While everyone is getting hyped about 2015 being possibly one of the greatest years for action films of all time, they seem to be forgetting that 2013 was a damn good year too, so I'm here to honor my top 5 favorite action films of this year. Please take into account that I, like most people in college, didn't have the cash to see every single action movie that came out this year, but these are the ones that I saw that I enjoyed the most. Also, keep in mind that I am going to be making a Top 5 Dramas and Comic Book Films as well, so this list will not contain any of our favorite super heroes and is not necessarily ranked on a basis of superb acting, just fun, excitement, and enjoyability. So, without further ado, here is my personal Top 5 action films of 2013 list.
5. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
As much as we all love Jennifer Lawrence now, I have to admit that after I first saw her in the Hunger Games part 1 I was not very impressed, the acting seemed a bit stiff and the camera work was choppy at best. I never would have expected the Hunger Games: Catching Fire to be that great and nowhere near top 5 best list material. As much as I hate to admit it, the only reason I went to see THGCF was because it was the first time I had seen Thad Castle (Alan Ritchson) or, "Gloss," in this film, since Blue Mountain State was canceled and I wanted to get my BMS fix. However, now that Jennifer has gotten some serious acting practice under her belt and under the new director, Francis Lawrence, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this film. The acting and direction was greatly improved, as was the action, I was engrossed in the story and, as someone who had never read the books, this film really got me interested in doing so and, for that, it kicks off the list at number 5.
4. Star Trek Into Darkness
Even with Star Trek Into Darkness being a remake, I thoroughly enjoyed this film. The acting was top notch, the action scenes were stunning, and there were enough improvements on the original to make the film seem fresh. I may still not be a fan of J.J.'s decision to shoot Star Wars: Episode 7 on film, but, after this film, I'm still extremely excited to see what he does with it.
3. 2 Guns
A 1980s-esque buddy cop comedy starring Denzel and Marky Mark, what's not to like? 2 Guns was a film that a lot of people liked and disliked this year, but I'm proud to announce that I am in the corner of those who loved it! I found the characters and back and forth banter between the A list actors to be witty and memorable. The plot was interesting and the over-the-top Mexican standoff finish made me feel like I was watching a great, old 80's buddy cop movie. To me, this film seemed like a modern day action classic.
2. Pacific Rim
2013 was a year full of a lot of moving, inspiring, and respectable films, but, every once and a while, a movie comes along that you just can't describe in any other way than by saying, "THAT WAS FREAKING AWESOME!!!" And that's exactly what you get with Pacific Rim. Is the action and writing a little shaky aside from the great Idris Elba's, yeah, sure, but were those giant robot versus inter-dimensional alien fights some of the coolest things I've ever seen on the silver screen? Hell yes, as a guy who grew up watching Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers and the Transformer cartoons, my inner 9 year old would have needed a change of pants after this movie and, for that, Pacific Rim is not only one of my favorite films of 2013, it is one of my favorite action films of all time.
1. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
For a while, I thought about putting the Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug in my Top 5 Drama list, but the more I thought about it, this movie was more of an action film than anything else. Jackson seems to have ditched the 30 minute introduction method of the first Hobbit and epic medieval melodrama of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and skipped straight to the action this time around and, while I quite enjoyed the story building of the first film and loved the LotR series, I could not be more happy with this decision. This is probably because while you may have remembered 5 or so of the new character's names walking out of the first Hobbit, you will remember all of them after this one at least for a while (there are a lot of names). Absolutely everyone in the lovable band of traveling dwarves and the accompanying wizard and hobbit has something exciting and memorable to do this time around and it is fantastic. Jackson even introduced a few original characters and subplots and, while some people took issue with this, I had no problems with them at all. These additions, aside from the love story between Kili and the new elven character Tauriel, seemed to tie things together with the Lord of the Rings, dare I say, even better than the original book, probably because there was no sequel in mind then and Tauriel just provided us with a gorgeous and bad*ss new elvish face to gawk at. But, as per usual, the acting was flawless from each and every character, chiefest and greatest of which would of course be Smaug. That's right folks, the movie may be called the Hobbit, but even with the phenomenal performances from all of the actors, the one part people will remember about this film is Benedict Cumberbatch's menacing portrayal of Smaug. Because of Benedict's fantastic performance, the fire drake from the north will forever be remembered in my mind as one of the greatest movie monsters of all time. I'm a huge J.R.R. Tolkien fan, this film does his book justice and makes minor improvements on one of the best stories even written and for that reason it is my number one favorite action film of 2013.
But that's just my opinion, I would love to hear yours! Agree? Disagree? Did I miss anything? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!