Anticipation. Will it be good? Will it be horribly, horribly bad? If you can believe the trailers, every movie will be amazing but we all know that isn’t true. I thought I’d take a look at the next year’s slate of films and try to figure out which ones have the better chance of actually being good. My good movie picking criteria: who is involved, movie buzz or I just really want it to be a quality flick. So yes, it’s very scientific.
Warm Bodies (February 1st) – The heart-warming tale of a girl, the apocalypse and that cute boy she likes…who happens to be a member of the undead. I guess we just haven’t seen enough zombie comedies in our lives. Add a little romance and you’ve got yourself a deal. Plus having John Malkovich doesn't hurt.
The Franchise Continues
A Good Day to Die Hard (February 14) – This is a franchise that has very rarely let us down. Hey, you know what you’re getting when you get a Bruce Willis/John McClane movie. The first was a classic but it’s hard to argue that the next three weren’t entertaining. Why not a fifth?
Iron Man 3 (May 3) – this blockbuster keeps rolling along. The second Iron Man wasn’t that great but with a boost from The Avengers, a new darker tone and Sir Ben Kingsleyas the big bad guy, who doesn’t want to take another trip with Tony Stark?
Storytellers Doing What They Do Best
Side Effects (February 8) – I’ll give director Steve (Ocean’s Eleven, Traffic) Soderbergh a chance no matter what he does. He doesn’t always pull it off but at least he’s always trying something different. This is a psychological thriller with Channing Tatum, Jude Law, Rooney Mara and Catherine Zeta-Jones, so we know the acting talent is there.
Much Ado About Nothing (June 7) – If you listen very closely, you’ll hear geek-squealing every time this one is mentioned. If you were thinking hardcore Shakespeare fans, you’d be wrong. Joss “Buff, Angel, Avengers, Geek Overlord” Whedon is taking some of his favourite actors to work with and sharing his vision of the classic. Joss is usually a good horse to bet on.
The Great Gatsby (May 10) – The one other time director Baz Luhrman reworked a classic piece of literature, we were collectively blown away with Romeo + Juliet. Is it too much to ask for another helping? (And DiCaprio is in this one too)
Star Trek into Darkness (May 17) – JJ Abrams took a tired franchise, fed it, bought it some nice clothes and gave it some confidence. No, this isn’t the story of my first job interview; it was the amazingly slick job he did making us care about Star Trek again. Trekkies AND non-believers. I’m betting he can do it again.
Comic Book Crazy
Man of Steel (June 14) – I’m sorry, Superman fans. You haven’t had a decent representation of the character since Superman 2 (yes that includes Smallville) but…what’s this? Some newbie actor in the tights, the director of 300/Watchmen and a little guidance from the guy behind the Dark Knight trilogy have brought us a trailer that has me “believing a man can fly” (rip-off of Christopher Reeve’s movie tagline).
Piece of History
42 (April 12) – When Brian Helgeland writes a good movie, we get L.A. Confidential and Mystic River. When he’s off his game, we get The Order and The Postman. The story of Jackie Robinson should be a no-brainer and Harrison Ford really needs a win.
Monuments Men (December 20) – Again, you have to get excited about a movie when you hear who’s involved and what they’ve done before. George Clooney is writing and directing and staring. He’s brought in Daniel Craig, Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, John Goodman and put them up against Nazis. I’m getting in line now.
Dose of the Funny
Admission (March 8) – Tina Fey, Paul Rudd and the director of About a Boy, what’s not to like? As much as I would have liked if Fey had written this, she's still one of the best comedians out there. Add another in Rudd and I have high hopes for the story of a university admissions officer whose life is shaken up with the arrival of an 18-year-old son.
Anchorman: The Legend Continues (December 20) – when the first one came out in 2004, Will Farrell was just starting to make his name in film. So were Paul Rudd and Steve Carrell. They’ve had a busy nine years. With everyone back, why wouldn’t this bring the same sense of awesomeness?
Here's to hoping the year is filled with great movies, and maybe some good ones too. What ones are you most looking forward to?
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