2014 Reviews

by jwoehr | created - 12 Feb 2014 | updated - 24 Apr 2014 | Public
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1. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014)

PG-13 | 105 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

57 Metascore

Jack Ryan, as a young covert CIA analyst, uncovers a Russian plot to crash the U.S. economy with a terrorist attack.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Keira Knightley, Kenneth Branagh

Votes: 108,433 | Gross: $50.58M

2. The Lego Movie (2014)

PG | 100 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

83 Metascore

An ordinary LEGO construction worker, thought to be the prophesied as "special", is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil tyrant from gluing the LEGO universe into eternal stasis.

Directors: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller | Stars: Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett

Votes: 286,013 | Gross: $257.76M

***1/2: An ambitious movie with a surprisingly smart ending.

3. The Monuments Men (2014)

PG-13 | 118 min | Drama, History, War

52 Metascore

An unlikely World War II platoon is tasked to rescue art masterpieces from Nazi thieves and return them to their owners.

Director: George Clooney | Stars: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett

Votes: 113,434 | Gross: $78.03M

4. Pompeii (I) (2014)

PG-13 | 105 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

39 Metascore

A slave-turned-gladiator finds himself in a race against time to save his true love, who has been betrothed to a corrupt Roman Senator. As Mount Vesuvius erupts, he must fight to save his beloved as Pompeii crumbles around him.

Director: Paul W.S. Anderson | Stars: Kit Harington, Emily Browning, Kiefer Sutherland, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje

Votes: 96,119 | Gross: $23.22M

5. RoboCop (2014)

PG-13 | 117 min | Action, Crime, Sci-Fi

52 Metascore

In 2028 Detroit, when Alex Murphy, a loving husband, father and good cop, is critically injured in the line of duty, the multinational conglomerate OmniCorp sees their chance for a part-man, part-robot police officer.

Director: José Padilha | Stars: Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, Abbie Cornish

Votes: 198,976 | Gross: $58.61M

**1/2: a some what well made remake with a good cast. It also manages to be pretty violent despite being PG-13. The original was a lot more violent though, fresher of course and just a far better film. What hurts this remake is that it takes itself too seriously, the original didn't. A bad guy drove into toxic waste and turned into a disfigured mess in the original for gods sake!

6. Mr. Peabody & Sherman (2014)

PG | 92 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

59 Metascore

The time-travelling adventures of an advanced canine and his adopted son, as they endeavor to fix a time rift they created.

Director: Rob Minkoff | Stars: Ty Burrell, Max Charles, Stephen Colbert, Leslie Mann

Votes: 54,515 | Gross: $111.51M

7. 3 Days to Kill (2014)

PG-13 | 117 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

40 Metascore

A dying CIA agent trying to reconnect with his estranged daughter is offered an experimental drug that could save his life in exchange for one last assignment.

Director: McG | Stars: Kevin Costner, Hailee Steinfeld, Connie Nielsen, Amber Heard

Votes: 77,949 | Gross: $30.70M

***: Costner is some comeback story of late and he manages to even make a McG film good

8. Non-Stop (2014)

PG-13 | 106 min | Action, Mystery, Thriller

56 Metascore

An air marshal springs into action during a transatlantic flight after receiving a series of text messages demanding $150 million into an off-shore account, or someone will die every 20 minutes.

Director: Jaume Collet-Serra | Stars: Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore, Scoot McNairy, Michelle Dockery

Votes: 224,521 | Gross: $92.17M

9. Veronica Mars (2014)

PG-13 | 107 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

62 Metascore

Years after walking away from her past as a young private eye, Veronica Mars gets pulled back to her hometown, just in time for her high school reunion, in order to help her old flame Logan Echolls, who's embroiled in a murder mystery.

Director: Rob Thomas | Stars: Kristen Bell, Jason Dohring, Enrico Colantoni, Chris Lowell

Votes: 45,147 | Gross: $3.32M

***1/2: Kristen Bell shines in this well made revival of her television series. The film works as both a mystery and a reunion movie. While Bell's witty lines are a lot of fun.

10. 300: Rise of an Empire (2014)

R | 102 min | Action, Fantasy, War

48 Metascore

Greek general Themistokles leads the charge against invading Persian forces led by mortal-turned-god Xerxes and Artemisia, vengeful commander of the Persian navy.

