I have to say, 2013 was a pretty good year for movie releases. Of course we had some really bad ones, but since the year is about to end, let´s talk about the year what it had to offer.
Django Unchained was a great start of 2013, showing Quentin Tarantino is back with a very well made western movie. I should also mention Zero Dark Thirty, an intensive war thriller by director Katheryn Bigelow. The story behind the hunt for Osama bin Laden was very well made, and the acting delivered strong performances. Schwarznegger made a fun comeback, in his first leading role since Terminator 3. This time he was ready to make The Last Stand, an action movie that delivered entertainement for all ages.
In february of 2013 we did have some average releases, but alot of them were not very interesting. The biggest disappointment was without a doubt, A Good Day To Die Hard. A Die Hard movie without John McClane is not ok. Bruce Willis is John McClane again, at least that was what we thought. But Bruce Willis did not act, he did this movie just to get a paycheck. I had more fun watching Bullet To The Head, Stallone in Walter Hill´s explosive action movie. Unfortunately it flopped really big at the box office, while Movie 43 still made a profit. Sometimes life is not fair.
Moving on to march we had some nice titles coming out. The ABC´s Of Death, was a different approach to the horror genre, telling a short story on every letter in the alphabet. Some were bad, but some were actually really funny to watch. Oz - The Great And Powerful, a prequel to the classic motion picture Wizard Of Oz. As an adventure movie, it had some great moments, but most of all to see Bruce Campbell as one of the guards at the Witches castle. Spring Breakers was a different party movie, with a raw image of teenagers loosing control at Spring Break. I loved the colours, the acting and the intensive storyline in Spring Breakers. Now, i know some of the critics hated this one, but i just felt Olympus Has Fallen was a dumb entertaining action movie, not to be taken serious at all. It was just the right kind of macho action for a couple of beers and some pizza, a perfect relax moment at home. But most of all, we had The Place Beyond The Pines coming to a Cinema screen. I could not forget this movie, ever since i saw it, it stuck with me all the time, and still today, at the end of this year, i still say this is the best motion picture of 2013.
In april we started with a big bang with the remake of Evil Dead. Wow, what a ride. More gore, more blood than ever, it was a feast indeed. I was hoping Robert Redford´s return to political thrillers with The Company You Keep, would be a comeback from his classics in the 70´s. But it did not deliver, it was very dull. Still, the month continued with Trance, directed by legendary british director Danny Boyle. A hijack thriller that actually worked very well, because of a changing plot when you don´t expect it to happen. Tom Cruise came back with Oblivion, not his best work, but still a well made sci fi thriller. I had really high expectations for Rob Zombies latest movie The Lords Of Salem. It was not bad, but far from the quality he brought us in his earlier work. And suddenly we got it, a knock out motion picture that we really needed. Mud, a thriller drama with Matthew McConaughey doing one of his best performances ever. It took almost 7 months to get a cinema release in Sweden, and when it did arrive most people did not know about it. Too bad, this one is really good.
Coming up in may, we were getting closer to summertime, so the film studios prepared the audience for box office blockbusters. Iron Man 3 landed worldwide, bringing in over 1,200,000, 000 dollars, amazing numbers. I have been asked why i did not review Iron Man 3 in here, simply because i watched it many months later, and simply choosed other titles instead, i still enjoyed it though. The Iceman is a good thriller, based on the true story of the brutal hitman Richard Kuklinski. Even if Michael Shannon did a great performance , the audience never found The Hitman. Moving on with The Great Gatsby, with Leonardo Di Caprio and Tobey Maguire. I liked it, but i have to say i would have wanted something more in this remake, some more edges, something more powerful, still this was a good version at least of an old classic. I was not sure what to think about the next sequel to the new Star Trek franchise, but Star Trek Into Darkness was really good, especially british actor Benedict Cumberbatch. I actually did not want to see The Hangover Part 3, so i still have not seen it, and i don´t think i will after i watched the trailer earlier this year.
