It’s once again time for my annual report of what I think are the coolest and most exhilarating movies of the upcoming year. I started this tradition one year ago to date, when I didn’t even have my own blog yet. That particular entry was also my very first official blog entry ever. So a big thanks to my friends over at Beyond the Iron Sky for releasing my first blog. I have re-released the 2009 edition here in Zombie room and you can read it here.
One of the best parts of being a total movie nerd is the feeling of anticipation for a new movie. Some movies you even wait for years. Some times you get let down big time like with Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but some times your wait is rewarded with movies like Avatar and The Lord of the Rings. Last year there were 15 movies that made my list, but since I’m all about making things bigger and better, I decided to add a few titles to the list. So with no further ado, here’s a list of my most anticipated movies of 2010.
The American is the second feature film from director Anton Corbijn. His debut was the superb black and white Control which was a profile of Ian Curtis, the singer of Joy Division whose personal, professional, and romantic troubles led him to commit suicide at the age of 23. Corbijn is most known for his work as a photographer and the work he has done with music videos, but after Control he left no doubt of his abilities as film director. The American is a story of an assassin that hides out in Italy for one last assignment and it stars George Clooney.
I know not all of you are going to agree with this particular choice, but I’m just one of those people who like director M. Night Shyamalan, even his not-so-good work. He manages to keep interested. I do have to admit that The Last Airbender looks a bit weird and I’m some what worried how it’s going to turn out, but I’m still willing to give it a change and go see it non the less. The story follows the adventures of Aang, a young successor to a long line of Avatars, who must put his childhood ways aside and stop the Fire Nation from enslaving the Water, Earth and Air nations. And you know that it’s a true M. Night Shyamalan film, because even the trailer has a twist.
The Book of Eli is on my list mostly for superficial reasons only. Reason number one is how absolutely beautiful the movie looks (or at least what I can imagine from the trailer and images I have seen), and reason number two is the quite impressive cast that includes the always charismatic Denzel Washington who plays Eli in the film and Gary Oldman. The movie is directed by the Hughes Brothers who are an interesting duo, but in no means a safe bet. There is a lot of potential for good things in this movie. The Book of Eli is a post-apocalyptic tale, in which a lone man fights his way across America in order to protect a sacred book that holds the secrets to saving humankind.
My jaw dropped to the floor when I saw the cast list for The Expendables. In case you don’t know the movie has the manliest action cast ever, including Sylvester Stallone (who is also directing the flick), Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis and even Arnold Schwarzenegger is credited. At this point I don’t even care that the movie is probably going to suck pretty bad, because with a cast like that even if they would just beat people up and say lame one-liners, it would be so cool! Too bad they didn’t get Steven Seagal and van Damme who both turned the role down. Big mistake.
Kick-Ass is an upcoming 2010 superhero film based on the comic book of the same name by Mark Millar. Kick-Ass is a story about Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson) who is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan who one day decides to become a super-hero, even though he has no powers, training or meaningful reason to do so. I have to admit that it took me while to warm up to Kick-Ass, but as soon as I saw a red band clip of Nicolas Cage as Big Daddy shooting bullets to his daughter, I was sold immediately. I’ve added it here instead of the trailer, because the trailer didn’t work as well for me as this clip below. If I’m lucky the film will be filled with black humor and crazy characters, just like in the clip below.
Greenberg is movie directed by Noah Baumbach who is a very talented writer and has written some pretty good stuff in his career, including the amazing The Squid and the Whale and a couple of collaborations with Wes Andersson. Ben Stiller plays a New Yorker who moves to Los Angeles in order to figure out his life while he housesits for his brother, and he soon sparks with his brother’s assistant. Doesn’t sound like much, but I’m expecting a well written and heart warming story. I’m also interested seeing Stiller in what seems a bir more serious role.
