Our Top 25 Most Anticipated Movies of 2013!
And so, another year begins. For film buffs, January
is always a pretty slow month, but even if that upcoming crop of films don’t look so hot, you can rest assured that Hollywood has plenty of big films up their sleeve for the rest of the year and the following is a list of 25 of the most anticipated on JoBlo.com. In the end, 2012 was a pretty damn good year for movies, and 2013 looks just as packed. In fact, it’s so jam-packed with movies, I found condensing the list to 25 movies ended up being really hard -- which is always a good sign. Obviously, not all of these movies will be winners, but the majority of them at least look
promising, and if all goes well this should prove to be another extremely memorable year of movie going. CLICK HERE TO SEE ENTIRE LIST OF 2013 RELEASES (222 films in all)
Before we get to our most anticipated of 2013 list, there are a few films that could “possibly” come out this year, but didn’t make it on to the list due to the fact that they don’t have release dates, and could potentially wind up coming out in 2014. ONLY GOD FORGIVES
, which reteams Ryan Gosling with director Nicholas Winding Refn seems like a good bet to come out this year, following a (presumed) bow at Cannes, but we’ll see. I hope so, as DRIVE was my favorite film of 2011. Spike Jonze has a new film in the works called HER, about which little is known. Being Jonze, I’m sure it’ll be weird but awesome. The Coen Bros., INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS should also come out this year, following a festival bow at Cannes or Toronto, but who knows? Certainly that’s one we’d all be looking forward to. Finally, there’s TWELVE YEARS A SLAVE, from SHAME director Steve McQueen, and starring the perennially underrated Chiwetel Ejiofor, as well as Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, and Benedict Cumberbatch. Hopefully all these will make it to the big screen this year- but even if not, this seems to be a jam-packed year. Read on…
Ruben Fleisher’s GANGSTER SQUAD gets the dubious honor of being on the “most-anticipated” list two years in a row. To be fair, GANGSTER SQUAD would have never gotten delayed had it not been for the horrific Aurora shooting- with some of the film being re-shot to eliminate a big movie theater shoot-out. The film is finally coming out, but again- is tainted by another shooting, this time the tragedy in Newton. Hopefully, people will be able to take GANGSTER SQUAD for what it (reportedly) is, a comic-book style riff on THE UNTOUCHABLES, with the action taking place against the rule of gangster Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn- who looks more like a character out of DICK TRACY than Cohen). While I’m pretty sure the pulpy tale told by GANGSTER SQUAD will only have the slightest basis in reality, and that it won’t even begin to compare to L.A CONFIDENTIAL- it still looks like a good time at the movies. Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Penn and Emma Stone are always worth watching, and who doesn’t like a good gangster movie?
People were divided on THOR’s maiden big-screen outing, although everyone pretty much agreed that Chris Hemsworth was ideal in the title role, as was Tom Hiddleston as Loki. With THE AVENGERS owning the box office throughout the summer of 2013, we can reasonably expect THOR: THE DARK WORLD
to get some serious hype towards the end of the year, especially now that Hemsworth’s become such a big star. Given that a trailer is still months away, it’s anyone’s guess as to how THE DARK WORLD is going to look, but the hiring of GAME OF THRONES vet Alan Taylor seems like a good choice, especially if this spend more time on Asgard than the first film- which is the rumor.
Reasons why THE COUNSELOR will be amazing:
- A script by Cormac McCarthy
- Directed by Ridley Scott
- Stars Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem
- It’s a crime thriller- and the last time McCarthy wrote a crime thriller, it was NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.
Need I say more?
Alfonso Cuaron’s CHILDREN OF MEN is probably my favorite film of the last ten years or so. To me, Cuaron is one of the unquestionable geniuses working in film, and I’m super-excited to see his long-awaited follow-up GRAVITY. This is another film that was supposed to come out in 2012, only to get the release date shuffle, with the rumor being that Cuaron needed more time for the VFX. It’s being shot by Emmanuel Lubezki, who contributed all those amazing long-takes to CHILDREN OF MEN. This will be a huge film for star Sandra Bullock, who plays an astronaut floating through space after a space-station calamity. George Clooney co-stars, although the rumor is that his part is small.
Martin Scorsese. That name alone is enough for THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
to immediately skyrocket right to the top of my own most anticipated of 2013 list. Add to that the fact that it once again reteams him with Leonardo DiCaprio (who’s body of work over the last decade as been almost perfect), and is written by BOARDWALK EMPIRE’s Terrence Winter, I’m salivating at the prospect of seeing this true tale of financial wheeling and dealing. Jean Dujardin, Jonah Hill and Matthew McConaughey co-star.
