Posted in 2020-2029, Ranking

Most Anticipated Films of 2022

Happy new year cinephiles! 2021 was a very mixed year for cinephiles, we got a return to the big screen at long last, but it hasn’t been the complete return to normality that the cinema industry would have liked to see. Though the feeling of being back in the best place to watch films was truly special, and the 2021 box office was certainly an improvement on that of 2020’s. There’s still much uncertainty in the coming months, as we continue to struggle with the ongoing pandemic, but let’s hope that our cinemas stay open right throughout the year.

With that, let’s look ahead to the upcoming films that are scheduled to be released over the next 12 months. As may be the case for the foreseeable future, some films on this list may end up getting delayed into next year. But, hopefully, we will get to see all these films and many more in 2022. So let’s dive straight in with the films I am most excited to see. First thing’s first, let’s have a look at the honourable mentions (All current UK release dates unless specified):

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (release date: 1 April): So often do films based on video games disappoint, so it was a very welcome surprise when the first Sonic proved to be a blast of fun. The decision to delay the film so they could redesign the titular character worked wonders, and now the sequel will see Sonic team up with Tails, as they take on Dr Robotnik, and Knuckles the Echidna.

Jurassic World: Dominion (release date: 10 June)  Life finds a way, and for the concluding chapter in this Jurassic World trilogy, a few very familiar faces will be making their return for this dinosaur threequel. Namely Sam Neill and Laura Dern as Dr. Alan Grant and Dr. Ellie Sattler respectively, as well as Jeff Goldblum as Dr. Ian Malcolm, who will hopefully have a much bigger role this time around.

The Flash (release date: 4 November) The DCEU has been through its ups and downs, but after a solid 2021 in which both Zack Snyder’s Justice League and The Suicide Squad pulled in good numbers on HBO Max, 2022 it’s looking like it will be a big year with three films being released. The most intriguing is Ezra Miller’s solo Flash film, which will reportedly borrow from the Flashpoint storyline in the comics. The film is set to introduce Supergirl, see the return of not only Ben Affleck’s Batman, but also Michael Keaton’s iteration of the Dark Knight as well.

Avatar 2 (release date: 16 December) Back in 2009, Avatar became a cultural phenomenon. Partly thanks to the revival of 3D, it stormed its way to the highest-grossing film of all time, which it held for over a decade, and has since retaken thanks to a rerelease in China. However, it has taken a while for James Cameron to get all of the pieces in place for the sequel to finally be released after numerous delays. Will Cameron recapture that enthusiasm that audiences had for a Pandoran adventure, or has the ship sailed? Time will tell.

Turning Red (release date: 11 March). Very few studios can sell a film based on the strength of their name alone, but Pixar is definitely one of those studios. With two films from Disney’s sister studio to look forward to this year, Focusing on a girl who turns into a giant red panda when she’s stressed out. Pixar can so often be at their brilliant, and emotional, best when crafting original stories, and this is their most unique film in quite some time.

Now, let’s see what cracked my top 10:

10. Lightyear

Release date: 17 June

The second Pixar offering of the year. Everyone knows the name Buzz Lightyear and his iconic catchphrase. However, what makes this film so intriguing is that it is not a direct continuation of the first four Toy Story films, but rather a look at how the Buzz Lightyear action figure came to be the #1 toy that all of the kids wanted to have. With Chris Evans taking over the voice duties from Tim Allen, this film promises to be an exciting space adventure that audiences will be wanting to go To Infinity and Beyond to see.

9. Nope 

Release date: 22 July

With his first two films as a director, Jordan Peele has proved himself to be one of the new masters in horror filmmaking, creating thought-provoking and brilliantly terrifying films. One of which won him a well-deserved Oscar. Not much is known about the plot of his third film but with a cast that includes his Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya, as well as Keke Palmer and Steven Yeun. Was there a chance this was missing the list?

Well, erm, nope….. (I’ll see myself out..)

 

8. The Northman

Release date: 22 April

Along with Jordan Peele, another director that has come along in recent years and changed the horror genre is that of Robert Eggers. However, with his latest film, he seems to be stepping away from horror, into a more historical epic that focuses on one man’s quest to avenge the death of his father. With that super exciting first trailer, this promises to be an enthralling epic, with a stellar cast that includes Alexander Skarsgård, Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, and Bjork.

