By Jake Coyle, AP
The top 10 films of 2014, according to AP Film Writer Jake Coyle:
1. ��Ida�� �X Where did this perfect little gem come from? Its director, Pawel Pawlikowski, wasn’t previously a major name in international cinema. Yet at a time when most filmmakers can’t keep their movies under two hours, Pawlikowksi plunges into Polish history and back again in less than 90 minutes. Yes, an austere, black-and-white Polish film doesn’t sound like the most appetizing stuff. But it’s a hauntingly beautiful film, and thanks to the tremendous Agata Kulesza, there’s humor here, too.
2. ��Boyhood�� �X One of the most memorable parts of film in 2014 was seeing the movies play with time, capturing it in elapse (��Boyhood��), bending its particles (��Interstellar��) and wryly gazing at its courses across centuries (Jim Jarmusch’s excellent ��Only Lovers Left Alive��). Richard Linklater’s 12-years-in-the-making ��Boyhood�� is a landmark, for sure. But for a much-lauded masterpiece, it’s incredibly humble, warm and humanistic.
3. ��The Grand Budapest Hotel�� �X Wes Anderson’s heroes are, like him, devotees of brilliant escapes: the beachside oasis of ��Moonrise Kingdom,�� the play land of Rushmore Academy, the pre-war elegance of this film’s Eastern European resort. Dreams are inevitably punctured by outside forces, and a new, compromised life must be found �X some melancholy combination of fantasy and reality. Usually, Bill Murray’s there somewhere.
4. ��Mr. Turner�� and ��Birdman�� �X In a year rich with colorful portraits of artists (the obsessive, rigorous drummer of ��Whiplash,�� the arrogant, oblivious author of ��Listen Up Philip��) these two most stood out: ��Birdman�� for its blisteringly kinetic flow and the raging ego of Michael Keaton’s actor; and the masterful ��Mr. Turner�� for its total lack of pretention and Timothy Spall’s gruff, grunting painter.
5. ��Interstellar�� �X Admittedly, I’m a sucker when it comes to stories about dads and daughters. Many critics poked holes in the imperfectly stitched cosmic fabric of Christopher Nolan’s space epic, but I found the time-traveling epic �X science fiction build on science fact �X grandly moving. So I’m a sentimentalist who digs space. Sue me.