Post-Summer Movie Ranking!
With Paranorman more than likely being the last summer movie I’ll see, and with me heading off to college in a matter of days (yikes!), I found it fitting to rank the fourteen movies I’ve reviewed so far, worst to best, in the same manner I ranked my summer movie hype way back in the day. This will be my last movie-related post for a while – I’m going from living with my parents in DesolatetownsVille, population 46, to living on my own in the sixth biggest city in the country. Trying to take things one step at a time. That could mean I won’t see a new movie in a while; so be it. I’ll publish one more post with details about this blog’s future before I go. But for now, I think it’s safe to say there will at least be a short hiatus while I get comfortable and find my footing in Philadelphia. Think of it as a TV show. This was season 1.
Sooo, yep, here we go.
The ranking order most likely does not parallel with the number of stars I awarded the movies. Some are more fresh in my mind than others, which can help or hurt them. Whatever. I am a man of contradiction. I contradict myself all the time. When I say something, I mean it.
Just as a refresher, the movies I’ve reviewed are (in the order I’ve reviewed them) :
- Cabin in the Woods
- The Hunger Games
- Marvel’s The Avengers
- Dark Shadows
- Snow White and the Huntsman
- Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
- The Amazing Spider-Man
- The Dark Knight Rises
- The Watch
- Total Recall
Click the titles for the full review!
Sadly I spent around one twelfth of my birthday in the theater watching this. I didn’t hate it (passionately) back when it was new to me, but in retrospect, I want those two hours back. Probably the only thing I remember from this movie without distaste is the “Lion King stampede”, as my friend called it, and even that wasn’t too great. In retrospect it kind of freaks me out. At least I didn’t pay for my ticket for this one. #BirthdayBoy (Thanks, Janel and Abby. Thumbs up. Cake.)
Hey, look, it’s the other vampire movie! I really wonder why I hate vampire movies so much. It can’t have anything to do with my mom’s automatic obsession with anything vampire. It can’t have anything to do with the common public’s annoying fascination with them. It sure as heck can’t be because of K-Stew’ and the Twilight Crew. So, what is it?
I don’t know. This movie is dawdlingly boring. All I remember is Chloe Grace Moretz playing the grouchy teenage daughter perfectly. Besides this movie, I’ve enjoyed everything she’s been in that I’ve seen (Kick-Ass, Hugo, 500 Days of Summer, Zombieland, she’s awesome in everything) AND she’s starring in a remake of Stephen King’s Carrie as Carrie herself next year. (I know in my Dark Shadows review I encouraged you all to follow her on Twitter, but update on that – she’s boring there. All she does is tweet Instagram photos of inspirational quotes and empty fields and ~gorgeous nature~ and stuff. We have non-celebrity teenage girls for that.)
Whoever wrote this, I want to shake the man’s hand for actually being able to sell a screenplay this weak. Oh, it’s Seth Rogen. So that’s why it sold. It wouldn’t have if anyone with a smaller reputation had written it. Sure, it came with a handful of laughs here and there. Almost all comedies do. They’re supposed to. Actually, they’re supposed to come with more. Still, no vampires.
I didn’t see the New Bourne Never-Ending Legacy: The Jumping of the Shark, Book 1, The Beginning of Part 1; Heading Out yet (nor will I ever) but I’m willing to bet Total Recall fills the role of generic action movie of the summer. It had its good moments – the CGI was undeniably excellent, the action scenes were never dull. But I’ve always treasured story as the most important of a film’s ingredients, and here it fell flat on its face into a puddle of mud.
“I can’t wait to read your review, so I can know what happened,” my dad remarked after the movie was finished.
Hate to disappoint you, dad, but I used Wikipedia. The worst part is, they were confused too. (Whoever wrote the summary gave up halfway through, publishing “Someone else write the rest” after he got to type “alien boobs”.)
