1. Monsters University - Absolute bliss. Smile on my face the entire time. Wrapped up in a world only Pixar can weave. Could never ask for more going to the theater.
2. Upstream Color - From the cinematography, sound design, and screenplay this movie was an absolute breath of fresh air. A jump forward in film making if I ever saw one in this age. Relentless in its balance of keeping you in the dark but throwing you bits to keep you captivated. Viewed it 5 times now, still as if it was the first time.
2. Before Midnight - Beautifully painful. The journey goes to its next logical place, for better or worse. Acting and dialogue are as top notch as the other entries in the series.
3. Stoker - Dripping violent stunning style. Had no expectations of this movie other then my prior exposure to Park Chan-wook's films, and when I left the theater I was frozen and scared. I felt the way I had heard people walking out of Psycho in 1960.
4. Trance - A unique psychological romp through the british underground. Surprising turns and entertaining filmmaking I expect in every Boyle film. Really good time with this one.
5. Francis Ha - A lovely little film. Captures the confusion of identity, place, and life importance through fun character interactions. A more down to earth film version of HBO's GIRLS. Have not enjoyed a Baumbach film as much since The Squid and The Whale.
6. Spring Breakers - What more can be said. A wild ride. Rainbow infused cinematography showing a world completely parallel to any that we see on the day to day. Can not think of a film that shows the dark side of decadence in such an effective manner. DEFINITELY not what it appears on the surface.
7. This Is The End - An insane comedy that does everything and THEN SOME to be over the top AND actually hits its mark? Had a ton of fun with this one with a bunch of friends. Shockingly good.
8. Mud - What felt like a fresh approach to the coming of age story. Fantastic child actor performances and easily the best of Matthew McConaughey's career. In a sea of movies where even the "indie flicks" are trying to be bombastic, the pacing and level headed approach of this one really gained a lot of my admiration. Don't skip it!
9. Much Ado About Nothing - On a whim I checked out a movie I thought I would have zero interest in (or ability to sit through), but Joss Whedon used his stable of actors to their fullest here. Assembling the words of Shakespeare in a fun and manageable setting is a feat on its own, but providing new modern humor and style along the way deserves everyone's attention.
10. Post Tenebras Lux - The movie that could easily sit at #1 for many reason or be ignored entirely for many reasons. A beautiful sprawl through the fragments of a director's childhood recollections, current life, and what I assume to be religious based fears. Really something else, that I find truly indescribable... for better or worse.
Pain & Gain - Fuck it. Saw it on a whim when I was bored one day. Absolute insanity, accomplishes everything a misogynistic pig like Michael Bay could ever want to do within the limits of his career he has created for himself. A stunning wild ride not to be missed. Everything that was pent up by filming CGI robots for the last decade is released in a fury of insanity.
Would still like to see To The Wonder, just keep missing it and the home video release day could not come quick enough.