Director: Noam Murro | Stars: Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Hans Matheson

Votes: 251,339 | Gross: $106.58M

11. Need for Speed (2014)

PG-13 | 132 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

39 Metascore

Fresh from prison, a street racer who was framed by a wealthy business associate joins a cross country race with revenge in mind. His ex-partner, learning of the plan, places a massive bounty on his head as the race begins.

Director: Scott Waugh | Stars: Aaron Paul, Dominic Cooper, Imogen Poots, Kid Cudi

Votes: 149,791 | Gross: $43.58M

12. Muppets Most Wanted (2014)

PG | 107 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime

61 Metascore

While on a grand world tour, The Muppets find themselves wrapped into an European jewel-heist caper headed by a Kermit the Frog look-alike and his dastardly sidekick.

Director: James Bobin | Stars: Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, Tina Fey, Steve Whitmire

Votes: 27,507 | Gross: $51.18M

13. Divergent (2014)

PG-13 | 139 min | Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi

48 Metascore

In a world divided by factions based on virtues, Tris learns she's Divergent and won't fit in. When she discovers a plot to destroy Divergents, Tris and the mysterious Four must find out what makes Divergents dangerous before it's too late.

Director: Neil Burger | Stars: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Kate Winslet, Jai Courtney

Votes: 383,284 | Gross: $150.95M

14. Neighbors (I) (2014)

R | 97 min | Comedy

68 Metascore

After they are forced to live next to a fraternity house, a couple with a newborn baby do whatever they can to take them down.

Director: Nicholas Stoller | Stars: Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne, Zac Efron, Lisa Kudrow

Votes: 252,914 | Gross: $150.16M

15. Noah (2014)

PG-13 | 138 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

68 Metascore

Noah is chosen by God to undertake a momentous mission before an apocalyptic flood cleanses the world.

Director: Darren Aronofsky | Stars: Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins, Emma Watson

Votes: 220,408 | Gross: $101.20M

16. Rio 2 (2014)

G | 101 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

49 Metascore

It's a jungle out there for Blu, Jewel and their three kids after they're hurtled from Rio de Janeiro to the wilds of the Amazon. As Blu tries to fit in, he goes beak-to-beak with the vengeful Nigel, and meets his father-in-law.

Director: Carlos Saldanha | Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Jemaine Clement, Andy Garcia

Votes: 67,426 | Gross: $131.54M

17. Sabotage (2014)

R | 109 min | Action, Crime, Drama

41 Metascore

Members of an elite DEA task force find themselves being taken down one by one after they rob a drug cartel safe house.

Director: David Ayer | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sam Worthington, Terrence Howard, Olivia Williams

Votes: 53,256 | Gross: $10.51M

18. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

PG-13 | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

70 Metascore

As Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world, he teams up with a fellow Avenger and S.H.I.E.L.D agent, Black Widow, to battle a new threat from history: an assassin known as the Winter Soldier.

Directors: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo | Stars: Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Redford

Votes: 603,286 | Gross: $259.77M

****

19. 22 Jump Street (2014)

R | 112 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

71 Metascore

After making their way through high school (twice), big changes are in store for officers Schmidt and Jenko when they go deep undercover at a local college.

Directors: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller | Stars: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube, Nick Offerman

Votes: 302,291 | Gross: $191.72M

20. Transcendence (I) (2014)

PG-13 | 119 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance

42 Metascore

A scientist's drive for artificial intelligence, takes on dangerous implications when his consciousness is uploaded into one such program.

Director: Wally Pfister | Stars: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy

Votes: 196,262 | Gross: $23.02M

21. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

PG-13 | 142 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

53 Metascore

When New York is put under siege by Oscorp, it is up to Spider-Man to save the city he swore to protect as well as his loved ones.

Director: Marc Webb | Stars: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx, Paul Giamatti

Votes: 367,026 | Gross: $202.85M

***1/2

22. Chef (2014)

R | 114 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

68 Metascore

A head chef quits his restaurant job and buys a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creative promise, while piecing back together his estranged family.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Jon Favreau, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Dustin Hoffman

Votes: 164,306 | Gross: $30.64M

23. Godzilla (2014)

PG-13 | 123 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

62 Metascore

The world is beset by the appearance of monstrous creatures, but one of them may be the only one who can save humanity.