Let me start this by saying I considered putting this film at number one because it ultimately caused the K-Stew’/R-Patz break-up, which may in fact put a dent in Breaking Dawn Part 7’s ticket sales. I’ve had a subtle, churning dread that the final film in the Twilight “saga” (the word saga gives an epic, good-story connotation to it) will surpass the final Harry Potter film’s sales. That’s what every cool person spends their time thinking about, correct?
No I’m lying. I honestly don’t hate K-Stew’. If we went to school together she’d be my homegirl, albeit a little dead-eyed. I defended her acting in my full review. This movie is higher than four others on the list because I enjoyed it to some degree. I enjoyed the dark re-imagination of the Snow White tale. Some parts were awesome to watch. But it’s lower than 9 other movies because I had huge expectations for it (I foolishly had it ranked at number one on my hype list. I was so young.), and it did not come close to reaching them. It was embarrassingly unoriginal, and the only reason I even remember it was unoriginal in the first place is because that was my angle for the review. If I hadn’t written the review, even its unoriginality would have failed to leave an impression.
There’s a large jump between this movie and number 9.
Beep. I loved this movie when I first saw it, but that was months ago (I wrote the review long before this blog even existed) and it’s faded in my mind a little. It was a seamless fusion of the horror and comedy genres, and it was hilariously condescending to other horror movies. It’s kind of like the movie variant of a bully. This is a bullying free zone!
Ted placing this high is pretty surprising considering I more or less decided I hated it before I saw it. Kudos to Kunis! This movie seems to be aimed at college guys, so I guess technically I’m in the targeted audience. I dunno. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t bring me more laughs than most other movies I’ve seen recently. I just can’t picture myself looking back on this year in movies and remembering Ted as a highlight.
Which brings us to the top half. Ranking these was much harder than I expected it to be. Most shifted around a few places more than once. But I legitimately enjoyed all seven.
Brave was a beautifully animated film, but provided nothing too unexpected, like, say, the other animated movie ranked higher on this list. Pixar seems keenly aware they need to bring something new to the table in order to keep up their movies at top quality – why else would they have advertised Brave like it was going to be a dark, more mature tale?
That being said, the movie did bring us probably my favorite character of all the films on this list, Merida. She’s just so spunky! So easy to enjoy. I wonder what it’d be like to know her in real life. She’d probably be “that” annoying girl who sneaks out of school in the middle of class to shoot arrows and climb waterfalls and hog the bathroom pass. We all know a girl like “that”. The rest of the movie was highly entertaining in parts and sagged a little in others. It’s worth a watch.
I probably owe it to this movie for awakening my appreciation of Superhero films. Before this, the only superhero I paid attention to was Spider-Man. Iron Man? Not interested. (Even though it’s literally on my TV as I post this.) Thor? Not that good. Hawkeye? Who the -? But four movie franchises combined together in what was probably the most hyped cinematic event of the year (even more than Hunger Games/Dark Knight Rises/Hobbit)? Yes please. Fact about me: I don’t give in to peer pressure easily, but when there’s hype around a movie, count me in. (Except for another certain superhero movie that came out years ago.)
And I’m glad I succumbed to the hype. I had a great time watching it. It made great discussions for the next couple of weeks. And now I consider myself invested in the superhero genre. Why else would there be not one, but two more superhero movies ranked in the top five of this list? This time a few months ago, Man of Steel (Superman reboot) would not be my most anticipated movie of 2013, but now it is.
(PS, this has nothing to do with anything, but can someone please translate or try to make sense out of this pseudo sentence: “The amazing avengers Thor boxt filter the Loki.” Big thanks. I’ll explain later, maybe.)
Prometheus started out strong on my hype list and finishes strong here. I still can’t get over how good Michael Fassbender was as the robot human whose name I forget. Bob? Whatever. I mean, whoever Bob was, he was art. Someone nominate him for something! It’s not your typical alien horror movie. There was something… more to this one. Months later I’m still scratching my head over certain parts whereas I’ve forgotten other movies entirely. Probably the reason it’s ranked so high on this list is because it succeeded to do what so many other movies this summer haven’t: Leave an impression.
Definitely the biggest surprise of the summer. I ranked the other 13 movies before I saw this one, so when I originally added it to the list, I had it grappling with Brave over sixth place. At first I gave the edge to Brave, but in the end I decided to give Paranorman the advantage; it far exceeded expectations, while Brave failed to match them. Then, the more I thought about it, the more I wanted it to push past Avengers. So it did. Then came the Paranorman vs. Prometheus, battle of the long, single-worded, 10-lettered P titles. Ultimately I decided that if I could re-watch either or, I’d pick Paranorman, just to relive the stunning climax and claymation. So, there we go.
Yeah, I ranked Spider-Man below Batman. Take a picture it’ll last longer.
My hype for this movie was off the charts (ranked number 2 originally, and when K-Stew’ did her thing with Snow White it quickly became my only hope). There was a point close to the beginning where I feared I wouldn’t like it at all. But Andrew Garfield makes such an awesome Spidey. And it has Emma Stone, who, I’ve recently decided, is awesome at everything. Many people heard they were remaking the Spider-Man franchise so soon and were like “OH MY GOSH Hollywood is soooo running out of ideas this is pathetic we just had Spidey hurrduhduhdurrduhduhblubblubbluhh!!!1” Those people probably wore those shutter shades to the theater, and never actually gave the movie a chance. Shoulda worn 3D glasses instead – the 3D was incredible.
“Bluuhhduhduh the Lizard was soooo generic hurr!!”
Get over it and go play with your Bane, he probably needs someone to feed him through that highly ineffective mask.
… I’m still a Spidey at heart. ❤
Anyway, that brings us to our top two: The Hunger Games, and The Dark Knight Rises. Both rock. Drumroll please….
I’m eating my words.
Because I’m a hipster, I read all three Hunger Games books before they were popular. They’re awesome. If you haven’t read the first one yet – 4am, alone in your bedroom, all lights expect the reading lamp off. Do ittttt.
The Hunger Games movie wasn’t quite as lush or disturbing as the book series, but it was nonetheless a triumph. I’ve seen the movie three times now, and I still get chills during the “fashion runway dude we’re on fire” scene. My TV stopped being a bully and let me watch it yesterday. How great is Elizabeth Banks as Effie? How great is everyone as everything?
Sentimental reasons. It was the first review I’ve written. (I just happened to publish Cabin before it.) Probably my favorite and best. It’s the reason this post exists in the first place! I’m glad it happened.
Which means, of course…
This is painful but I’m fair. It’s the best film out of the 14. My only gripe with it is a unique one: Going into the theater, I was under the assumption that we as an audience were supposed to know the truth behind Gordon-Levitt’s character. (Almost posted a major spoiler, oops. BTW semi-spoiler alert.) I watched the trailer, saw Joseph sitting there, talking to an orphan, and I was like, “Oh cool, ______ is in this one!!” even though there was apparently zero evidence. Did anyone else make the same stupidly smart mistake? Leave a comment!
Seriously, though, it was fantastic. For me, everything worked. The new characters were all outstanding, especially Anne Hathway as a cat, and this was the first time I looked at Christian Bale without quietly whispering “Creeeeeeeeeeeep” to myself.
If there are any Best Pic noms out of this bunch, Dark Knight Rises is the one.
Ya happy, Bane? I ate my words. At least I can eat.
OH, but I have to say. The Dark Knight, though? The movie The Dark Knight Rises supposedly “just did not live up to”? The “best superhero movie ever created”?
Eh, it’s whatever. Didn’t really like it that much. Too many explosions. Too many coin flips. Joker was cool.
The complete list, for all you tl;dr people:
14. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
13. Dark Shadows
12. The Watch
11. Total Recall
10. Snow White and the Huntsman
9. Cabin in the Woods
6. Marvel’s the Avengers
3. The Amazing Spider-Man
2. The Hunger Games
1. The Dark Knight Rises
Hope you enjoyed this as much as I enjoyed writing it! Dissing celebrities and movies is fun! Ranking things is fun! Check back tomorrow or Wednesday night for one more post before I shove off!