The Tree of Life is the new movie from director Terrence Malick. Personally this is the only piece of information I need to want to see it. But in case you are not convinced so easily, I did some digging around. The very impressive cast includes Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, and the story centers around a family with three boys in the 1950s. The eldest son witnesses the loss of innocence. Also it is credited as a drama/fantasy/sci-fi. The Tree of Life is only the fifth feature film directed by Malick during his 40 year long career and still he is considered as one of the most respected and talented directors out there. At least by me. So when he actually does do a film, I will be lining up to see it as soon as possible.
I’m guessing Iron Man 2 doesn’t need much of an introduction. Or even reasoning why it’s on my list. I would imagine this movie is probably found on everybody’s most anticipated list. And why not. I can honestly say that I enjoyed the first part quite a lot, mostly because of Robert Downey Jr, but still. In the second part we get to also enjoy the awesome Mickey Rourke as Whiplash and Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow just to name drop a few movie stars. Nuff said!
Toy Story and Toy Story 2 are still some of Pixar’s best work and one of my personal favorites, and for that reason alone I’m exited to see the third edition. Also it is in 3D, which should give a little depth to the movie. It has been ten years since the second part was released and also time has passed in the story. Woody, Buzz, and the rest of their toy-box friends are dumped in a day-care center after their owner, Andy, departs for college. All of the original cast, including Tom Hanks as Woody and Tim Allen as Buzz Lightyear, have come on board for the last adventures of these beloved toys. Sounds pretty damn good to me.
The Rum Diary is an adaptation of a novel by the same name written by Hunter S. Thompson and it stars Johnny Depp. The last time when the two collaborated, it wasn’t only movie magic, but a classic was born. I’m of course referring to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. In The Rum Diary Depp plays Paul Kemp who is a freelance journalist who finds himself at a critical turning point in his life while writing for a run-down newspaper in the Caribbean. Other cast members includes Giovanni Ribisi and Aaron Eckhart.
Machete is an upcoming action film from director Robert Rodriguez. It is probably the first of it’s kind because it is actually an expansion of a fake trailer Rodriguez directed for the 2007 film Grindhouse. It star Danny Trejo in his first lead role as the title character. The film also stars Jessica Alba, Lindsay Lohan, Rose McGowan, Robert DeNiro and even Don Johnson. Sounds good right? But you still haven’t heard the best part, which is that Steven Seagal will be in the movie!!! For me this is like telling that God himself has part in the film. So you can imagine my excitement of wanting to see it. Here’s the original trailer for Machete from Grindhouse.
Alice in Wonderland is director Tim Burton’s take on the classic tale by Lewis Carroll. In Burton’s story the 19-year-old Alice returns to the magical world from her childhood adventure, where she reunites with her old friends and learns of her true destiny: to end the Red Queen’s reign of terror. Burton’s number one actor, Johnny Depp, is of course cast as The Mad Hatter, Helena Bonham Carter is The Red Queen and Mia Wasikowska is Alice. The whole look of the film is very Burtonesque as always and I’m expecting a fantastical adventure story only he could do. I’m also really looking forward to Depp’s performance as well. At least the styling of The Mad Hatter seems to be spot on.
The Danish Girl is an upcoming film adaptation of the novel of the same name by David Ebershoff. It is based on the life of Lili Elbe, the first person to undergo sex reassignment surgery. The film stars Nicole Kidman who plays Lili and Gwyneth Paltrow who will be his (or hers) wife. Kidman is producing the project via her production company, Blossom Films. Let the right one in director Tomas Alfredson was set to direct the film, but apparently left the project for undisclosed reasons. It is a real shame if he is no longer involved. Kidman will be playing a man in the movie and maybe this will be her Moster moment as it was for Charlize Theron back in 2003 when she won an Oscar for Best Actress.
Somewhere is an upcoming comedy-drama directed by Sofia Coppola and starring Stephen Dorff and Elle Fanning. Dorff plays a hard-living Hollywood actor who re-examines his life after his 11-year-old daughter surprises him with a visit. In my eyes Sofia Coppola hasn’t done one bad movie in her career, in fact it’s quite the opposite. She has only done excellent films, much like her father, Francis Ford Coppola, before her. My expectation are very high, but I’m totally convinced that this is going to be another great movie from Coppola.
