2014 in review made me a little nervous to be honest. I feel like I didn’t see nearly enough films, or maybe it was because I feel like I didn’t review a lot this year? Who knows, but I did come up with a few. A lot of them are indie films, and a lot I saw on the festival circuit. Some have been released and some you may have to search for on demand, but I recommend seeing them! Click on each film title for my reviews or links to trailers, and if you have any to add, please comment! I’d love to know what your favourites were!
Godzilla: I don’t like remakes, but I really enjoyed this one. Big ol’ monsters smashing things made up for a so-so storyline, and it was a fun blockbuster event for me.
Maleficent: Another blockbuster movie with one of the best makeup looks. I couldn’t take my eyes off of Angelina Jolie’s beautifully altered face, and the effects were great.
Guardians of the Galaxy: So much fun. Just so much fun.
Lyle: This 65 minute film is pretty incredible. Shown free of charge for a brief time to raise funds for his next project, writer and director Stewart Thorndike serves up a modern version of a Rosemary’s Baby-like suspense horror that is deeply moving. A lesbian couple move into a brownstone with their baby Lyle, and mysterious neighbours coupled with a family tragedy gets the paranoia going full speed ahead. Gaby Hoffmann, the current indie film darling of the moment, shows why she is in such demand. Her portrayal of a mother on the brink is memorable, and I loved the haunting score. You will have to follow the film’s Facebook page to find out when and where you can see it, as it is currently not available online.
Wyrmwood: The zombie movie for action movie fans. It is going to be released by IFC on February 13, 2015, so keep your eye out for it!
Predestination: A wonderful spiralling tale of time travel and love. This has a limited release date of January 9th, 2015. Find it!
Housebound: I’m not a comedy horror movie gal, but this one is superb! Great pacing and a great cast. Seems like it was released on DVD this past November, so again, find it!
Oculus: a slow burner with a cool story, and one I will be adding to my collection. Done by Mike Flanagan, the man behind Absentia, which I also loved for its unique story.
Two Canadian films I recently saw were Black Mountain Side and Berkshire County. Both take on classic horror fare and make it their own. Berkshire County seems to have an April 2015 limited release date, and Black Mountain Side will hopefully come out in 2015 as well.
Another Canadian gem was Hellmouth. Starring Stephen McHattie, one of my favourite Canadian actors (whom I finally met this year! Yay!), this surreal quest for redemption will take you away with its visuals and retro feel.
The Babadook: One of the most talked about films that actually lived up to the hype. Tense, scary and dark, this is a must see for all horror fans out there.
Only Lovers Left Alive: Starring Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston, this beautiful love story about lonely vampires will make you ponder your existence and purpose.
What will 2015 bring us? Apparently a ton of sequels and remakes (big surprise!), but I’ve sifted through the fluff to find a few that seem to have a bite that is just as good as the bark!
First up is It Follows. This film has made the festival rounds and is getting quite the buzz as being a refreshingly terrifying addition to the tormented teen horror roster. After a steamy date, a girl is now being followed by a creepy unknown. Love the Carpenter-esque score. I will definitely see this one in March when it comes out in wide release!
Z for Zachariah has my interest because I still have my dog-eared copy of the book I loved as a teen. Chiwetel Ejiofor stars and I hope they do the story of post-apocalyptic survival justice.
Chappie is about a robot with heart, intelligence and innocence. Directed by District 9‘s Neill Blomkamp and starring Hugh Jackman, Dev Patel, and Sharlto Copley, it is sure to be one of the bigger films with the great special effects that Blomkamp is known for.
Directed by Hostel and Hemlock Grove‘s Eli Roth, Knock Knock is a “horror/thriller” about a man terrorized by two gorgeous girls. Not really sure about this one, but Keanu Reeves is in it. All I can say is: Don’t. Hurt. My. Man.
Insidious 3 and Sinister 2 are on their way. I feel like I need to see them because I was there from the start. Also from the producers of the Insidious, Paranormal Activity and Sinister series comes another Amityville movie, which I also have to see because, again, I was there from the start. In this case, Jennifer Jason Leigh stars in Amityville The Awakening, so there will be guaranteed intensity with her performance.
The aforementioned Mike Flanagan is coming out with a new one called Somnia, about a kid whose nightmares become real. He is known for creepy atmosphere, so I expect something great.
I would really, really love to see Pixie Dust realized in 2015! Check out my interview with writer and director Damon Colquhoun and donate to get it made!
Lastly, Guillermo del Toro’s new gothic horror Crimson Peak about tragedy and a haunted house will probably be a good bet. Also, Charlie Hunnam and Tom Hiddleston are in this. Yup. That will get my bum in a seat.
So there you have it. A 2014 wrap-up and my 2015 picks all in one long-winded package! Wishing you all a wonderful new year that brings us all good, great, no-FANTASTIC luck in life, love and health!