The Top 5 Movies of 2012

January 13, 2013 at 9:58 am

The Top 5 Movies of 2012

MY FAVORITE MOVIES OF 2012

2012 is over and I’ve finally caught up enough to make my ‘best of’ picks.  There are some movies I regret missing but overall, I saw more than 30 movies released in 2012.

Before I mention my top 5, I wanted to acknowledge some awesome movies that just missed the cut.

ARGO | Review

LIFE OF PI | Review

DJANGO UNCHAINED | Review

SINISTER | Review

TED | Review

Click here for a complete list of all my 2012 reviews.

THE TOP 5 MOVIES OF 2012

5. SKYFALL

Click here for my review.

Skyfall narrowly edged out Django Unchained purely because of the nostalgia it brought back to the Bond franchise.  Casino Royale is one of my favorite movies period but Skyfall felt like a better reboot.  Classic James Bond movie.

4. LOOPER

Click here for my review.

I was blown away by Looper’s style and originality.

3. ZERO DARK THIRTY

Click here for my review.

A smart and fascinating look behind the scenes of one of the most important events in recent memory.

2. THE DARK KNIGHT RISES

Click here for my review.

The end of an era.  Though the film didn’t rise above The Dark Knight, it still wrapped up a legendary film series I’ll cherish forever.

1. THE AVENGERS

Click here for my review.

I saw The Avengers 3 times in 7 days.  Two of those were matinee viewings before work…  By myself.  I absolutely adored The Avengers.  It was, by far, the most fun I had in theaters in 2012.

Bring on 2013!

Click here for the review archives.

Click here for The Bottom 3: The Worst Movies of 2012

The Top 5 Movies of 2012 | The Athletic Nerd

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

November 29, 2012 at 7:43 am

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

Growing up, I was always interested in showing my family the latest technology. Imagine playing with an iPad having been around when television was just getting warmed up.  I’m starting to get that feeling myself.  I still remember our first modem and what it meant.  Back then, I used to log in to a primitive forum that only let you online for an hour a day.  Even then, I was interested in movies.  That was the first forum I visited and the majority of my hour was spent discussing movies.

Technology kept getting better.  The world got faster modems, better websites, more engaging content and up to the minute second information.  Just before I graduated high school, I remember scouring the web for any piece of information I could find on The Matrix sequels.  I had to know details immediately.  This desperate search led me to many of the websites I still visit every day.  Since that time, technology evolved and movie news has never been easier to consume.

Now I look back on how I used to get my movie news and I’m blown away by how far we’ve come.  Now there are thousands of websites and blogs out there.  The internet has a pulse and I’m no longer solely a reader,  I’m a contributor. It’s so much fun.

Looking back, I decided to focus on 5 announcements that blew my mind and kick started my addiction to movie news.

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SPIDER-MAN ON THE BIG SCREEN

My favorite Superhero.  When I found out that Sam Raimi was creating a live action Spider-Man movie I was speechless.  CG technology was exploding and the very thought of live action web slinging was too good to be true.

I still get goosebumps watching that trailer.  It’s Spider-Man!  I still can’t believe it’s been over 10 years since Peter Parker changed the Superhero movie forever.  I also can’t believe the series has already been rebooted but I enjoyed The Amazing Spider-Man and I’m looking forward to following the ‘electrifying‘ sequel.

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

THE MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE

“Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Nick Fury, Black Widow & Hawk Eye are on stage together!”

Marvel had done it.  4 movie franchises would come together in the biggest Superhero movie of all time:  The Avengers. Years later, I’m still stunned they not only pulled it off but exceeded expectations.  The ‘official’ hype began with a press conference at Comic Con in 2010…

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

XTRA | Top 10 Moments: The Avengers

I loved The Avengers but beyond that, I loved following the film’s development.  I loved the Easter eggs they built into the movies that preceded it.  What threat could possibly exist that would challenge these larger than life heroes?  I was actually sad after I saw The Avengers.  I had so much fun reading about the film.  Then I remembered PHASE TWO!  Another round of phenomenal Marvel movies is on the way and it all leads to The Avengers 2 in 2015.

Until then, we must wonder what Thanos will do to make these heroes assemble again.