In all honesty- I did not like MACHETE. Sure, the fake Grindhouse trailer was fun, but stretched out to ninety minutes, it was a joke that got old fast. However, it did have its moments- chief among them being a solidly badass performance by Don Johnson, paving the way for his part in DJANGO UNCHAINED. MACHETE KILLS sees the return of Danny Trejo, with none other than Mel Gibson playing the baddie. Oh yeah, and Charlie Sheen plays the president. Seriously. Well- this will obviously be bug-nuts insane, and fun in a “midnight movie” kind of way, but I’d be lying if I said it was a 2013 release I was really excited for. Then again, I may be in for a surprise.
The trailers for OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL
, make it look like a fifty-fifty split between Sam Raimi-style genius, and 21st century Disney/ALICE IN WONDERLAND style crap. I have faith that Raimi will pull this off, but to be sure, OZ has the potential for falling flat on its face. Visually, it looks interesting, especially the 1:33:1 b&w-Kansas framing scenes being juxtaposed against the 2:35:1 candy-colored 3D spectacle of Oz. But will the script be any good, and does THE WIZARD OF OZ really need a prequel? Why not just do a big-screen version of WICKED? Another questionable aspect is the choice of leading man. James Franco is brilliant in comedies and indies- but his work in big-budget event movies is inconsistent to say the least. He has a really bad habit of phoning-in performances when he’s not engaged by the material, but again- it all comes down to whether Raimi will be able to get more out of him than others have. Hopefully, this will work. We’ll see.
Over the holidays, I got the chance to re-visit the first three DIE HARD’s- which hold up stunningly well (the first is an undisputed classic, but DIE HARDER and WITH A VENGEANCE are almost
as good). Too bad A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD looks a lot more like LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD than the other movies. Sometimes I wonder whether the new suits at Fox have even seen the old DIE HARD’s, as they seem to have no idea of what made them successful. What made Bruce Willis as John McClane unique was that he was an average blue-collar cop, forced by circumstance to become a virtual superhero. Compared to the other action heroes of his era, McClane was a flesh and blood human, full of doubt, guilt (the scene where he fails to rescue plane load of people in DIE HARD 2 is a killer), and who- above all, just wants to be a good husband and father.
Having McClane’s daughter in on the action in LIVE FREE was a good idea, as is the notion of having his son in GOOD DAY, but the action is too over-the-top. McClane should not be jumping on to jets, or taking out helicopters with his car. The action should be limited to intense hand-to-hand, shootouts, stunts, and maybe a chase scene or two. Any explosion should be done practically. A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD , with its Russian locale and huge action set pieces, looks like LIVE FREE all over again. The choice of John Moore to direct also strikes me as a bad move, as I’ve yet to enjoy any of his films (although BEHIND ENEMY LINES was passable). The rating is still up-in-the-air, but I expect Fox to release this as PG-13, another bad move.
THE HUNGER GAMES was a pleasant surprise, as I honestly walked into it expecting TWILIGHT all over again. While it was still a watered-down BATTLE ROYALE for tweens, the combination of star Jennifer Lawrence’s natural charisma, a solid supporting cast, and a surprisingly juicy heroine in Katniss Everdeen made HUNGER GAMES a cut-above the usual tween flick. While I have no idea whether Suzanne Collins’ novels will be able to sustain a franchise, THE HUNGER GAMES was good enough that I really don’t mind revisiting that world. Too bad director Gary Ross isn’t returning, as he seemed to bring a lot to the table. Hopefully Francis Lawrence will be able to deliver a good follow-up. That said, even if CATCHING FIRE is terrible, expect it to make half a billion dollars.
Both Sylvester Stallone (BULLET TO THE HEAD) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (THE LAST STAND) have other, solo, action films coming out this year, but THE TOMB
is their first, all-out big-screen team-up. Sure, they’ve shared the screen in THE EXPENDABLES 1 & 2, but this is a real buddy flick, casting Sly as a prison designer who winds up an inmate at the state-of-the-art prison he designed. Before you can say PRISON BREAK, he meets up with another inmate, played by Arnie (with a cool salt and pepper goatee), and- one assumes, the two team-up to do same damage. Hardcore action fans have been waiting for a Sly/Arnie buddy flick since the eighties. This BETTER deliver the goods.