7. Don’t Worry Darling

Release date: 23 September 

Olivia Wilde successfully made her directorial debut with the hilarious Booksmart. For her second stint behind the camera, she’s going back to the 1950s for a mysterious thriller/horror about a married couple. Not much else is known about the film’s plot but when you have Florence Pugh and Harry Styles in the lead roles, with Gemma Chan, Chris Pine and Kiki Layne in supporting roles, well need I say anymore?

6. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Release date: 11 November 

The first Black Panther film was a landmark moment for the MCU as it was the first MCU film with a predominantly black cast, and it was a phenomenal success, winning the MCU their first 3 Oscars. But, as exciting as it will be to make a return to Wakanda, it will ultimately be a very bittersweet one given the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman.

It’s quite the unenviable task for director Ryan Coogler to honour Boseman’s extraordinary legacy, and simultaneously pass the mantle of the Black Panther onto a new character. Fortunately, as the first film introduced audiences to numerous memorable characters, Ryan Coogler will find a way to ensure that legacy of the Black Panther, and that of Chadwick Boseman, will live on. Plus, there’s been plenty of rumours as to who some of the new additions to the cast, such as Michaela Coel, might be playing.

5. Mission: Impossible 7

Release date: 30 September

Since Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol, the MI franchise has somehow managed to find ways to keep going and just get better and better with every new instalment. This is no small part due to the willingness of the franchise’s star Tom Cruise to keep doing absolutely jaw-dropping and insane stunts that manage to outdo the last crazy stunt he did for the previous film, quite a feat for him as he’s fast approaching his 60th birthday.

While plot details remain unknown, all of the familiar faces seem to be back in action, and Christopher McQuarrie is once again calling the shots as the director. What’s more, the franchise has added some very exciting talents including Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementioff,  Esai Morales and Shea Whigham. Based on the above picture, audiences can surely expect more insane stunts and some thrilling action sequences.

 

4. Thor: Love and Thunder

Release date: 8 July

It took a while for Thor’s MCU solo films to really find their feet after a decent debut film, and a somewhat shaky second outing. However, in came director Taika Waititi in the director’s chair for the third film, and it proved to be a match made in heaven, with one of the funniest MCU films to date. So it’s thrilling to see Waititi return to helm this sequel that promises to somehow outdo the bonkers nature of Ragnarok, as if that was possible.

Natalie Portman will make her return as Jane Foster, but not only that, she will also be suiting up as the Mighty Thor. All of the supporting cast from Ragnarok like Valkyrie and Korg are expected to return. Plus, there’s also the strong possibility that the Guardians of the Galaxy will show up as well, all possibly taking on Gorr the God Butcher as played by Christian Bale.

 

 

3. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (Part One)

Release date: October 7

2018’s Spider-Man Into The Spider-Verse was one of the most stylish and unique animated films to have come out in a long time, and it’s one of the best superhero films ever made. Introducing fan favourite Miles Morales as Spider-Man, its unique animation style made it feel like it was as if the animators were directly taking pages of a comic book and translating them onto the screen. Plus given lots of superhero films this year are all about the multiverse, it was a film ahead of the curve.

With this sequel, we can definitely expect more multiverse shenanigans, and the fact that this film will be part one is an extremely intriguing prospect. Shameik Moore, Hailee Steinfeld and Jake Johnson will all be reprising their voice roles. On top of which, Oscar Isaac joining the cast as Spider-Man 2099 and Issa Rae as Spider-Woman.

2. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Release date: May 6

Phase 4 of the MCU has slowly but surely been building towards unleashing the Multiverse, and now thanks to the events of Spider-Man: No Way Home, it has finally arrived. Based on the teaser trailer for the film, one cannot help but wonder if we’re only just scratching the surface with the Multiverse in the MCU, and it’s going to be something that the MCU heroes will be dealing with for a long time to come. Based on what’s been teased, this could well be the closest thing the MCU may ever come to a horror film, and the trailer looked suitably ominous and foreboding.

