Ranking The Films of 2013: Ryan Edition

| March 16, 2014

farleyIt was yet another exciting year here at Reel Nerds Podcast. We debuted season 1 of our web series Reel Nerds Podshow and I saw 10 more movies released this year then last year. bringing my total to 85 movies! I enjoyed a lot of movies this year and while it took a long time to see my favorite movie, it was no doubt a lot of fun. Like every year for your convenience and possible annoyance I have ranked my movies from least favorite to my most favorite. My tastes are most likely different then yours and totally different then critics and my fellow Nerds. If you would like to hear us ramble on about our top ten movies of the year make sure you give a listen to our Filmsplosion 2013 podcast, it’s lots of fun and you can find on this website or download it on Itunes. Thanks to Brad and James yet again for their tireless efforts to make Reel Nerds Podcast what it is and thanks to all of our fans who make this little podcast what it is, and now sit back and enjoy, Ryan’s Ranking of movies from 2013. *Living in Denver sometimes we do not get smaller or Academy Award contenders until January that’s why there are a couple of 2012 movies on this list that are from 2012 but I saw in theaters this year.

85. Texas Chainsaw 3D: Sometimes when you watch movies you get excited when you see some ones name in the credits, sometimes you cringe, when Adam Marcus’ name was one of the writers I knew this film would be a disaster, incoherent, and totally illogical. This movie is by far the worst movie of the year, sorry Leatherface fans, this sucks.

84. Oldboy(2013): Spike Lee is one of those filmmakers where I see his name and go “Meh”. That’s how I would describe this remake of a Korean film, meh.

83. Bad Milo!: This was the most disappointing film of the year. The premise of a demon that comes from your butt and eats anyone who mistreats you sounds awesome on paper, but this film never fully embraces its zany concept. And that makes the film completely suffer.

82. Riddick: Why does anyone continue to pay to see Vin Diesel as an action star? He is good when it’s an ensemble but boy he really can’t carry a movie.This movie tries to be a hardcore Sci-Fi action film but is totally limp.

81. Lords of Salem: I am one of the few I believe who actually likes Rob Zombie’s Halloweens. But in his attempt to be Kubrick he falls flat on his face. His insistence that his wife be the lead in his films also hurts him creatively. It almost feels when you watch his wife he pulls the punches, where he will do horrible things to other women(see Halloween and Annie’s topless assault) he is very cautious not to exploit his wife and this film about witches is a prime example.

80. Only God Forgives: What a mess. After Drive I had high hopes for this Winding Refn, Gosling collaboration, but alas what we got was a disjointed mess of a drug smuggling film, it took me a few times to get through it, boring.

onlygod 79. ABC’s of Death: Horror anthology in which 26 different films are made with a letter from the alphabet, and you can already see how this film is a hit or miss affair. Some are great, most are ok, and some are terrible making one unique but average film.

78. V/H/S/ 2 : Another horror anthology that misses the mark. Found footage for the most part is so gimmicky that it really stretches credibility at times. This film has some genuine frights but not as good as the first one.

77. R.I.P.D: Big budget misfire for Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds. It is a cool premise where dead police officers are tasked with keeping nasties form invading our world but nothing really clicks in this film and throw in some shoddy CGI and you have a recipe for disaster.

76. Jack The Giant Slayer: Another CGI mess but this time from a great director in Bryan Singer. A different telling of Jack and the Beanstalk that can’t decide if it’s a action movie or a kiddie action movie. It wavers between dark and silly too much, there are some impressive moments but not enough to save this film from being blah.

75. Midget Zombie Takeover: Director Glenn Berggoetz was on our podcast talking about this film and how he makes all of his other films. I give him huge props for making a film for $2,000 and that he is genuinely funny and talented. If it wasn’t for some sloppy editing this would be higher on my list, but I love the sense of humor and the fun he has making the films.

74. The Great Gatsby: Leo Dicaprio is great in this film but like all Baz Luhrman films this has all style and no substance. Flashy costumes and incredible set designs are the mist interesting things happening here.

73. The Internship: Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson are great together and their chemistry is spot on in this film, but the film is kinda boring with only a few laughs to be found

. 72. A Good Day To Die Hard: A bad day for the Die Hard franchise as this film feels really tired and Bruce Willis seems to be just coasting throughout it. John McClain taking on Russians in Russia should be amazing it is not. Lame script and lame villain do not help this film at all, oh how I wish Hans Grubber survived his fall.

