Annal: 2005 Saturn Award for Best Action/Adventure/Thriller Film

Results of the Saturn Award in the year 2005.

Film:Kill Bill: Volume 2

Kill Bill: Volume 2

Quentin Tarantino

“The Bride” (Uma Thurman) gets her satisfaction—and so do we—in Quentin Tarantino’s “roaring rampage of revenge,” Kill Bill, Vol. 2. Where Vol. 1 was a hyper-kinetic tribute to the Asian chop-socky grindhouse flicks that have been thoroughly cross-referenced in Tarantino’s film-loving brain, Vol. 2—not a sequel, but Part Two of a breathtakingly cinematic epic—is Tarantino’s contemporary martial-arts Western, fueled by iconic images, music, and themes lifted from any source that Tarantino holds dear, from the action-packed cheapies of William…

Film:The Aviator (2004)

The Aviator

Martin Scorsese

From Hollywood’s legendary Cocoanut Grove to the pioneering conquest of the wild blue yonder, Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator celebrates old-school filmmaking at its finest. We say “old school” only because Scorsese’s love of golden-age Hollywood is evident in his approach to his subject—Howard Hughes in his prime (played by Leonardo DiCaprio in his)—and especially in his technical mastery of the medium reflecting his love for classical filmmaking of the studio era. Even when he’s using state-of-the-art digital trickery for the film’s exciting flight scenes…

Film:The Bourne Supremacy

The Bourne Supremacy

Paul Greengrass

Good enough to suggest long-term franchise potential, The Bourne Supremacy is a thriller fans will appreciate for its well-crafted suspense, and for its triumph of competence over logic (or lack thereof). Picking up where The Bourne Identity left off, the action begins when CIA assassin and partial amnesiac Jason Bourne (a role reprised with efficient intensity by Matt Damon) is framed for a murder in Berlin, setting off a chain reaction of pursuits involving CIA handlers (led by Joan Allen and the duplicitous Brian Cox, with Julia Stiles returning…

Film:Collateral (2004)

Collateral

Michael Mann

Collateral offers a change of pace for Tom Cruise as a ruthless contract killer, but that’s just one of many reasons to recommend this well-crafted thriller. It’s from Michael Mann, after all, and the director’s stellar track record with crime thrillers (Thief, Manhunter, and especially Heat) guarantees a rich combination of intelligent plotting, well-drawn characters, and escalating tension, beginning here when icy hit-man Vincent (Cruise) recruits cab driver Max (Jamie Foxx) to drive him through a nocturnal tour of Los Angeles,…

Film:The Manchurian Candidate (2004)

The Manchurian Candidate

Jonathan Demme

Serving together in the Persian Gulf War, Captain Bennett Marco and Sgt. Raymond Shaw were part of a platoon of soldiers kidnapped and brainwashed. Ten years later, Shaw gears up for his vice presidential campaign while Marco eventually remembers being kidnapped and discovers Shaw’s powerful mother played a big part in that scheme. Determined to reveal the truth behind everything, Marco must first convince Shaw that the brainwashing really happened.

Film:National Treasure

National Treasure

Jon Turteltaub

Ever since he was a boy Benjamin Franklin Gates (Cage) has been obsessed with finding a treasure few dare to believe exists—the legendary Knights Templar Treasure. As Gates tries to find and decipher ancient riddles that will lead him to the greatest treasure known to man he’s dogged by a ruthless enemy who wants it for himself. Now in a race against time Gates must steal one of America’s most sacred and guarded documents—the Declaration of Independence—or let it and a key clue to the mystery fall into dangerous hands. Heart-pounding chases close calls and the FBI turn Gates’ quest into a high-stakes crime caper and the most exciting treasure hunt you’ve ever experienced.

Book:The Phantom of the Opera: The Original Novel

The Phantom of the Opera: The Original Novel

Gaston Leroux

The actors, singers, and patrons of the Paris Opera House say that a ghost haunts the labyrinthine chambers beneath its stage. While there are those who laugh off such superstitions, they always do so nervously, in the bright light of day. Nearly everyone connected with the Opera House in any way has felt the phantom’s vague, troubling presence. But beautiful, talented young singer Christine Daae will soon experience a terror far more acute than any vague feeling of unease. For she is about to learn the secret of why the man who has made the tunnels beneath Paris his private domain must forever hide his face behind a mask.

Part horror story, part historical romance, and part detective thriller, the timeless tale of a masked, disfigured musical genius who lives beneath the Paris Opera House is familiar to millions of readers, as well as to movie and theatre-goers. At the heart of the story’s long-standing popularity lies its questioning of a universal theme: the relationship between outward appearance and the beauty of darkness of the human soul.

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