Year-End Wrap-Up: 2012!

It’s 2013 now, and you know what that means! You… DO know what that means, don’t you? I sure hope you do, or that would be just so embarrassing for you. Alright, fine, I’ll tell you: it means that I’m going to count down my top five favorite movies made in 2012 that I saw in 2012 (and if you’re nice I just might mention my least favorite movie of the year as well ;). So let’s get crackin’! Also, wow, look how blue and boring all of these movie posters are, that’s really cool and great.

pirates band of misfits5. The Pirates! Band of Misfits

A wacky pirate crew without names compete for the Pirate of the Year award, and end up crossing paths with other pirates, Charles Darwin, and Queen Victoria. Not to mention all manner of wacky animals and other wacky… things. It’s just really damn wacky, okay?

There were flaws with Aardman’s latest stop-motion kid’s flick, certainly. The story was way too dense and there was a lot of lowest common denominator humor in it. However, it provided a lot more laughs than a movie of this kind usually would, and it was just so goddamn beautiful.

I’ve always been an admirer of stop-motion animation, and I love Aardman’s Wallace and Gromit series. Really the only problem with this movie was that they chose a bad story to spend six years on, since that’s how long it takes to make a feature like this. Maybe in 2018 they’ll have something a little more cohesive? Let’s hope.

prometheus4. Prometheus

A group of scientists take a spaceship to another planet where they find pyramids and other signs of alien life, which may or may not have anything to do with the origins of humanity. Of course there are still some aliens around there and they want to eat people, and I think you all know how it goes from there.

This movie got a lot of shit this year for not living up to the high expectations Ridley Scott’s cultivated over the years, and it was mostly all well-deserved. Still, I think compared to the rest of the sci-fi we had in theaters this year (which were basically all superhero movies or big explosion-fests like Battleship), Prometheus still stands out as the best hard sci-fi movie. That I saw, anyway. That’s part of the problem with not watching many movies as they come out, I don’t have the entirety of the year’s work to compare. I’ve got something in the pipeline for 2013 that should help with that, though.

ace attorney3. Ace Attorney

In a semi-futuristic Japan, a junior attorney must take on his first major case: the murder of his mentor. In doing so, he unravels the threads of a twenty year-old case and must use detective work combined with ghostly assistance to get to the bottom of it.

When I heard that they made a Phoenix Wright movie, I was excited. So excited I found a Japanese copy and got some fan-made subtitles (which were not the best in the world, let me tell you) because I didn’t want to wait for the English release sometime early this year. And you know what? I’m glad I did. It’s an extremely faithful adaptation of the video game it’s based on, right down to the off-beat sense of humor and interesting blend of the supernatural which I found so interesting in the game. I think the only really disappointing part of the film to me was that there wasn’t a lot of Takashi Miike’s influence in it. Not that I had any specific ideas in mind of what that might be, but he’s always a surprising director and it’s fun to see what new things he comes up with.

amazing spider-man2. The Amazing Spider-Man

A high schooler named Peter Parker gets bitten by a genetically modified spider and gains the proportionate strength and agility of a spider, etc etc. With his newfound powers, he must save the city and his new girlfriend from the threat of a crazy scientist who accidentally turned himself into an evil lizard monster.

Yep, what a surprise that we’d get to the Marvel movies in my top five list, right? I didn’t have super high hopes for yet another superhero origin story movie, especially one we’ve gotten recently… but I think I ended up liking this movie more than the Raimi Spider-Man films. Andrew Garfield did a great job as Peter Parker, which is way more important to understanding Spider-Man than one might think. He’s awkward and smart, but also repressed and picked-on, and the superhero gig is just an outlet for those normal teenage excesses.

avengers1. The Avengers

A group of superheroes from different movies have to stop a crazy alien from blowing up Earth with a magic cube and his connection of some other evil alien guys.

The culmination of a couple years of the best possible marketing campaign you could have for something like this (namely five other movies) was guaranteed to be a success. What surprised me more than anything else was that it was also really good! Since when do those two things have anything to do with each other?

They treated the subject material with reverence and the best possible kind of fanboyism, and more than that they managed to take a movie with four main characters and balance it well enough that it was enjoyable and not confusing or complicated in the least. These goddamn Marvel movies are actually making me look forward to sequels, but that’s really the beauty of these things when handled right.

Oh, and what the hell, here’s the worst movie made in 2012 I saw all year long:

pee-wee's xxx adventurePee-Wee’s XXX Adventure

I watched so many porn parodies this year, but I was still surprised that one of them ended up being the worst thing I saw. I almost didn’t want to choose it just because porn aren’t REALLY movies, but my entire philosophy towards them on this site is to treat them as such. Also this thing was fucking disturbing.

Pee-Wee Herman goes around meeting all sorts of horrible people and terrifying circumstances that create the least sexy atmosphere possible, and then the sex scenes happen and it’s so fucking terrible. It’s so bad. I don’t even remember most of this movie because I blocked it out of my mind as soon as I wrote about it. If there’s one single thing you learn from ever reading this site, I hope that it’s that you should ever watch this movie. And I don’t mean that it’s “so bad it’s good”, I mean it is mentally scarring and a blight against the very concept of happiness.

So, another year, another couple superhero movies I liked. For 2013 I hope to keep up better on new movies, and to that end I’m going to start reviewing movie trailers! I expect I’ll treat them much like I do movies now, giving what impressions I get from them and sorta pre-rating them. A nice thing about that will be being able to compare the trailer to the actual film, not to mention just a better general awareness of movies as they come out! So, until then, happy new year and good watchin’!

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