Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Best Film Of 2014 (And You Haven't Seen It Yet)

What was the best film of 2014? The Oscars said Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance). The New York Film Critics said it was Boyhood. The LA Film Critics Association agreed, naming The Grand Budapest Hotel as the runner-up. But if the IRAs have anything to say about it, the movie that might well rise in stature and come to be remembered as one of the defining films of the year is...Nightcrawler. That was the big winner at the 40th annual IRA Awards handed out over the weekend. It swept most major awards, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor. Despite a lot of acclaim (and a juicy supporting performance from Renee Russo that should have snagged her an Oscar nomination), it was passed over at the Oscars and by most critics groups. It grossed less than $40 million worldwide (most of that in the US), so chances are you haven't seen it yet. You should.







But wait! Who are the IRAs? The IRAs is a mysterious but august film society that has voted on the best films of the year since 1976. More international and indie focused than the Oscars, more mercurial than the LA Film Critics and more loyal to their favorites than the Golden Globes, the IRAs met over the weekend, voting for the best film of 2014 (along with all the usual other categories) and capping off a two-year debate by finalizing their picks for the best films of the 1960s. They have no more claim to pronounce the best films of the year than anyone else but they've been doing it for decades so, hey, it's tradition!



Below are their votes -- including nominees and winners in major categories -- followed by its list of the Top 100 Films of the 1960s. If you want to see films that will endure, you could do worse than watch all five of the Best Picture nominees. And are you a serious film buff? Well, tell me, how many of the movies on the 1960s list have you seen?



And the IRA goes to....



BEST PICTURE



1. Nightcrawler -- 29 pts. (out of a possible 50 pts.)

2. Foxcatcher -- 21 pts.

3. Stranger By The Lake -- 17 pts.

4. (tie) Boyhood 16 pts.

Ida 16 pts.





BEST DIRECTOR



1. Dan Gilroy for Nightcrawler -- 27 pts.

2. Bennett Miller for Foxcatcher -- 22 pts.

3. Pawel Pawlikoska for Ida -- 16 pts.

4. (tie) Alain Guiraudie for Stranger By The Lake -- 15 pts.

Richard Linklater for Boyhood -- 15 pts.





BEST ACTOR



Jake Gyllenhall for Nightcrawler by acclamation



1. Jake Gyllenhaal for Nightcrawler -- 35 pts.

2. Tom Hardy for The Drop and Locke -- 19 pts.

3. Oscar Isaac for A Most Violent Year and The Two Faces of January -- 16 pts.

4. Joaquin Phoenix for The Immigrant and Inherent Vice --10 pts.

5. Channing Tatum for Foxcatcher -- 9 pts.





BEST ACTRESS



1. Essie Davis for The Babadook -- 24 pts.

2. Emmanuelle Seigner for Venus In Fur -- 21 pts.

3. Marion Cotillard for The Immigrant and Two Days, One Night -- 18 pts.

4. (tie) Amy Adams for Big Eyes --11 pts.

Lisa Loven Kingsli for Force Majeure -- 11 pts.







BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR



1. Ethan Hawke for Boyhood -- 23 pts.

2. Riz Ahmed for Nightcrawler -- 15 pts.

3. (tie) Patrick d'Assumçao for Stranger By The Lake -- 12 pts.

Jeremy Renner for The Immigrant --12 pts.