While I wasn’t exactly blown away by THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY, I still mostly enjoyed it. Hopefully, the second part- which will no doubt benefit from an audience that will now be acclimatized to 48FPS, will be better. I can’t honestly say I’m really looking forward to it, but then again THE TWO TOWERS was probably the best LOTR, so maybe, being sandwiched between the exposition-heavy first film, and a third film that will have to tie up loose ends- SMAUG will be a quicker paced adventure. I also think the cool (if far from disastrous) fan reaction to the first film may inspire Jackson to tighten up the theatrical releases of the next two films, which- to me anyways, seems like a good idea.
When I heard they were remaking THE EVIL DEAD
, the fanboy in me wasn’t optimistic in the least, even after hearing Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell signed on as producers. But- the buzz has been absolutely terrific, and the first trailer makes it look like there’s way more up director Fede Alvarez’s sleeve than a beat-for-beat remake. I’m now cautiously optimistic, but optimistic nonetheless.
The buzz on WORLD WAR Z
has been toxic to say the least. Apparently, it’s a totally out-of-control production- similar to another (possible) 2013 release, THE 47 RONIN. Even before hearing about the out-of-control budget, and re-shoots (which supposedly involved scrapping a full third of the film), WWZ seemed like a bad idea. If you’ve read the book, it’s kind of difficult to ever imagine them being able to turn it into a two-hour, PG-13 movie- and the hiring of Marc Forster- who’s coming off the disastrous MACHINE GUN PREACHER, and the relative failure of QUANTUM OF SOLACE (proving he’s not yet adept at staging action scenes) seemed like a strange choice. Then again, maybe Forster and producer/star Brad Pitt will pull it off. If WWZ ends up being like CONTAGION with zombies, that would be fine by me- but I dunno, this one seems like a train-wreck.
It’s finally on its way! Robert Rodriguez has been teasing us with a SIN CITY sequel for years (hard to believe the first movie came out eight years ago), and it looks like it’s finally going to happen. The good news is that A DAME TO KILL FOR was probably the best graphic novel in Frank Miller’s series, so this should be a cool noirish film. Also- Mickey Rourke is back as Marv, which is awesome. Hopefully, Clive Owen will also be brought back as Dwight, although- if they go by the comic, he’ll only play Dwight in the second half, unless they use prosthetics (which I’d prefer to casting another actor). Either way- I hope Owen comes back. He’s one of my favorite actors- and I’d love him to make more SIN CITY films (Dwight’s in a lot of the comics).
A couple of years ago, if you had told me a sixth installment of THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS franchise would be on its way, I would have rolled my eyes. While the first film was fun (but has dated really badly) all the others passed gas. Up to FAST FIVE that is. That was a flick I walked into expecting absolutely nothing, only to discover that Justin Lin had taken this previously puny serious and pumped it up to the point that it resembled a blue-collar MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE. And I loved it! FAST FIVE was the film star Vin Diesel’s own XXX should have been, and while it was certainly dopey, it also rocked- hard. Diesel, and co-stars Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Michelle Rodriguez (despite dying in the fourth film) are all back, as it Dwayne Johnson, who seems like an ideal fit into Lin’s re-imagined franchise, along with Gina Carano. Will FAST SIX, or FAST & FURIOUS 6, or whatever it’s being called be silly? Yes- I’m sure it will be. But, it should also be a friggin’ blast.
To quote Seth MacFarlane’s TED, on his recent Jimmy Kimmel appearance, THE HANGOVER 2 was “pretty much the first film, only in Thailand”. Yup- that about covers it. Hopefully, Todd Phillips and the rest of the Wolf Pack have something else in store for the (possibly) final installment of the series, and a return to Vegas seems like a good start. The again, this may end up as even more of a carbon copy than the last one. Either way, I just hope it’s funny.
Guillermo Del Toro's PACIFIC RIM
could be this year's breakout blockbuster. Certainly, the preview makes it look like all the best parts of IRON MAN and classic Toho monster movies rolled together. Combine Del Toro's strengths behind the camera, with the potentila breakout quality of Charlie Hunnam, and especially Idris Elba, and you have a film that looks like a huge winner.
is another one of this year’s films that I feel I should be more excited for than I really am. I loathed X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE, but then again, everyone did- so hopefully Fox learned something from its (relative) failure. Given that X-MEN: FIRST CLASS was so good, it seems Fox is more committed to making their tent poles “not suck” as opposed to years past. THE WOLVERINE
tells the acclaimed Japan-storyline from Wolverine’s mythology, and the choice of James Mangold to direct seems intriguing. Granted, he’s no Darren Aronofsky (who was linked to this for awhile), but WALK THE LINE, COPLAND, and 3:10 TO YUMA are pretty good films in their own right. Of course, he also made the crappy KNIGHT & DAY, but- nobody’s perfect. At the very least, I’m sure Jackman will be good, as always.