And then, out of nowhere came After Earth, holy shit this, is a bad movie, i already regret seeing it.
Summer started pretty well in june with Man Of Steel, maybe not the best Superman movie of all time, but i kind of liked parts of the story with Kevin Costner as Clark Kent´s father. One of the funniest comedies of 2013 was without a doubt This Is The End. I bought This is The End on blu ray instantly in october, i can´t remember when i laughed as much as i did watching this one. Some people did not like World War Z, i really did enjoy this one. Maybe not the best zombie movie, but still a fun ride. I had no expectations going into the Cinema watching The Heat, but this was actually pretty good. Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy worked very well together on screen.
As summer kept going, we got some more big budget movies in july. Pacific Rim was a hell of a good time, with fantastic special effects and massive action sequences in superb quality. We also got a really good horror movie in our hands, The Conjuring. James Waan succeded again to give us old school horror, instead of cgi mistakes like Mama ( really awful cgi effects there in that movie ).
Grown Ups 2, this movie really pissed me off. I usually like most of Adam Sandler movies, but this one was really awful.
Still in july, we also got Only God Forgives. I was actually looking forward to see Ryan Gosling back with the same director from Drive. But the magic was lost, with this very strange motion picture. The Wolverine was the first time Hugh Jackman had his own movie with the character Wolverine, and it was actually not that bad.
In august we got Sharknado on the big screen, after it was a hit on tv. I wish i could have gone and seen it, but this was never screened here in Sweden, instead you had to buy the dvd from England or Usa. A really good sci fi action movie from the same director of District 9, came out in august, Elysium. Matt Damon is really good here, and we also get some of the best special effects i have seen in a long time ( not as good as in Gravity, but still impressive ). We´re The Millers might be the funniest Jennifer Aniston movie ever, and i am not a big fan of her. I suppose the vulgar humour worked well with the cast of this fake family trying to smuggle drugs from Mexico. Lovelace was an interesting look at Linda Lovelace, the famous porn star of Deep Throat. Amanda Seyfried did a very good performance as this legendary woman. I had a blast going in to see The World´s End, a sci fi comedy with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, trying to survive an alien attack in a small british Town. Even if The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones did not do well at the box office, it was still better than any Twilight movie. Sure i see problems within these 2 hours, but still better than Twilight.
As autumn came closer, and we arrived in september, we had some more treats along the way. Prisoners, one of the best motion pictures of 2013 was both shocking and disturbing. And all the actors did an amazing job at their characters. Insidious 2 was one of the titles i was looking forward to see. Not as good as the first movie, but still pretty frightening. One of my personal favourite movies released in september is Don Jon. Not as good as Prisoners of course, but i loved the honest story behind an addicted man, who have a hard time changing his life. One movie i did not see in september with Naomi Watts, is the motion picture Adore. I was planning to see this one, but it never screened here in Sundsvall. I will review this one soon.
In october i was happy to see Gravity arrive at the big screen. One of the best cgi movies ever, and i am not kidding. Sandra Bullock have never been this good before as an actor, she can act with the right material. One of the best Tom Hanks movies ever, called Captain Philips, gave us a very honest portrait on Somali pirates. And of course we had Machete Kills, a let down from the first motion picture, but still pretty fun to watch. A movie i intend to see soon in 12 Years A Slave, i have heard so many great things about this tragic story. Big Ass Spider! is a fun tribute to old B Movies from the good old days. You can buy this one on dvd now from january 2014.
I am going to stop talking about more movies here, because there are a lot of releases here from the end of this year i have not seen. So i will choose some of them and review them during 2014. I am so gratefull to have readers from all over the world, who read my movie review blog. I hope you enjoyed reading all my reviews this year, and i will be back in january with more fresh reviews. Have a great new year and let´s look forward to many great movies in 2014.
Cheers from Daniel