Apologies for not posting this yesterday, we had an impromptu cinema trip to see Les Miserables during the time I’d anticipated sitting down and tapping this out.
2012 was a pretty good year for movies, and it looks like 2013 could be just as good, if not better. Here’s my pick of the films I’m looking forward to seeing most this year. There’s a few that have already been released in other countries, but haven’t made their way to England yet, but in my eye’s they still count as 2013’s films.
I’ve been looking forward to this film for a long time, because I do love animated films that are skewed firmly at adults. It hasn’t helped that Wreck-It Ralph has been out in America for over 2 months now, and that I’ve been hearing no end about it on The Adam Carolla Show, as he apparently voices a donut in the film. I’ve heard good things about it, but I think quite a lot of the references may go over my head, as I’ve never been a massive gamer, especially when it comes to the more classic arcade games. Anything related to Crash Bandicoot, Pac-Man, Sonic, Mario, Grand Theft Auto or Portal should be pretty clear to me, but I don’t recognise most of the villains in the picture over here. Hopefully there’ll be plenty to keep me amused though.
UK release: 8 February 2013
10. A Liar’s Autobiography
I’ve got a lot of time for Monty Python, so a documentary about one of the six key members, and the only one to have sadly passed away, Graham Chapman, is something that I will gladly pay good money to see. The likelihood of a documentary appearing in a cinema near me is roughly the same as Graham Chapman appearing in person to do a Q&A afterwards, but I’ll definitely be tracking it down on DVD.
UK release: 8 February 2013
Another film that’s been out in America for two months now, Lincoln is this year’s front-runner for the Oscars, accumulating a total of twelve nominations, just two shy of Titanic and All About Eve‘s fourteen-nomination record. I don’t necessarily have that much interest in US history (no offence, American readers, I didn’t see The Iron Lady either) but the sheer depth of character actors in this cast, plus Steven Spielberg’s direction, makes this a must see. And, Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s in it, along with Tommy Lee Jones, Jackie Earle Haley and John Hawkes. I’ll watch pretty much anything with any of them in.
UK release: 25 January 2013
8. Robot & Frank
There’s no surprise why I’m looking forward to seeing this film – it’s about a man and a robot, attempting a heist together. It came out in America in August, so I’ve been waiting a while, and I reckon I’ll be waiting a little longer than March, the planned UK release date, as a Frank Langella film may not have enough wattage to draw the crowds near me. I guarantee I’ll see it some day, as soon as I can.
UK release: 8 March 2013
7. Iron Man 3
So, Iron Man was amazing, and Iron Man 2 was a bit of a let down, but Iron Man 3 is going to be absolutely amazing. Why? Because it’s being directed by Shane ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang‘ Black, working with Robert Downey Jr. again for the first time since that amazing festive film noir that I love so much. Plus, Ben Kingsley’s playing the Mandarin (with a strange accent), and the trailer looks epic, with Stark’s cliffside mansion being destroyed, possibly with himself and Pepper as well. April suddenly seems a long way away.
UK release: 26 April 20136. Monsters University
Monsters Inc. is, in my opinion, one of the more underrated Pixar films, and when this prequel was announced I heard a lot of people asking “Why?” and even more just ignoring the fact altogether. But me? I couldn’t wait. I loved Monsters Inc., and whilst it’s not Pixar’s greatest film (that would be Wall-E), there is still an awful lot of gold that could be mined from furthering the universe created within it. And setting the film is a university populated entirely by monsters sounds genius. I’m intrigued to see what the overarching plot is, as just centring it on Mike and Sully not getting on too well initially, before becoming the best of friends, won’t suffice for a film on its own. And the teaser, where Mike becomes a cycloptic disco ball, is hilarious.
UK release: 12 July 2013
5. Warm Bodies
Back in December 2011, this was one of my most anticipated films of 2012. It has since been pushed back from it’s original intended release date, but this does at least give me a chance to read the book, by Isaac Marion, that I received for Christmas first. The book pretty much always ends up better than the film, so I think I should read the book first if I can, to make that experience the best it can be. I’m looking forward to both the book and the film because the story’s about zombies, which are awesome, but they’re about a particular zombie called R (Nicholas Hoult) who falls in love with a non-zombie (otherwise called a person), and slowly, possibly, becomes de-zombified again. It cannot be overestimated how much I don’t want this to be comparable to Twilight, which I’ve heard bandied about a bit, but I personally don’t think that will be the case, as the trailer seems far too self aware and comedic for that.