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PETER JACKSON & THE HOBBIT

The Lord of the Rings.  Three movies that I watch at least twice a year.  That includes the hours of amazing special features included in the extended editions.  LOTR is a remarkable achievement and an adaptation that captured the imaginations of millions around the world.  I absolutely adored The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

The next logical step was the Hobbit but the film was plagued with legal issues causing endless delays.  Not to mention the concern fans had knowing Peter Jackson planned on handing over the keys to Middle Earth to another filmmaker.  Those concerns were alleviated when they announced that Guillermo Del Toro was on board.  Unfortunately, the production ran into more delays and Del Toro departed.  Heart break once again…

Until Peter Jackson himself stepped up and vowed to return to Middle Earth.  That was an unbelievable announcement.  Then they announced three movies instead of two!  Another trilogy directed by Peter Jackson featuring the same dedicated team of filmmakers.  A dream come true.

THE MATRIX GETS TWO SEQUELS

“They are making a sequel to The Matrix!? …  Hold on…  There is going to be two AND they are filming them back to back?”

The Matrix Reloaded.  Some people love it, others think the original should have been left alone.  Even those who hated the sequels were still curious at some point. Where will the Wachowski’s take Neo next?  I was obsessed.  I read every article I could.  I was searching for Matrix news before I checked my own email on a daily basis for months.  How could they possibly continue such a complex story? (Insert Architect joke here)

XTRA | Top 10 Matrix Moments

When The Matrix Reloaded came to an abrupt end, I was even more addicted to news and rumors.  Thousands posted theories on what could happen next and I read all of them.  Speculation was as endless and I was addicted.  The Matrix Revolutions delivered a fitting end even though it wasn’t as spectacular as I hoped.  The Matrix will always be my favorite but I loved Reloaded because it inspired the movie nerd in me.

The day I found out they were making two sequels changed everything…

XTRA | What The Matrix Screenplay Taught Me

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

DISNEY ANNOUNCES STAR WARS EPISODE VII

I thought we had seen the last of the galaxy far far away…  I didn’t hate Episodes 1,2 & 3 but they definitely didn’t rise to the level of the original trilogy.  I never imagined that one day, we would FINALLY get true sequels to Star Wars.  Then Disney announced the acquisition of LucasFilm.  One single press release literally blew up the internet.  The hype began instantly and speculation will dominate movie websites until the day Star Wars Episode VII is released in 2015.  This doesn’t even include the sequels and spin offs the mouse house is planning.

I don’t normally cover news on my blog but I couldn’t resist.  It’s Star Wars Episode VII!

What will it be about?  Will Luke Skywalker and the rest of the original cast return?  Who will direct it?  When will we find out more!?

XTRA | Star Wars Episode VII Story Round Up

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There’s also an interesting battle brewing in the Summer of 2015.  Which film will gross more?  Star Wars 7 or The Avengers 2?    The culmination of Marvel Phase 2 and a sequel movie fans have been waiting decades to see. (Disney wins the Summer 2015 box office battle by the way.  I’m prepared to make that call now since they own both franchises.)

5 Super Massive Gigantic Game Changing Movie News Announcements

ARE YOU ADDICTED TO MOVIE HYPE?

I grew up searching for my favorite movies and devouring the articles I found.  Every new trailer, tv spot, poster, synopsis, casting announcement, set pic and interview makes me smile.  I’m addicted to movie hype.  Today, it’s easier than ever to find information on the movies you can’t wait to see.  Technology has indeed come a long way since I was young.

However, one thought makes me smile more than all of the massive announcements combined: Back then I used to search for articles.  Today, I write my own.  It’s funny how people evolve just like the technology we use to tell our stories.

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Top 10 Moments: Marvel’s The Avengers

November 9, 2012 at 11:31 am

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

Marvel fans waited years for The Avengers to arrive.  Thankfully, when it did, it exploded world wide and became one of the most successful movies in history.  Joss Whedon brought the Marvel Universe together brilliantly in a movie that entertained millions.  The Avengers was a FUN movie to experience.

Movies events like The Avengers don’t come along very often and it’ll be interesting to see where The Marvel Universe takes us next.  If Iron Man 3 is any indication, we’re heading into darker territory which is fantastic.  I can’t wait to see what Thanos will unleash upon Marvel’s heroes in a few years.  Bring on Phase Two.

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Here are the top 10 moments from Marvel’s The Avengers:

10. GALAGA

“That man is playing Galaga.”

