Top 10 movies of 2014

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2014 was a year anticipated for the inception of film franchises, sci-fis and most of them turned out to be superb. Interstellar, Gone Girl and Guardians of the Galaxy delivered more than anyone expected.

1. Interstellar

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Interstellar is Christopher Nolan’s best as a writer and easily the best original screenplay of 2014. This space odyssey about the survival of the human race has its unexpected twists and theories making it the most accomplished film of the year with Mathew McConaughey and Jessica Chastain delivering supreme performances.

2. X-Men: Days of Future Past

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They are all back together and the fun of all X-Men movies is summed up into this extravaganza. X-Men: Days of Future Past is a meticulous display of taut writing and scintillating performances. This feature film exceeds your massive expectations by reasons only known to its makers.

3. The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies

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The final chapter of the Hobbit series is the best fantasy movie of the year. Bilbo Baggin’s journey back again to the Shire from Erebor is not as easy as it seemed. Armies of Dwarves, Elves, Men and Orcs clash for the wealth of the mountain.

4. Guardians of the Galaxy

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Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy is the biggest surprise of 2014. No one expected it to be a huge success. Despite its mediocre star cast and trailers the film turned out to be an absolute entertainer.

5. Gone Girl

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David Fincher’s Gone Girl was the most difficult film to be successfully made. The mystery of a missing wife on her anniversary turns out to be a nightmare. Rosamund Pyke and Ben Affleck give Oscar winning performances.

6.Captain America: The Winter Soldier

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This is the first Captain America film after his brief introduction as The First Avenger and shared screen space in The Avengers. Cap 2 is a heavy duty action film in which Steve Rogers faces his old pal with the help of Agent Romanoff.

7. Transformers: Age of Extinction

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This is kind of a semi-reboot to the Transformers franchise. Michael Bay gets Mark Walberg to play the lead in Age of Extinction where Autobots are hunted down until the rise of Optimus Prime.

8. The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay – Part 1

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Mocking Jay – Part 1 is the set up for the ultimate finale next year. A lot does not happen in it but it is enough to captivate you for its running time. Jennifer Lawrence grows as an actor with every film.

9. The Lego Movie

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Innovation is exemplified in Phil Lordand Christopher Miller’s animation laugh riot. A simpleton guy is handed the reins of the Lego universe to save it.

10. The Maze Runner

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The Maze Runner emerges as a stunning surprise unlike the herd of YA tryouts since Twilight and The Hunger Games. It’s a story about a bunch of boys trapped in a maze filled with death.

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Top 10 movies of 2012

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2012 had a host of anticipated films. Almost all of them turned into blockbusters. There are easily more than 20 awesome movies. It’s been a puzzle picking the top 10.

 1. The Avengers

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Give me Iron Man or Thor alone and I’ll watch the movie again and again. But if you give me both of them in a single movie that too with Captain America, Hulk and the beautiful Scarlet Johansson, I’ll watch it everyday. The Avengers was the first notable movie to feature standalone superheroes together, and we jumped on it.

2. The Dark Knight Rises 

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The culmination of the epic The Dark Knight trilogy was definitely the most awaited movie of 2012. The capped crusader returning on screen after 4 years with both Chris’s (Nolan and Bale) confirming it their last ride made it so. The Dark Knight Rises was an epic indeed. Christian Bale is the best Batman.

3. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

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I have no words for Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. I might just watch it on mute and still won’t be able to give justice to its picturesque visuals. Besides, it has a hell of a story and cast.

4. The Hunger Games

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The Hunger Games is the adaptation of Suzanne Collin’s bestseller of the same name. The pretty Jennifer Lawrence is the heart and soul of this dystopian film.

5. Skyfall

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The 50th anniversary of James Bond is called Skyfall. It is definitely style to its epitome. No wonder it made more money than The Dark Knight Rises.

6. Men in Black 3

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Ten years after MIB2, Will Smith returned with Men In Black 3. This man does not age. The movie was one of the funniest of 2012. Only Smith can pull off such characters.

