I told you I'd be back! (said in best Arnold Schwarzenegger voice)
As a movie fan there's a few reasons to optimistic in 2012. Sure, box office was down in 2011 but I think that's because there was no Avatar propping it up. Movie goers are also sick of paying $6 for a drink and triple the price of admission to see the movie in 3D. I mentioned Avatar a moment ago and it has been the only movie where 3D has really made it better in my opinion. The movie was still terrible but boy, it looked good.
So, yeah 2011 didn't blow me away but 2012, if the trailers are anything to go by, will be a peach. Okay, I'll be the first to admit that originality might not be front and center since most of the most anticipated movies of the coming year are sequels, prequels, reboots or re-imaginings of previous fan favorites. However, what is exciting is the fact that Hollywood has lined those movies up with sure-fire fanbait directors and casts, luring us back with promises of better and bigger and best.
I'm basically going to talk about three movies I would sell a kidney to go see (I know I don't have three kidneys...details, details) but before I get to them, here is a quick blast through some of the others that are on the schedule:
Skyfall - James Bond is back and fingers are crossed that this one will be more Casino Royale than Quantum of Solace.
Red Tails - A World War 2 movie about the Tuskegee pilots with very cool looking dogfights. It's produced by George Lucas so you know no money was spared on the effects. Let's just hope he didn't have too heavy a hand in the story.
The Grey - Liam Neeson, stranded in Alaska, punching wolves with homemade broken glass knuckledusters...sounds fantastic and the trailer was good too. Liam Neeson might be 60 but he's been born again as an action star. Also look for TAKEN 2 sometime later in the year as Liam returns as Brian Throatpuncher (or whatever his name is).
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters - I know, right? Sounds awesome! I haven't seen any footage of this but its going to star Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the titular with hunters so I'm there.
Snow White and the Hunstman/Mirror Mirror - There's a deluge of fairy tale related movies and both of these are based around Snow White. The first looks to be more action oriented and the second a more colorful comedy. Both have plenty of big names in their casts but the Hunstman one looks more appealing, despite Tarsem's incredible visual flair on Mirror Mirror.
Jack, The Giant Killer - Directed by Bryan Singer (X-Men, The Usual Suspects) and starring plenty of well known actors, this one looks like it could be fun. The trailer was good and who doesn't like to see Giants fee-fi-foe-fumming around?
John Carter - Based on the stories of Edgar Rice Burroughs, this one is directed by Andrew Stanton (from the Pixar pool of geniuses...he did Wall-E) so the visual flair and storytelling credibility goes up ten notches. An American Civil War veteran ends up on Mars and basically gets to be Superman, leaping around and beating on bad Martians. I'm sure there's more to it than that but that's enough to start with.
The Raven - A gothic thriller with John Cusack as Edgar Allan Poe, investigating a series of crimes mirrored on his poems and stories.
The Hunger Games - I haven't yet read these stories but this is the "next big franchise". If it hits the other two will surely be made. Don't know much about it except the fans of the books are excited!
Wrath of the Titans - The first one was dumb and rubbish...and Sam Worthington was in it. I'm a sucker for the Greek Gods though and I want this to be good. The trailer looked impressive but I thought that about the first one as well. I have reservations (Sam Worthington) but I may check it out nonetheless.
The Cabin in the Woods - A horror movie which supposedly turned the genre on its head. Written by Joss Whedon, this movie took a while to get a release date so, not sure if thats a good reason to be excited or a not.
Lock-out - Sounds like John Carpenter should be directing and Kurt Russell should be in the lead on this one...a man is offered his freedom if he rescues the President's daughter...the catch...she's being held in a space prison which has been over-run by the inmates. Maybe a spiritual successor to Escape from New York...starring Guy Pearce.
Dark Shadows - Based on a cheesy old Gothic soap, this one has Johnny Depp and Tim Burton reuniting to do weird as only they can.
Men in Black 3 - Josh Brolin playing the young Tommy Lee Jones! Time travel! Will Smith being Will Smith! Might be fun.
Brave - The new Pixar movie looks gorgeous. Whether it lives up to the...aahhh who am I kidding, this movie will kick all kinds of animated arse. Pixar's worst (Cars/Cars 2) is still better than most people's best. I predict...massive hit! (no brainer)
...and that's the end of part one...come back for part two very soon...