The new year is upon us, and so is another barrage of movies – some good, some bad. And in this economy, no one wants to waste money on a lemon of a movie. But that’s what Spike is here for: to do the research, perform the tests, and generally espouse subjective opinions so you don’t have to get burned at the box office.
Source: Universal Pictures
Source: Twentieth Century Fox
Yes, it’s true. After the two Aliens vs. Predators movies that the lesser of the Paul Andersons began (he only directed the first), and after the last two Aliens movies bombed, no one is all that excited that there’s a new Predator movie coming our way. But with Nimrod Antal helming it, we don’t really have any idea what we’re going to get. He’s the guy who directed, most recently, Armored, as well as Vacancy and Kontroll. At this point he’s still got something to prove, but what a great movie to prove it with. I mean, with a name like Nimrod, you know this guy’s taken a lot of s*** in his life. He might just give every bully on the playground who ever pushed him around their comeuppance with a return to awesome Predator movies. That’s what we call a win-win.
6. Toy Story 3
Don’t even act like you didn’t love the first two Toy Story movies, ‘cause I know you did. You might have been in grade or middle school at the time, but you loved them all the same. And if the trailers we’ve seen of Toy Story 3 are any indication it’s going to be just as good as, if not way better than, the first two. At this point Pixar is the animation company that can’t make a bad movie if it tries, so you don’t have to be Nostradamus to figure Toy Story 3 is going to be awesome. But this sequel, in this franchise, has so much potential that it could quite possibly be the best Pixar movie yet – and that’s saying a lot.
This one came out of left field when director Matthew Vaughn, sitting alongside the creator of the comic book, Mark Millar, screened footage of it for the first time at Comic-Con 2009. I don’t think most of those comic book loving dorks had even ever heard of Kick-Ass before they saw the footage, but everyone took note after. This movie could not only be one of the best comic book movies to come out of 2010 (and it definitely has competition), it could also be one of the best comedies. That’s what we like to call synchronicity. (It’s also an album by the Police. Look into it.) Few films can rock two genres at once, but it looks like this one definitely will. It could, like Spider-Man before it, change comic book movies as we know them right now.
Writer/director Christopher Nolan is going around saying this could be the most important blah blah blah, which is expected since he needs to market his work. But, all kidding aside, this could be the most important film to come from the mind of Nolan since, well, The Dark Knight. Few people have changed the face of the comic book movie as much as Tim Burton, Sam Raimi, and Nolan have, so when he makes a film that looks strange and different, you’d best get yourself a ticket. Sure, this psychological, mind-boggling terrain has been tread before, but when Nolan takes on a genre you never know what twists he’s going to apply to it. My prediction: this either does very well, or simply makes us wish he’d stop procrastinating and write the third Batman movie.
3. Robin Hood
After most people watch the trailer to Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood their first reaction is often, “That looked like Gladiator II.” To which my response is: So? Gladiator was awesome! And I want more awesome movies! Which means, if Robin Hood is half as awesome as Gladiator was, then I’ve got it made in the shade. Quite frankly, there’s no reason there shouldn’t have been a Gladiator II. If Scott hadn’t killed him off in the last scene we’d probably be seeing part III or IV right about now. So, suffice it to say, Ridley Scott directing a historical film starring Russell Crowe is very, very good news. This might not be Braveheart, but that’s okay – Gladiator will do.
2. The A-Team/The Expendables
Why, you might be asking right about now, has he put two movies in the number two slot? Because, I respond, if there is a marked difference between The A-Team and The Expendables – aside from the fact that the original of the first starred Mr. T – I’ve not been able to discern it. These movies are more or less interchangeable, even with Sylvester Stallone thrown into the mix (or perhaps, especially with Sly thrown into the mix). Okay, so the plots are a little different, and the actors starring in each are a little different, but, by and large, the similarities outweigh the differences. Both involve mercenaries, lots of explosions and violence, and improbably ridiculous stunts involving guns, fists, knives and fire. And both will likely be really, really awesome to watch. In conclusion, Mr. T is great and Sylvester Stallone is immortal.
1. Iron Man 2
There really isn’t a lot to say about this. The first Iron Man was great and, if the trailers are any indication of what’s to come in the sequel, Iron Man 2 will be much, much better. This time we have some cool villains (not that there was anything wrong with Jeff Bridges, but the end battle was a little too RoboCop 3), one of whom is played by the frightening Mickey Rourke, we’ve got War Machine, and we’ve got a bevy of very hot chicas. It felt like Tony Stark really didn’t have any worthy adversaries in the first Iron Man, but in the sequel he’s going to have more baddies to fend off than even he and War Machine will be able to handle. Also, this movie just looks like it’s going to be extremely funny and actually have special effects worth coughing up $10 for. If there’s one movie you don’t want to miss this year, Iron Man 2 is it.