best picture

Selma (2014)

Inspiring, emotional, typical. Ava Duvernay’s envisioning of history offers nothing that has not been seen before in film artistically, but still manages to educate and relay the real struggles and turmoil felt during Martin Luther King’s battle for equality. Recommended? This movie is best suited for students in history classes, as its educational value mildly outweighs its entertainment value.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

The only (but important) area where Selma falls flat is in its delivery and pacing. (more…)

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The Theory of Everything (2014)

Insightful, light, dry. Eddie Redmayne’s performance is by far the most captivating aspect of this movie which also offers a fascinating story and inspiring premise. Recommended? Not the most exciting movie, but an interesting story nonetheless.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

At the centre of this movie is a brilliant performance by Eddie Redmayne that single-handedly makes the whole movie worth watching. (more…)

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)

Strange, clever, unique. This movie perfectly combines strong storytelling with virtuosic filmmaking to bring the strong and colourful characters to life in a vibrant, but elegant fashion. Recommended? Birdman sports both traditional and eccentric elements which could make it enjoyable for a wide variety of audiences.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s directing brings the edge that makes this otherwise overwrought and predictable story come to life in a brilliant way. (more…)

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)

Visual, funny, shallow. The production effort behind this film is magnificent, but the story lacks the big finish that it seems to build up to throughout the movie. Recommended? A fun casual comedy, but not to be taken too seriously.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

There were a few elements to the story that did not seem to fit as well as they should have. (more…)

The Imitation Game (2014)

Dramatic, humorous, eye-opening. Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance as Alan Turing in this World War II film is breathtaking and the story captures his triumphs, setbacks and the tragic irony of his life and times as a brilliant codebreaker beautifully in this film that screams Oscars in every way. Recommended? This movie captures the elements of a stellar war, social injustice and genius biopic film in one impressive package.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

This movie is driven by the strong screenplay behind it. (more…)

Her (2013)

Quirky, funny, emotional. The acting is on point and the story is unpredictable, but the most moving part of this film is its level of realism and its social commentary, set in a beautifully created not-so-distant future. Recommended? As far as romantic movies go, Her is set apart in its originality and technological themes.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

Spike Jonze’s Oscar-winning screenplay is truly an experience in itself. (more…)

Nebraska (2013)

Light, slow, humorous. The artistic appeal of this movie is fascinating and the acting is well above par, but with the exception of a select few funny moments and character nuances, this movie received its classification as a comedy for its drawn out and nonsensical conversations as opposed to its actual comedic value. Recommended? With the exception of its heartfelt base and meaning, this feel-good family comedy is not for everyone.

Photo Credit: IMDb

Photo Credit: IMDb

The storyline seems a little like Rain Man at times; a man takes an estranged family member on a cross-country journey in search of a large sum of money. The difference here: replace an autistic brother with an alcoholic father; a fortuitous inheritance with a million dollar marketing sweepstakes; and a journey of two men repairing their estranged relationship with each other with one man enabled by his son and his wife to face his life’s former demons. The dialogue comes off dry at times, but story is very touching and relatable. (more…)