In an attempt to help you, our beloved readers, get to know us, your Daily Grindhouse staffers and contributors, a little better, we thought we’d pose and answer a big important movie-type question. If you enjoy this, please let us know in the comments and we’ll make it a recurring feature. So here it is:

With the end of 2014 rapidly approaching, which are the movies you’re still hoping to see before all the awards-season conversations and the year-end lists start popping up?     



Doug Tilley:


I usually find myself having to play catch up once award season hits, but there are some movies I’m hoping to catch up on early. This includes the documentary THE OVERNIGHTERS, which is currently getting rave reviews theatrically. But I’m well behind on some usual suspects, including NIGHTCRAWLER, WHIPLASH and BIRDMAN. Still, it’s the odd films that tend to make the most impact, and I’m still desperate to see the no-budget all-star compilation HI-8, and Sion Sono’s followup to (THE INCREDIBLE) WHY DON’T YOU PLAY IN HELL?, called TOKYO TRIBE.



Paul Freitag-Fey:


Jeez, way too many! I haven’t gotten around to WHY DON’T YOU PLAY IN HELL? yet, and there’s HOUSEBOUND, THE MACHINE, JOHN WICK, INTERSTELLAR, OCULUS, NYMPHOMANIAC, JODOROWSKY’S DUNE, COLD IN JULY, NIGHT MOVES, 7 BOXES, THE EDITOR — every time I think I’m going pretty good on catching up with the things I have seen, I take a look at the things I haven’t seen.



Jason Coffman:


I currently have a list of 40+ films to try and cram in before the end of 2014, not counting films that are still yet to be theatrically released this year. I’m particularly excited about the NYMPHOMANIAC director’s cut (I haven’t seen the 4-hour version since I’ve been holding out for this), and WHITE BIRD IN A BLIZZARD (the new Gregg Araki film), but there’s always a ton of stuff I miss out on every year that I have to end up catching up on later. I’m hoping against hope that INHERENT VICE hits Chicago before the year is out!


Craig Edwards:


I’m honestly not looking forward to any movies for the rest of 2014. I am really looking forward to 2015 though!



Mike Vanderbilt: 


2014 has probably been the best year for me and seeing new movies since I was a teenager. Since January, I’ve seen thirty-four movies at the theatre (including the 4K GHOSTBUSTERS, HALLOWEEN and the new, excellent transfer of THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE, at a drive-in no less) with my goal being 52 in total. It’s coming down to the wire, with only a handful of theatrical releases that are really calling my name, including FOXCATCHER and INHERENT VICE. I’m on the fence about ST. VINCENT and THE EQUALIZER, but I’d check them out at a matinee to hit my goal.

I subjected myself to some mediocre studio horror this year in the forms of THE QUIET ONES, DELIVER US FROM EVIL, and OUIJA, and I think I’ve missed out on some great stuff via VOD, so I’ll definitely be sitting down with THE BABADOOK and STARRY EYES before the end of the year. As much of a horror fan as I am, giallos generally bore me, but simply seeing the stills from THE EDITOR has got me on board as soon as I can track that one down.



Matthew Monagle:


Every November, I start to feel like I’m behind on a required reading list in a film history textbook. That means scrambling to watch all the Really Important Films that I missed and trying to get people on Twitter to talk about them with me, even though most of those discussions ran their course weeks (or even months) ago. Over the next two months, I will be tweeting at various points about BIRDMAN, INTERSTELLAR, GONE GIRL, INHERENT VICE, ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE, and BOYHOOD, so please be sure to actually respond to me and make me feel like I’m still with the times. Hip. Cool. Down to film.

Thankfully, it feels like most of the heavyweight movies of 2014 have already been released, so I should have time to play catch-up. That means I’ll also probably sneak out to watch Mark Wahlberg be an asshole in THE GAMBLER, because “Movies Where Mark Wahlberg Plays An Asshole” is one of my favorite defunct Blockbuster Video shelving categories and I wouldn’t miss it for the world. I’m also going to go see WHY DON’T YOU PLAY IN HELL? in theaters one more time, or maybe two more times, because that movie is everything, all of the things. It’s the kind of movie that’s so good that it pisses you off when people have seen it, because you wanted to be the one to recommend it. Damn you, Jon and Doug!