The final installment of the “Three Flavors: Cornetto” (tee hee hee) trilogy, THE WORLD’S END reteams Simon Pegg and Nick Frost with director Edgar Wright. Where SHAUN OF THE DEAD took on zombies, and rom-coms, and HOT FUZZ deconstructed macho action, THE WORLD'S END
is a take on “social science fiction”- which I suppose means THE WORLD’S END is a little less bombastic than the similarly themed end-of-the-world comedy, THIS IS THE END (which also looks funny). I love these guys, so I’m waiting on THE WORLD'S END
with baited breath. If anything, director Edgar Wright has only gotten more
ambitious since HOT FUZZ, and I’m curious to see how the experience of SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD rubs off on his latest. I really can’t wait. Of all the movies on this list, THE WORLD’S END really has the potential to be a new comedy classic.
George Clooney. Matt Damon. Cate Blanchett. Bill Murray. John Goodman. Daniel Craig. Jean Dujardin. These actors have two things in common- one, that they’re all amazing, and two- that they all star in George Clooney’s latest film, THE MONUMENTS MEN. Based on the true story of a group of art historians who raced to recover known works of art stolen by the Nazis during WW2, MONUMENTS MEN sounds a bit like an old John Frankenheimer/ Burt Lancaster movie called THE TRAIN, which is a pretty great film in its own right. The premise is intriguing, and with his passion for history and vintage filmmaking, Clooney seems like the ideal star/director, although this is larger scaled then anything he’s attempted so far behind the camera. That said, I fully expect this to be great.
“You’ve got a dirty whorish mouth. I like lamp. I’m going to punch you in the ovary. I want to be on you.” I could go on and on quoting ANCHORMAN dialogue, but I won’t. But how the heck did it take nine years for us to FINALLY get an ANCHORMAN sequel? No matter- it’s almost
here, with Ron Burgundy, Bran Fantana, Champ Kind, and Brick Tamland about to once again unleash their genius upon an unsuspecting world. I can’t wait to see what these boys get up to in the eighties. Will it be as endlessly quotable as the first? I don’t know- but I ate a big, red candle.
The trailer for OBLIVION
knocked quite a few socks off when it hit the net last month. I definitely include myself in this category. Say what you will, Tom Cruise has a knack for choosing interesting projects, and this heavy-duty sci-fi opus, pairing him with TRON: LEGACY director Joseph Kosinski promises to be visually stunning. Kosinski has tremendous talent as far as visuals go- although TRON: LEGACY had a major failing in the script department. But- I have faith OBLIVION
will be a much better film, given that Cruise tends to attract top flight screenwriters, with OBLIVION
being penned by Oscar-winner William Monahan. Add to that a soundtrack by French electronica group M.8.3, and we have a movie that’s sure to be good, and just might be great.
IRON MAN 3
looks to be darker take on the character than we got in the last couple of movies (including THE AVENGERS), with Jon Favreau stepping aside for writer/director Shane Black. It’s Black’s involvement that’s really got me excited, as the last time he paired with Robert Downey Jr., we got the incredibly underrated KISS KISS BANG BANG. Given the huge budget and scope, it’ll be an interesting exercise for Black as a director, but given his reputation for penning action classics like LETHAL WEAPON & THE LAST BOY SCOUT, we can rest assured that Black knows how to do action. I’m very curious to see how this turns out.
MAN OF STEEL
is yet another big-screen SUPERMAN reboot. I wasn’t keen on Bryan Singer’s SUPERMAN RETURNS, which was a slavishly faithful ode to a series of films that were never THAT good to begin with (although Christopher Reeve remains the ideal Superman). Zack Snyder’s a divisive director, but the trailer is very impressive, making it look somewhat akin to what a superhero movie directed by Terrence Mallick might look like. While I doubt that finished product will feel too much like that (which would be kinda interesting actually) - I think Snyder’s going to deliver a pretty good big-screen reboot of perhaps the greatest of all comic book characters. Also- Michael Shannon as General Zod. Hell yes.
J.J Abrams’ big-screen STAR TREK reboot is one of those blockbusters that seemingly everyone, from hardcore Trekkies, right through to casual filmgoers seemed to like. STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS
looks to be a much darker take on the material than the first film, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be just as good. Abrams makes solid blockbuster entertainment, and the trailer was pretty damn exciting. While it looks like they’re trying a little too hard to position this as the DARK KNIGHT of STAR TREK movies, I’m still very intrigued; especially if new villain Benedict Cumberbatch ends up being Khan. Hate the awkward title though. Why not just call it SATR TREK 2?