UK release: 8 February 2013
4. Django Unchained
Next Friday! This finally comes out in less than a week! I love Tarantino films, even Death Proof (though Mary Elizabeth Winstead’s cheerleader outfit certainly helps there), and this one just looks amazing. I’ve heard that it isn’t his best work, but still sits in the better half of his back catalogue, which still makes it a pretty amazing film. My only problem, and the reason this isn’t a few notches higher, is that it stars Jamie Foxx, who I honestly don’t have too much faith in in terms of acting, or his ability to carry a movie. Hopefully the supporting cast, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson, an Oscar-nominated Christoph Waltz and a similar amount of character actors as Lincoln should more than make up for Foxx being front and centre.
UK release: 18 January 2013
3. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Before An Unexpected Journey this would not have appeared so high on my list, because I had some severe doubts as to how good it would be. But now my doubts have been quashed and The Hobbit’s first third proved to be wonderful I can start looking forward to the next two parts, which will surely be an improvement, because of how much more dragon there’ll be in them. I love dragons, particularly the eyes. I filled a lot of sketchbooks when I was younger just drawing dragon’s eyes, so what other picture was I going to use? Frodo on the gold pile? Please, this is going to be Smaug’s movie, and I’m very much looking forward to what Peter Jackson and Benedict Cumberbatch are going to do with his character.
UK release: 13 December 20132. The World’s End
The Cornetto trilogy comes to an end this year with the third feature-length collaboration of Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and presumably half the cast of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz (including Martin Freeman from both of those, Paddy Considine from Fuzz and Eddie Marsan’s newcomer to the series).Shaun and Fuzz are, in my opinion, two of the best comedies to have been made in the past decade, mainly because they were made by people who genuinely loved films, so were able to reference and almost endless amount of them. I don’t know how much they’ll be able to continue this with The World’s End, a story of five friends meeting up after twenty years to complete a pub crawl, as there seems to be less potential for meta-mockery in a tale that may or may not involve an apocalypse, as end-of-the-world films tend to be less classic, quotable and memorable than those involving zombies or over the top action. I’m also a little apprehensive as to how clean-cut the characters seem to be from the image shown.
UK release: 14 August 2013
1. Pacific Rim
Robots! Giant robots! Fighting giant monsters! From another dimension! Or a parallel universe! Or something! I don’t care! Guillermo del Toro returns to directing after a five year hiatus since the wonderful Hellboy II (and some dalliance with The Hobbit), and he returns with my most anticipated film of this year. The film looks amazing – and not just visually – and the lack of mega stars to get in the way of the production (the biggest names are Idris Elba, Charlie Day, Charlie Hunnam and Ron Perlman) will give this a more realistic feel. As realistic as skyscraper-sized battle-mechs fighting mountainous beasties can be, anyway. The only bad thing is that I have to wait until July to watch this thing!
UK release: 12 July 2013
Others I’m looking forward to:
The Great Gatsby – I’m currently reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic after my interest was piqued by his appearance in Midnight In Paris, and so far (about 5 chapters in) I like what I’ve read. I am always slightly concerned whenever Tobey Maguire is involved in something, but Baz Luhrmann has so far made 3 out of 4 great films (Australia, please go away). UK release: 17 May 2013
Zero Dark Thirty – Great reviews and a Best Picture and Best Actress Oscar nomination bode well for Kathryn Bigelow’s follow up to The Hurt Locker. I’ve not got long to wait, but I’m still trying to get a handle on just what kind of film this will be. Maybe that’s a good thing. UK release: 25 January 2013
Star Trek Into Darkness – J.J. Abrams 2010 Star Trek still remains as my only foray into the entirety of the Star Trek pantheon. It was quite good by all accounts, but it was missing a little Benedict Cumberbatch, which this sequel seems to have rectified most sufficiently. UK release: 17 May 2013
Elysium – A slap-headed Matt Damon takes on capitalism and the class system in District 9’s Neill Blomkamp’s second feature. The teaser trailer looks good, and Sharlto Copley’s in there somewhere, so this will at least be interesting. UK release: 20 September 2013