5. Mark Ruffalo for Foxcatcher -- 9 pts.





BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS



1. Agata Kulesza for Ida -- 27 pts.

2. Renee Russo for Nightcrawler -- 21 pts.

3. Tilda Swinton for The Grand Budapest Hotel and Snowpiercer -- 16 pts.

4. Marion Bailey for Mr. Turner --13 pts.

5. Bharati Achrekar for The Lunchbox -- 9 pts.





BEST SCREENPLAY



1. Dan Gilroy for Nightcrawler -- 37 pts.

2. Ritesh Batre for The Lunchbox -- 17 pts.

3. E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman for Foxcatcher -- 16 pts.

4. Alain Guiraudie for Stranger By The Lake --12 pts.

5. Richard Linklater for Boyhood -- 10 pts.







BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY



1. Robert Elswit for Inherent Vice and Nightcrawler -- 31 pts.

2. Ryszard Lenczewski and Lukasz Zal for Ida -- 26 pts.

3. Dick Pope for Mr. Turner -- 20 pts.

4. Greig Fraser for The Gambler and Foxcatcher -- 20 pts.

5. Emmanuel Lubezki for Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance) -- 7 pts.





BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN



1. Suzie Davies for Mr. Turner -- 23 pts.

2. Jess Gonchor for Foxcatcher -- 19 pts.

3. Rick Heinrichs for Big Eyes -- 16 pts.

4. Kevin Kavanaugh for Nightcrawler --13 pts.

5. Josefin Åsberg for Force Majeure -- 12 pts.



BEST SCORE



1. Mica Levi for Under The Skin -- 21 pts.

2. James Newton Howard for Nightcrawler -- 19 pts.

3. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for Gone Girl -- 14 pts.

5. Danny Elfman for Big Eyes--10 pts.

5. Alexandre Desplat for The Grand Budapest Hotel --9 pts.





BEST EDITING



1. (tie) Jay Cassidy, Stuart Levy and Conor O'Neill for Foxcatcher -- 12 pts.

Simon Njoo for The Babadook -- 12 pts.

3. Jean Christophe Hym for Stranger By The Lake -- 11 pts.

4. Sandra Adair for Boyhood --9 pts.

5. Justine Wright for Locke -- 7 pts.





BEST COSTUME



1. (tie) Jacqueline Durran for Mr. Turner -- 23 pts.

Kasia Walicka-Maimone for Foxcatcher and A Most Violent Year -- 23 pts.

3. Milena Cononero for The Grand Budapest Hotel -- 13 pts.

4. (tie) Colleen Atwood for Big Eyes and Into The Woods --10 pts.

Maja Meschede and Anna B. Sheppard for Fury -- 10 pts.



SOMINEX (The movie that put you to sleep)





1. The Monuments Men -- 21 pts.

2. Into The Woods -- 13 pts.

3. Jersey Boys -- 7 pts.

4. (tie) Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance) 5 pts.

The Congress -- 5 pts.

Exhibition -- 5 pts.

Only Lovers Left Alive -- 5 pts.





DRAMAMINE (The film that made you sick)



1 The Imitation Game -- 23 pts.

2. Whiplash -- 12 pts.

3. Nymphomaniac -- 10 pts.

4. The Lego Movie -- 9 pts.

5. Into The Woods -- 8 pts.





MECHANICAL ACTRESS



1. Lilla Crawford for Into The Woods -- 25 pts.

2. Sofía Vergara for Chef -- 18 pts.

3. Meryl Streep for Into The Woods -- 14 pts.

4. Kate Winslet for Labor Day -- 6 pts.

5. (tie) Keira Knightley for Begin Again and The Imitation Game -- 9 pts.

Elizabeth Olsen for Godzilla and Very Good Girls -- 9 pts.

Rosamund Pike for Gone Girl -- 9 pts.

Robin Wright for The Congress -- 9 pts.



MECHANICAL ACTOR



1. The entire cast of The Monuments Men -- 17 pts.

2. Noah Wiseman for The Babadook -- 16 pts.

3. Tom Wilkinson for Selma -- 16 pts.

4. Benedict Cumberbatch for The Imitation Game --11 pts.

5. (tie) Johnny Depp for Into The Woods -- 7 pts.

J. K. Simmons for Whiplash -- 7 pts.



For an explanation of voting, a list of winners from past years and more, go here.





IRAs: THE BEST MOVIES OF THE 1960s



1. Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) (69 pts./941 pts.) (see note at bottom for explanation of pts.)