71. Identity Thief: Jason Bateman stars as a normal guy from Colorado(home state sweet!) who gets his identity stolen by Melissa McCarthy’s crazy Diana, what trouble will they get into when he goes down to Florida to bring her to justice? Who cares.

Kick-Ass-270. Kick Ass 2: Another go into the “real” world of super heroes is hit or miss. Christopher Mintz-Plasse is great as Mother Fu@ker and Chloe Grace-Moretz is fantastic as Hit-Girl, but the rest of the film is just ok and feels a little cheap. There is fun to be had here and I will watch it again but not anytime soon.

69. White House Down: With the talent behind this film you would expect it to be a little better but it is just ok. Channing Tatum is a fun leading man and Jaime Foxx is pretty good as the President it just feels a little late to the game.

68. Drug War: An import from China has a lot going for it. It is a crime thriller where you are not sure how it will play out. If it wasn’t for some goofy side effects from the Drug everyone is taking this would be higher on my list.

67.Willow Creek: Bobcat Goldthwait wrote and directed this “documentary” about a couple in search of Bigfoot. There is some genuine frights in this film and the leads are great, but Bobcat drops the ball at the end which seems to be a common thread in found footage movies.

66. I Declare War: A game of war that is played out by kids and treated like it’s a real war is a clever premise. There are parts of this film that are incredibly poignant but like a few films this year it doesn’t fully embrace the fantasy part of the story and in turn makes this film seem like an updated Lord Of The Flies, but I do think I will own this because I do want to see it again.

64. Bullet To The Head: Sylvester Stallone stars in this somewhat forgettable movie about a hitman who teams up with a cop to take down someone more dangerous then him. I do remember a cool fight at the end and Sly being racist to the Asian police officer but I can’t remember much else.

63. Gangster Squad: Real life criminal Mickey Cohen is the subject of this film and while it has lots of style and cool production design, Sean Penn as Cohen is a scene chewing distraction. Real line from the film, “Here comes Santy Claus!” Yuck.

62. 2 Guns: Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington star in this film of double crossing agents and there is fun to be found here it never seems like anything special. Both leads are great and there is some awesome over the top stuff but nothing too memorable.

61. Side Effects: A trippy Soderbergh film that is great to look at and the leads are great. There are however to many twists in the film to elevate it to something more then a well made thriller.

redemption60. Redemption: Jason Statham stars in this film about a war veteran trying to redeem his life through the help of nun. The film is well shot and acted but it is also a little boring. You keep waiting for Statham to be Statham but it never really materializes. Interesting film however.

59. Blackfish: This documentary has gotten a lot of press about how Sea World treats its Orcas and how unprepared the trainers are if something goes wrong. Yes the film has some very powerful moments and it is heartbreaking to see that a couple of trainers just doing there jobs have lost their lives, but the most powerful moment I feel is when they interview the fisherman who have captured these animals in the wild.

58. Now You See Me: Average movie about magicians pulling of a bank heist is somewhat forgettable. A group of young and upcoming magicians are planning the ultimate trick and using the power of illusion to fool you, great cast ho-hum story.

57. Carrie(2013): Remaking a classic is always tricky. Too similar and people will say why remake it, too different and purists will cry foul. Carrie is somewhere in the middle. It’s a well made film and all the actors deliver great performances but it has a been there done that feel to it. The gore effects are great.

56. G.I. Joe: Retaliation: Sequel to Rise of the Cobra attempts to make a more serious movie and does an ok job at it. This time we get The Rock and Bruce Willis taking over for a Duke killed in the line of duty, they most uncover the plot by Cobra to find out who is really behind the attack on the Joe’s. The Rock is good, Willis is there for a paycheck.

55. Grown Ups 2: Adam Sandler’s back at basically playing himself with all his friends in the follow up to the 2010 hit. If the film would get past the silly deer pee jokes it would be really funny. When Sandler and his friends take on a douchey frat the film really hits it stride, not great but still fun.

54. Olympus Has Fallen: Another White House is taken by terrorists film but this one feels like a Die Hard so it is better then White House down, bad special effects however hurt the overall experience of the film.

53. Don Jon: Joesph Gordon Levitt’s directorial debut is not bad, as a pron addicted man he meets what he believe’s is the girl of his dreams. But he soon learns that looks aren’t everything and happiness can be found in the least likely of places.

52. We’re The Millers: Funny road trip movie starring Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis as a “couple” who try and smuggle drugs across the border. Some really funny moments my favorite is when Jennifer Anistion and Emma Roberts try and teach Kenny how to kiss.

