Friday, January 14, 2011

Top 10 Most Anticip...ated Movies of 2011

Hello I am the movie encyclopedia and if no one else will see it, I will.

Right off the bat I'm sorry for the Rocky Horror joke but it's the first thing that comes to mind whenever I hear the word anticipated. Anyway with a new year comes new movies and I've got to be excited about a few of them right? I mean marketing for most of these films starts 6 months in advance so come January we are chomping at the bit to get our hands on these movies. But some people are more excited for some films than others which makes reading these anticipated lists quite a treat. Well I'm hear to throw in my two cents so let's get started.

10. The Tree of Life-
 Usually if a movie poster or trailer doesn't grab me then I usually skip or go into said movie with low expectations. The Tree of Life didn't grab me. The trailer, while with it's moments of awe inspiring visuals, looks more like a walking Hallmark card or home videos from the 50s than an actual movie and the poster is a little too on the nose for me. But before you start flinging the hate let me say that I blame the marketing department and not the film itself. You see Castor at Anomalous Materials did a Script Review of The Tree of Life a while back and that made me more interested in the film than anything the marketing department has done so far. I am a huge Mallick fan so I do have high hopes and I don't doubt that this will be the favorite film of many people next year. We'll just have to wait and see.

9. The Invention of Hugo Cabret-
 If you haven't guessed already this is not the poster for the movie but the cover of the novel the film is an adaptation of. This is because little to no information about the movie besides the cast list, the main synopsis and who the writer and director are has been released. But these few things have been enough to get me excited. First it's directed by Martin Scorsese, my second favorite director, and written by John Logan, my fourth favorite screenwriter. On top of that it stars the kid from The Boy with the Striped Pajamas, Chloe Moretz, Jude Law, Christopher Lee, Ben Kingsley, Emily Mortimer and Sacha Baron Cohen. And it's in 3D, a first for Scorsese. If these sentences (well maybe except 3D) don't get you excited then I don't know what will.

8. Scream 4-
 I love the Scream franchise and consider it one of the better acts of satire in recent memory. The whole series is basically Wes Craven satirizing the horror genre, reducing it down to rules and regulations and patterns that the characters, the killer included must follow, but doing so without the laughs. Yes there are jokes, since there must always be the "comic relief" character, but most of the time it's a film that takes itself seriously without being serious. And yes I did love Scream 3. It had the most problems out of the three and got a little caught up in it's own story but it accomplished the point it was trying to make about the third film in a horror series and overall was pretty good. And while the initial reaction to Scream 4 was that of "Really?" I soon realized that it was exactly what the doctor ordered. Nearly every horror franchise is getting a reboot or sequel nowadays and the rules have changed since then because now there are the rules of a "reboot/remake." So in a lot of ways Scream 4 is perfect.I have high hopes for it and hopefully it won't disappoint.

7. Drive Angry Shot in 3D-
 It is near impossible not to say the title with some sort of Grindhouse style inflection. It's such an intense title and is one that should be said with power. Add in "All Hell Breaks Loose" and you got the makings of an action packed movie. On top of that you have an incredibly badass poster, an even more badass trailer and while everything about this movie should scream horrible (look at who is writing and directing it), Nic Cage being over the top Nic Cage blasting people with comically large guns and driving epic muscle cars makes this film awesome. I mean it won't win any Academy Awards by any means but I bet this will be one of the most fun theater experiences I have this year. Thank God for Nic Cage doing just about anything for a paycheck.

6. Piranha 3DD-
 Now with an extra D! In all seriousness though Piranha 3D was one of my favorite films last year, successfully mixing tongue in cheek laugh out loud humor, Grade B schlock, and the most gore I've ever seen in a film. When it was over I was actually kind of sad because they now had Mega Piranhas as well as the tiny little guys. That and I never get tired of Christopher Lloyd's ramblings. Then I heard they were doing a sequel and I was more excited then I probably should have been. That excitement was worthy though because they said they were going to put more blood and gore then the first one, more Piranha's, more Mega Piranha's and it was going to be called Piranha 3DD which in and of itself is an awesome title to say out loud. It's guilty pleasure at it's best and I couldn't be more happy.

