January 12, 2015 by bck1402
Yeh, it’s late as we’re almost to the mid-point of January at this time.
2015 looks to be a banner year for movies with loads of choices and enticing premises. Several top directors (Scorsese, Spielberg, Malick, Scott, Zemeckis, Wachowski, del Toro, Tarantino!) have new films coming out and the franchises are rolling along like crazy, some more significant than others. Taking a stab in this new cinematic environment where franchises appear to rule, we get to return to worlds past the likes of Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Mad Max, The Terminator, Fantastic Four and even Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon along with The Transporter. Meanwhile, we get to hang out again with The Avengers, Pitch Perfect, James Bond, Mission: Impossible, and take one last final trip to The Hunger Games.
In all that, what’s the one movie I’m most eager for?
Fas7, or Fast & Furious 7, or Furious 7 (according to the trailer and poster), or whatever the final title is actually going to be, since the last instalment had it’s own identity problem. I did a ‘look-back’ at the entire series last year and already commented on the titling issue of the series.
Sure there are lots to feel excited for, so why that one? For one, it may the the final instalment and I’m hoping for it to go out on a really high note given the way the franchise has grown over the last couple of instalments. I enjoyed the first; felt the second was derivative of typical cop franchises; thought the third was smart to look at the idea from a different perspective; liked the fourth for bringing things home; went wild for 5 with it’s more practical vehicular stunt-work and “Avengers Assemble” wrangling of cast and characters from the entire series thus far; felt 6 was equally over-the-top as it raised the stakes… and then pushed those stakes higher with it’s closing sting, promising a very furious next instalment. The passing of star Paul Walker delayed the production (the original release was for last year) and the movie was reportedly rewritten to accommodate that, and most likely wrap the franchise. The one trailer so far promises even more insane action beats that I don’t want to see anymore trailers for this, preferring to ‘go in cold’ – a little difficult in this age of information bombardment, but dammit I’m gonna try.
On the equally insane vehicular stunt action front is Mad Max: Fury Road and one trailer is all you need. The stunt work is amazing and the visual aesthetic exceeds the original trilogy – and that’s just in the trailer.
Now, given the number of prospective ‘gems’ coming, I’m not going to able to touch on everything, and not all will make it to the screens of my preferred cinema and nearby options. Very likely, I’m going to miss on a few movies here and there. Select trailer links where available.
So, the big guns of summer would include The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Jurassic World, The Fantastic Four, Terminator: Genisys, San Andreas, Ant-Man, Pan,and Poltergeist (Remake). Leading up to them are Kingsman: The Secret Service (from Kick-Ass director, Matthew Vaughn), Cinderella (from Thor director, Kenneth Branagh), In the Heart of The Sea (from Rush director, Ron Howard), and Divergent follow-up, Insurgent whose trailer seemed to gave me the entire movie in under three minutes. After summer will be some major expectations such as Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, Spectre, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part II, Mission: Impossible 5 and, of course, Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Of the major directors, I’m most looking forward to Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight and the Wachowskis’ Jupiter Ascending. Spielberg’s currently untitled Cold War thriller starring Tom Hanks is a must. The Wachowskis tend to be cinematic world builders and good storytellers even if they have their detractors. I’ve enjoyed all their films and yes, that includes Speed Racer and Cloud Atlas, but of which are amazing technical achievements with solid narratives. They may falter a little when it comes to casting, but it’s a very minor quibble. Spielberg’s had a few quiet years, starting and passing on several projects, including Interstellar, which ended up with Christopher Nolan.
Ridley Scott is directing Matt Damon in an adaptation of The Martian; Martin Scosese has a period piece set in 17th Century Japan called Silence; Terrence Malick has Knight of Cups, which reportedly has a companion piece that’s untitled; Michael Mann has Blackhat starring Chris Hemsworth; Jon Favreau is directing The Jungle Book utilising Andy Serkis’ performance capture system for the talking animal performances; Guillermo del Toro has gothic romance, Crimson Peak with Tom Hiddleston, Robert Zemeckis directs Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Philippe Petit walking across the twin towers in The Walk; and David O Russell reunites his Silver Linings Playbook trio of Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Robert DeNiro for Joy.
On the animation front, Pixar hits a double after passing last year. They’ve got Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur. Major competitor, DreamWorks Animation has Home featuring Jim Parsons and Rihanna (a short, Almost Home, was screened in cinemas last year), and BOO: Bureau or Otherworldy Operations with possibly a third feature late in the year, Me and My Shadow. Sony Animation turned to one of their game properties and have Ratchet and Clank, and also a return to Hotel Transylvania. Chris Wedge, formerly of Blue Sky’s Ice Age and Robots, has Monster Trucks coming under Paramount Animation, while Blue Sky has Snoopy and Charlie Brown in The Peanuts Movie. The Minions have their own movie now, leaving despicable Gru behind. Lucasfilm and ILM have Strange Magic, directed by effects guru Gary Rydstrom, with a story by George Lucas. One to watch out for is The Little Prince, from France. May we finally get the last Evangelion movie as well?
Speaking of Anime movies, even if they don’t hit the cinemas, I’m looking forward to Beyond The Boundary (Kyokai no Kanata) and it’s two parts. A Past Chapter that recaps the anime series, and a Future Chapter that is set one year after those events. There’s also a Psycho Pass movie, a reimagining for Ghost In The Shell following the events in Arise, and the final Ghibli produced movie, When Marnie was There.
And finally, on the Sci-Fi front, well, we’ve already mention Jupiter Ascending, Star Wars: The Force Begins, Jurassic World, Terminator: Genisys and some comic-book franchises. A couple of robots are making their mark- from Alex Garland (writer of Sunshine and Dredd) comes Ex Machina, while District 9 director Neil Blomkamp gives us Chappie Meanwhile, Brad Bird takes us to Tommorowland and after that, pickings are slim.
Finally, this one looks like fun.