2. The Apartment (Billy Wilder, 1960) (65/973)

3. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (John Ford, 1962) (62/958)

4. 2001: A Space Odyssey (Stanley Kubrick, 1968) (58/801)

5. Chimes At Midnight (Orson Welles, 1965) (50/864)

6. Once Upon A Time In The West (Sergio Leone, 1968) (49/808)

7. The Birds (Alfred Hitchcock, 1963) (42/790)

8. Marnie (Alfred Hitchcock, 1964) (38/778)

9. When A Woman Ascends The Stairs (Mikio Naruse, 1960) (31/776)

10. Contempt (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963) (30/796)



11. Bunny Lake Is Missing (Otto Preminger, 1965) (61/745)

12. High and Low (Akira Kurosawa, 1963) (58/747)

13. Gertrud (Carl Theodor Dryer, 1964) (56/764)

14. Le Samouraï (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1967) (53/708)

15. Army Of Shadows (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1969) (50/754)

16. Home From The Hill (Vincente Minnelli, 1960) (47/733)

17. An Autumn Afternoon (Yasujirô Ozu, 1962) (45/730)

18. Andrei Rublev (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1966) (42/740)

19. Band Of Outsiders (Jean-Luc Godard, 1964) (41/774)

20. The Big City (Satyajit Ray, 1963) (32/744)



21. Play Dirty (André De Toth, 1969) (56/664)

22. Point Blank (John Boorman, 1967) (56/666)

23. Les Bonnes Femmes (Claude Chabrol, 1960) (53/649)

24. Inside Daisy Clover (Robert Mulligan, 1965) (53/677)

25. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb (Stanley Kubrick, 1964) (50/674)

26. Advise And Consent (Otto Preminger, 1962) (49/668)

27. They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (Sydney Pollack, 1969) (47/632)

28. The Good, The Bad And The Ugly (Sergio Leone, 1966) (46/700)

29. L'Eclisse (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1962) (44/627)

30. Peeping Tom (Michael Powell, 1960) (41/630)



31. Petulia (Richard Lester, 1968) (59/592)

32. Viridiana (Luis Buñuel, 1961) (57/589)

33. The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah, 1969) (55/578)

34. L'Avventura (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960) (51/616)

35. Samurai Rebellion (Masaki Kobayashi, 1967) (50/604)

36. The Leopard (Luchino Visconti, 1963) (47/627)

37. Mouchette (Robert Bresson, 1967) (45/596)

38. Belle De Jour (Luis Buñuel, 1967) (43/598)

39. Winter Light (Ingmar Bergman, 1963) (43/608)

40. Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard, 1960) (42/620)



41. Shock Corridor (Samuel Fuller, 1963) (60/554)

42. Ride The High Country (Sam Peckinpah, 1962) (58/554)

43. The Manchurian Candidate (John Frankenheimer, 1962) (57/576)

44. Rosemary's Baby (Roman Polanski, 1968) (52/560)

45. What Ever Happened To Baby Jane? (Robert Aldrich, 1962) (51/546)

46. Knife In The Water (Roman Polanski, 1962) (51/560)

47. The Exterminating Angel (Luis Buñuel, 1962) (46/574)

48. Bonnie And Clyde (Arthur Penn, 1967) (45/572)

49. Jules And Jim (François Truffaut, 1962) (38/533)

50. Shoot The Piano Player (François Truffaut, 1960) (37/553)



51. The Servant (Joseph Losey, 1963) (58/496)

52. Closely Watched Trains (Jirí Menzel, 1966) (57/492)

53. The Naked Kiss (Samuel Fuller, 1964) (54/525)

54. Rocco And His Brothers (Luchino Visconti, 1960) (52/502)

55. Eyes Without A Face Georges Franju, 1962) (51/518)

56. Comanche Station (Budd Boetticher, 1960) (47, 512)

57. Vivre Sa Vie (Jean-Luc Godard, 1962) (47/500)

58. Playtime (Jacques Tati, 1967) (46/492)

59. Cleo From 5 To 7 (Agnès Varda, 1962) (45/497)

60. Pierrot Le Fou (Jean-Luc Godard, 1965) (38/499)



61. The Sorrow And The Pity (Marcel Ophuls, 1969) (67/479)

62. Blow-Up (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1966) (65/485)

63. The Hustler (Robert Rossen, 1961) (56/465)

64. The Battle Of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966) (55/490)

65. La Jetée (Chris Marker, 1962) (51/474)

66. Wild River (Elia Kazan, 1960) (48/465)

67. Au Hasard Balthazar (Robert Bresson, 1966) (48/472)

68. The Umbrellas Of Cherbourg (Jacques Demy, 1964) (46/485)

69. Splendor In The Grass (Elia Kazan, 1961) (41/468)

70. El Dorado (Howard Hawks, 1966) (29/489)



71. Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (Russ Meyer, 1965) (60/432)