Gravity – Imagine Moon, but less mysterious and with two people instead of one. Sounds promising, right? Especially when one of those people is George Clooney, and the director is Alfonso Cuarón. My only problem? The other person on screen is Sandra Bullock, who is normally a good reason not to watch a film. UK release: 18 October 2013
Compliance – There is absolutely no chance of a film this small being released in a cinema near me, but from what I’ve heard its quite gripping. UK release: 1 March 2013
Kick-Ass 2 – I was fully on board for this sequel when original director Matthew Vaughn was involved, but I’ve decreased on it a little since the director’s gig has switched to Jeff Wadlow, so has only previously directed a crappy-looking horror (Cry_Wolf) and an even crappier-looking dance film (Never Back Down). Some great additions to the 2010 cast, including Jim Carrey, John Leguizamo and Donald Faison, could make this a winner though. UK release: 19 July 2013
And there’s a few that I’m a little tentative about; ones that could be great, but have a high chance of not being that great too:
World War Z – I loved the book, I mean loved it, but the trailer looks a bit iffy, with overly CGI zombies and a story that, by the looks of it, follows Brad Pitt’s United Nations worker rather than the multi-stranded, international focus of the book. UK release: 21 June 2013
Now You See Me – I love the trailer, cast and concept of this magicians heist movie starring Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Mark Ruffalo, Mirgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Isla Fisher, but I can’t get past the directer – Louis Leterrier, whose back record is almost entirely dreadful. UK release: 21 June 2013
The Tomb – Stallone and Schwartzenegger teaming up again, this time as a prison architect locked up inside one of his own creations and the top dog convict incarcerated there, this could be just a little bit awesome, but I have my doubts, and everyone I mention the film to just rolls their eyes in despair. UK release: 27 September 2013
Movie 43 – I’m going to have to watch it eventually, seeing as it features Kate Winslet (along with every one else), but this sketch-based comedy from various directors including the Farrelly brothers, James Gunn and Brett Ratner actually looks pretty damn funny in places. I just hope all the best jokes haven’t been used in the trailers. UK release: 25 January 2013
Cuban Fury – Nick Frost as a salsa dancer. That image alone makes me want to see this, but could this be his Run, Fatboy, Run? It’s James Griffiths’ feature-length directorial debut, but he made Episodes, which was quite enjoyable. UK release: 22 March 2013
Anchorman 2 – I loved the original, but can lightning strike twice? Having the same principle cast and director will certainly help, but I won’t be surprised if this is disappointing. UK release: 20 December 2013
Last Vegas – Morgan Freeman, Kevin Kline, Michael Douglas and Robert de Niro all go to Vegas to celebrate Douglas’ bachelor party. If, like it sounds, this turns out to be Space Cowboys meets Bachelor Party, then you can count me in. UK release: 20 December 2013
RIPD – Ryan Reynolds dies and, in heaven, joins the Rest In Peace Department in order to find the man who killed him. I think the premise is interesting, as is the participation of Kevin Bacon and Jeff Bridges amongst the cast, but alas its being directed by Flightplan‘s Robert Schwenke, so a success is not guaranteed. UK release: 19 July 2013
Sin City: A Dame To Kill For – This should easily be one of my most anticipated films of 2013, considering how much I loved Robert Rodriguez, Frank Miller and Quentin Tarantino’s first film, and I’ve since read and loved all of Miller’s graphic novels in the Sin City series, but this film has been in and out of development for about seven years now, so I’ll be waiting until I’m actually sat in a cinema, about to watch it, before I get even a little bit excited. UK release: 4 October 2013
Ender’s Game – I’ve just finished reading Orson Scott Card’s sci-fi novel on which this is based, and I thought the story of a gifted child being trained to lead an army against a deadly alien force to be pretty damn good. And then I found out they’d cast Harrison Ford as Colonel Graff, and hired X-Men Origins: Wolverine‘s director Gavin Hood to direct it, and my heart sank. I will be beyond surprised if this turns out to be even halfway as good as the book, and I’m guessing there’ll be some significant rewrites, mainly the amount of child nudity, including a naked shower fistfight between two boys, one aged ten and the other thirteen. UK release: 25 October 2013
This Is the End – I love me some meta, but this could be going a little bit too far as a bunch of comedic actors including James Franco, Seth Rogen and Jay Baruchel play themselves in a film about them trying to survive the apocalypse. The trailer’s pretty funny, but I fear there may be too many people that annoy me in this film (Danny McBride, Jonah Hill, sometimes Craig Robertson), but who knows, I may get to see them die! UK release: 28 June 2013