Green Zone is an upcoming thriller war film directed by Paul Greengrass. The film is based on the 2006 book Imperial Life in the Emerald City by journalist Rajiv Chandrasekaran which is based in Green Zone, Baghdad. It stars Matt Damon, Greg Kinnear, and Brendan Gleeson. Paul Greengrass is mostly remebered for great films like United 93 and the last two Bourne movies, The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, in which he also worked with Damon. I have high hopes for this one.
The Social Network is a story about the founders of the social-networking website, Facebook, and it is directed by David Fincher. The film was adapted from Ben Mezrich’s 2009 novel The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding Of Facebook, A Tale of Sex, Money, Genius, and Betrayal. And even if the subject might sound a little bit awkward to say the least, I have complete trust in Fincher, who is definitely one of my favorite directors. I would go see every single one of his films, no matter what. The cast includes (and I warn you, that now the movie gets even weirder) Justin Timberlake (I’m not making that up, trust me) and Jesse Eisenberg. It is definitely the most intriguing movie of the year.
Black Swan is a psychological thriller film directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis and Vincent Cassel. Nina (Portman) and Lilly (Kunis) are rival ballet dancers in New York City, and Nina wins the lead in the ballet Swan Lake. Things fall apart around Nina, and she begins a downward spiral mentally. One of the reasons why I’m so attracted to this movie is that it very much reminds me of a movie I was developing myself some time ago. So Black Swan coming out is bitter sweet for me. But if some one was going to do it, I couldn’t think of a better director than Aronofsky. But the main reason of course is the visionary director himself, whose work in the past has been one of the most interesting and ground breaking of the past decade.
The Green Hornet is an upcoming superhero action film directed by Michel Gondry. It is an adaptation of the radio and television character of the same name. Seth Rogen will be The Green Hornet, Jay Chou is Kato and the amazing Christoph Waltz is Chudnofsky. I’m extremely eager to see Waltz in a different role from Inglourious Basterds. Gondry is the mastermind behind movies like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Be Kind Rewind. The participation of Michel Gondry feels almost too good to be true and we can most likely expect a very visual and original take on the whole superhero genre.
Here’s an example of how release dates change. Shutter Island was number two on my last years list as well, but as you can see it wasn’t released in 2009 as was originally planned. So it’s on my list again. Shutter Island is an upcoming horror thriller directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio. The film is based on the 2003 novel of the same name by Dennis Lehane. In 1954, two U.S. marshals investigate the disappearance of a patient from a hospital for the criminally insane on an island in Massachusetts. They run into trouble when they are deceived by the hospital’s chief administrator, a hurricane hits and an inmate riot traps them on the island. There is more than enough proof to go around that Martin Scorsese together with Leonardo DiCaprio works beautifully, with no exceptions. So I have a hard time believing this would be their first miss.
I’ve had Inception on this list for a long time now, but as time went on it has slowly but surely made it’s way closer and closer to the top. Inception is a contemporary science fiction action thriller set within the architecture of the mind, stars Leonardo DiCaprio, and is written, produced and directed by Cristopher Nolan. For me this movie seems like Nolan wanted to take a break from Batman and do something completely different before returning back to portraying Bruce Wayne. Sure it’s not official yet that Nolan would direct the third Batman movie, but we can almost surely assume it. I have been very exited about this movie for a while now, but it climbed at least 5 places up because of this beyond perfect teaser trailer (also after it there’s the new trailer that was released on Christmas, so I will include that as well). After you see the trailer, I’m pretty sure you will share my enthusiasm towards this film. It is simply mind blowing.
And here’s the new trailer:
Movies that didn´t make the list (but are still very interesting or at least worth mentioning), in alphabetical order:
And then we have Hot Tub Time Machine…
Well there you have it. That was my list, but what about yours? Do you think something is missing from these films? Is there something that doesn’t deserve to be there? Drop a comment below and share your views!
Ps. I’m already working on the list for 2011 and oh man it’s gonna be good! Can’t wait to share that with you too.
(Via ZombieRoomTop 20 Most Anticipated Movies of 2010)