51. Kings of Summer: Friends decide to run away and build a house in the woods to live in over the summer. Great acting all around and some truly funny and touching scenes really help this film.

westmemphis 50. West Of Memphis: The true crime story that gets more and more heartbreaking as it unfolds is painstakingly covered in detail in this powerful documentary. A lot of celebrities got involved in this case of 3 murdered boys and the teenage boys that might have been wrongly convicted in their horrible murders, powerful and heartbreaking this would be higher if it wasn’t so hard to watch. I’m not sure if I need to see it again but everybody should see this film.

49. Hatchet III: The final chapter of the over the top Hatchet series is gory good, but you really have to be a fan of these films to want to see it and have fun doing so. I did.

48. The Shortest Game: A cute documentary that follows young golf stars as they compete in the world championships. It is a fun little movie and the kids are too precious.

47. Insidious: Chapter 2: The first Insidious caught everyone off guard with it’s different take on the haunted house genre and its shocking ending. The sequel picks up right after the first film and doesn’t quite live up to the previous entry, James Wan however shows he is the master at directing these types of films with effective tracking and steady cam shots.

46. Pain and Gain: Dumb bodybuilders become dumb criminals in this Michael Bay film. The leads are fun but they are criminals so it’s a little difficult to get behind their schemes.

45. Bad Grandpa: I was never a fan of Johnny Knoxville’s old man routines in the old Jackass movies and TV show but this film is funny and has some nice moments as well.

44.Hangover III: The Wolf Packs final adventure has its moments and it works for the most part. Fun to see them head back to Vegas and get into more trouble.

43. Ender’s Game: Mixed feelings about this film, it looks great and I did like it but I can’t help but think there is nothing very that amazing about it. The cast is fantastic however.

42. Gravity: Almost everyone loved this film and Sandra Bullocks performance, and true the film looks amazing but after it ended I was neither moved or had an urge to see it again.

41. Delivery: Saw this indie horror film at Telluride Horror Show where it made its world premiere. The story of a couple having their first child and the child might be possessed by something in the womb is clever/terrifying. Plus they couple is being filmed for a TLCish reality show so it makes sense why no one stops filming, see this film if it comes to your town and hopefully there will be an announcement about home media soon.

parkerwire40. Parker: This was one of the longest running jokes here at Reel Nerds and it was the springboard for me to watch all of Jason Statham’s movies. Statham plays Parker a criminal that gets in over his head and he must find out why his old partners want him dead. Not as bad as I thought it would be, in fact I had fun watching it, and it has one of my favorite Jason Statham lines ever “I need to know if you are wearing a wire”

39. The Last Stand: Arnold’s return to the big screen as a sheriff protecting his small Arizona town failed to connect with audiences, but it was a fun movie and one I have watched twice since I got it on Blu-Ray.

38. Fast and Furious 6: I loved Fast 5, Fast 6 doesn’t quite make it to the finish line but it does have some spectacular stunts and all the actors(sans Michelle Rodriguez) are game and have fun, plus The Rock kicks ass in it that alone makes it worth the price of admission.

37. Snitch: The Rock again! He plays a father trying to help his son get out of a drug charge by going undercover. The Rock flexes his acting muscles and crushes it. The movie does end rather limply however.

36. Escape Plan: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone star as men trapped in an inescapable  prison, along they way they kick ass and try and over throw a corrupt warden. I liked this film plus Sam Neil is in it!

35. The Incredible Burt Wonderstone: Silly movie about an over the hill magician played brilliantly by Steve Carell has some really laugh out load moments, with so many other good films this year is the only reason this one slid this far down my list.

34. The Impossible: The true story about a family that survived a deadly tsunami is powerful and heart breaking. The special effects are amazing and the performances are some of the best this year, I cried a little watching this…

33. The Conjuring: Creepy haunted house film once again directed with flair by James Wan tells the true story of paranormal investigators the Warrens. And the doll is scary as Hell!

32. Elysium: Super cool film staring Matt Damon as a man who is dying on future Earth and is trying to get a cure on Elysium the super exclusive space station for the rich the orbits Earth. Outstanding special effects and some really rocking action make this one cool film.

31. Oblivion: Another future Earth film starring Tom Cruise as a man who isn’t entirely sure his life is what it’s cracked up to be. Special effects once again are one of the stars in this film and the film looks stunning.

oz-the-great-and-powerful30. Oz: The Great and Powerful: Sam Raimi’s origin tell of the Wizard of Oz has some great moments. I love the horror film element of the birth of the Wicked Witch and there are some truly spellbinding moments to be seen. 29.

