Okay, so this one might be a teeny bit lopsided. I fully expect Die Hard to win its way into the final four and I won’t be the least bit surprised if it makes it to the final round. Heck, it’s probably the odds-on favorite to take the crown. Pretty much anything I might put up against Die Hard in the first round was going to get steamrolled. One of the reasons Die Hard was able to redefine action movies is that the genre wasn’t in the best place in the late 80’s. Take a look at the other action movies of the year and you will see what I mean. Other than Midnight Run, my best options were They Live, Bloodsport, Above the Law and Action Jackson. I like some of those movies and I know they all have their fans. But Midnight Run is better than all of them. It’s a near-perfect buddy comedy that had the misfortune to come up against John McClane.
James McAvoy is turning 38 today. He began acting in the late nineties and has had a distinguished career in film (mixed with some television) and on the British stage. One of his early stage roles was as Romeo in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet; he has since had the “Romeo” part in two films adapted (more or less) from that play, the 2003 film Bollywood Queen and the 2009 animated feature Gnomeo and Juliet. He emerged as a major star in the mid-2000s with lead roles in The Last King of Scotland, Atonement, and Wanted.
In 2011 he made the first of three appearances in the film role he is probably best known for, Charles Xavier in X-Men: First Class and two sequels: