Monday, January 21, 2013
Anticipated Films of 2013
The Film Stage has put together a great list of their 100 most-anticipated films of 2013. (Check it out here: link)
I culled from their list the titles that I'm most excited to see. I've added commentary on some of the titles, which basically reads as "I like director - I watch movie."
I anticipate watching the following:
Can A Song Save Your Life (John Carney)
Synopsis: A dejected music business executive forms a bond with a young singer-songwriter new to Manhattan.
I enjoyed Once, and there are a few actors attached to this film that I enjoy (Mark Ruffalo, Catherine Keener, Hailee Steinfeld). I'm really hoping that it doesn't turn into "whatever happened to the good old days of the music industry" fest. Remember how bad Love Monkey was? Yeah, none of that please.
The Butler (Lee Daniels)
Synopsis: The story of a White House butler who served eight American Presidents over the course of three decades. I'm down to support Black directors. This one feels a little less weird than his prior film, which works for me.
Untitled Nicole Holofcener Film
Synopsis: A divorced woman who decides to pursue the man she’s interested in learns he’s her new friend’s ex-husband.
I really enjoyed Please Give, so I'm down with Nicole Holofcener. Also, Catherine Keener. (I love her)
Life Itself (Steve James)
Synopsis: The story and struggles of film critic, Roger Ebert, based on his memoir, “Life Itself.”
I'm less enamored with Ebert, but he still commands respect and has lived an interesting life. Steve James' involvement directing is a plus.
Breathe In (Drake Doremus)
Synopsis: When a foreign exchange student arrives in a small upstate New York town, she challenges the dynamics of her host family’s relationships and alters their lives forever.
Don't know much about this director, but the story sounds sexy. I'm in.
August: Osage County (John Wells)
Synopsis: The Weston family overcomes certain differences when their alcoholic patriarch goes missing.
The stage play won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2008. Solid Cast. I'm in.
Prisoners (Denis Villeneuve)
Synopsis: A Boston man kidnaps the person he suspects is behind the disappearance of his young daughter and her best friend.
I loved Incendies, so Denis Villeneuve has my attention.
Top of the Lake (Jane Campion)
Synopsis: A detective investigates the disappearance of a 12-year-old pregnant daughter of a local drug lord.
My snob pick. 353-minute crime saga? Sure.
Oldboy (Spike Lee)
Synopsis: An everyday man has only five days and limited resources to discover why he was imprisoned in a nondescript room for 15 years without any explanation.
"A film is a film is a film." (shush, foreign movie lovers and complainers) Spike has taken a lot of heat (unfairly I believe) over Django Unchained. He needs this to work.
I’m So Excited (Pedro Almodovar)
Synopsis: When a group of passengers aboard a plane fear for their lives they reveal elaborate confessions.
Labor Day (Jason Reitman)
Synopsis: Depressed single mom Adele and her son Henry offer a wounded, fearsome man a ride. As police search town for the escaped convict, the mother and son gradually learn his true story as their options become increasingly limited
Anchorman: The Legend Continues (Adam McKay)
Synopsis: The continuing on-set adventures of San Diego’s top rated newsman.
The Lobster (Giorgos Lanthimos)
Synopsis: An unconventional love story set in a dystopian near future where single people, according to the rules of the Town, are arrested and transferred to the Hotel. There they are obliged to find a matching mate in 45 days. If they fail, they are transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into the woods. A desperate Man escapes from the Hotel to the Woods where the Loners live and there he falls in love, although it’s against their rules.
Read the synopsis (huh?), then realized it's the director of Dogtooth; I'm in.
The Wind Rises (Hayao Miyazaki) and The Tale Of The Bamboo Cutter (Isao Takahata)
Synopsis: The Wind Rises – A look at the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II. The Tale Of The Bamboo Cutter - Follows the life of a mysterious girl called Kaguya-hime, who was discovered as a baby inside the stalk of a glowing bamboo plant.
I didn't enjoy Arrietty, but Studio Ghibli has such a strong track record that I'll probably want to check both of these films out.
Stoker (Park Chan-wook)
Synopsis: After India’s father dies, her Uncle Charlie, who she never knew existed, comes to live with her and her unstable mother. She comes to suspect this mysterious, charming man has ulterior motives and becomes increasingly infatuated with him.
Really curious to see how these South Korean directors will do in Hollywood.