12 Years A Slave: The winner of The Best Picture of the year at the Oscars is a great film. The subject matter makes it hard to watch and enjoy, hence not my favorite film of the year but one you should see.

28. Warm Bodies: The love story of a zombie and a girl sounds stupid, but Warm Bodies is the film that surprised me the most this year, with its wit and clever story telling. And yes the love story works. Plus it also has some great zombie moments.

27. Much Ado About Nothing: Joss Whedon and Shakespeare are like vanilla and chocolate they just go great together. Whedons take on the Bard hits all the right beats. Add in the fact the most of the cast is made of Buffy and Angel alum and you have one heck of a film.

26. The Spectacular Now: Coming of age tell that is funny and heartbreaking all at the same time. Miles Teller stars as Sutter a funny high school senior who gets dumped by his high school girlfriend and soon starts falling for Shailene Woodley’s Aimee. Touching and funny this is another surprise this year.

25. Captain Phillips: The true story of an American ship hijacked by Somali pirates is gripping and the most intense 2 hours at cinemas this year. Tom Hanks gives one of his best performances ever as the title captain and director Paul Greengrass knows how to tell stories like this.

24. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues: Ron Burgundy is back! And he’s brought the whole news team with him. Jokes come a mile a minute and it is a movie you have to see more then once to get them all.

23. Monsters University: Surprise Pixar does it again. A prequel to Monsters Inc. is also a clever parody of all college movies. Wonderful animation and characters you love, you can’t stop Pixar.

22.The Wolf of Wall Street: The story of a douche bag stock broker Jordan Belfort is the definition of excessive. But the more I thought about it the more I liked this film. Leo Dicaprio is stellar in the film and the movie is truly funny, I can’t wait to see it again.

21. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: The second chapter in The Hobbit trilogy is a better movie then the first as we no longer have to wait to introduce characters we get right in on the action. Several scenes are spectacular and the return of some of old favorites like Legolas is fun.

thisisend20. This Is The End: A movie so zany it is hard to describe, the shirt version is Hollywood funny guys play versions of themselves surviving the Rapture. Super funny and a movie that is so clever that you need to see it more then once to fully appreciate it.

19. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Katniss returns in a successful sequel to the 2012 hit. Jennifer Lawrence again owns the screen in the title role and it has me excited for the next chapter.

18. American Hustle: The somewhat true story of abscam concerns con men and undercover FBI agents. Funnier then I thought it would be, Bradley Cooper again shows why he is an under appreciated actor and Jennifer Lawrence again is on fire, throw in a stellar performance by Christian Bale and you have one killer film.

17. Pacific Rim: Giant robots fight giant monsters, nuff said.

16. 42: The true story of Jackie Robinson is told in a very moving and enjoyable movie. Chadwick Boseman is up to the challenge in playing an American legend and Harrison Ford is equally as good as Branch Rickey owner of the Dodgers. Sometimes we forget how hard it was for people to break down unjust walls and movies like this are great reminders.

15. Thor: The Dark World: Marvel does it again, Thor continues the studios momentum by delivering laughs and great comic action. Chris Hemsworth again crushes it as Thor, and of course Tom Hiddleston as Loki steals yet another film. The villain in the film is a little weak but the overall story is a lot of fun.

14. Man Of Steel: A movie that was better then I was hoping, Zack Snyder deserves huge props for making Superman cool again. Henry Cavill shows why he is such a great choice as Supes, but the MVP of the film to me is Kevin Costners Pa Kent, moving and heartbreaking it’s what we needed in a Superman film.

13. Zero Dark Thirty: The raid on Osama Bin Laden was one of the defining moments in recent history and it is told with great excitement  by Kathryn Bigelow. Jessica Chastain is stunning as Maya an analyst who breaks the ten year hunt for the worlds most wanted man. The ending had me on the edge of my seat, even though we know how it will end, Go America!

12. Star Trek: Into Darkness: Stunning follow up to the 2009 smash hit finds Captain Kirk and Spock at war with Khan. Some trekkies were not too keen on the reverse roles that J.J. Abrams did but I loved it, plus it is one of the best looking films of the year in terms of visual effects. Great stuff.

11. Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters: I loved this movie. Is it silly? Yes. But so what. You have 2 bad asses killing monsters and using sweet weapons. This movie isn’t for everyone but if you get it, you will love it.