7. Argo

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Argo introduced a new kind of cinema created by Ben Affleck. Its superb script and supreme direction are lessons in cinema. The Oscar wanted this movie.

8. Ted

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Seth Macfarlane’s Ted is the best R-rated comedy next to The Hangover. It’s hilarious and yes,there’s a sequel coming.

9. Madagascar 3

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Madagascar 3 is easily the best animation movie till 2012. Its colourful never-ending 3D is an experience you cannot afford to miss.

10. Silver Linings Playbook

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David O Russel’s Silver Linings Playbook is his life’s best work. Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence strike a brilliant chemistry to make this film a must watch.

Top 10 books to be adapted into films in 2014

2014 will see the inception of a few fresh book series being adapted for super-hits. Some best-selling solo novels will see the light of the awaited screens. The existing adaptations will witness their sequels in the cinemas.

1. Mockingjay

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Author: Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games trilogy has been a game-changer for Lionsgate. The first two films have been unanimously appreciated. Director Francis Lawrence and actor Jennifer Lawrence will give us the The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part 1.

2. Divergent

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Author: Veronica Roth

The Divergent series is the latest adaptation by Summit Entertainment after the successful Twilight series. The first film titled Divergent stars Shailene Woodley, Theo James and Zoë Kravitz and is directed by Neil Burger.

3. The Hobbit

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Author: J.R.R. Tolkien

The single novel has been adapted as a trilogy by Peter Jackson. The first two of them have been blockbusters. The finale The Hobbit: There And Back Again cannot disappoint.

4. Gone Girl

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Author: Gillian Flynn

David Fincher has made this mystery thriller scripted by Gillian Fylnn. Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pyke star as Nick and Amy Dunne respectively.

5. Dracula

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Author: Bram Stoker

The horror classic will be remade by Gary Shore. Luke Evans plays the bloodsucker vampire Vlad Tepes. Sara Goden plays his wife.

6. Vampire Academy

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Author: Richelle Mead

The young adult paranormal romance has been adapted by Mark Waters as Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters. It stars Zoey Deutch, Danila Kozlovsky and Lucy Fry.

7. The Fault In Our Stars

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Author: John Green

The blockbuster novel is being adapted by director Josh Boone. The romantic drama stars Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort and Nat Wolff.

8. The Monuments Men

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Author: Robert M. Edsel

George Clooney has writen and co-produced The Monuments Men starring Matt Damon, Clooney, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, Hugh Bonneville, and Cate Blanchett.

9. Sin City: A Dame To Kill For

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Author: Frank Miller

Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez have made the sequel to their Sin City. The sequel stars Jessica Alba, Eva Green, Josh Brolin, Rosario Dawson and Joseph Gordan-Lewitt.

10. The Maze Runner

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Author: James Dashner

The best selling sci-fi mystery has been adapted by Wes Ball. It stars Dylan O’Brien, Thomas Sangster, Kaya Scodelario and Will Poulter.

Top 10 anticipated films of 2014

2014 will have a plethora of sequels and reboots. The sci-fi genre will see a new level. The 10 most anticipated films have fantasy, dystopian, comic and sci-fi as fountainheads. The year is the return of top directors and franchises.

1. Interstellar

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Director: Christopher Nolan

Cast: Mathew McConaughey, Anne Hathway, Jessica Chastain, Michael Caine, Bill Irwin, Ellen Burstyn, Matt Damon, Casey Affleck

Release Date: November 7

The blockbuster director Christopher Nolan returns after The Dark Knight trilogy with a sci-fi film. Interstellar has a team set out in space and involves traveling through a wormhole. Nolan returns with an enviable ensemble cast with Mathew McConaughey as lead. The IMAX photography is highly anticipated.

2. Transformers: Age of Extinction

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Director: Michael Bay

Cast:  Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Kelsey Grammer, Stanley Tucci, Sophia Myles, T. J. Miller, Titus Welliver, Li Bingbing

Release Date: June 27

The fourth installment of the Transformers series is set four years after the events of the prequel. Shia LaBeouf is no longer a part of the franchise. Mark Wahlberg is the new lead with Nicola Peltz playing his daughter. The film shall also be semi reboot of the franchise.

3. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part 1

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Director: Francis Lawrence

Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Donald Sutherland

Release Date: November 21

Katniss Everdeen will start a revolution against the evil minded Capitol and reunite the districts of Panem. The retaliation shall test her trust in her comrades once again.

4. The Hobbit: There And Back Again

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Director: Peter Jackson

Cast: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Benedict Cumberbatch, Evangeline Lilly, Orlando Bloom, Lee Pace, Luke Evans

Release Date: December 17

The final film of the Hobbit series will have Smaug trying to destroy Dale against the black-arrow archer’s intentions. Bilbo Baggins has to find the Archenstone and transfer the power back to the Dwarves of Erebor. Gandalf’s incomplete encounter will Sauron can ignite more wars.

5. X-Men: Days of Future Past

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Director: Bryan Singer

Cast:  Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Peter Dinklage, Patrick Stewart

Release Date: May 23

Wolverine is back where he suits best. Professor X and Magneto join hands to fight a war in the past so that the one in the future does not start. This film has the best cast for the year 2014 piping Nolan’s Interstellar.

6. 300: Rise of an Empire

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Director: Noam Murrro

Cast:  Sullivan Stapleton, Lena Headey, Eva Green, Hans Matheson, Rodrigo Santoro

Release Date: August 22

Although Zack Snyder has not directed the sequel to his most celebrated film, Rise of an Empire has big expectations riding on it. This time the war is on water. The navies of Lena Heady and Eva Green clash in the bloodied waters.

7. The Amazing Spider-Man 2

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Director: Marc Webb

Cast:  Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx, Dane DeHaan, Paul Giamatti

Release Date: May 2

Spiderman will realise that his foes have one thing in common: OsCorp. On the stint to find the secrets about his father, Peter Parker will take on two villains, Electro and Rhino.

8. Transcendence

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Director: Wally Pfister

Cast: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy, Kate Mara,

Release Date: April 17

Cinematographer Wally Pfister makes his directional debut after working long with Christopher Nolan. Transcendence is a sci-fi starring Johnny Depp as a computer researcher with a path breaking invention which juggles between a boon or bane scenario.

9. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

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Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

Cast:  Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Cobie Smulders, Emily VanCamp, Samuel L. Jackson

Release Date: August 22

The second outing of the first avenger has him dealing with the Winter Soldier, Captain America’s best friend turned against him. The film also sees Anthony Mackie as Falcon having telepathic powers and flight. Does Cap get a girl finally is the real interest.

10. How to Train Your Dragon 2

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Director: Dean DeBlois

Cast:  Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T. J. Miller

Release Date: June 13

Hiccup and Toothless will fight a battle for humans and dragons. The prequel was extremely loved and How To Train Your Dragon 2 is the most highly anticipated animation film of 2014.

Top 10 films of 2013

Superhero, fantasy and animation have been an annual prevalence. Live action and dystopian have steamed up in the past two years. Horror has become an enigma now. 2013 has witnessed yet another furore amongst the audiences.  The critics were again there but the top ten films of the year will always belong to the people despite their rants. Presenting these movies which you will surely watch again and again

10. The Conjuring

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James Wan’s The Conjuring created a worldwide paranormal hysteria for its incredible story and screenplay. The true story adaptation saw a family paralyse to the wrath of an invincible spirit only to be miraculously saved by an exorcism expert couple. It also garnered praise for its clean nature. What more? They’re already working on a sequel and a spin off.

9. Despicable Me 2

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Minions minions minions! We loved them so much they’re getting a spin off movie with just minions. Despicable Me 2 was one of the most awaited films and churned out to be the best animation film. It actually surpassed many big hits. The film brings inescapable joy to even the serious folks.

8. Now You See Me

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Louis Leterrier’s film has magic as its essence. An original adaptation with scintillating visuals and power-packed performances from each actor with a supersmart screenplay keeps you rapt throughout the show. Jesse Eisenburg is the Sherlock of the future.

