5 Great Movies You May Have Missed In 2014

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A still from the movie Calvary. Pic: Niall Carson/PA Wire
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A still from the movie Calvary. Pic: Niall Carson/PA Wire

2014 has been a sterling year for movies. We all know about the big blockbusters, like Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain America, but how about some of the lesser-known flicks? Here are some films you might just have missed – and the good news is that they’re now available to buy on DVD

Under the Skin

Under the Skin is one of the most unusual films to come out in a long time. Scarlett Johansson stars as an alien who drives the streets of Glasgow picking up men to take home and kill.

It sounds like an out-and-out horror film, but is actually nothing of the sort. Instead it’s a disturbing movie that’s as beautiful and moody as it is odd. And there’s certainly plenty of weirdness here – not least seeing Johansson in rainy Scotland surrounded by everyday Glaswegian folk. 

Locke

The premise for Locke hardly sounds promising – a man drives from Birmingham to Croydon holding various conversations on his car phone, many of which concern the logistics of pouring concrete. And yet this manages to be a gripping piece of cinema. Why?


Because the man in question is a married construction manager who had a one-night stand with a colleague 7 months before, and the colleague has just gone into early labour. The phone calls are the man’s attempts to put right a life-shattering situation. Tom Hardy puts in a great performance as Ivan Locke, while the ever-brilliant Olivia Colman is the one-night stand. 

Calvary

Anyone who saw writer-director John Michael McDonagh’s 2011 movie The Guard will have been eagerly awaiting the follow-up, and – guess what? –it’s even better. In Calvary Brendan Gleeson again stars, this time as Father James, a priest who’s told in the confession box that he’s about to be killed.

Father James then sets about trying to find out who’s behind the threats. Could it be local butcher Chris O’Dowd? Or tycoon Dylan Moran? This black comedy has a serious point at its heart, and is one of the best Irish films in ages. 

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Wes Anderson’s movies are always worth a look for the visuals alone, and The Grand Budapest Hotel surpasses even past triumphs The Royal Tenenbaums and Rushmore. It’s a stunning film packed with fascinating characters.

Indeed it’s worth seeing for Ralph Fiennes alone, who puts in one of the best performances of his already outstanding career. Jude Law, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton and Adrien Brody all add their names to the starry cast list. 

The Double

The IT Crowd star Richard Ayoade has proved himself to be a top-notch director, first with Submarine and now this, an adaptation of Dostoevsky’s novella The Double.

Jesse Eisenberg plays Simon, a shy programmer who works in a drab office where he’s ignored by his colleagues and girl of his dreams Hannah (Mia Wasikowska). Then Simon discovers he has a doppelgänger in the office – someone exactly like him, only suave and successful.

Needless to say, Simon’s colleagues – and, worst of all, Hannah – all fall for the double’s charms. It’s an intelligent film, and stylish looking too. 
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