And now the Top 10 Movies of 2013! (according to Ryan so it matters!) worldz   10. World War Z: I am a huge fan of the book. When I first heard about the changes I was a little worried but I knew the book would be hard to adapt into a two hour long film. What the movie was able to do was make a huge zombie film and make it very entertaining.   The third act is some of the most intense moments on film this year. I truly loved this movie. mama   9. Mama: The film that surprised me the most was this little horror film. Cleverly shot and genuinely scary Mama succeeds because it takes what we know about ghost movies and twists them just a little. The trailer is a little misleading as well, Jessica Chastain’s Annabel actually doesn’t want the kids but soon learns to love them and protect them form a vengeful ghost. The ending too is what it should be, shocking, and truly heartbreaking. evildead138. Evil Dead (2013): I love The Evil Dead. I was not against remaking it like some people, but I knew they had to get it right and make it their own. Under the guidance of the original creators, director Fede Alvarez delivers one of the most intense movies of all time. It starts slow so we get to know all the character and then turns up the horror and gore to 11. The last 2/3’s of the film never let up. Well done guys, well done. prisoners   7. Prisoners: One of my favorite trailers from the year also is one of my favorite films. Hugh Jackman stars as a father who’s daughter is kidnapped and when the suspected kidnapper is let go he takes matters into his own hands. Amazing performances from every actor in the cast help make this one truly unforgettable movie. It has many twists and turns and makes each revelation more devastating then the last. wolverine   6. Hugh Jackman strikes again! This time he returns as Wolverine the character that made him a star. The Wolverine picks up after the events in X-Men 3 with  Logan struggling with the guilt he feels over killing Jean Grey. After being found in the wilderness by Yukio he is brought to Japan to see an old friend who is about to die. Jackman is awesome in this film and it feels different then most super hero movies as Logan wrestles with being a hero and a killer. The action is sweet and pretty violent for a super hero film but it is set in the right tone. I was surprised how much I liked this film. worldsend5. The World’s End: Was there any doubt that this would be in my top 10. Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost do it again. But what makes this film so great is not only the cool sci-fi moments but also the character moments make you laugh and break your heart at the same time. I really hope that they continue to make films because the Cornetto Trilogy is bloody brilliant. yourenext4. You’re Next: This film came out of nowhere I loved it. The premise is simple, a wealthy family on vacation to there second home are under attack by masked killers. But what the trailer doesn’t tell you is Sharni Vinson’s Erin is one tough chick who turns the killers plan upside down by fighting back, twist endings and great suspense only add to the coolness of this film. "Frozen" Anna, Olaf, Kristoff, Sven3. Frozen: Disney scored with this heart warming tale of two sisters that are locked away in their castle because one has the power to freeze things. The film has catchy tunes, funny moments and spectacular animation. Plus it takes what we all know about Disney movies and uses it against us. Truly a fun time and the Mickey short that accompanies it is amazing as well.

IRON MAN 32. Iron Man 3: Iron Man delivered on action and yet another great performance by Robert Downey Jr. It also had some great surprises(Hi Mandarin!) and some amazing special effects. What is also great is director Shane Black got a huge hit that will hopefully led to him getting more director jobs(he wrote Lethal Weapon but this is his first hit as a director). How Marvel continues to crush all who challenges them is nothing short of amazing.

mrbanks1. Saving Mr. Banks: What a drama as Ryan’s number one movie? Has he can elitist? No. I just love well told stories. And one that involves one of my favorite films ever with amazing performances and makes me cry at the end, yes this is the best film of 2013. The story of how Walt Disney convinced P.L. Travers to hand over the rights to Mary Poppins is so engrossing you get swept up in it’s world and even though you know Disney does make Mary Poppins it is still fun to see how he pulls it off.



About the Author:

As far as nerds go, there are not many reeler than Ryan. His love for movies is unmatched. He also loves comic books. When you combine comic books and movies Ryan is at his happiest. He enjoys all forms of pop culture and prides himself on knowing more then average nerds. Ryan has a couple of characters he prefers over the rest, first and foremost is Spider-Man. He also loves Ash from the Evil Dead. Ryan also enjoys Finishing people in Mortal Kombat and hopping on Goombas. He has attended Comic-Con and several Starfests with his good buddy Brad. He is amazed on how awesome Brad is at designing Reel Nerds pages. But don’t tell Brad he needs to stay humbled. Favorite movie: Army Of Darkness Favorite Genres: Action, Horror, Comic Book, Comedy
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