I can’t imagine the amount of trouble someone would be in if they played Galaga in the Pentagon during an Alien invasion.  S.H.E.I.L.D is a pretty lenient organization.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

9. THE VINTAGE SET

Apparently you’re able to buy the vintage set?  Not sure how collectable and/or cool they would be featuring Chris Evans but an old school comic book Steve Rogers set would be cool.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

8. 10 BUCKS SAYS YOU’RE WRONG

I think this moment was meant for audiences.  Many people thought they wouldn’t pull off a movie of this magnitude.  By the time The Avengers ended, we were all happy we spent the 10 bucks.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

7. THOR HAMMERS HULK

So Thor nails Hulk with his hammer…  I’m a big fan of the frustration Hulk feels when he can’t pick up Mjolnir.  Puny hammer.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

6. SHAWARMA

These poor shop owners are busy sweeping up debris when 6 people come in.

“You guys are open right?”

10 bucks says Thor didn’t have any Earth cash and owes Tony lunch.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

5. THANOS

It’s amazing how a tiny glimpse of Thanos sets the stage for Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy & The Avengers 2.  We don’t know what it means yet but Marvel has hit their stride.  Phase Two is going to be pretty special.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

4. HULK SUCKER PUNCHES THOR

I saw The Avengers 3 times in theaters and this moment was a crowd favorite every single time.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

3. THE LONG SHOT

My favorite shot of the movie.  It’s long and it’s full of incredible and continuous action.  Two moments really stand out during the shot:

  1. Captain America reflects Iron Man’s blaster off his shield.
  2. Hulk & Thor team up to hammer an electrified sky snake scale into it’s face.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

2. THE PARTY

An incredible moment.  Who would have thought Marvel could bring these franchises together?  Seeing all the heroes together ready to take on an army gave me chills and still does.  What an epic cinematic moment.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

1. PUNY GOD

The Party could (and probably should) be the number one moment but there are a few reasons why I picked this particular moment.  First, it’s hilarious.  Second, how long have we waited to see Hulk really go to town and smash things.  The Incredible Hulk did an admirable job but this is clearly THE Hulk we’ve all been waiting to see.  He picks up a God and proceeds to slam the crap out of him right in the middle of a monologue.

I hope we get another standalone Hulk movie someday.  It’s been hinted that Phase Three might feature a Hulk movie.  For now we have moments like these to watch as we await The Avengers 2.

Top 10 Moments: Marvel's The Avengers | Best Avengers Moments

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Should The Avengers Get An Oscar Nomination? Could The Dark Knight Rises?

May 23, 2012 at 8:43 am

Should The Avengers Get An Oscar Nomination?

RISE OF THE OSCAR WORTHY SUMMER MOVIES

Movies vs Films…  I like to think my taste in movies falls somewhere in between.  So while I LOVE the summer movie season, I’m also a big fan of the dramas that regularly populate the awards season each year.

I’ve seen The Avengers three times.  I love that movie.  Critics love that movie.  Audiences around the world love that movie.  But… Is Marvel’s The Avengers an Oscar contender?

The most fun I’ve ever had watching the Oscars was the year Return of the King dominated.  I felt like I was cheering for the Blue Jays. (My favorite sports team.)  Eleven times they announced that fantasy ruled the cinematic world that year.  I was filled with a sense of pride.  It’s fun to cheer on the movies you love.

On the other hand, sometimes your favorites aren’t even nominated.  The Dark Knight did NOT receive a best picture nod which was incredibly frustrating for me.  Realistically, I didn’t expect it to win but I felt that Christopher Nolan’s masterpiece deserved at least a nomination.  Thankfully, the Academy did recognize Heath Ledger’s legendary performance as The Joker.

Should The Avengers Get An Oscar Nomination?

With Gladiator being a notable exception, there haven’t been many summer action movies in contention come awards season.  I suppose Avatar kind of fits the bill but it was released in December.  Still, the landscape has changed a lot since Peter Jackson received the night’s final and most prestigious award.

With Christopher Nolan’s Batman franchise leading the way, superhero movies have evolved immensely.  It’s a series of films that made all of us believe comic book movies can be Oscar contenders.  Perhaps it’s time the Academy took notice of the blockbuster entertainment being served in the Summer months.

Want to spice up the Oscar broadcast?  Stick a summer horse in the race if it deserves it.  What’s the worst that could happen?

Having said that, before that plan can work, the movies must deliver.  For every Dark Knight there is a Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen after all.

Should The Avengers Get An Oscar Nomination?

DOES THE AVENGERS DESERVE OSCAR TALK?

First and foremost, The Avengers delivered on impossibly huge expectations.  It was a FUN movie.  Marvel’s universe collided on the big screen and crushed box office records in the process.  To say that Joss Whedon’s film is an overwhelming success is an understatement.  90%+ on Rotten Tomatoes from the critics and the fans and over billion dollars grossed and counting.

