5) The Hunger Games
We all know that film studios look to books now to make cheap money a la Harry Potter and Twilight, but few studios put the time and money in to actually make very good films (Harry Potter aside). With The Hunger Games though, Lionsgate chose to make a very good film. They got great actors and a fantastic writer/director in Gary Ross. I was actually surprised at how sadistic this film was, it was a breath of fresh air to watch and to get involved in another universe is a fantastic feeling.
Ah, James Bond. Who doesn't love James Bond? But let's be honest, Quantum of Solace kind of sucked. James Bond felt old, but not anymore. For 50 years of Bond, Sam Mendes made a terrific homage to everything Bond, while making one of the best Bond films in it's own right. It had everything, good action sequences, fantastic new characters and a good script. I would love it if Mendes stayed on for Bond 24.
When I first saw Looper's trailer, I instantly knew that I wanted to see this film and that it was going to be good. Ironically, the trailer only hinted at half of the film. I don't think anyone could have guessed where the second part of Looper would go, but what a fantastic film! Great acting from the Joseph Gordon-Levitt - the best that Hollywood has to offer and it's good to see Bruce Willis back to his best. What I loved about Looper was that it's universe was so deep and that it's plot was so rich and complex, but still it was almost impossible to get lost and you could always follow along.
2) The Avengers
It's always important to take risks in Hollywood and Marvel certainly did that when they first set up what we now call 'Phase One'. Thankfully they did take that risk because now we have The Avengers, one of the best superhero films of all time and one of the funniest films I have seen too. Another risk that they took was hiring Joss Whedon as director. Now don't get me wrong, Whedon is a genius and has done fantastic work, but he had never cracked Hollywood and was a fairly 'cult' director, but that paid off too because it was wonderfully directed.
1) The Dark Knight Rises
One of the most anticipated films of all time and for all the right reasons. The Dark Knight was outstanding and could not possibly be topped, but god did Nolan give it a go. Now I don't think he did top it, but I think he came fairly close. It was wonderfully written and I really liked Bane as a villain. Most importantly though, it was a great ending to, in my opinion, the best and most consistent trilogy of all time.