'The Revenant' & More 2015 Movies That Prove It Was The Year Of The Bear

2015 was a landmark year in film. Sure, the box office had a record-setting year, bringing in 11 billion dollars for the first time ever. And yes, a number of beloved franchises like Star Wars, Jurassic Park, and Mad Max had wildly successful returns to the big screen after long absences. But the most notable thing about 2015 at the movies was without a doubt the prevalence of bears in films. Yes, not since the days of Hollywood legend Bart the bear (legendary bear actor once referred to by Anthony Hopkins as "the John Wayne of bears") have the furry giants been such a big part of the Hollywood landscape.

And it's not hard to see why, as bears are incredibly versatile on the big screen. They can be funny like Ted, menacing like the bear in The Revenant , or adorable like Paddington. They are also a diverse bunch, with polar bears, grizzlies, and teddy bears all sharing the spotlight. Clearly, the rest of Hollywood could learn a thing or two from the bears. So even though 2015 was technically the year of the sheep, it was definitely the year of the bear at the cinema. And here are the films that made sure of that.

The Revenant

The most infamous bear of the year, she gets a bad rap because she was falsely accused of rape. Now that she's been exonerated, fans can finally appreciate her simply as the mere attempted murderer that she is.

Ted 2

Easily the most foul-mouthed bear of the year, and probably ever, Ted proves that ursine citizens can be just as crass as anyone else.

Paddington

Essentially the polar opposite of Ted (well, actually I guess the polar opposite would be a polar bear, ba dum chh), the only f-bomb Paddington drops is "friendship".

A Walk In The Woods

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A lot of actors would be intimidated at the prospect of sharing the screen with legends like Robert Redford and Nick Nolte, but these hairy thespians are such pros that they managed to steal the show from their lauded co-stars.

Into The Grizzly Maze

The mammoth grizzly in this insane film is definitely over-the-top, and is more of an outright villain than maybe any bear ever since he hunts humans for sport.

Backcountry

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Another bad guy bear (I'm sensing a theme), this guy drew comparisons to Jaws for the menacing and suspenseful way in which he stalks his prey.

Boonie Bears: Mystical Winter

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This Chinese animated film didn't get a release in the U.S., which is a shame because its progressively positive depiction of bears could have done a lot to combat the frequent typecasting of the misunderstood mammals as villains here in the States.

Infinitely Polar Bear

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OK, so there aren't actually any bears in this movie about a bipolar man taking care of his two daughters, but it's clear the title was hoping to capitalize on the animals' popularity.

It remains to be seen whether or not bears will continue their pop culture dominance in 2016, but with Norm of the North and Kung Fu Panda 3 both lumbering into theaters this month, I'd say it looks like this could be another beary good year at the movies.

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