The Avengers is a movie that nearly everyone seemed to love.  That’s an award worthy movie in my books.  Again I stress I don’t think it would win but a little comic book love is overdue isn’t it?

To me, the brains behind The Avengers deserve an Oscar nomination JUST for pulling it off.  Merging 4 larger than life heroes into one movie that delivers is an achievement worth recognizing.  Not only that, the seamless blend of action, character and humor was so much fun to watch…  Three times.

Of course, two summer movies sneaking in would be a bit farfetched.  But what if? What if TDKR and The Avengers are deserving?

XTRA | The Dark Knight Rises Trailer Top 5 Moments.

It’ll be interesting to see the results after The Dark Knight Rises launches this July.  Will Christopher Nolan’s Gotham enjoy the same fate as Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth?  Part of me thinks The Dark Knight Rises may prevent The Avengers from getting a nomination.  Is this a year we see not one but two comic book movies honored on Oscar night?

…  Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

For now, The Avengers will continue tearing up screens around the world.  I’m already looking forward to adding the blu ray to my collection.  I’m thankful The Avengers exists especially after such a long wait to finally see it.  It exceeded my expectations and will most definitely appear on my Top 5 movies of 2012.

But will it be in the Top 5-10 come Oscar time?  I wouldn’t be surprised if it wasn’t but wouldn’t it be cool if it was?

Should The Avengers Get An Oscar Nomination?

The Road To The Avengers: Getting To Know THOR

May 6, 2011 at 4:14 pm

The Road To The Avengers: Getting To Know THOR | Thor Review 2011 | Movie Blog

WHAT’S A MJOLNIR?

Growing up, I was never an obsessive comic book reader but I had a modest collection regardless.  I knew enough about Marvel’s superheroes but not nearly enough to claim I KNEW Thor.  There is obviously a big difference between knowing a heroes name and knowing who they are and where they come from.

So when I sat down to a 3D matinee today, I truly didn’t know what to expect beyond the what the trailers and movie sites showed me.

… Thor’s pretty cool.

The Road To The Avengers: Getting To Know THOR | Thor Review 2011 | Movie Blog

I’m a sucker for comic book movies and big summer action flicks but I was always on the fence about Thor.  If anything, I was excited to see this movie to catch all the references to next summer’s The Avengers.  A movie event that will surely (hopefully) wow us all.

At the same time, I have to admit I was curious about that tiny hammer and the land called Asgard.  I was excited to get to know Thor, his world and his enemies.

Introducing a god like character from another realm into Marvel’s ‘earth based’ world had to be tough.  Rainbow bridges, over sized helmets and Frost Giants can be difficult to portray on screen but they did a phenomenal job.

I went in hoping for more clues for the upcoming Avengers team up. I left the theater with an appreciation for Thor and I’m officially excited to see how he fits into the larger picture.  It’s pretty amazing to hear a line like “I’ll be your ally” and know exactly what he is talking about.

He’s talking about the enormous evil power that will rise and cause the world’s heroes to unite in order to defeat it!

What I loved the most about Thor was that it was nothing like Iron Man 2. The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America need to stand up on their own for this universe to work according to Marvel’s plan.  Iron Man 2 seemed like nothing more than a setup for the following movies but Thor doesn’t fall into that trap.  It’s a damn good movie that can exist on it’s own without The Avengers’ references taking over.  Marvel has learned from their past mistakes and I couldn’t be happier.

Natalie Portman isn’t really given much to do here but that’s because most of the excitement takes place in Thor’s home of Asgard.  This may turn some people off but I bought it.  I think Asgard is the film’s one cool element that’s sets Thor apart from his Avenger buddies.  It’s a new world and they did a fantastic job incorporating it into the Marvel Movie Universe.  Personally, I can’t wait to see what mischief Loki cooks up next!  (He’s awesome by the way. Stay until the credits are over.  But you already knew that right?)

Thor is a solid summer blockbuster.  I had a blast discovering who he is and where he comes from but beyond all that:

I want to know more!

Thankfully, the road to The Avengers continues this summer with Captain America up next.  Will The First Avenger continue to build on this amazing world Marvel is creating?  I can’t wait to spend a weekend watching all of these movies back to back!  Thor definitely fits in.  Let’s hope Captain America belongs as well…

In the mean time, the one thing I can’t seem to get out of my mind?

What evil could be so great that all of these powerful heroes are needed to defeat it?  It’s going to have to be one hell of an evil plot.  Holy crap I can’t wait to find out what it is!

To be continued…

The Road To The Avengers: Getting To Know THOR | Thor Review 2011 | Movie Blog

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