‘Saturday Night Live’ started 2014 as a show that was rebuilding; it ended the year in a noticeable groove that foreshadows, hopefully, many more great things to come. The following 10 sketches represent the calendar year of 2014—which includes the last half of the 39th season and the first half of this current 40th season. So, with that explanation out of the way, here are the 10 best ‘SNL’ sketches of 2014. Like all lists, you will like some choices and not like others.
The Internet Movie Database is a fantastic website. It’s an invaluable, comprehensive resource; I use it almost every day of my life. But the IMDb is also an underrated source of comedy. Every film on the site contains what are called “Plot Keywords”—words or phrases that describe motifs, themes, character types, or plot details. Each plot keyword is searchable, so if you wanted a list of, say, every movie where a character gets hit with a hammer, you just need to go to the “Hit With A Hammer” IMDb keyword page. It’s that simple.
I enjoy reading top ten lists, but I don’t particularly like making a top ten list—which does nothing as far as an explanation as to why I decided to do a Top 147 list (or Bottom 147 list, if that’s more your thing). I covered four film festivals in 2014, so I saw more than 147 movies, but these are the 147 movies I saw that came out in a theater this year. (I realize ‘The Interview’ is now not coming out, but, whatever, it’s on here too.) I am only one human being, so I didn’t see every movie that came out this year—Where’s ‘Noah’? I never saw ‘Noah’—but I think I saw quite a few! Anyway, here they all are. (I only wrote about a few of them because I am not a crazy person.)
Top 10 lists rank among the more unusual aspects of movie and TV criticism, and as my colleagues Ryan McGee, Matt Singer, and Mike Sampson’s own 2014 favorites will attest, the end-of-year celebration format brings with it a unique mixture of...
We’re winding down Best Of 2014 Week here at ScreenCrush with today’s lists of the best TV shows and movie posters (to go along with our already completed lists of the best movies and trailers). But in this time of celebration, let’s not lose sight of what’s really important: Making jokes about terrible movies. 2014 was jammed with exceptional films, but those great movies were surrounded (and often crowded-out of multiplexes) by plenty of stinkers as well. As we bid a fond farewell to the year in movies, ScreenCrush Editor-In-Chief Mike Sampson and I decided to take one final look back at the flops that nearly destroyed us. But like that old expression says: That which does not kill us makes us write strongly-worded listicles.
I’m gonna let you in on a little secret: No one likes putting together a Top 10 list. Oh, don’t get me wrong; it’s fun at a party if someone asks you, “What were your favorite movies this year?” and you can just rattle off a list of titles in no particular order, not overly concerned if you accidentally left something off. But this list is formal. Published on the Internet. This will be my legacy. And that’s not something to take lightly.
It wasn’t a great year for critics in movies—see ‘Birdman’ (or ‘Chef’ [or ‘Top Five’ (or ‘Big Eyes’)])—but it was a great year for critics at movies. 2014 offered an tremendous variety of fantastic films: big and small; foreign and domestic; mainstream and indie. To anyone who says the overall quality of movies has declined, I call B.S. There are more good movies now than ever before. If you can’t find one, you’re not looking very hard. Take, for instance, these ten instant classics:
Just the other day came word that Sony was developing an animated 'Spider-Man' movie with 'The LEGO Movie' directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller. Which would be great, and we would very much look forward to that movie! But, buried in that same piece of news was word that Sony still has no idea what to do with the live-action films. Do they make an 'Amazing Spider-Man 3' or just completely reboot (again)? High-level executives and 'Spider-Man' producers are set to meet at a "Spider-Man Summit" in January to decide the fate of the franchise. Since our invitation to this summit was strangely lost in the mail, Managing Editor Matt Singer and Editor-in-Chief Mike Sampson put their heads together and came up with a list of ten directors that Team Spidey should be considering.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s new movie, ‘Inherent Vice,’ opens this Friday. Thinking about PTA’s latest opus got us thinking about the rest of his filmography—which got us quoting from PTA’s filmography, which got us wondering: What are the best lines of dialogue from Paul Thomas Anderson’s filmography? It was a question that could only be solved one way: With a list! Using ScreenCrush’s highly scientific method (i.e. we picked the ones we liked best), and illustrated with conclusive evidence (i.e. YouTube videos), here is the definitive list of Anderson’s 30 best lines: (And keep in mind, some of this language is on the salty, NSFW side.)
Welcome back to another installment of the Monday Morning Critic. In this space each week, I’ll be looking at the week that was in addition to the week ahead in television. The format will shift each week, as the world of TV will dictate the form and content of each piece. In this week’s installment: The top ten shows of 2014.