5. Thor-
 Marvel is releasing two big superhero films in 2011 and both of them look amazing. DC on the other hand is releasing one big one, Green Lantern, and that only looks okay. The first big Marvel release though is none other than the Norse God of thunder himself, Thor. Kenneth Branagh, who most of you would probably recognize from any Shakespearian film released in the past 30 years, is directing the film while JMS, a favorite comic book author of mine, is writing it. The fact it's written by a comic book writer already gives me some solace that this film will be great. JMS worked on the Thor comics for a number of years and understands the mythos of Thor quite well. Branagh on the other hand, knows how to make characters who inherently sound melodramatic sound badass. That is crucial as most adaptations of Norse mythology, or at least a branch of it,  kind of have their characters sounding melodramatic. Add in Natalie Portman, Chris Hemsworth, Idris Elba and Anthony Hopkins starring in the movie and you have the makings of a pretty well rounded and awesome film. I mean the trailers sure do look awesome.

4. Captain America-
 Marvel's other big release happens to be the original Avenger himself, Captain America. Now while I'm a bit hesitant to get overly excited, mostly since Joe Johnston, who directed The Wolfman last year, is directing this film. But then you tell me the writers of The Chronicles of Narnia Movies, David Self and Joss Whedon are all collaborating together to write the script and I'm a little more excited. Then you tell me Chris Evans is Captain America and Hugo Weaving is the villain. Excitement rising even more. Then you tell me Dominic Cooper, Tommy Lee Jones, Stanley Tucci, and Neal McDonough are all in it as well as Cap's sidekick Bucky Barnes, whom I love, and you pretty much have me jumping up and down waiting for this film to come out. It has to be just has to.

3. Battle: Los Angeles-
 I went into more detail on why this film looks good in my recent edition of Trailer Talk Thursday over at the LAMB but basically the fact that most of this film is being kept quiet except for fact that aliens invade and Earth is fighting back is actually helping the film rather than hurting it. If you show your hand too early, people won't want to see more, something that the marketing team at Columbia understand really well. But I love alien invasion movies and I feel this one will be a truly epic, mostly because I'm not sure if the human race is going to pull through okay or not. Almost every film has the aliens being defeated and humanity being okay. This one, not so much...we'll just have to wait and see.

2. Cowboys and Aliens-
 I love titles that get right to the point. This film has cowboys and it has aliens. It has James Bond and Han Solo fighting aliens. It also has Olivia Wilde, Sam Rockwell and Paul Dano rounding out the supporting cast. It has tons of action, it's based on an amazing graphic novel, is directed by Jon Favreau, produced by everybody (Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Steven Spielberg and more), written by one of the guys who did Lost and has epic special effects. I had the opportunity to read the script a while back and the film, in word form at least, sounds awesome. And from what I've seen the moving picture version looks awesome as well. I realize a lot of people seem to hate Daniel Craig, but I say put your hate aside because this film will be amazing.

1. Sucker Punch-
You want to know a secret? When I was writing out my list I put this at number 1 from the start and just worked my way backwards. Ever since Comic-Con last year I have been anxiously awaiting this movie. No other film has come close to my excitement levels that I have for Sucker Punch. First, it's directed by Zack Snyder, who is my favorite living director and whose entire filmography is in my top 25 films of all time, with two in my top 10. Second, it has some of the best visual effects I have ever seen in a film, none of which, for a change, will be in 3D. Third, it has a ton of hot woman kicking ass and blowing things up. Fourth, Jon Hamm is the villain and Scott Glenn is a wiseman, which is amazing casting if I've ever seen it. And finally, it's Zack Snyder's FIRST ORIGINAL MOVIE, with all of his other films being adaptations or remakes of something else. Robots, samurai's, dragons, Nazi's, aliens, and all sorts of awesome bad guys to blow up, all in slow-fast-slow motion is truly a sight I can't wait to see. This movie will be amazing and if it lives up to the expectations I have for it, Shaun of the Dead may be moved to number 2 on my favorite films of all time.

Well that does it for my most anticipated movies of 2011, stay tuned for my best Male/Female performances of 2010, best trailers/soundtracks of 2010 and some recent film reviews all coming up shortly.


  1. Got to say Battle: Los Angeles really has grabbed me. Tree of Life, not so much. I saw Terrence Malick's Days of Heaven, and though it is beautiful that's just about it. The trailer reveals so little and is very confusing that it actually turned me off of the film. Sucker Punch should be interesting because its Snyder's first time doing original material.

  2. I'm looking foreward to Kaboom. It speaks to my inner hipster.

  3. Nice list TJ! I do look forward to most of those although in the reverse order ahah ;) The Tree of Life is easily the one I look most forward to while Drive Angry 3D and Scream 4 are two movies I doubt I will even check out on DVD.