The Playlist ranked on their website the 21 best performances in 2014, and they chosen Jake Gyllenhaal as their #1.
1. Jake Gyllenhaal in “Nightcrawler”
Jake Gyllenhaal is so brilliant in “Nightcrawler” that it almost feels like it’s a breakthrough performance. In reality, he’s been slowly surging ever since 2011’s “Source Code,” and through gritty and psychologically pulsating turns in “End of Watch,” “Enemy,” and “Prisoners,” he’s landed what’s sure to stay one of his most memorable roles, giving the performance of his career thus far. His Louis Bloom has been compared to Travis Bickle and Patrick Bateman, and the sociopathic similarities are certainly there, but Gyllenhaal has evolved far beyond merely channeling other actors’ performances. He’s made the demented, determined and diabolical Lou Bloom completely his own creation. Losing pounds for the role in order to embody a starved vulture, Gyllenhaal connects with Dan Gilroy’s crackling dialogue as if he’s been speaking it since birth. No one else this year will transfix you to the screen, almost through sleep-deprived glazed hypnosis, while simultaneously creeping you the fuck out. Gyllenhaal manages to make the audience root for a scumbag, and with Lou Bloom, has his name etched in the hall of fame for playing twisted maniacs.