though. That’s very interesting.

    1. Hi Tom! Fair enough, A Most Violent Year doesn’t look as flashy as others but it does look pretty intense and I LOVE that cast.

      I’m glad you love Gugu in BELLE, she just won Best Actress at British Independent Awards, woo hoo!! I LOVE Riz Ahmed too from his performance in The Reluctant Fundamentalist where he played the lead role. I hope to see both of these talents get more work in Hollywood & beyond.

      I had Locke on my Best of the first half of the year, but not sure if it’ll still make my final Top 10. Birdman and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes most likely will though.

      I doubt Interstellar would get a lot of Oscar noms though, maybe more in the technical aspects.

      Yeah Hardy is too famous now, but then so is Idris. It seems that Bond actors weren’t as famous before they’re cast in the role but with these two, I don’t mind that we break that tradition 🙂

  13. Hey Ruth!

    1. I have no idea of it’s any good but I’m looking forward to it. I am surprised it won the award though considering it’s not one that’s really been talked about massively for awards season.

    2. Ellar Coltraine was good in Boyhood and I was also impressed with Mackenzie Foy in Interstellar.

    3. I think Nightcrawler will definitely end up in my top 10. It won’t get top spot but I’m not giving that away just yet 🙂

    4. I’m sure Interstellar will feature heavily for this answer! I’ve not really seen much this year that I really haven’t liked but maybe Noah, Transcendence or The Book Thief.

    5. Tough question Mark. I think Elba is a great shout and having a black actor play Bond isn’t really an issue I wouldn’t have thought. I have a feeling it might go to a relative unknown, however, or at least someone who crops up between now and then.

    1. Hiya Chris! Sorry I’m still playing catch up w/ the comments.

      I think it’s fine that a film that hasn’t gotten plenty of buzz was considered ‘the best’ early in award season. It seems that some of the front-runners don’t always sustain their traction by the time Oscar noms come out.

      Oh yeah I think Foy was good in Interstellar, it was quite a moving performance between father/daughter.

      Oooh I’m very curious to hear which one it’ll be, I for one still have no clue which movie would make my #1. I feel that I should separate BEST from Favorite, though the line is quite blurred sometimes.

      I haven’t seen Noah nor Transcendence but I quite like The Book Thief. I finally reviewed the one critically-acclaimed film from this year that I REALLY dislike.

  14. 1. I’m only predicting A Most Violent Year for a Best Supporting Actress nomination at the Oscars right now, but I could see the film also getting Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay nominations. I doubt the film can break into Best Director or Best Actor, though.

    2. Gugu Mbatha-Raw (particularly for Beyond the Lights), Jack O’Connell (Starred Up), Marine Vacth (Young & Beautiful) and Tessa Thompson (Dear White People) are a few performers that surprised me this year. I’m also interested to see what Ellar Coltrane (Boyhood) does next.

    3. Hmm… I have to mention Birdman, but you knew that already. 😉 The Immigrant will definitely be on my top 10 list, as will Calvary.

    4. Sin City 2 disappointed me the most, since the first film was awesome!

    5. CLIVE. OWEN. Even if he only does one film about a grizzled Bond before the franchise moves on. He’d be amazing, even if he is 50 now.

    1. Hi there Josh!

      This would be Chastain’s second nom if she got it right? Or is it third?? I really like her and Isaac, but you don’t think he’d get a nod? The Best Actor category is quite crowded though this year.

      I’m happy you love Gugu Mbatha-Raw too!! I still need to see Jack O’Connell in something, that ’71 movie intrigued me, perhaps more than Unbroken. He reminds me of young Toby Stephens, so automatically I like him 😉

      Interesting that I’ve seen The Immigrant being mentioned in both BEST and WORST list by various people. I haven’t seen it yet so curious how I’d feel abou tit.

      Yep, Sin City 2 is awful and boring indeed.

      Speaking of which, I LOVE Clive Owen and I was championing for him to play Bond for ages. I think he still looks eons better and sexier than Craig now even though he’s much older, so yeah if only!

  15. Hey Ruth! Yay for Five for the Fifth! 😀

    1. I’m totally confused as to how A Most Violent Year has gained that kind of stigma . . . to me, it looks a bit dull, although Jessica Chastain looks like she’s going to give an incredible performance in it. I’m not really sure what to make of that right now.

    2. I’m surprised to say that Kiera Knightly left an impression on me for 2014. I haven’t seen Laggies yet, but I just loved her in Begin Again. I was also very impressed with Emily Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow and Shailene Woodley in The Fault in Our Stars. I know she was also in White Bird in a Blizzard this year, so I’d like to catch that one on DVD at some point.

