Movies: Top 5 Favorites Update

Good story, great jazz music, and even better performances; what more can you ask from a film.

In the past few weeks I’ve had the opportunity to catch up with a few of the releases from the end of 2014. As an update to my post a few weeks ago, I again don’t have enough films to make a Top 10 for 2014.

And yet, last night I got to see Whiplash and it has leaped into my Top 5 of 2014. Interstellar is still my favorite movie from last year, but Whiplash is in competition with The Imitation Game for second place. So now I have a Top ‘6’ Favorite Films of 2014.

Whiplash 000

The last time a movie affected my physical body like this one was seeing the opening 25 minutes of Saving Private Ryan. It’s hard to put into words how Whiplash actually ‘moved’ me physically. Several times my upper body leaned forward vibrating, trying to keep up with the beating of the drummer.

“There are no two words in the English language more harmful than good job.”
– Terence Fletcher, Whiplash

Miles Teller is terrific as Andrew Neiman, the young drummer who’s in his first year at a celebrated music school in New York. And all the attention J.K. Simmons is getting for his portrait of Terence Fletcher, his abusive professor, is well deserved. New writer/director Damien Chazelle has beautifully presented the contrast between the hard driving teacher and the driven student, two very different characters that in the end really aren’t that different.

“I was there to push people beyond what’s expected of them. I believe that’s an absolute necessity.”
– Terence Fletcher, Whiplash

The film is rated R for obscenities throughout, much of it quite politically incorrect.

It’s a story of sacrifice, self-discovery and the lengths some will go to, for good or bad, to achieve their goals. Again, as I said in my earlier post, I had barely come up with a Top 5 Favorites for last year. Whiplash helped me to leave 2014 behind with a bit more fondness for movies for the year overall.

Now let’s get on with the competition for 2015.


About VocareMentor

Walk with the wise and become wise - Prov. 13:20 A lot of my blog comes out of the way I grew up. My parents divorced when I was 6 years old and I didn’t see much of my father. I had no understanding of how the lack of his presence in my life affected every choice I made as I grew up. Much of my adult life has been attempting to sort things out and catch up. Thus, what you’ll find on my blog are musings, thoughts, wisdom and ideas from history and pop culture. Themes: mentors, father/son, male/female, self-discovery, courage, stepping up, friendship and more.
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