Freeman Williams:


I don’t have much truck with award shows or lists, and my viewing habits are pretty lackadaisical when it comes to theatrical releases. I will be there for the last HOBBIT, because I enjoyed the last two, and will put forth an effort to see INTERSTELLAR on an actual Imax screen. Past that, I’ve still got 100 years of cinema to choose from, and honestly, not much is out there that is enticing enough for me to leave the comfort, quiet and relative safety of my armchair. Yes, I have been a cranky old bastard since I was 30 or so.



Jon Abrams:


This is a long list. It always is. This year it’s at the point of length where I needed to split it into two lists, the irresistible lures and the ones that feel like homework.


TOP FIVE : As a guy who generally likes even the so-called “not-good” Chris Rock movies, the idea of a reputed “good” one thrills me.

INHERENT VICE : I’m a PTA freak, like anybody else with a brain. His movies have an uncommon energy, sophistication, and artfulness. Not really sure how he gets away with it.

AMERICAN SNIPER : Call me crazy, but I like the idea of Clint going straight-up red state. That’s not my political orientation, but I don’t necessarily need my favorite filmmakers to re-assure my personal world view. I’d rather be challenged. And I’d rather see Clint pissing people off than making nostalgia musicals.

THE BABADOOK : People keep telling me it’s the best horror movie of the year. Don’t they know all I needed was the title?

HOUSEBOUND : Not remotely as fun to say as “THE BABADOOK,” but here’s another horror movie from that area of the world with American raves to greet it.

SELMA : Impressive cast, crucial subject matter, and most importantly, with Ava DuVernay, a black woman finally weighs in as co-writer and director. I’m so overtired with American history being told from the white male perspective, even when it’s well-meaning. We’ve seen that onscreen version of the story of race in America over and over. The time for diversity is now, if not yesterday.

BEYOND THE LIGHTS : Same reasoning. Also I may be a manly macho man, but sure, I like a good romantic movie if it’s actually any good.

THE GUEST : Heard great things.

LATE PHASES : Heard even greater things. Plus it’s a werewolf movie so I’m contractually required to give it a look.

INDIGENOUS : Somebody made a horror movie about a chupacabra. Somebody (this guy) needs to see it.

BULLET : Danny Trejo is… BULLET!


FALCON RISING : Having seen ANDROID COP already, it’s time I see the second Michael Jai White action film of 2014.

THE MONKEY KING : Chow Yun-Fat is in this movie too, but it’s Donnie Yen who plays the title character.

A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES : Lawrence Block, Liam Neeson, Scott Frank. Yeah. This movie was not in theaters long enough for me to get to it.

THE EQUALIZER : Don’t have high hopes and it’s why I didn’t rush, but still, it’s Denzel busting heads and I won’t ultimately be able to resist.

LEFT BEHIND : They left Nicolas Cage behind. Big mistake.

WOLFCOP : Part man. Part wolf. All cop.



BIRDMAN : Love Michael Keaton, he’s my Batman of choice, but Alejandro González Iñárritu is just about the last director whose idea of a comedy I was hoping to see.

BOYHOOD : Look, I’m not excited about any three-hour movie. I’m the guy who somehow hated a three-hour movie about Batman, and that had Batman in it.

FOXCATCHER : Just not sure I can handle that Steve Carell make-up job for an entire movie. He looks so damn much like Jeffrey Tambor from that episode of TALES FROM THE CRYPT.

Tales From the Crypt Dead Right

FURY : Normally a fan of what David Ayer does, but SABOTAGE harshed my enthusiasm.

JERSEY BOYS : The aforementioned nostalgia musical.

KILL THE MESSENGER :  Incredible assortment of actors, and Sean Bobbitt is the kind of cinematographer who makes any movie worth seeing, but I don’t know.

INTERSTELLAR : From most of the same people who brought you the aforementioned three-hour movie about Batman.

ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE : Normally I’d be into the idea of Jim Jarmusch making a horror movie, but I’ve heard such insanely mixed things that I don’t know if I should risk it.

ROSEWATER : Jon Stewart is great. I almost always agree. That’s why I don’t actually watch The Daily Show all that much. Remember what I said about not needing my own viewpoint to be validated? And this is all the same politics, without the jokes. Important story, yes, glad this movie is out there, but still, seeing it feels like an obligation.

ST. VINCENT : Nobody loves Bill Murray more than I do. Nobody. That said, this looks a lot like a place we’ve been to before, i.e. RUSHMORE in 1998. And it’s getting too much with the Sad Bill Murray. Let’s see the guy having some fun again!


Turn that frown upside down!


There, that’s better.

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