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 Forget the OscarsR: Movies Worth Watching from 2014

Forget the OscarsR: Movies Worth Watching from 2014

Each year many people treat the Oscar nominations as a must-see list of films to check out from the past year. And while that's a pretty good way to catch up on what you might have missed from the previous year, you're missing out on a lot good stuff. It's known that the Academy overlooks films that are blockbusters and popular with audiences. It's pretty uncommon that they nominate films from the horror and thriller genre. But some of my favorite ones have been winners such as Jurassic Park and The Silence of the Lambs. This year, horror was missing all together.

Therefore, this February, instead of telling you what you should watch that was nominated, I'm giving you my picks for movies to check out that you may never have even heard of in the horror and thriller category, plus a few others from 2014.

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Annabelle

This movie is a spin-off from another horror movie, The Conjuring which I enjoyed a lot. Dolls are creepy, right? Well this one might take the cake; this demon doll is given to woman as a gift by her husband. It's going to be super scary but I'm in to that kind of thing. I don't want to give too much away but I think the women figures out how to handle Annabelle in kick-ass way, certainly for the 60s time period the movie is set in.

The Babadook

The director of The Exorcist said it was the scariest movie he's ever seen, so I'd say that's everything you need to know. I highly recommend this Australian-made film about a mother and son dealing with an unwanted guest. Some parts horror and some parts psychological. It frightened audiences at last year's Sundance Film Festival. Definitely worth a watch if you can handle a few jumps.

Big Eyes

With performances by Amy Adams, who won a Golden Globe for the role, and Oscar winner Christophe Waltz there's sure to be some good acting, but having yet to see this one, I'm not sure why, with such a strong cast this movie failed to make an impression with audiences. It pretty much bombed, so maybe this drastic change from director Tim Burton's recent ventures didn't pan out. I'm interested in seeing this movie about a woman who lets her husband take all the credit for her paintings, not for the true story per se, but for the production design and hoping that it's reminiscent of Edward Scissorhands.

Deliver Us from Evil

Supposedly this is also based on a true story about a NYC police officer who can't deny that the supernatural might be a part of recent murders he's been investigating. He teams up with a contemporary priest to figure out what's causing this, which is handy, since it looks like there might be a need for some exorcism. This is scary, so check it out if you think you can handle it.

Horns

I only heard about this independent movie starring Daniel Radcliffe (yes, Harry Potter!) through On Demand. It's based on the book by the same name by Stephen King's son, Joe Hill. It's about a guy tormented by his girlfriends' murder and is suspected of committing the crime. It has an interesting supernatural twist with a bit of humor and heart that helps round it out to a worthwhile 2-hour couch session. It's available to stream now through Netflix.

John Wick

Movies like this are great to make fun of, but what if it turns out to actually be good? Keanu Reeves plays a retired hit man who's forced into a mission of revenge. Interestingly enough, this is actually directed by one of Reeves' past stunt men, so there's going to be lots of action including car chases and choreographed fight scenes. It's available to rent now.

The Lego Movie

This is up for Best Song, and how couldn't it be. It's so catchy! Everything is awesome! But everyone was shocked when this wasn't nominated for Best Animated Feature by the Academy. This movie was very well done and it's so much fun to see LEGOs like this. I definitely recommend seeing it whether you're a parent or not, regardless it would be entertaining for anyone. It was also so successful that they're already making another one, slated to come out in 2017.

Locke

Hunky Tom Hardy plays a man in his car throughout the entire film. Wait, stay with me here, while this might seem like a boring concept, keeping it under 90 minutes allows this emotional roller coaster to maintain its momentum. And while it's won a few accolades from smaller associations, it didn't make an impression on Academy members.

Odd Thomas

For those of us who are familiar with Dean Koontz's best-selling series about a young guy who can see ghosts, you might be interested to know there was a movie made of the first book. While it was pretty low-budget, they kept to the story, and I was even impressed with some of the CGI they had to use to make the story come to life on the screen. This one is also available for streaming now on Netflix.

Snowpiercer

Set in a world where the earth is covered in ice and the only people that survived are on speeding train. There's also a caste system to the train cars - the lower class live in the back. A band of rebels are determined to get to the front and take command of the train. With a quirky performance by Oscar-winner Tilda Swinton, this one is worth a watch.

White Bird in a Blizzard

I saw the trailer for this movie and was really intrigued by it. This independent film flew under the radar, starring Shailene Woodley, who was the It-girl last year, appearing in The Fault in Our Stars, but we didn't hear much about this coming of age tale she was in. It's available to rent through On Demand.

What movies are you going back to watch from the past year? Share your favorites with us!

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