7. Gravity

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It didn’t have the gravity of hype, but when it struck we got swayed to the multiplexes. Gravity is a never before seen type of film. It’s simply spectacular. Alfonso Cuaron’s original adaptation, yes it’s not from some novel or comic, brought original stories back to the spotlight after Nolan’s Inception. It topped weekend after weekend to gross a mighty $640 million.

6. Pacific Rim

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Many wrote this one off before its release. Pacific Rim is the latest illustration of Don’t judge a book by its cover. This film brought the child out of everyone. Just like those old days of watching great machines with one hell of a background score which reverberates for a week. Guillermo del Toro’s sci-fi is all in for the ever excited hearts.

5. Fast & Furious 6

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Nothing beats speeding cars, sexy babes, and cheesy one-liners. They even got an aeroplane in this one. Blazing guns and unimaginable leaps and lungs on equally unimaginable things were the trademark of Justin Lin’s second instalment of the perceived trilogy. We will miss enough of our darling Brain O’Conner.

4. Thor: The Dark World

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We never get bored even if it’s just a hammer. Excitement was at its pinnacle when Game of Thrones henchman Alan Taylor was roped in the already hyped Thor: The Dark World. Chris Hemsworth coarse voice and character coupled with Loki’s mischief were sheer pleasure and gratuity. Asgard’s visuals are stupendous.

3. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy presented by Peter Jackson is a marvel to live. The epic tale of hobbits gets better this year. Dwarfs, orcs, skin-changers, elves, spiders, wizards and what not; they’ve got it. The bliss of the visual treat reminiscences for days after watching this movie. There’s a sequel left, but we might not see such films again.

2. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

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The girl on fire will always be desired for her beauty, courage, honesty and finally her smartness. Jennifer Lawrence plays Katniss Everdeen with such surety that other actors look pale despite their seniority. The story and screenplay are such a rarity that we just want them to somehow do it again. May the odds be ever in their favour.

1. Iron Man 3

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You can take away my tricks and toys…but you can’t take one thing away from me….I am Iron Man. Ever escalating technology on one side and one badass villain only to know that our superhero is himself super badass. He may not remember what he had for breakfast, but there are guys who just want to be him every second. No one gets the better off Robert Downey Jr. Period.

Review: Peter Jackson and J.R.R. Tolkien swing the Smaug for the Hobbit

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There were many filmmakers who envied Peter Jackson and there will be many more. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is a cinematic experience to be rued forever if missed. The first was an experience as well, but this is better. The quest to reclaim a homeland and slay a dragon is beyond enticing each second. And then finally we do get enough to worship the creature we were seduced with in the first part.

Bilbo Baggins, our cherished hobbit, has ultimately become a significant member of the quest headed by Thorin Oakenshield and ghost-headed by Gandalf the Grey. Together our beloveds embark on a journey sprinkled with increasing Orcs throughout. There is a skin-changer. There are weird spiders. And then there are the Elves ruled by Thranduil. Tauriel is the only girl in the film, and is a beauty indeed. Legolas’ arrows are still captivating. The escape cum river cum river bank cum waterfall sequence is worth whistling. Gandalf’s epic face-off with the Enemy is surprising. Finally the advent of the dragon Smaug sends chills across the theater.

Martin Freeman just like his character never ceases to amuse us with his performance. Although Ian  McKellen once again emerges favourite as Gandalf. Evangeline Lilly (Tauriel) does catch our eyes, being the only lady onboard.  Orlando Bloom (Legolas), Ken Scott (Balin) are also poignant. Benedict Cumberbatch (voice of Smaug) will always be special to give the greedy Sherlock fans their two stars in a frame.

Peter Jackson’s direction will be eulogised till the end of all times. The screenplay writers Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson, Guillermo del Toro have outdone every living screenplay writer. The real immortal is J.R.R. Tolkien whose antique novel is the heart of venture. The 160 minute film has a better pace than its predecessor, courtesy of the brilliant editing involved. A special salute to the entire team for filming the entire trilogy together and taking film production to its novel epitome. The 3D is mesmerizing and has to be watched to be believed.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is worth the wait. The writing, visuals and performances are scintillating to the core. It’s a must watch. Ironically, one cannot wait for the final chapter!

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