What if Guy Pearce played an amalgamation of Snake Plissken and Han Solo tasked with rescuing a very important and very attractive woman from a floating space prison?
You’d end up with an ass kicking good time called Lockout, that’s what. This fast-paced film from producer Luc Besson and directed by James Mather & Stephen St. Leger is unfiltered adrenaline with a side of comic gold and a dynamite performance by Guy Pearce.
2. The Raid: Redemption
This Indonesian actioner garnered perhaps the most praise of any action film this year and with good reason – it’s intense. Chock full of relentless action and little in the way of plot other than “Fight your way to the top,” the film starts off with lots of bangs and great gun fights before transitioning to brutal hand to hand and sharp object combat. While I found it slightly repetitive after awhile, the action and stunt work is still some of the absolute best of the year.
1. The Avengers
The Avengers blew the bar away and set it rather high for all future fun comic book movies – as opposed to the grim darkness of the recent Batman flicks. With several great action scenes and the best climax of any Marvel film to date, this superhero team up earns the top spot for being both exciting and completely satisfying on virtually every level. The action manages to be alternately fierce, fun and dramatic. All in all, a totally enjoyable action-oriented flick.
Animated Honorable Mention: Berserk: The Golden Age – The Egg of the King, the first in a trilogy of adaptations of a popular manga book is a brutal animated feature, something along the lines of a cartoon Ironclad. The flick starts off with an epic battle that culminates with a knight getting his head cleaved in half so hard his eye pops out and the battles just get bloodier from there. The 3D style animation left me cold at a times and the movie slows a bit at the end, but if animation is your thing, you won’t be disappointed with the action in this one.