2007 was another fine year at the movies, perhaps most notable for me as Josh Brolin's big breakout, which went mostly unacknowledged, although he's been reaping the benefits ever since...
1. Spider-Man 3 ($336 mil)
Do you begin to sense a pattern about the trends of audiences yet? Another blockbuster installment of a popular franchise scores big. Sure, most fans think of this one as their least favorite in the series, but here it is, the most popular movie of 2007. It's still my favorite. Tobey Maguire is finally something other than merely geeky, getting to be geeky cool (to his mind, anyway) when the Venom symbiont has affected his personality. That's progress!
2. Shrek the Third ($322 mil)
This is the installment I have the fewest memories of in this franchise, but clearly audiences were not deterred by the comparatively generic work. Sometimes it's just about revisiting favorite characters.
3. Transformers ($319 mil)
Michael Bay makes a movie about giant robots who happen to also transform into common human vehicle and previously have been a 1980s cartoon and toy franchise. Part of the reason these movies succeed so well is because of Bay's typically impeccable casting, with twitchy Shia LaBeouf leading the way, followed by American's temporary sexpot Megan Fox.
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($309 mil)
The most indulgent entry in this franchise allows Jack Sparrow to be as surreal as possible, plus literally meet his maker, Keith Richards, who helped inspire Johnny Depp's original portrayal. Still, there's an awful lot of moody reminders that pirates really weren't appreciated in their time.
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix ($292 mil)
The lasting image from this installment will always be the most thrilling wizards duel in movie history, between Voldemort and Dumbledore. (This is one of the thing Peter Jackson got very, very wrong in his Lord of the Rings trilogy.)
6. I Am Legend ($256 mil)
Will Smith's hot streak continues full steam ahead, adapting the Hollywood favorite story from Richard Matheson as seemingly the last man left standing in a global apocalypse, sort of like the action version of Cast Away.
7. The Bourne Ultimatum ($227 mil)
Matt Damon finally learns Jason Bourne's real name (David Webb) in this final installment in the original trilogy. Because I love mythology and character work, this is almost by default my favorite entry.
8. National Treasure: Book of Secrets ($219 mil)
Nicolas Cage returns as the modern Indiana Jones. This is my favorite of the two films so far in this series. I'm hoping for another, ideally from that mysterious page from the eponymous book borrowed with a wink from the president portrayed by Bruce Greenwood. (Bruce Greenwood is always awesome. He must also return.)
9. Alvin and the Chipmunks ($217 mil)
This update of another 1980s property (at least this is the point where it was famous for me) is also another blend of live action and computer animated characters. This may be Jason Lee's lasting cultural memory, given that My Name Is Earl inexplicably failed to find a wide viewership, even though it was awesome.
10. 300 ($210 mil)
The digital landscape movie that audiences absolutely loved, and also the reason everyone is still trying really hard to combat Hollywood's efforts to make Gerard Butler a star. This is also the next reason why Zack Snyder is a commodity halfway between Robert Rodriguez and Christopher Nolan.
Other personal highlights:
11. Ratatouille ($206 mil)
12. The Simpsons Movie ($183 mil)
15. Juno ($143 mil)
19. American Gangster ($130 mil)
21. Bee Movie ($126 mil)
22. Superbad ($121 mil)
25. Blades of Glory ($118 mil)
26. Ocean's Thirteen ($117 mil)
27. Ghost Rider ($115 mil)
31. The Bucket List ($93 mil)
32. The Game Plan ($90 mil)
33. Beowulf ($82 mil)
36. No Country for Old Men ($74 mil)
37. Fred Claus ($72 mil)
40. Charlie Wilson's War ($66 mil)
46. TMNT ($54 mil)
48. 3:10 to Yuma ($53 mil)
49. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street ($52 mil)
52. Music and Lyrics ($50 mil)
55. Michael Clayton ($49 mil)
60. License to Wed ($43 mil)
66. There Will Be Blood ($40 mil)
74. Freedom Writers ($36 mil)
75. Smokin' Aces ($35 mil)
77. The Number 23 ($35 mil)
87. 28 Weeks Later ($28 mil)
88. We Own the Night ($28 mil)
94. The Mist ($25 mil)
96. Grindhouse ($25 mil)
98. Across the Universe ($24 mil)
101. Hot Fuzz ($23 mil)
108. Gone Baby Gone ($20 mil)
121. Elizabeth: The Golden Age ($16 mil)
125. Alpha Dog ($15 mil)
127. Lions for Lambs ($15 mil)
135. Shoot 'Em Up ($12 mil)
146. Pathfinder ($10 mil)
159. Martian Child ($7 mil)
168. In the Valley of Elah ($6 mil)
172. The Last Legion ($5 mil)
175. Lucky You ($5 mil)
178. Rescue Dawn ($5 mil)
182. The Lookout ($4 mil)
189. I'm Not There ($4 mil)
192. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford ($3 mil)
217. Blade Runner: The Final Cut ($1 mil)
241. The Hunting Party ($900 thou)
296. Southland Tales ($200 thou)
550. Slipstream ($8 thou)
Source: Box Office Mojo