Everyone's always talking about the smaller films of 2013, for good reason they definitely outshone most of the blockbusters this year, but it is worth giving some credit to the films that went all out at being pure entertainment. Here are my top 10 thrill rides of 2013.
Thor: The Dark World
Jam-packed with fun visuals, comedy, and a heavy-metal fantasy story-line, Thor 2 was some great fun in the theaters. While it was most definitely flawed, with one in-particular annoying character (ahem, im looking at you Kat Dennings), and it could sometimes get a little to over the top, it never swayed from being entertaining (which is what comic book films are supposed to do right?). Plus, Tom Hiddleston comes back stronger than ever as Loki and completely steals the film (he just missed out on my top 5 villains list, he was my number 6)
Despicable Me 2
What makes a good family film good is that it's accessible to enjoy for the entire family (meaning, it's not a load of fart jokes and Stooge like humor to give the entertainment), while the Minions did definitely play off physical comedy, it was hilarious physical comedy that made everybody laugh. While the story could still get a little basic, for even a kids film, it was lots of fun and very enjoyable.
Another animated film that was good on laughs but also was able to squeeze a bit of heart into it at the very end. As much as I loved the last act of the film and thought it was everything that made great Pixar great, I had to take into consideration that the first two acts were on the Brave level of Pixar or even a bit lower. Despite this, it was still very enjoyable and lots of fun, and everything a family blockbuster needs to be.
On one hand, it's an incredibly flawed film that is just pure popcorn candy action. However, on the other hand that pure popcorn candy action is giant clean shots of mega robots smacking godzilla in the face with a submarine in the streets of Hong Kong.
Iron Man 3
An excellent, graceful pick up from the former atrocity known as Iron Man 2. Iron Man 3 was brim packed with humor that worked, great character development, and it was a comic-book blockbuster that actually tried to have more depth than explosions and romance. The plot twist half-way through was (controversially) spectacular, however when Kingsley is gone from the movie it does really start to lose its steam and go into typical action-fare territory.
Star Trek: Into Darkness
This film, as a Star Trek movie, really hit all the right notes (despite some past plot re-treading with the villain), and gave something for Star Trek fans while also remaining entertaining for the general audience that went to see it. The references were funny, it could get emotional, the action was definitely thrilling. I'm happy to say Star Wars is now in good hands with the Star Trek director, JJ Abrams.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Most young adult adaptions really fall flat, Catching Fire completely defied this trend to become one of the best (if not the best) movie based on a young adult franchise. There is depth in the story, and the entire film sucks you in, engages you, and despite having a dreary tone it has bits of humor to stop it from ever being depressing. Nearly all of the flaws from the first film are fixed, now if we could just get rid of (or at least tone down) that darn-awful love triangle.
This is the End
I literally think I may have gotten sore from laughing so much the first time I went to see this movie, it was an absolutely hysterical satire, and it was also completely original. This film was the surprise of the summer by far and the ensemble in the movie was just so damn great. What surprised me even more was the bit of heart they were able to throw in at the end, while also never losing the humor, this was the comedy of the year right here.
This is the movie that officially brought Walt Disney back, the music is catchy and outstanding, the story was cliche-mocking and defying, and the script and humor worked for kids and adults alike. By far, it was the best family film, but not only that it was one of the best movies of 2013 period.
Now, I don't know if I am stretching it by classifying Gravity as a blockbuster, but I really don't care because it absolutely deserves its spot here. Gravity was one of the most thrilling and suspenseful films I have seen, and the visual effects were better than all the blockbusters listed before this one combined. I loved every single aspect of this movie, and it is one of my favorites of the year (so expect to see this in another list soon). This is the space movie to define a generation.