Remember when people would line up outside a movie theater just to be the first to see a much-anticipated film? Movies have always been a part of our culture, sometimes reflecting it and sometimes influencing and dictating upon it. From “Gone with the Wind” and “Casablanca” to “The Sound of Music,” “Star Wars,” “Titanic” and “Avatar,” people will never get tired of a good and entertaining movie. And 2012 was no different, as three movies broke the billion-dollar box office level worldwide. Here now is a list of the top 10 movies of 2012.
10 Men in Black 3 - $624 million
Released by Columbia Pictures, “Men in Black 3” is a science fiction comedy movie that starred Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones and Josh Brolin. It was released on May 25, 2012. The movie garnered generally positive reviews from critics and pulled in $624 million at the box office. It is the highest grossing film of the movie franchise. A fourth installment of “Men in Black” is in the works.
9 The Hunger Games - $686.5 million
Released by Lionsgate, “The Hunger Games” is a science fiction adventure movie that starred Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks and Donald Sutherland. It is based on the popular book of the same name written by Suzanne Collins. The movie is just the first installment of the book trilogy. It was the first movie of 2012 to break the $500 million mark. It received a lot of positive reviews, with Lawrence’s portrayal of the lead character being specifically praised. She received an award for Best Actress in an Action Movie from the Broadcast Film Critics Association.
8 Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted - $742.1 million
Released by Paramount Pictures and DreamWorks Animation, “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted” is a computer-animated film that serves as the third installment of the “Madagascar” series. Acclaimed actors like Frances McDormand, Bryan Cranston, Jessica Chastain and Martin Short voiced the characters. Despite the fact that it is already the third part of the movie series, critics still praised the freshness of the film. It is now the highest grossing among all the “Madagascar” movies.
7 The Amazing Spider-Man - $752.2 million
Released by Columbia Pictures and Marvel Entertainment, “The Amazing Spider-Man” is a movie about the Marvel superhero. It starred Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone and Rhys Ifans. It is actually a reboot of the entire “Spiderman” series as it focuses on how the lead character evolved from a high school student to a superhero. It garnered generally positive reviews from critics, while fans are now awaiting the second part of the series slated for 2014.
6 The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 - $828.2 million
Released by Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment, “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2” is a romantic fantasy film based on the novel by Stephenie Meyer. The book series actually only had four parts, but the producers decided to split up the last book into two movies. The move worked as it turned out to be the highest grossing among all the “Twilight” movies. The movie starred Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner.
5 Ice Age: Continental Drift - $875.3 million
Released by Fox Pictures and Blue Sky Studios, “Ice Age: Continental Drift” is a computer-animated comedy adventure movie. It featured the voices of Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, Wanda Sykes, Queen Latifah and Jennifer Lopez. It is the fourth installment of the “Ice Age” series. The movie received mixed reviews, however, as some critics noted its lack of freshness with some parts merely recycled from the previous movies.
4 The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - $949.2 million
Released by Warner Bros., MGM and New Line Cinema, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” is an epic adventure film from Peter Jackson. It is based on the J.R.R. Tolkien classic of the same title, though the book will be divided into three movies. These will serve as prequels to “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. It starred Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen and Richard Armitage. The movie was able to surpass the gross sales of the first two parts of “The Lord of the Rings,” namely “The Fellowship of the Ring” and “The Two Towers.” The film received mixed reviews from critics, with some noting negatively the length of the movie. It also probably suffered from the high expectations brought about by its connection to “The Lord of the Rings.”
3 The Dark Knight Rises - $1.08 billion
Released by Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures, “The Dark Knight Rises” is a superhero movie about Batman. It is the third installment of Christopher Nolan’s “Batman” trilogy. The movie starred Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman and Anne Hathaway. While it received generally positive reviews, there were some who criticized the movie for being disjointed and disconnected with the first two parts. Most people loved the movie, however, because of its intensity and climactic ending.
2 Skyfall - $1.09 billion
Released by MGM and Columbia Pictures, “Skyfall” is an action movie that is part of the 007 franchise. It is the 23rd installment of the James Bond series and the third James Bond of Daniel Craig. Aside from Craig, the movie also starred Judi Dench, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw and Naomie Harris. It marked Dench’s last time as M, a role she portrayed for six Bond films. Javier Bardem, who received critical acclaim for his performance, portrayed the movie’s antagonist. “Skyfall” has become the highest grossing of all the James Bond movies.
1 The Avengers - $1.5 billion
Released by Marvel Studios and Disney, “The Avengers” is a superhero movie. It starred Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddleston, Samuel Jackson and Cobie Smulders. It featured superheroes like Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Black Widow and Hawkeye. It received generally positive reviews, with Ruffalo’s performance as Hulk being singled out for praise. A sequel is under development.