Director: Gareth Edwards | Stars: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Bryan Cranston, Ken Watanabe

Votes: 332,695 | Gross: $200.68M

24. Jupiter Ascending (2015)

PG-13 | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

40 Metascore

A young woman discovers her destiny as an heiress of intergalactic nobility and must fight to protect the inhabitants of Earth from an ancient and destructive industry.

Directors: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski | Stars: Channing Tatum, Mila Kunis, Eddie Redmayne, Sean Bean

Votes: 159,200 | Gross: $47.39M

25. X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

PG-13 | 132 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

75 Metascore

The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy

Votes: 587,947 | Gross: $233.92M

26. Maleficent (2014)

PG | 97 min | Action, Adventure, Family

56 Metascore

A vengeful fairy is driven to curse an infant princess, only to discover that the child may be the one person who can restore peace to their troubled land.

Director: Robert Stromberg | Stars: Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley, Lesley Manville

Votes: 287,753 | Gross: $241.41M

27. A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014)

R | 116 min | Comedy, Romance, Western

44 Metascore

As a cowardly farmer begins to fall for the mysterious new woman in town, he must put his new-found courage to the test when her husband, a notorious gun-slinger, announces his arrival.

Director: Seth MacFarlane | Stars: Seth MacFarlane, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried

Votes: 153,499 | Gross: $43.14M

28. Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

PG-13 | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

71 Metascore

A soldier fighting aliens gets to relive the same day over and over again, the day restarting every time he dies.

Director: Doug Liman | Stars: Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton, Brendan Gleeson

Votes: 512,908 | Gross: $100.21M

29. The Giver (2014)

PG-13 | 97 min | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi

47 Metascore

In a seemingly perfect community, without war, pain, suffering, differences or choice, a young boy is chosen to learn from an elderly man about the true pain and pleasure of the "real" world.

Director: Phillip Noyce | Stars: Brenton Thwaites, Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Taylor Swift

Votes: 100,484 | Gross: $45.09M

30. How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014)

PG | 102 min | Animation, Action, Adventure

76 Metascore

When Hiccup and Toothless discover an ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace.

Director: Dean DeBlois | Stars: Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson

Votes: 254,480 | Gross: $177.00M

31. Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014)

PG-13 | 165 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

32 Metascore

Autobots must escape sight from a bounty hunter who has taken control of the human serendipity: Unexpectedly, Optimus Prime and his remaining gang turn to a mechanic, his daughter, and her back street racing boyfriend for help.

Director: Michael Bay | Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Stanley Tucci

Votes: 272,114 | Gross: $245.44M

32. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014)

PG-13 | 130 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

79 Metascore

A growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier.

Director: Matt Reeves | Stars: Gary Oldman, Keri Russell, Andy Serkis, Kodi Smit-McPhee

Votes: 373,410 | Gross: $208.55M

33. Hercules (I) (2014)

PG-13 | 98 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

47 Metascore

Having endured his legendary twelve labors, Hercules, the Greek demigod, has his life as a sword-for-hire tested when the King of Thrace and his daughter seek his aid in defeating a tyrannical warlord.

Director: Brett Ratner | Stars: Dwayne Johnson, John Hurt, Ian McShane, Joseph Fiennes

Votes: 129,975 | Gross: $72.69M

34. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

76 Metascore

A group of intergalactic criminals are forced to work together to stop a fanatical warrior from taking control of the universe.

Director: James Gunn | Stars: Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana

Votes: 851,024 | Gross: $333.18M

35. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

PG-13 | 101 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

31 Metascore

When a kingpin threatens New York City, a group of mutated turtle warriors must emerge from the shadows to protect their home.

Director: Jonathan Liebesman | Stars: Megan Fox, Will Arnett, William Fichtner, Noel Fisher

Votes: 186,563 | Gross: $191.20M

36. The Expendables 3 (2014)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

35 Metascore

Barney augments his team with new blood for a personal battle: to take down Conrad Stonebanks, the Expendables co-founder and notorious arms trader who is hell bent on wiping out Barney and every single one of his associates.

Director: Patrick Hughes | Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas

Votes: 147,784 | Gross: $39.32M