72. The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner (Tony Richardson, 1962) (60/457)

73. Two Weeks In Another Town (Vincente Minnelli, 1962) (50/438)

74. My Night At Maud's (Eric Rohmer, 1969) (50/454)

75. Yojimbo (Akira Kurosawa, 1961) (49/430)

76. Breakfast At Tiffany's (Blake Edwards, 1961) (47/449)

77. A Hard Day's Night (Richard Lester, 1964) (47, 442)

78. Salesman (Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin, 1968) (44/441)

79. Lawrence Of Arabia (David Lean, 1962) (44/444)

80. Two For The Road (Stanley Donen, 1967) (43/443)



81. Night Of The Living Dead (George A. Romero, 1968) (61/409)

82. The Taking Of Power By Louis XIV (Roberto Rossellini, 1966) (52/422)

83. Valley Of The Dolls (Mark Robson, 1967) (51/393)

84. La Dolce Vita (Federico Fellini, 1960) (51/410)

85. One, Two, Three (Billy Wilder, 1961) (51/425)

86. Charade (Stanley Donen, 1963) (50/395)

87. Repulsion (Roman Polanski, 1965) (49/428)

88. Lolita (Stanley Kubrick, 1962) (48/413)

89. Persona (Ingmar Bergman, 1966) (47/426)

90. Alphaville (Jean-Luc Godard, 1965) (35/415)



91. I Am Cuba (Mikhail Kalatozov, 1964) (60/338)

92. Planet Of The Apes (Franklin J Schaffner, 1968) (59/277)

93. The Dirty Dozen (Robert Aldrich, 1967) (58/314)

94. The Nutty Professor (Jerry Lewis, 1963) (53/383)

95. Dont Look Back (D.A. Pennebaker, 1967) (51/291)

96. A Shot In The Dark (Blake Edwards, 1964) (49/370)

97. The Producers (Mel Brooks, 1967) (49/337)

98. The President's Analyst (Theodore J. Flicker, 1967) (47/250)

99. The Pink Panther (Blake Edwards, 1964) (35/278)

100. Gunn (Blake Edwards, 1967) (34/219)



MOVIES BY YEAR



1960 -- 12 movies XXXXXXXXXXXX

1961 -- 07 movies XXXXXXX

1962 -- 18 movies XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

1963 -- 10 movies XXXXXXXXXX

1964 -- 10 movies XXXXXXXXXX

1965 -- 7 movies XXXXXXX

1966 -- 9 movies XXXXXXXXX

1967 -- 14 movies XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

1968 -- 07 movies XXXXXXX

1969 -- 06 movies XXXXXX



For an explanation on how the voting was done, go here.



For more IRA lists, like the Top 100 Films Of All Time, the Top 100 Films of the 1950s and so on, go here.



For my personal list of the best films of all time, by year, go here.



_____________



Thanks for reading. Michael Giltz is the founder and CEO of the forthcoming website BookFilter, a book lover's best friend. It's a website that lets you browse for books online the way you do in a physical bookstore, provides comprehensive info on new releases every week in every category and offers passionate personal recommendations every step of the way. It's like a fall book preview or holiday gift guide -- but every week in every category. He's also the cohost of Showbiz Sandbox, a weekly pop culture podcast that reveals the industry take on entertainment news of the day and features top journalists and opinion makers as guests. It's available for free on iTunes. Visit Michael Giltz at his website and his daily blog. Download his podcast of celebrity interviews and his radio show, also called Popsurfing and also available for free on iTunes.



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