When we discussed the "Best of 2014" lists here at ScreenAnarchy, the first thing I asked was: "Can I do mine in February or March, please?".
I'm so hopelessly behind on 2014's theatrical releases that it isn't even funny. Yes, I caught some of the big releases. Yes, I went to three of the best Dutch film festivals and had a hell of a time at each of them. But life in 2014 conspired to keep me mostly out of the art-house theaters. I saw most of what I desperately wanted to see, but most of what was "just" recommended to me I managed to miss out on.
I'll catch up though. My home-system is now easily beating most Dutch arthouse cinemas of a mere twenty years ago in quality, and far beyond what I, as a teenager, dreamed I could possibly ever own one day. And legally owning films has never ever been this cheap, nor has the home-release waiting time for most titles ever been shorter.
So I do not feel comfortable posting a top-10 this very moment, although I did contribute to the main ScreenAnarchy event a few weeks ago. But what does 2014 mean to me then, at this moment, film-wise? How do I remember this year?
Therefore I have decided to make a general list of personal highlights. Some items in it are films, some are events. Not all are top-moments, but these are the dozen recollections that defined 2014 for me.
Browse through them (they're in no particular order...), and feel free to discuss!
Rhymes Like Teen Spirits:
Jeff Barnaby's debut film Rhymes For Young Ghouls has been much lauded at this site: Jason Gorber even called it "an absolute must-see", and rightly so.
As a thriller which casts some much-needed light on the evil history of Canada's residential schools, the film should already be interesting enough. But the story introduces Aila, played fantastically by Kawennáhere Devery Jacobs, and she turned out to be the single protagonist I cheered for the most in 2014.
When Rhymes For Young Ghouls played at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, Jeff Barnaby said Kawennáhere Devery Jacobs did all her own stunts as a true tomboy trooper. Well, after seeing Rhymes For Young Ghouls I'd already pay just to watch her read a phonebook. She's a standout talent, and I hope we'll be seeing her a lot more often in the future.
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