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More in Arts & Entertainment
Top Ten Blockbusters of 2010
2010 has been quite a year for major motion pictures. Some said it was a good year for films, while others felt disappointed. But whether your perception of 2010 was good or bad, there’s no doubt that the year had its own share of entertaining blockbusters. These films became box office hits thanks to telling good stories, provide excellent characters, and give great entertainment value. Here are the 10 films that became the latest examples of why we love to go to the movies time and time again.
10. Grown Ups (PG-13/Columbia Pictures) (June 25) ($162 Million)
Adam Sandler may not be a critic’s darling when it comes to his outrageous comedies, but he always understands his audience. When it comes to Grown Ups, he never lets his comic energy go to waste and always relies on a good script to help provide the entertainment. However, the reason why the movie works is due to Sandler’s collaborative efforts with his budding co-stars. Kevin James, Chris Rock, David Spade, and Rob Schneider who all give equal comic energy that gives the movie some great moments of laughter. It’s that group effort that makes Grown Ups one of Sandler’s most entertaining films.
9. Clash of the Titans (PG-13/Warner Bros.) (April 2) ($163 Million)
The original Clash of the Titans from 1981 was an action packed story taking place in ancient Greece highlighted by the stop-motion animation by Ray Harryhausen. Since the effects of the original look dated by today’s standards, it’s natural that a movie like this had to be remade. Surprisingly, the end result is a high-flying thrill ride with great effects and a great story that expanded upon the mythology. While the 3D conversion wasn’t necessary, the movie fares well without the 3D. While the original is still good to watch, the remake however exceeded it well enough to give it its own sequel scheduled for 2012 this time being filmed in 3D.
8. Alice in Wonderland (PG/Walt Disney Pictures) (March 5) ($334 Million)
Tim Burton and Johnny Depp’s movies can be like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. No matter how the sandwich is made, it’s always going to taste just as good as it can be. From Edward Scissorhands to Sweeney Todd, there’s no denying the dark magic of this wonderful duo. Alice in Wonderland is the latest example of that kind of magic combining Burton’s visually appealing imagination with Depp’s odd yet imaginative acting as the Mad Hatter. Even though it’s different from the Lewis Carroll books, it deftly mixes the novel’s elements with elements of epic adventure storytelling similar to “The Lord of the Rings.” Mia Wasikowska is a revelation as the title character. Though her Alice is all grown up, she balances well between being emotional and being intelligent. While Charlie and the Chocolate Factory better handles the source material, Alice in Wonderland is an entertaining adventure exactly what you expect from both Burton and Depp.
7. The Expendables (R/Lionsgate) (August 13) ($103 Million)
Not only is the film entertaining, but it also harkens back to the action cinemas of the 1980s and 1990s where guys were beefy and packing punches, while explosions were high and mighty. The film’s writer, director, and star Sylvester Stallone has brought together an amazing cast of action stars old and new for this pulse-pounding action packed film that is sure to be an instant classic. Don’t let Stallone fool you because he knows how to make a good old fashioned action film based on his experiences starring in some.
6. Shrek Forever After (PG/DreamWorks Animation) (May 21) ($238 Million)
The character of Shrek (voiced by Mike Myers) has become one of the most popular animated characters in pop culture. It’s always exciting to see a new Shrek film in the theater especially when the new one, Shrek Forever After, happens to be the last one. Fortunately, the final chapter fittingly concludes the series by giving Shrek a Capra-style adventure, while it shows us why we love the series from the beginning. The voice cast is great and the animation is top-notch. Of the three animated films released by DreamWorks Animation in 3D including How to Train Your Dragon and Megamind, Shrek Forever After offers the best story and the most humorous moments.
5. Paranormal Activity 2 (R/Paramount Pictures) (October 21) ($84.5 Million)
The first Paranormal Activity was a surprisingly scary film bringing the same realistic horror feel of The Blair Witch Project and popularized a new horror sub-genre, the “found footage” film. The sequel picks up during the events of the first and heightens the scares further involving a family and their newborn son. Watching it in a packed theater can be a fun experience that can not be replicated when watching it at home. For a budget of almost $3 Million, a lot of effort was put into this to make it scarier than the first.
4. Shutter Island (R/Paramount Pictures) (February 19) ($128 Million)
Martin Scorsese has explored many genres including drama, comedy, action, and documentary. Shutter Island was his first suspenseful thriller and a very good one too. Leonardo DiCaprio holds your interest from beginning to end in a twisty plot that keeps you both entertained and enthralled at the same time. The film’s twist ending, while not bad, has created debate since its release. Whether or not you liked the ending, the film is still satisfyingly suspenseful.
3. Iron Man 2 (PG-13/Paramount Pictures) (May 7) ($312 Million)
Robert Downey Jr. was given, by fans, a second chance at his career since the release of the first Iron Man. With Iron Man 2, he once again displays the same courageousness and witty humor to the character of Tony Stark as in the first film. Mickey Rourke and Don Cheadle are welcome additions to the cast as Whiplash and War Machine, respectively. Featuring great action scenes and a mix of comedy and drama, the sequel packed as much punches as the first.
2. Inception (PG-13/Warner Bros.) (July 16) ($292 Million)
Christopher Nolan has proven himself to be a visionary director thanks to both Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. With Inception, he was able to build upon his original story mixed with intelligent characters and enthralling visuals. Leonardo DiCaprio again holds our interest but this time, he’s backed up by an all star cast to help bring Nolan’s vision to the screen. Like Shutter Island, the ending created widespread debate though one would think that maybe a sequel might be possible. Inception has been praised as the most groundbreaking science fiction film since the likes of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Blade Runner. It may be the kind of blockbuster to be named the best of the year, but it’s already reserved as a worthy film.
1. Toy Story 3 (G/Walt Disney Pictures) (June 18) ($415 Million)
Not only is this the top grossing blockbuster of 2010, but truly the best film of the year. The creators at Pixar have made a film that not only everybody can watch and enjoy, but it can be enjoyed by future generations. It wraps up the trilogy wonderfully with its well-known characters mixed with new ones and an emotionally well told story of letting go and moving forward. The characters of Woody and Buzz Lightyear have been beloved since the first Toy Story film more than 15 years ago, and they’re given such a great farewell that it’s hard to forget after the movie ends. The Toy Story trilogy and other Pixar classics are still being watched by moviegoers young and old around the world and the magic of Pixar will never go away.
With 2010 out of the way, 2011 might become another entertaining year for blockbusters. For a fun weekend, there’s nothing better than grabbing some popcorn and relaxing in a dark movie theater for a few good hours.
PLEASE NOTE: The films chosen on this list are rated by popularity and not star ratings. The box office numbers are cited from IMDb.com.