Not to rush the last few weeks of the year away, but how about a 2010 top ten list for you? AOL recently released its "2010 Year End Hot Searches" lists, most of which are packed with what you'd expect. The top search in the health category is actually something that's plagued the movie industry quite a bit this year: bedbugs. Tiger Woods took the #1 spot in the celebrity category while the BP Oil Spill did so in the top news section. Top trend gold went to Betty White while the Apple iPad trumped the competition in the shopping category.
That's all quite interesting, but now for the really good stuff -– movies. It's no surprise that the top seeded film on this list is one of the biggest earners of the year, 'Alice in Wonderland.' Close behind in the #2 spot is the actual top earner of the year, 'Toy Story 3,' followed by 'The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,' 'Shutter Island' and 'Iron Man 2.' Rounding out the top ten is 'Inception' at #6, 'How to Train Your Dragon' in seventh, 'Clash of Titans' in eighth, 'The Last Airbender' in ninth and, lastly, 'Sex and the City 2.'
Is this what you'd expect?
It generally should be. A large portion of this list correlates with the year's top earners. So far, 'Toy Story 3' leads with $415 million domestically while 'Alice in Wonderland' is right behind with $334.2 million. 'Iron Man 2' is the third highest earner with $312.1 million while 'Eclipse' is in the fourth position with $300.5 million followed by 'Inception' with $292.3 million. In fact, the only film on Aol's list that isn't one of the 20 highest earners this year is 'Sex and the City 2.'
Now, this makes sense. Clearly the movies that are being seen by the most people will be the ones being tracked down on the Internet more often. The trouble comes when you consider quality. It's quite frustrating that 'Alice in Wonderland' has been given so much attention. The film isn't terrible, but it certainly doesn't deserve the same haul as a film like 'Toy Story 3.' Now that's a movie that's really worthy of a place on this list, on box office lists and ultimately on award lists.
While 'Eclipse' and 'Iron Man 2' are far from the top films of the year, we can let those two slide. First off, 'Eclipse' was a major step up for the 'Twilight' series and 'Iron Man 2' was really quite impressive except for the fact that it wasn't as good as its predecessor, which set the bar insurmountably high to begin with. It's quite odd that 'Inception' only managed to secure the sixth position. Not only did it perform well in theaters, but you'd think after seeing a movie that leaves so many questions unanswered, moviegoers would be scrambling to find new information. Regardless, Leonard DiCaprio's double appearance on this list is entirely justifiable; it's just interesting that 'Shutter Island' was the higher ranking of the two.
It's nice to see a sweet and well made film like 'How to Train Your Dragon' on this list, but the same cannot be said for 'Clash of Titans,' 'The Last Airbender' or 'Sex and the City 2.' It's these films that really bring up a major concern within the industry; apparently the general public likes crap. Actually, 'Clash of the Titans' isn't exactly crap, just low grade entertainment, but 'The Last Airbender' and 'Sex and the City 2' shouldn't have made nearly as much money as they did, nor should people be spending so much time researching them on Aol. Okay, maybe there was so much hype around 'Sex and the City 2' that most of these searches occurred before the film actually hit theaters, but 'The Last Airbender?' Yes it has a pretty devoted fan base, but it's unlikely that it's wide enough to earn these kinds of numbers.
A few films that surprisingly didn't make the list are the ones that made it into the top ten for their domestic box office hauls, but didn't manage to do so here – 'Despicable Me,' 'Shrek Forever After' and 'The Karate Kid.' 'The Karate Kid' is perhaps the one you'd least expect to be searched unless we're talking about little girls in love with Jayden Smith, but 'Despicable Me' and 'Shrek Forever After' are slightly different, 'Shrek' being part of a wildly popular franchise and 'Despicable Me' just being such a surprise hit. Plus, we're not going to lie; we did search for a few clips of those Minions after seeing the film.
No, this list isn't exactly the most profound data, but it does further solidify the fact that most folks are generally interested in the more commercial films regardless of quality. It's just the nature of the beast and there's really nothing that we can do about it. Then again, there's no harm in dreaming of the day when a more important film like 'Waiting for Superman' makes a list like this.
What 2010 film do you wish the public showed the most interest in?