Top 25 SF And Fantasy Films of 2012

Despite some notable high points, 2012 hasn’t been the strongest year for sci-fi and fantasy films.

Your knee-jerk reaction to a statement like that might be, “Hang on! Avengers? Dark Knight Rises? Looper? Has SFX gone mad?”

And yeah, there are some great, great films in the Top 10, but the quality starts to dip quite drastically as you head into the mid and lower reaches of the chart. So much so, we seriously considered only doing a Top 20 this year to save the ignominy of having to include John Carter.

Don’t get us wrong. We don’t have as much of a downer on John Carter as some people, but, well, one of the top films of the year?

Between Carter and the behemoths at the top of the chart there are a lot of good-but-not-great films. This year, animated movies have done particularly well almost by default; they’re jolly, fun, well-made and a darn site less irritating to watch than vacuous action movies. 2012, then, is the triumph of the not-bad sci-fi and fantasy movie.

But there have been some pleasant surprises. Especially the number of original movies (ie, not sequels or based on comics or books) in the Top 10. See, Hollywood, you do have it in you. It’s also been a great year for quirky, low-budget films.

This list was compiled by votes from a vast range of SFX writers, both on staff and freelance (about 40 people in all). So it’s the critics’ choice. Which doesn’t make it more or less valid than a reader-voted choice, but it does mean it hasn’t been knobbled by Joss Whedon fans block voting. What that means for The Avengers and The Cabin In The Wood…? Well, read on and find out.

Countdown starts on the next page…