Star Trek Into Darkness (J.J. Abrams)
Synopsis: After the crew of the Enterprise find an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organization, Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction.
Blue Jasmine (Woody Allen)
Synopsis: Revolves around a wealthy-turned-broke woman who leaves New York and is living with her sister in San Francisco. She is forced to downsize after losing her funds and meets her Bay Area lover while finding herself and accepting S.F. as her new home.
Devil’s Knot (Atom Egoyan)
Synopsis: The savage murders of three young children sparks a controversial trial of three teenagers accused of killing the kids as part of a satanic ritual.
Canada. Also, solid cast.
The Zero Theorem (Terry Gilliam)
Synopsis: A computer hacker’s goal to discover the reason for human existence continually finds his work interrupted thanks to the Management; this time, they send a teenager and lusty love interest to distract him.
I saw my first Gilliam film last year (Monty Python...). I should see more.
Night Moves (Kelly Reichardt)
Synopsis: A drama centered on three environmentalists who plot to blow up a dam.
Although I did enjoy Meek's Cutoff, this pick is mostly here to annoy friend of the blog Matt Fish.
Monuments Men (George Clooney)
Synopsis: In a race against time, a crew of art historians and museum curators unite to recover renown works of art stolen by Nazis before Hitler destroys them.
The Bling Ring (Sofia Coppola)
Synopsis: Inspired by actual events, a group of fame-obsessed teenagers use the Internet to track celebrities’ whereabouts in order to rob their homes.
Story seems interesting enough.
The Rover (David Michod)
Synopsis: A dirty and dangerous near-future western set in the Australian desert.
Elysium (Neill Blomkamp)
Synopsis: Set in the year 2159, where the very wealthy live on a man-made space station while the rest of the population resides on a ruined Earth, a man takes on a mission that could bring equality to the polarized worlds.
I disliked District 9, but I'm willing to give him another chance. Seems like a sci-fi story I may enjoy.
The Counselor (Ridley Scott)
Synopsis: A lawyer finds himself in over his head when he gets involved in drug trafficking. Ridley Scott's name made me pause, but then I realized it's written by Cormac McCarthy.
Nymphomaniac (Lars von Trier)
Synopsis: A self-diagnosed nymphomaniac recounts her erotic experiences to the man who saved her after a beating.
Only God Forgives (Nicolas Winding Refn)
Synopsis: A Bangkok police lieutenant and a gangster settle their differences in a Thai-boxing match.
The World’s End (Edgar Wright)
Synopsis: Five friends who reunite in an attempt to top their epic pub crawl from 20 years earlier unwittingly become humankind’s only hope for survival.
Closed Curtain (Jafar Panahi and Kambozia Partovi)
Synopsis: None available.
The fact that he's still making films...I will reward his bravery with my money (I hope).
Before Midnight (Richard Linklater)
Synopsis: We meet Jesse and Celine nine years on in Greece. Almost two decades have passed since their first meeting on that train bound for Vienna.
Wait, what? I still haven't seen the first two installments yet.
Snowpiercer (Bong Joon-ho)
Synopsis: AD 2031, the passengers in the train are the only survivors on Earth.
REALLY curious to see how these South Korean directors will do in Hollywood. Bong Joon-ho is my favorite.
Twelve Years a Slave (Steve McQueen)
Synopsis: A man living in New York during the mid-1800s is kidnapped and sold into slavery in the deep south.
Black. Shame wasn't a favorite, but I'm still down to support.
The Grandmaster (Wong Kar-wai)
Synopsis: The story of martial-arts master Ip Man, the man who trained Bruce Lee.
I love Tony Leung. Wong Kar-wai's got that international acclaim, and...Ip Man!
The Past (Asghar Farhadi)
Synopsis: An emotional social thriller.
A Separation was really good.
The Wolf of Wall Street (Martin Scorsese)
Synopsis: A New York stockbroker refuses to cooperate in a large securities fraud case involving corruption on Wall Street, corporate banking world and mob infiltration.
Scorsese + Leo are good together, right?
Inside Llewyn Davis (Joel and Ethan Coen)
Synopsis: A singer-songwriter navigates New York’s folk music scene during the 1960s.
Gravity (Alfonso Cuaron)
Synopsis: Astronauts attempt to return to earth after debris crashes into their space shuttle, leaving them drifting alone in space.
Wow, it's really been that long since Cuaron made a movie, huh? I'm down.
That was a long list.
Thanks for reading.