Oscars 2014: Ranking Best Pictures From Worst To Best
8. Captain Phillips
Director Paul Greengrass is an accomplished action auteur with some strong titles under his belt most notably the second and third Bourne films but has always seemed destined for greater things. Captain Phillips is his first truly astonishing film, fusing the visceral and shaky action he has come to be known for with some deep characterisation, expertly expressed by one of the all-time greats Tom Hanks. Paul Greengrass also does an admirable job of shying away from falling into stereotypical villain traps. The Somali pirates overtaking the titular Captain Phillips ship arent presented as your average one-dimensional villains, but as real people with moral conundrums. Captain Phillips sympathises with their plight and despite being captured, he understands why theyre holding him hostage. Its commonly accepted however that the true defining moment of greatness alongside being one of 2013s most emotional scenes is Tom Hanks unbelievable expression of traumatic release after everything is all over, complete with some of the most believable crying ever seen on screen. The only reason it isnt higher on the list is due to its iffy pacing in the middle. It truly does feel that some of the film could have been nixed to keep the tension consistently at extreme heights. Also, Greengrass indulgence in shaking the camera is often just distracting, and not something that feels necessary to building atmosphere.