Every year I like to cap of my end of the year writeups, I like to look forward to the year ahead and pick my 12 most anticipated films of the coming year. Looking ahead to 2018, currently there isn’t a lot I am dying to see. Sure, there are some big films, that will have many fans drooling in anticipation, but many of this (Avenger’s 3, Hans Solo) are not really films I am dying to see. This feels like my weakest Dirty Dozen I have ever done, on paper. I am sure some films will come out at festivals, will excite me and have me feeling 2018 a bit more, but in January at the time of writing this list, I am not feeling much. So, here are the 12 films I was able to at least be semi-excited about. (Note: I am leaving Martin Scorsese’s next film The Irishman, because I fully believe it will be a 2019 film and it will appear on next years list. It would have landed at #3 on this year’s list, if it was to come out).
Last year’s Beauty and the Beast, wasn’t the masterpiece I was hoping it would be, considering the excellence we got in recent years with Disney live action updates of their classic (Jungle Book, Cinderella and the brilliant Pete’s Dragon). That can not derail me from being exciting for their upcoming list of live action films (Lion King, Alddain, Dumbo). 2018’s sole entry on this list (as far as I know of) is the live action retelling of Mulan, one of Disney’s more underrated animated films. I was a rather huge fan of that film and I believe it will make for a great live action tale, that will continue the run of great movies, with female leads. Here is hoping Disney hasn’t gotten lazy with these remakes and Mulan hypes me even more for the next ones down the line.
11. Mid 90’s
This film, directed by Johan Hill, has my interest for one reason only. The fact that it is set in the 90’s, a moment in film I have been waiting for. The 90’s to me (the era I grew up in) is the best era of all time. There is so many stories to be told from that time and I truly can’t wait to feel the nostalgia for the era I hold dear and I am hoping that Hill can bring me back to it.
10. Isle of Dogs
I have a very strange relationship with Wes Anderson and his films. I am surrounded by man friends who think he is a genius and his films are true works of art. However, as much as I admire and mostly love his work (only 2 of his films would not have ranked in my Top 20 of their respective years) I never find myself truly being blown away by his films. That said, he is still one of the most reliable film makers out their and his new animated film about a dog island, does look like something only Anderson could pull off. I am looking forward some brilliant images and a unique story being told.
9. A Wrinkle in Time
I have seen the trailer, I respect the cast and I respect that this is one of Disney’s big tent poles of 2018, but I haven’t really been able to muster up the excitement for this film. That is till I saw that it was directed by Selma queen Ava DuVernay. That is a cause for excitement and considering the recent love I have been showing for female directors on my Top 10 lists, I am expecting massive things. Of course, my only fear is Disney getting their hands a bit too much involved in this project, the way it did with Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland and Steven Spielberg’s The BFG. Here is hoping Disney respects the brilliance of DuVernay.
8. The 15:17 to Paris
Client Eastwood in the recent decade has really been a hit or miss director for me. His films have ranged for good to down right awful. So, his name attached to directing a film, doesn’t hold the excitement factor it once did. The 15:17 to Paris is different though, because Eastwood, made one brilliant decision. He cast the real-life heroes, portrayed in the film, as the actors in this movie, telling the real-life story, that dominated the headlines a few years back. This choice in casting, makes this film a most see. My hope is that Eastwood, tones down the American chest pounding, that ruined American Sniper and does these heroes justice.
I am likely not doing this film enough justice by only placing it at 7 on my list here, but I will take the hit later for that. This is the latest film from direct Steve McQueen, who’s 12 Year’s A Slave is a lock to appear on my Decades best films list. That alone would have landed this film a spot on this list, but add in the fact that the screenplay is written by Dave Bril Hall of Famer Gillian Flynn who wrote both the screenplay and the book for the brilliant Gone Girl! This pairing is almost sure to make this one of the year’s biggest critical smashes. It tells the story about 8 women, who’s husbands die while robbing a bank, who decide to finish the job. Move over Ocean’s 8, this is the real heist film of 2018!
6. Where’d You Go Bernadette
There is one thing you can always count on, when it comes to my most anticipated list and that is if Richard Linklater has a film coming out, it is going to appear here. The man has such an amazing track record, that he has earned that type of hype. I have no clue what this film is about, or who it stars, I just know it is Linklater and that is enough for me, to get excited every time.
Being a massive Spiderman fan that I am, it is funny to me that I have never really put thought to who my favorite villain of the web head is. I suppose if I thought about it, it would be Venom, the black beast, with the razor teeth and Gene Simmons like tongue. We saw him once on screen, before in Spiderman 3, where he was forced to be shoehorned into the film and the director did not do the character any justice at all. Well now Sony is going to give it another try, this time bringing in one of the best actors working today in Tom Hardy, to play the title role. I am hoping beyond words that, they do this one right and Hardy becomes a household name, as the villain turned hero.
4. Untitled Deadpool Sequel
It is no secret that I was a huge fan of the Deadpool movie that came out in 2016. It not only was a film I placed on my Top 10 lists that year, but it inspired me to become a fan of the character as well. My one compliant with the film, was that it spent time much time on the origin and I said I can’t wait for the sequel to see them go full out with the character and his wicked funny ways. The second trailer, which had Deadpool as Bob Ross, only got me more excited for what I hope is this series version of Spiderman 2 or The Dark Knight.
3.The Incredibles 2
I am right there with you all, in hoping that Disney knocks it off with the Pixar sequels. Only the Toy Story sequels have managed to keep the magic of their originals. However, with that said, if there was one Pixar film that deserved a sequel, it was the 2004 masterpiece The Incredibles, not only one of Pixar’s best films, but one of the best superhero movies of all time. Director Brad Bird is back to make sure this sequel is a worthy successor, and this has my hopes very high, that this will finally break the streak of less than wonderful Pixar sequels.
2. Black Panther
So, remember how I said in my 2017 Top 10 lists I was burnt out with superhero movies. Well that aside (and the fact that I have 2 other superhero movies of this very list) I am REALLY looking forward to Black Panther! Marvel has been able to maintain a certain level of quality in with their films, but very few have truly been great. Something just tells me that Black Panther is about to break that mold. The character was a true stand out in Civil War. Then came that amazing trailer, that was truly like nothing else we have seen from Marvel before. Toss in a great director and the fact that Kendrick Lamar was personally chosen to make the soundtrack and I am simply on the edge of me seat with anticipation for this one. Please let this live up to the hype!
1. Ready Player One
This was a clear cut #1 as nothing else even came close. Its Steven Spielberg. It has the Iron Giant in it. I am not saying anything else, just please let’s hurry up to March already!!