With 6 months of films behind us, we have officially reached the halfway point of 2015 (you’re welcome for that clarification). And although we’ll likely not see many of these films mentioned come Oscar Season, it’s still fun to do a bi-yearly recap. So, as Pink once said: let’s get this party started.
Best Film: Jurassic World
I was shocked how great this film was (more on that in a second). It is one of the best and most summer movies I have ever seen, and Chris Pratt continues to kill it as Hollywood’s next big thing. Unlike most other things in this list, “Jurassic World” will definitely be in my Top 10 of the year, and could even hold out for number one overall when all is said and done.
Worst Film: Fifty Shades of Grey
Oh my God, is this thing dreadful. I can’t imagine a world where this isn’t my worst film come the end of the year. The dialogue, the narrative, the chemistry (or painful lack thereof) all combined for a movie-going experience that made me almost hate movies. I don’t remember much about it (thank God), but from what is stained in my brain I recall this thing just being awful and lazy and the fact that there are going to be two sequels makes me physically ill.
Biggest Surprise: Jurassic World
I didn’t expect this to be awful, but I was never wowed by the original “Jurassic Park” film, and the trailers for “Jurassic World” made it look like standard summer fluff. And as previously stated, I was dead wrong. If somehow you aren’t one of the millions of people who have pushed the film to $1.2 billion (and counting), or you have only seen the film one time so far… whatever you’re doing can wait. Go now.
Biggest Letdown: Entourage
I was a late addition to the “Entourage” series bandwagon, but once I was on it I instantly fell in love with Ari Gold, Johnny Drama and the rest of the, well, entourage. When the beginning of 2015 rolled around the film adoption was one of my most anticipated films of the impending year, and not a day went by that I didn’t think about it. Then I saw it. It is an unfunny, lazily constructed shadow of its former self, and it depressed me. Maybe it was my own fault for hyping it up so much in my head, but hey, this is my list, and “Entourage” let me down.
Shocked It Didn’t Suck: The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
I love SpongeBob and I love, love the first film from 2004. However when the trailers for this sequel dropped, I was horrifically worried. They made it out to look like most of the film would be sellout CGI instead of flat 2D animation, as well as lazy potty “comedy” that studios think dumbed-down kids enjoy in 2015. However I was relieved and thrilled when about 80% of the film was both the classic animation and humor of the show’s early seasons. The film itself isn’t great, but it is a lot of fun and didn’t ruin my childhood, and that was good enough for me.
Most Underrated: Run All Night
Unlike the other “Liam Neeson Has a Gun!” film from January (“Taken 3”), “Run All Night” was a lot of fun and had a few fun twists. Not too many people caught this one, and I feel like even less appreciated it, but if you get a chance to watch this on a rainy Saturday afternoon I really think it’s worth your time.
Most Overrated: Mad Max: Fury Road
OK, I seriously am still baffled by this one. Just like last year’s “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”, I can’t begin to fathom why people thought this was a good film, much less how it has a 98% on Rotten Tomatoes and is being lauded as one of the year’s best films. It is an impressively made but narratively hollow film, and while I don’t expect much plot or character development in my action films, I do enjoy them having a shred of either.
Thanks for reading, and here’s to a successful second half of 2015, which includes my personally most anticipated films, “Ant-Man”, “Black Mass”, and a little indie film called “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. It also includes the latest Adam Sandler project, “Pixels”, but we’ll cross that bridge when we are unfortunately forced come to it.