Film critics seem to label every year as the "year of the blockbuster." But given the lineup we're seeing for 2012, they might actually be right this time. Below are our five most anticipated action movies of 2012.
Dark Knight Rises
Let's get the obvious one out of the way first. Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy ends this summer when this superhero flick hits screens on July 20. Not much is known about the plot, but we know Bane will be the bad guy wreaking havoc on Gotham City eight years after the events of The Dark Knight. It'll be sad to see the franchise end, but at least Nolan won't force Christian Bale into a slew of silly sequels, finally ending with Batman in a wheelchair at a nursing home.
Since Iron Man was the only incredible film of the bunch, we're expecting a so-so reception to this orgy of superhero flicks. We're huge fans of Robert Downey Jr.'s smart aleck wit, but Captain America and Thor were pretty standard comic book movies, seemingly created only to enable The Avengers. But we are looking forward to seeing how this multi-film crossover turns out. Expect plenty of explosions, fireballs and buildings collapsing on May 4.
The Amazing Spider-Man
Did Spidey really need a reboot after 10 years? With the promised July 3 release of The Amazing Spider-Man, apparently it did. We're intrigued only because director Marc Webb is at the helm of this summer blockbuster. He's best known for (500) Days of Summer, so no doubt he'll have the romantic chemistry down between Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) and Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). But his résumé is otherwise a bit skimpy, leaving us a little skeptical about whether he can handle a monstrous action flick in his first at-bat. At least the trailer looks interesting, except for massive emo undertones. Cheer up, Peter Parker! You're freakin' Spider-Man!
Men in Black III
The first film was an incredible addition to the collection of action-comedy movies. The second film could not have been more painful to watch. It was clearly made to cash in on the success of the original. Now, 10 years later, the same motivation apparently applies, but, as we have previously noted, the trailer actually looks pretty darn good. The pickup of Josh Brolin to play Young Agent K is a stellar casting decision. Time will tell if this sequel to the sequel will end the franchise on an uptick. Check it out on May 25.
This one slipped by us originally, but one viewing of the nerve-wracking trailer has us counting down the days until June 8. The film centers around a team of explorers who journey to the "darkest corners of the universe" in search of man's origins on planet earth. Of course the inevitable, "Oh my God! We're all gonna die!" scenario unfolds, but we can accept the overheated plot twists since director Ridley Scott is in control. Fans will remember him from such adrenaline pumping films as Gladiator, American Gangster and Blackhawk Down.
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