Welcome to part three of the Nerd Crave Movie Awards! Our team nerd culture genres like science fiction, fantasy, comic book movies, and horror are underrepresented during awards season so we created some awards for our favorite genre movies and actors. For part three of the Nerd Crave Movie Awards, here are our awards for Best Picture!
10. Jurassic World:
Jurassic World was the first Jurassic Park movie released in 14 years, and it was well worth the wait. The movie was fun and exciting and most importantly, it was full of amazing looking dinosaurs. Chris Pratt was already a blockbuster superstar because of Guardians of the Galaxy, but Jurassic World proved to audiences that Pratt is an extremely likeable and ticket selling leading man. Jurassic World is now the 4th highest grossest film of all time and no one is unhappy with that placement.
9. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt. 2:
After three books and three movies, The Hunger Games series finally concluded with Mockingjay Pt. 2. The movie was a gloomy affair without happy endings for many fan favorite characters, but the movie was a powerful and poignant end to the series. Hopefully, Katniss and Peeta’s futures are brighter than the ordeals they faced in the series.
8. Kingsman: The Secrete Service:
When Kingsman came out in February of last year, no one expected it to be a success. The general public was not very aware of The Secret Service, the comic series that the movie was based on. However the public rightly fell in love with the movie and the film made over $400 million at the box office. The reason why the Kingsman was so successful was because the movie took a light, self mocking tone to the spy genre. Kingsman is not another James Bond knock off. The Secret Service is bloody, funny, and fun.
7. Avengers: Age of Ultron:
Age of Ultron may not be as great as the first Avengers film commercially or critically, but it is still a solid new addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. After three years of waiting, audiences got to see the whole Avengers team work together once again and it is hard to deny the joy one gets from seeing the whole team in action. Adding new characters Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver, and The Vision and adding old supporting characters like War Machine and Falcon to the team could’ve made the movie feel bloated but Joss Whedon handled the challenge well. Every character in the movie gets their own moment to shine. Luckily for fans, we don’t have to wait very long for the Avengers to come together again because Captain America: Civil War is only two months away!
Time travel is a science fiction concept that is constantly explored. From Back to the Future to Dr. Who, time travel has been thoroughly represented in pop culture. However there has never been a time travel movie like Predestination before. The premise may seem familiar with Ethan Hawke as a time travelling government agent character going through time to stop a terrorist, but the story quickly surprises the audience and is one of the most original stories of the year. The movie is enthralling throughout and has an ending that will stick with you for the rest of your life.
5. It Follows:
2015 was a good year for horror with The Gift, Deathgasm, Crimson Peak, and The Visit, but none of those films were as powerful or as terrifying as It Follows. Every second of It Follows is excruciatingly tense and the music will haunt your dreams. I bought the film’s score on vinyl, but I haven’t been able to sit through a full album listen yet because it is too terrifying. Even if you are not a horror fan, you should check out It Follows because it is not only the best horror film of the year but also one of the best films this year of any genre.
4. The Martian:
In The Martian, Matt Damon is stranded alone on Mars for an entire movie. That may seem like a tough sell without much character interaction but Matt Damon sells the hell out of the movie, making The Martian one of the most enjoyable movies of the year. Although Damon handles most of the workload in The Martian, the movie also has an incredible supporting cast including Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Peña, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Donald Glover. The Martian is Ridley Scott’s best film in years and one of the best films of his career.
3. Mad Max: Fury Road:
When George Miller announced that he was creating a new Mad Max movie, no one thought it would be as good as Fury Road. The last Mad Max film came out 30 years ago and since then, Mel Gibson had disgraced himself. George Miller’s three previous films were Happy Feet, Happy Feet Two, and Babe: Pig in the City. Who knew that Miller still had the badass prowess to produce a movie as unique and wonderful as Fury Road? The latest entry in the Mad Max series sets itself apart from its predecessors by focusing on female lead, Charlize Theron’s Furiosa, instead of focusing on Max himself. That may sound odd on paper, but Furiosa adds more depth to the story than is featured in the previous films in the series. Fury Road is the excellent sequel that the Mad Max series deserves.
2. Ex Machina:
Like time travel, artificial intelligence is a topic that has been thoroughly explored in science fiction. Ever since the invention of the computer, people have been fascinated about the limits of technology and have feared that technology might someday take over the world. This concept has been explored in movies and literature for decades, but Ex Machina embodies this fascination and fear better than any other previous artificial intelligence story. Whereas Terminator and The Matrix show a world where artificial intelligence has already created a dark dystopian future, Ex Machina shows in intimate detail how an artificial intelligence could be created and how this intelligence would accept its existence and make choices about its own future. Ex Machina is a brilliant and original story and has exceptional performances from its small cast of Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, and Oscar Isaac. The film is writer Alex Garland’s directorial debut and I am very excited to see what he does next.
1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens:
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is now the third highest grossing film of all time and that is for good reason. The Force Awakens is everything that fans could’ve possibly hoped for in a Star Wars sequel and more. Fan favorite characters Han Solo, Princess Leia, and Luke Skywalker all make make triumphant returns in the film and remind us why we fell in love with Star Wars in the first place. However, the best characters in the film turn out to be the new cast. The old cast left very big shoes to fill but Rey, Finn, Kylo Ren, and Poe Dameron are all characters that our worthy of following in the legacy of their predecessors. Star Wars is now back in a big way and audiences will have the joy of seeing a new Star Wars movie every year for the foreseeable future. What a time to be a live.