Favorite Movies - 2012

  I was inspired by my good friend Allen to compose a list of my ten favorite movies that I saw released in 2012. (Don't expect Moonrise Kingdom anywhere on this list.)

10. Prometheus
Released : June 8
Rotten Tomatoes : 72%
Expectations : Met
Saw With : Tess

Even with all the facepalm worthy moments (scientists taking their helmets off, opening the external door for the zombie guy, making friends with the snake/penis/vagina creature, etc.), Michael Fassbender was really great as the android David and he kept my attention the entire movie. The visuals were great and the caesarean section of the alien made even me squeamish, which is hard to do.

9. Dredd
Released : September 21
Rotten Tomatoes : 80%
Expectations : Exceeded
Saw With: Allen

This was a fun, dark, action movie that was very reminiscent of the 80s action movies from my youth. (i.e. Commando, Cobra) There wasn't really any plot  to follow except for good guys killing bad guys which is exactly what my brain needs sometimes. Karl Urban kept his mask on for the entire movie, kind of like Toby Maguire in Spider-Man, but the exact opposite. It's unfortunate that the darker reboot didn't attract more attention.

8. Lincoln
Released : November 9
Rotten Tomatoes : 88%
Expectations : Met
Saw With: Jen

This is my default 'good' movie and a rare occasion where I enjoy a film with Oscar buzz surrounding it. Daniel Day Lewis was fantastic, just as he was in Gangs of New York and There Will Be Blood. I will be surprised if he doesn't win several best actor awards for his performance. I was expecting more story about his life, and maybe more build-up to his assassination (spoiler alert!) but I understand what Spielberg was going for with the 13th amendment story line.

7. Rock of Ages
Released : June 15
Rotten Tomatoes : 56%
Expectations : Met
Saw With: Kaylene

This is the first Russel Brand performance I've seen where I didn't want to punch him in his annoying face. I really loved Tom Cruise as the rocker Stacee Jaxx. Most of all, I loved the music selection. Between the two musicals I saw this year, the other being Les Mis, I thought this was superior. (Yeah, I said it.) I should also take this opportunity to rant a little about Les Mis. It was a great stage production (see the 25th Anniversary version) and it was a great movie (see the Liam Neeson version, 1998) but the amalgam movie/musical just didn't click with me.

6. The Hunger Games
Released : March 23
Rotten Tomatoes : 85%
Expectations : Exceeded
Saw With: Kaylene

On the rare occasion that I read a book before the movie is released, I'm skeptical that the story will translate well to film, but Gary Ross (director) did it very well. I thought the casting was just fine, particularly Lenny Kravitz as Cinna, Stanley Tucci as Caesar, and Elizabeth Banks as Effie, even though they all had small roles. There seemed to be just enough violence to carry the story without being gory. This was also the only movie I saw this year on a true Imax screen.

5. Jack Reacher
Released : December 21
Rotten Tomatoes : 74%
Expectations : Met
Saw With: Allen

I haven't read any of the Jim Grant novels that this was based on, and I primarily saw this because Django Unchained was sold out, but Tom Cruise always delivers.  I can't quite remember what this movie was about, but I remember Tom Cruise asking people questions, being chased in cars, and punching people in the face. That's all I really ask of any movie.

4. The Campaign
Released : August 10
Rotten Tomatoes : 53%
Expectations : Exceeded
Saw With: Raven

The silliest, but most quotable movie of the bunch.

Wolf Blitzer:  Bizarre news coming out of of the 14th district congressional race in North Carolina. Now, get this: Cam Brady, four-time congressman, punched a baby!

...Is anyone asking how my hand feels after punching that iron like jaw of that baby? -Cam Brady

3. 21 Jump Street
Released : March 16
Rotten Tomatoes : 86%
Expectations : Exceeded
Saw With: Jenna

I liked Ice Cube's rants as Captain Dickson. I liked the cameos from the tv show. I liked the silly shoot-outs and car chases. I loved Channing Tatum on drugs in front of the classroom. "One particle of unobtainium has a nuclear reaction with the flux capacitor - carry the '2' - changing its atomic isotoner into a radioactive spider. F- you, Science!" This movie had me cracking up from start to finish.

2. Wreck-It Ralph
Released : November 2
Rotten Tomatoes : 90%
Expectations : Far Exceeded
Saw With: Mir

I had no idea what Wreck-It Ralph was about, and saw it because Mir had already seen Skyfall. What a treat this turned out to be! The video game world was beautifully rendered and Sarah Silverman as the racer in Sugar Land was really sweet. The use of cross-generation video game characters in the same setting in the opening scene was worth the admission price alone. Everything about Wreck-It Ralph was creative. There is also a brilliant twist ending involving a villain that I won't ruin for you here.

1. The Avengers
Released : May 4
Rotten Tomatoes : 96%
Expectations : Far Exceeded
Saw With: Kristin, Holland

"Puny God."


Kristin said...

This is what I tried to post last night from my phone - "Phew. I was afraid I wasn't going to make it on this list!"

Dericho said...

Bonus points for seeing it with you.

Allen said...

I only made it twice the hell is that mess?

Dericho said...

Allen, I should have included a list of all the movies I saw so there was more context to the list. Magic Mike was just outside the top 10, as was Django Unchained.