It’s the end of the year — also known as list season. And everybody’s got an opinion on which film was the year’s best. So, I polled the staff to find their favorite movies of the year. These were the results, and we actually have a tie for most popular, which… may not be the movie you’re expecting.
7. The Grand Budapest Hotel is Wes Anderson’s Mona Lisa, a perfect mix of powerful acting and zany, goofy comedy. — Andy Isaac
6. The One I Love is the perfect blend of bizarre mindf*ck, modern marriage analysis, and Elisabeth Moss being wonderful, all wrapped up in a low budget package that was available to stream before many of the other movies listed here — most of which I did not see. #TeamCouch — Ryan Perry
5. Interstellar. Vince’s review says it all. — Robo Panda
4. The Babadook is blood-freezingly scary, but it’s also a painfully insightful look at the struggles of a single parent that refuses to adhere to cliches. Jennifer Kent remembers what so many horror movies don’t; that if we care about the characters, you can’t help but be scared. — Dan Seitz
3. Snowpiercer. There’s a moment in Snowpiercer where Chris Evans, with complete sincerity, utters the now-immortal line, “I know that babies taste best.” It is both the most horrifying movie quote of the year, and the most hilarious. That’s Snowpiercer: brutally violent and brutally funny, with a masterful performance from Tilda Swinton’s teeth. It’s the baby meat of movies released in 2014. — Josh Kurp
2. Birdman. There’s been a backlash equal to or if not stronger than the hype with this one, but that’s because a certain segment of people are always going to misconstrue deliberate absurdity as some pretentious metaphor (“I didn’t get it, bro.”). Which is a shame, because absurdity is my favorite. Birdman married the absurdity of the mundane with the absurdity of the profound like the bastard child of Curb Your Enthusiasm and Black Swan all wrapped up in a slick continuous shot gimmick. Stop worrying about “What’s he trying to say??!” and just enjoy the ride. — Vince Mancini
1. John Wick. I have a great deal of respect for any movie that lets Keanu Reeves kill dozens of Russian mobsters – possibly hundreds — because Theon from Game of Thrones killed his dog. I’ve always said this. — Danger Guerrero
Call me old-fashioned, but there’s just something about the classic American story of a boy and his dog. In this case, John Wick was the story a man and his dog, and that man was the underworld’s greatest assassin and that dog was killed by the worthless and cowardly son of the Russian mob’s all-powerful boss… the man that Wick had just so happened to push to the top through his incredible gift of kicking everyone’s asses into the afterlife. Wick’s tale of vengeance was swift, entertaining and so well-choreographed that it was like watching a ballet at times. A really violent and bloody ballet, with each act separated by charming and amusing interactions with a cast of interesting characters from a world that seems to have many more stories to tell. — Ashley Burns
Got a favorite? Disagree? Weigh in with your favorite of 2014!