By Isaac Mills
I made a top ten list easily enough, but getting it down to five? And then ranking them? Rough stuff.
5. The Karate Kid (dir. Harald Zwart)
Though there are many that’ll argue with me, this was a remake that improved on the original. The casting of a younger kid made so much sense to me – it didn’t feel so weird when he got upset, he’s a little kid that got moved to China! Compare that to Daniel in the original: a 15 year old throwing a fit because he moved across the country. Pfft, I did that!
The litmus test for any Karate Kid movie is whether or not after it’s over you want to jump out of your seat and do a flipping side kick. Man, I was jumping all over the place, and I’m supposed to be an adult!
4. Daybreakers (dir. Michael and Peter Spierig)
When I saw the trailer for this movie, I thought this was going to rock, but it seemed to have flown under most people’s radar. And it did indeed rock! The world building and overall atmosphere really impressed me, as did the message of consumerism run amok. It had Willem Dafoe running around with a crossbow scaring vampires. Clearly it had everything.
3. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (dir. Edgar Wright)
The only movie I can think of that I saw twice in theatres this year. It’s kind of a hard movie to describe, but I can at least say it captures the energy of a generation (I know that sounds hokey), especially if you’re from Canada, but especially if you’re from Toronto. All of the fight scenes were exemplary, but a special shout out goes to the Sex Bob-omb versus the Tanaka Bros. It’s a battle of the bands fought through sheer force of will and giant music-created avatars. It gets me pretty pumped.
2. Tron: Legacy (dir. Joseph Kosinski)
Fine, yes – the story was a little light in Tron: Legacy. Everyone says that. But the very fact that I don’t care speaks volumes. Normally, weird anomalies would totally take me out of the picture, but instead I just love the thing. The other thing that you’ve heard everyone say is that the movies score is amazing, and that’s oh so true too. This film filled me with a sense of wonder the moment the camera flew down through the city in the real world, such that I could love both reality and the fantasy of the system. Man, this movie made me happy.
1. Kick-Ass (dir. Matthew Vaughn)
Okay, the issue I’ve heard from a lot of people about this movie (besides the violence and language) is that it’s actually two movies. My response is: why is that a problem? The first half of the film documents a severe dissatisfaction with the world as is, a world where no one sticks up for anyone else. That movie ends with Kick-Ass protecting a lone man who’s about to get beaten to death in front of an apathetic crowd. That was an awesome movie. And then we got a movie about an entire world being willed to become a super hero world, asking how far are you willing to go when you’ve finally got something to lose? And there was a jetpack! It was awesome!
(Super honourable mention to Hot Tub Time Machine, Iron Man 2, The Social Network, The Town, and Toy Story 3.)