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2014 Rewind: Best Hollywood films of the year

This year, several Hollywood films managed to keep up with the hype they usually create before their release. And some of them completely exceeded expectations

Hollywood films never cease to amaze, do they? Every passing year, we witness mind-blowing cinema hitting the marquee and 2014 was no different. There was a gush of freshness, not only in live action but also animation, VFX and motion-capture. Although the market share of American movies is barely 10 per cent in India — China is far ahead at 45 per cent — there has been a delayed but definite release of big-ticket Hollywood films in the country. Of course, there were some duds as expected but the great ones were way too many. Without handing out spoilers, hitlist points out some Hollywood films of 2014 that left us in awe simply by their sheer scale…

'Boyhood'
Director: Richard Linklater
Lowdown: If there's an award for patience, Linklater clearly deserves it. Shooting a film over a period of 12 long years while waiting for the young protagonist to grow up is something unheard of.

Boyhood
Not a month passed in 2014 when there was a dearth of an  awe-inspiring film from the vast stable of Hollywood. Be it 'Gone Girl', 'Boyhood',  'The Lego Movie' or 'The Grand Budapest Hotel', there was plenty on offer for cinegoers

What's more interesting is the fact that the almost three-hour film was shot for just 39 days in total. You wonder why do we age after watching this movie.

Interstellar
Director: Christopher Nolan
Lowdown: Eight years in the making, this space odyssey starring Mathew McConaughey as a pilot-turned-farmer-turned-pilot — quite literally — takes you on a time travel.

Interstellar
'Interstellar'

But, it does so without losing the human touch. And some of the most awesome movie sequences in recent memory take place during this ride into the future.

The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
Director: Peter Jackson
Lowdown: He revolutionised motion capture with his first trilogy 'The Lord of the Rings' — which took a decade of his life — followed by another, 'The Hobbit' — which took another decade of his life.

The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
'The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies'

And we couldn't have expected a more fitting finale. All things watched and said, this ambitious project is a beautiful dream in motion.

'The Grand Budapest Hotel'
Director: Wes Anderson
Lowdown: How is it even possible for a filmmaker to stay so consistent with the world he has created?

The Grand Budapest Hotel
'The Grand Budapest Hotel'

Thanks to this period film, Anderson pushed the envelope of imagination as well as aesthetic humour. It's so close to perfection that it's almost scary. Besides, a stellar cast couldn't have delivered a more complete ensemble movie.

'X-Men: Days of Future Past'
Director: Bryan Singer
Lowdown: Perhaps the mutants shall inherit this planet. If they won't, you'd wish they did. Especially after going through this fast-track switch between the future and the past without moving through the present.

X-Men: Days of Future Past
'X-Men: Days of Future Past'

In a perfect tribute to the fragility of time, a scene shows Quicksilver slowing down everything around him the way only he can.

'The Lego Movie'
Director: Chris Miller, Phil Lord
Lowdown: This is the first year since 2006 that Pixar didn't have a single release. Amazingly, its peers made the most of the vacuum.

The Lego Movie
'The Lego Movie'

The one on top of the list is this wonderful film about a world and its characters made up of blocks. If you remember how epic Toy Story was, you can relate to the epicness some figurines exude here.

'Gone Girl'
Director: David Fincher
Lowdown: Whenever a novel is adapted for the big screen, the usual 'the-book-was-better-than-the-film' refrain is firmly in play.

 Gone Girl
'Gone Girl'

However, Ben Affleck's ambiguous husband and Rosamund Pike's psychotic wife compels you to say "this film does justice to the book". Oh yes, they also make you scared of marriage.

'The Babadook'
Director: Jennifer Kent
Lowdown: When the whole intention of a horror film is to frighten us, isn't it high time the good ol' gimmicks got shunned?

The Babadook doesn’t follow the usual gimmicks employed by horror genre
'The Babadook' doesn't follow the usual gimmicks employed by horror genre 

At least that's what this Australian film backed by Hollywood splendidly points out. With subtle but sharp twists and turns, 'The Babadook' provides dignity as well as intelligence to the otherwise jaded horror genre.

'The Raid 2'
Director: Gareth Evans
Lowdown: Find an action film that can be rawer than this bloody endeavour. You can't; certainly not among the ones that released in 2014.

The Raid 2 starring Iko Uwais as a cop is a pure celebration of adrenaline rush
'The Raid 2' starring Iko Uwais as a cop is a pure celebration of adrenaline rush

About a fighter who fights and fights and then fights some more, 'Raid 2' is a pure celebration of adrenaline rush. The only exercise that your lower jaw gets is when it touches the floor again and again — in awe, of course.

Point blank

There were some Hollywood films that couldn't manage a release in the country, at least not in 2014, but a few of them earned rave reviews across the globe...

Birdman
Birdman

Inherent Vice
'Inherent Vice'

Predestination
'Predestination'

The Imitation Game
'The Imitation Game'

Frank
'Frank'

Whiplash
'Whiplash'

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