    3. Well, I think The Imitation Game could land in my top ten . . . but I still have yet to see it as it doesn’t open over here in wide release until Christmas Day. But as for movies I’ve already seen, I would say X-Men: Days of Future Past, Edge of Tomorrow, Big Hero 6, and Begin Again will more than likely make it. John Wick might be the dark horse on my list, since I just enjoyed it so much more than I was expecting. Even Mockingjay Part 1 is a contender for me.

    Also, I appreciated how you pointed out that your list is composed of movies that you would actually buy on Blu-ray, that you would re-watch. It makes me think of movies like 12 Years a Slave. Incredible film, but it’s not one I could personally see again, given how brutal it was.

    4. Ahh, that’s interesting to hear your take on Wild. I’ve read some great reviews of it, so I’m not really sure what to think. It’s kind of funny, because my feelings on the film have taken a rollercoaster ride. When I first saw the trailer, I was like, “Wow, this doesn’t look good at all. I don’t want to even see this.” And then months later, I watched it again, and I read some positive reviews, and I was intrigued. So I was like, “OK, I’ll give this a chance.” And now I’m reading some mediocre reviews, and I think I’m back to the start. I think I just need to see this!

    I haven’t experienced any major disappointments in terms of critically-acclaimed films. I mean, I didn’t love Birdman, but I can see why so many people appreciate it. I had very mixed feelings on Interstellar after my expectations were sky-high for the film to deliver. I enjoyed The Theory of Everything, but I just wasn’t blown away by it. So far I’ve felt somewhat apathetic towards some of the critically-acclaimed films I’ve seen so far.

    5. I could totally dig Idris Elba as Bond. It’d be nice to have a different race portray the character, and Elba is just so slick and good-looking. I’d love him to play Bond!

  16. Well, can’t answer all of them, but a movie which will definitely will end up high in my end of year list will be Her (which was released this year over here) as will Grand Budapest Hotel and Edge of Tomorrow. A movie which has received a lot of praise, but which I didn’t like at all was Mommy.

  17. Good stuff, Ruth!

    1) I must be out of the loop because I don’t remember hearing anything about this movie. Definitely on my radar now though.

    2) Rosamund Pike is the first person to come to mind. I can’t recall seeing her in anything before, but she really impressed me in Gone Girl.

    3) Gone Girl. I’m woefully behind in catching up with this year’s movies, but I would be surprised if anything tops that for me.

    4) I wasn’t nearly as smitten as most people with Birdman. I liked it overall, but the 8.7 rating on IMDB is absurd.

    5) Idris Elba is an amazing pick. He gets my vote.

  18. The last of 2014! I gotta get in on it. (sorry I’m a week late) ok, here goes!

    1. having not seen Most Violent Year I can’t say completely, but it is a surprising pick. i think it may be nominated for an actor…Oscar Isaac since he was snubbed for Inside Llewyn Davis. maybe.

    2. 2014 actor who left impression on me: not necessarily a huge one, but i noticed her showing up quite a bit in movies and trailers: Bella Thorne. She’s young, usually plays a daughter (like in Sandler’s awful Blended.) and she will be a mean girl in The Duff. She was in a LOT of projects in 2014.

    3. Interstellar, Grand Budapest Hotel and Guardians of the Galaxy

    4. Epic disappointments: Winter’s Tale, Dracula Untold, The Monuments Men, Noah, 300: Rise of an Empire and Sin City: A Dame to Kill For.

    5. 007 replacements: I’ll have to get back to you on this. Armitage is a good one though

  19. 1. A Most Violent Year looks like my type of movie, I will definitely be seeing that. Look at Chastain’s hair ugh phenomenal reminds me of Michelle Pfeiffer’s in Scarface. I love Oscar Isaacs I should have put him in my list of actors I will watch in anything.
    2. You are right, Gugu Mbatha-Raw was great in Belle, I loved that movie too. I can’t wait to see her hit it big and then we can say Ruth called that one. I am going to agree with Cindy, would have to be Ellar Coltrane.
    3. Movies I loved this year, Boyhood would be number one for me, Budapest Hotel, Guardians of the Galaxy. Still more I want to see and then I can complete my list.
    4. Interstellar… bleh!
    5. O M G… please movie execs pick Idris Elba… he is so freaking perfect and just what the Bond franchise needs, a sexy, tall, African American man that can flip the usual Bond choice on it’s head and yet completely do it justice.
    GREAT list of questions!

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