Movie Rankings: 2005, 2004, 2003

2005.

10. THE ISLAND.  Is it the best Michael Bay movie?  No.  Does it have tons of gorgeous over the top action set pieces with a sci-fi twist that nonetheless look absolutely realistic?  Oh yes!  And the story was pretty interesting to boot.

9. KING KONG.  I dearly love Peter Jackson and his films.  There is an amazing 90 minute adventure movie lurking inside this bloated beast.  That half of the movie I absolutely love.  The action scenes on Skull Island are classic PJ.  But the other half of the movie, full of ponderous character scenes starring characters I don’t care about, completely drags it down.  LOTR earned the right to be three hours long, but this did not.

8. NARNIA. I haven’t seen these in forever but I recall the first one being very good.

7. SIN CITY.  Haven’t seen it in years but I recall it being amazing and an astonishing achievement at being a shot for shot recreation of a comic book.

6. HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE.  It took a lot of liberties with the source material, but I found the changes to be a necessary evil in order to make a functioning movie.  I think it honored the spirit of the book and did the best job possible.

5. WAR OF THE WORLDS.  Another movie I haven’t seen in years, but I remember it being an instant classic.

4. BATMAN BEGINS.  After Batman and Robin, my hopes for this movie, a drawn out ‘realistic’ origin story, were low.  But it does an astonishing job at making a well-worn rehashed tale interesting and gripping.  It made me actually care about Bruce before he put on the mask.

3. SERENITY.  I enjoyed Firefly but also thought it was mildly overrated.  The movie, however, is a perfect summation of the property and a great story in every respect.  Peak J*ss Wh*don.

2. HARRY POTTER GOBLET FIRE.  I haven’t seen these movies in years but I do remember this being a great one, though a let down after the amazing Azkaban.

1. STAR WARS REVENGE OF THE SITH.  Was there any doubt?  This movie had an impossible task of wrapping up a six movie franchise, being the final Star Wars movie made for all time, and delivering on all the hanging questions set up by the first two movies and endless tie-in material.  I think it does a great job!  This is my favorite SW movie.  It’s not perfect (the character work and dialogue is not ideal), but the sheer volume of characters and plot and action and events and worlds and aliens and detail is just mind-blowing.  And on a personal level, it succeeds just for having a massive fight between my two favorite characters, Yoda and Sidious!


2004.

10. SHAUN OF THE DEAD.  I think this movie is overrated, it’s just a zombie movie, but Edgar Wright certainly added astonishing visual flair.

9. DAY AFTER TOMORROW.  Not a great movie, but a fun disaster movie.

8. CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK.  I actually really enjoy the setting and concepts in this movie and I’m sad we never got to see a continuation.

7. SKY CAPTAIN.  A very fun low budget green screen Indiana Jones pulp adventure.

6. VAN HELSING.  I actually like this movie!  It’s no The Mummy but it’s got a lot of fun sequences and it’s great seeing all the classic monsters interacting with each other.

5. I ROBOT.  Another better than expected movie with some really neat set pieces.

4. KILL BILL 2.  A vast, vast disappointment after the superlative first chapter.  There’s not a single big set piece in this movie, it’s all smaller character conflict.  There’s no spectacle.

3. HELLBOY.  This is one of my all time favorite comic books, and this is half of a good adaptation.  It’s also half of new, traditional, newbie friendly material.

2. THE INCREDIBLES.  A perfect Pixar movie and a great superhero adventure.  At the time it was ground breaking, but now we have a gluttony of great superhero films.

1. HARRY POTTER PRISONER AZKABAN.  Alfonso Cuaron made the best looking and most stylish chapter in the entire saga.  This is where the story, and the series, gets great.


2003.

10. SINBAD.  A forgotten animated classic.

9. TOMB RAIDER 2. About as good as the first one.

8. TERMINATOR 3.  Nothing can ever touch T2 but this is a very solid movie on its own merits.  There are a lot of great action scenes and the ending reveal that they were never going to stop Judgment Day, only survive it in hiding, was beautiful.

7. X-MEN 2.  I think this movie is great but overrated.  There are great sequences within it, and it’s better than the first, but it still lacks strong villains.  Fighting humans is never interesting.

6. KILL BILL 1.  My favorite Quentin Tarentino movie.  A classic of truly inventive action and style.

5. MATRIX REVOLUTIONS.  A deeply disappointing conclusion to a classic trilogy.  The majority of the movie doesn’t take place in the Matrix and the big battle of Zion stars C list characters.  But it’s still a solid ending.

4. FINDING NEMO.  My favorite Pixar movie.  Every moment is iconic and classic.

3. PIRATES OF THE CARRIBBEAN.  A shockingly good movie.  A perfect comedy adventure.

2. MATRIX RELOADED.  Another perfect movie that expands on the original in so many wonderful ways.  The action is astounding and classic and the plot twist at the end is an all-timer.

1. RETURN OF THE KING.  But nothing can top the conclusion of LOTR.

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