In an exciting year that gave us robots landing on tiny comets, a World Cup that Britain lost interest in a few days in and the incredible news that dolphins and whales speak each other’s language, we take a look at this year’s very best cinematic diversions. But before we get stuck into the top ten, there are a few titles that very nearly made the list that are deserving of a quick mention.

Is it really this year that Twelve Years a Slave and The Dallas Buyer’s Club came out? It seems as if those two films had so much attention given to them upon their release and subsequent Oscar triumphs that there’s very little else to be said about either title. If you haven’t seen these two gems by now (what on earth have you been doing?), you should do yourself a favour and set aside some time for both.

In 2011 Gareth Evans took the martial art movie to new levels with his blisteringly paced movie The Raid. Three years later and he’s done it again! The Raid 2 elevates the genre further with more and more incredible set-piece action moments and an operatic drama that makes this the Godfather 2 of chop-socky action flicks!

In David Fincher’s Gone Girl we see a wonderful example of how to adapt a book to film. With original writer Gillian Flynn taking on the screenplay writing duties, we see a film with almost as many layers and complexities of the original material. Fincher’s clinical filmmaking techniques make this taught thriller both a treat for the eyes and the brain as we’re never entirely sure whose side to be on… even after it ends.

Interstellar took to the screens in November and, with its stunning visuals and epic feel, left critics mostly impressed. It’s certainly ambitious and there’s no doubt that it’s cinematic in every sense of the word but when transported from the Imax size screens to our living rooms, the plot and the central performances are the things that will have to count. In that respect, this may suffer slightly but it is still worthy of your time even if the running time is a little indulgent.

Finally, a nod to The Imitation Game. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Alan Turing – the man responsible for breaking the Nazi’s Enigma machine during World War Two. In a nuanced performance, Cumberbatch’s Turing is a complicated, often dislikeable man who, despite being a mathematical genius, has many faults in his personality that keep people at arm’s length. The supporting cast are all excellent and although the film may be a little old-fashioned in the way it’s played out, this is an engrossing tale that keeps you engaged from beginning to end.

And now, without further ado, the top ten for 2014:

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