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Top 10 British Films Of 2014

15. Black Sea


2014 was the year Jude Law decided he wanted to be Scottish, in order to play sub captain Robinson in undersea thriller Black Sea. It was a development which proved all too much for the Scots themselves who, palsied with shame at any association with the Home Counties pranny, voted to remain under the comfy loafer of Westminster tyranny.

Having said that, when Black Sea surfaced in cinemas, it turned out that by dropping the snotty public schoolboy whine, the irritation factor of Law is actually reduced by 67%. Just as well, because for all the lofty expectations fostered by the combination of director Kevin Macdonald and writer Dennis Kelly (TV’s Utopia), the film depends on Law and Law alone to stop it from stinking like five-day-old fish.

14. The Riot Club


Money! Privilege! Self-entitlement! No, not the British film industry; rather the rich boys of The Riot Club, adapted from Laura Wade’s hit play Posh.

Inspired by the infamous antics of Oxford dining society the Bullingdon Club, the members of the Riot Club like getting soused and smashing up restaurants – coincidentally also a choice hobby of Jesus Christ. Yes, really.

13. The Inbetweeners 2


For years now, the grand fromages at the Gallic box office have been broad comedies that travel about as well as a tossed anvil (Les Visiteurs and Bienvenue Chez les Ch’tis, to name but two).

Well, thanks to four men pretending to be 10 years younger than they actually are, the UK is now able to flaunt its own box office-swallowing comedy series that the rest of the world can only scratch its head at.

Getting the gang back together after 2011’s monstrously successful first outing, The Inbetweeners 2 out-grossed just about everything else glimpsed in British cinemas this year (and not just scatologically speaking).

12. Under the Skin

Like the Brazilian team’s World Cup campaign, Under the Skin begins brightly, steadily gathering momentum, inspiring you to really believe that yes, this is going to be something truly special… only for it all to unravel horribly in less time than it takes to say “Aye, wee lassie, aincha that Scarlett Johansson bird from tha films, like?”

Y’see, Under the Skin is a very much a game of two halves, with the unforgettable imagery of the ‘meat factory’ where Johansson’s siren lures her victims giving way to interminable scene after interminable scene that leave you yelling “Cut!” in your head five minutes before director Jonathan Glazer deigns to put you out of your misery. What a cut.

11. The Theory of Everything


After testing the character out on The Simpsons, 2014 was the year Professor Stephen Hawking, international doctor of outer space, was at last given his shot at big screen stardom.

Eddie Redmayne plays Hawking and he already looks a lock for a Best Actor nomination, proving that good genes, the best education money can buy and a delightfully tousled head of hair really need not stand as impediments to big screen success. Heart-warming, no?

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13 Comments »

  • Sheridan Passell said
    Sheridan Passell

    You can’t call one of the premium actors of his generation, Brendan Gleeson, an “auburn yeti”. Outrageous.

    Is there some contract somewhere that says Chris O’Dowd has to be in every British film this year?

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  • G said

    Under the Skin was awful. Trying to hard to be a David Lynch film. Though Scarlet’s English ascent was surprisingly believable.

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    • Sheridan Passell said
      Sheridan Passell

      I gotta say I loved Under the Skin. It wasn’t surreal and hard to interpret like a Lynch film it was more mainstream Kubrickian and I thought it was the best British film of 2014 so far (that I’ve seen). Sure some of the shots in the second half run a few seconds too long and it lacked the energy of the first half but the composition and visual storytelling were top drawer.

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      • G said

        I thought it was surreal just for the sake of being surreal. It did have a beauty to it, but it was all a bit pointless to me.

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  • gd smith said

    I liked under the skin. but I wish people would stop flinging Lynch a Kubrick around as comparisons.
    Lynch is a one off. Kubrick tended to stay fairly close to the source material he was working with, but made it is own through tone which usually involve a lot of humour.

    Under the Skin is much closer to social realism, meeting the French new Wave of Godard for a gnomic remake Xtro

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    • Sheridan Passell said
      Sheridan Passell

      Stephen King was very upset at what a departure The Shining was from the source material. Jonathan Glazer’s camera style is like Kubrick, not like Godard as far as I can see. It has the same cold detachment too. While the opening sequence with the eye forming could have been a deleted scene from 2001.

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  • JemimaR said

    I think the best british films of 2014 are Cuban Fury and soon The Inbetweeners 2 not seen many others yet …
    🙂

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  • jwal said

    number 2 is not a brit movie, its Irish. Irish cast, irish location, nothing british about it

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    • Sheridan Passell said
      Sheridan Passell

      It’s a co-production and describes itself as such, paid for by the UK National Lottery, nominated for Best British Film at the BAFTAs.

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  • Melody said

    Under the Skin sucked SO badly, SO HARD! What the feck is it doing on this feckin list?! What are ye thinkin?!

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  • Melody said

    I wouldnt watch Paddington, so disappointed I was with the bears appearance. He actually has a thin face! What bear has a THIN FACE?! Brendan Gleeson can do no wrong so far as I am concerned. He is amazing in all that he does!

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