The summer movie season isn't technically over until Labor Day, which is when the Oogieloves will be closing things out with a bang. Or maybe that task is assigned to the bad boys of Lawless? In any event, the true blockbuster frame has concluded with the release of The Expendables 2, and so now it's time to look back on the past three or four months (depending on if you were able to travel overseas for early international releases of The Avengers and Battleship) and determine our favorites of the summer of 2012. (See also: What was the most disappointing summer movie of 2012.)
It's been an interesting time. Who knew Marvel would blow DC out of the water by delivering a literally smashing comic book movie that surpasses The Dark Knight Rises critically and financially? Who was really disappointed by Prometheus, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer, The Dictator, Rock of Ages, Dark Shadows, The Amazing Spider-Man, The Bourne Legacy and Pixar's Brave? Who was really pleasantly surprised by Ted and, umm, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel?
Was this really that bad of a summer? Were we too pumped with high expectations? Did The Avengers ruin everything else for us right away?
Who sought alternatives to the Hollywood fare and came up with new loves among the indie fare, such as Bernie, Take This Waltz and Killer Joe? Or maybe an entertaining documentary like The Imposter or The Queen of Versailles? With fantastical arthouse flicks (Beasts of the Southern Wild, Ruby Sparks, Moonrise Kingdom) and modest sci-fi efforts (Safety Not Guaranteed, Robot and Frank, Beyond the Black Rainbow), who needed explosive, CG-heavy tentpoles anyway?
I mean, besides the most explosive, CG-heavy tentpole of all. Should we just go ahead and call this the summer of The Avengers? Or does another film deserve that honor?
What's your favorite summer movie of 2012? Here's a dozen responses received so far via Twitter:
Follow Christopher Campbell on Twitter (@thefilmcynic) to join the next discussion.