Image: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
“There’s figures on this. Seventy percent of what people react to is how you look, twenty percent is about how you sound, and only ten percent is actually what you say. So, if you look good and sound good [but talk nonsense], everyone’ll go wild!” –Eddie Izzard
Even those who were left unimpressed by 2014’s crowd-pleaser Guardians of the Galaxy were in unanimous agreement about how fantastic its soundtrack was. Employing a vintage Sony Walkman and a cassette mixtape to accompany the humourous action of the movie, its soundtrack topped the Billboard chart for 11 weeks, was the best-selling soundtrack of the year after Frozen‘s, and introduced a new generation to the hits of the Raspberries, Norman Greenbaum, 10cc, The Jackson 5, and Blue Swede.
The fact it was such a fun movie and a solid sci-fi actioner/superhero flick was better, but even if it had been just okay, the music (and the dazzling CGI) would have been enough to mostly make up it. The traction-less Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 is proof of that.
Photo: Paramount Pictures
Die Hard with a Vengeance, Jurassic Park III, and Mission: Impossible III were all excellent third entries, each more than making up for the problems of its weak predecessor. In all of those cases, changing directors allowed a breath of fresh air into the property the third time around — in M:I III’s case, funnily enough, from J.J. Abrams.
Abrams’ next movie would be the 2009 Star Trek reboot, a thrilling adventure that redefined the franchise — which then swiftly became stale and unimaginative in his 2012 follow-up, Star Trek Into Darkness.
Now that Abrams has jumped from warp drives to hyper drives, Justin Lin has been hired to do for Star Trek what he did for Fast & Furious movies 3-6, and he proves to be just what the series needed to once again shoot for the stars.
Image: Twentieth Century Fox
Many were turned off by Henry Selick’s The Nightmare Before Christmas in 1993. Scenes of talking skeletons, severed limbs, and disembodied heads came off as macabre and morbid to some who couldn’t get on board. Jorge Gutierrez’s The Book of Life has all of the same content, yet feels entirely different and wholly alive (no pun intended), simultaneously solving one of the shortcomings of its predecessor by adding one simple thing: colours.
Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
One of the big differences between movies adapted from Marvel superheroes (Iron Man, Spider-Man, etc.) and movies adapted from DC superheroes (Batman, Superman, etc.) is that Marvel movies generally are more enjoyable. DC movies tend to be more dark and brooding, while Marvel’s entries seem to care most about just taking audiences on a fun ride. Of all the already entertaining Marvel movies, Guardians of the Galaxy may be the most playful and the most amusing.