OK, year's almost over so.....here are my 2014 superlatives.
Best Movie: Captain America: the Winter Soldier
This is out of the movies I've seen, of course. Winter Soldier excelled in every way possible. It exceeded expectations, which were pretty damn high to start with. It cemented Marvel's place in the Superhero Studio Olympics. Non stop action from start to finish, an excellent story, you name it. The first Cap film was good in my book but it felt like a required building block to the upcoming Avengers film whereas this was a great standalone film on its own.
Best Cleanup Job: X-Men: Days of Future Past
Days of Future Past was a good movie and the second good step in Fox's rebuild of the X-Men movie franchise. But the best part of it may have been the great retcon at the end. Everyone agrees that X-Men: The Last Stand and X-Men Origins: Wolverine were messy, disappointing movies so (SPOILER ALERT) Fox and Bryan Singer used the time travel/space time continuum aspects of Days of Future Past to effectively wipe those movies away from the X-Men film canon. Some people hate retconning but I'm all for it if it means we can forget some bad storylines or poorly crafted events. If you want to keep that abomination of the Phoenix Saga that we got in Last Stand for the sake of 'no retconning!' then do you, but that's not we roll here.
Best Movie News: DC announces its full movie slate and Marvel announces phase three (tie)
We get the plans for a fleshing out of the DC film universe and the release schedule for Marvel's phase three. In all we got five years worth of movie plans from both companies. After decades of waiting we will finally get a big screen treatment for Wonder Woman and on the Marvel side we finally got the answer to if and when a Black Panther film was coming, and to how the eventual Thanos confrontation is going to play out. Good times everyone!
Worst Movie News: The Fantastic Four
No upcoming movie has been met with more disdain than the Fantastic Four film slated to drop in 2015. Fox pissed off damn near everyone by casting Michael B. Jordan as the Human Torch, then they officially killed everyone's hopes when it leaked out that Doctor Doom is going to be some kind of computer hacker instead of the ruler of Latveria or even the evil tycoon from the first two Fantastic Four films. I'm not a big Fantastic Four fan, so I'm not invested in what race Johnny Storm is or Doctor Doom's profession. But given that the first two FF movies were considered ok at best and slammed by many (I found them watchable but nothing special), and that the Fantastic Four is at a low point in casual fan recognition and reader popularity, this isn't the time to get all creative with basic elements of the story. At this point they've pissed off the hardcore FF fans and got the rest of us scratching our heads in confusion. I have no idea what to make of it all and I could really see myself skipping this one.
Worst Movie: Godzilla
Why did I pick this one? Real simple - 10 minutes of Godzilla. Yes, in an over 90 minute film we got 10 minutes or so of actual Godzilla on the screen. It's a movie about Godzilla for crying out loud. I know you can't have a two hour movie with two hours of Godzilla, but ten minutes? Ugh......no we don't want some hackneyed story about the humans around the monster. OK, you need some devotion to people trying to escape or figure out where Godzilla came from. You might even need to spend half the movie on it. But please......please........ it's not hard really. But if you're going to make another one, you can forget me being interested.
Left Turn Award: Lucy
Lucy was an interesting movie. When I saw it I gave it an immediate 3.5/5 rating. Given a few months of hindsight I'd probably drop it down to 3. It wasn't bad, but the ending really will leave you feeling some kinda way. What started out as a thriller based on quasi/pseudo science turned into the Matrix in the last third of the movie. Well......if you went into the movie knowing that's how it would turn then you were probably fine with it but if you didn't know, like me, then you might have been a little miffed by it. At the same time if you like Scarlett Johansson and like seeing her in movies then you'll probably be able to watch it without getting to pissed off.
The Tap Out Award: Transformers
I gave up on Transformers this year. After the third one it was obvious that Michael Bay was going to put together an incoherent mess every time out that would never reach it's full potential. But even with that, seeing the Dinobots in the trailer had me ready to go back in. Until I saw the running time, almost three hours. So I stuck to my decision to pass. And I'm glad I did, because from what I heard it was exactly what I was expecting. I'm no longer willing to go sit through an almost three hour movie, and I'm not willing to go see something that I know is gonna be mediocre just because it involves something I grew up on and love. Sorry guys
OK, that's it for the movies this year. Next year should be awesome with Age of Ultron and that little Star Wars movie.