2012 is a difficult year to categorize for me. In a previous post (Cinematic Love Letters), I was able to sum up the year 2011 as far as cinema was concerned. 2012 seems a bit more tricky; nothing immediately comes to mind (subject-wise). Nevertheless, I shall attempt to sum up 2012.
Perhaps 2012 is the year of the franchise-ender. The Twilight franchise immediately comes to mind. The best and only good thing about this franchise was that it finally ended (just like MTV’s Jersey Shore). The Twilight movies are an abomination; an embarrassment to both the romance and supernatural/horror genres. The “heroes” are so bland and lame that you’d actually want to root for the bad guys so that they can kill them and get it over with. Of course, the source material wasn’t very good to begin with. Stephenie Meyer, the author of the Twilight novels, committed an unforgivable sin: she made the vampires gay and boring. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not against gay vampires as fictional characters. I’m actually very much for it (especially if they’re ladies). But at least a gay vampire should be an interesting character. For real. Stephenie Meyer’s sin isn’t that her vampire characters were gay, but that they were gay and boring. That’s a very hard thing to screw up, but she managed to do just that. Oh, and how do I know that the vampire characters were gay? Here’s the only piece of evidence that I need: When a vampire’s skin is hit with sunlight, the skin sparkles like diamonds. I don’t mean to sound anti-woman, but let’s face it: only a female writer would make that a vampire trait. I’m sure a gay male writer would’ve looked at that and said, “Sorry, but that’s too gay.” I feel that I have digressed, so let’s get back to the main topic. 2012 was a year in which we bid farewell (and good riddance) to the Twilight franchise, marked by the release of Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2 (the “proud” winner of seven Razzies, including Worst Picture). Goodbye, Twilight franchise, and don’t ever come back.
Another franchise that came to an end was Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy. The Batman franchise, overall, will continue with a new set of Batman films (and perhaps a Batman appearance in the Justice League movie if it ever gets made). It was just sad to see Nolan’s trilogy come to an end. Nolan weaved an incredibly epic film, filled with great performances (especially Tom Hardy, who hasn’t gotten enough recognition for his Oscar-worthy work as Bane) and gripping drama. It was a shame that its domestic box office performance was affected by the Colorado movie theater shooting (I’m not saying it didn’t do well; after all, it did make over $400 million domestically- not an easy feat, especially for a Batman movie that had to follow 2008’s The Dark Knight). Thank you, Christopher Nolan, for re-raising the bar for good-quality Batman films (just to be clear: Tim Burton raised it, Joel Schumacher lowered it, and Nolan raised it again).
Switching from D.C. to Marvel, although technically Marvel is continuing to produce its own comic book-based movies (that it holds the movie rights to), 2012 did mark the end of Phase One of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the release of The Avengers (it started with 2008’s Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk, followed by 2010’s Iron Man 2, 2011’s Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger, and then 2012’s The Avengers). Joss Whedon did an incredible job of bringing the characters together to work as a team (as well as plant some seeds for Phase Two). The film was a huge success, grossing over $600 million domestically (worldwide total is $1.5 billion). So, I bid farewell to Phase One, and in a little over a month, I’ll be saying hello to Phase Two with the release of Iron Man 3.
(To be concluded in: Defining 2012 Part Two)