Featuring the return of Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Mordo and Rachel McAdams as Christine, the film will see Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange working with Elizabeth Olsen’s Scarlet Witch. Given these two are arguably the two most strongest MCU heroes, it will be fascinating to watch these two team-up. The cherry on the cake, however, is that this will be directed by Sam Raimi, the director of the Tobey Maguire Spider-Man films. A director with a history when it comes to horror films.

 

And, my #1 most anticipated film of 2022 is.

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1.  The Batman

Release date: March 4

If you had to ask anyone to name five superheroes, chances are good that most people would name Batman among them. The character of Bruce Wayne/Batman is truly iconic, and it’s a role that has been held by a number of actors down the years. Now, Robert Pattinson is latest man to don the iconic cape and cowl.

What started out as a DCEU film to be directed by and starring Ben Affleck, has now become a stand alone DC film, under the direction of Matt Reeves. It looks like this iteration of the Dark Knight will be considerably more darker and brutal than those that came before it. Pattinson looks like an inspired choice for the titualr role, and when you add Zoe Kravitz as Catwoman, Jefffrey Wright as Commissioner Gordon, Andy Serkis as Alfred, Paul Dano as the Riddler, and an unrecognisable Colin Farrell as the Penguin, you have the makings of what could turn out to be the best Batman film ever made.

This concludes my picks for the most anticipated films of 2022, What are your most anticipated films for this year? Let me know on any of the following platforms: Twitter, Facebook or Letterbox’d

Thanks for reading. Here’s to a great 12 months of cinema (fingers crossed!)

Posted in 2020-2029, Ranking

Most Anticipated Films of 2021

Goodbye, and good riddance to 2020. What started out like any other year quickly became anything but, as for lots of cinephiles across the world, the sad sight of cinemas being forced to shut their doors was extremely tough to take. The streaming services came to our rescue to deliver some quality films in 2020 which certainly helped with the fact that a lot of the big blockbuster releases that were planned for 2020 were delayed. Yet, with the vaccine for COVID-19 starting to be rolled out, hopefully we will be able to return to cinemas at some point in 2021.

So with that faint glimmer of optimism, let’s look ahead and see what are the films that we will (fingers, and just about everything else, crossed) be seeing on the big screen in 2021. Since many of last year’s films were delayed, a few films from last year’s last will crop up again, along with some new entries. With all those delayed films, let’s hope 2021 can be a big year for cinema. As always with these lists, there are some honourable mentions that just didn’t quite make the list, and these are:

Venom: Let There Be Carnage, If you saw my review of the first film, you’ll know that I hated it and it was one of the worst things I saw in 2018. However, with Andy Serkis attached as director, for this sequel has me intrigued. Given Serkis’s expertise with motion capture work, I hope that he can use that expertise to make something more compelling than that awful first film, and less of the horrendous cheesy dialogue would be great as well.

Godzilla VS Kong, The MonsterVerse hasn’t exactly had the easiest of starts to its existence as a cinematic universe. Both 2014’s Godzilla and 2017’s Kong: Skull Island were both beset by similar problems, namely too little screen-time for their eponymous titans, in favour of mostly very bland humans. 2019’s King of the Monsters certainly packed more action, but was bogged down by a problematic script. We go to these films to see giant monsters throw down, so if they can focus more on that and less on the humans, this titanic clash certainly could be an enthralling spectacle.

West Side Story, While I am not the most ardent musicals fan out there, I’m not averse to a decent musical every once in a while, and with Steven Spielberg attached as director of a new adaptation one of the most famous musical films ever made, well that has my attention.

The French Dispatch, Wes Anderson’s films are almost always eccentric, but that eccentricity doesn’t prevent his films from being wonderfully crafted pieces of art. After making the wonderful Isle of Dogs in 2018, the quirky director makes his return to live action. With another stacked cast including Anderson regulars like Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman, Frances McDormand, Owen Wilson and Adrian Brody.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, The second film in Phase 4 of the MCU that if release dates hold, will follow after Black Widow. While the end of Phase 3 of the MCU saw some beloved characters say farewell, Phase 4 is looking like it will introduce lots of new characters to the MCU. Just Mercy director Destin Daniel Cretton is behind the camera, with a cast that overwhelmingly consists of actors of Asian descent. Given the much discussed “Mandarin” twist in Iron Man 3, fans will be hoping this film sees the genuine article in action.

Honourable mentions have been honoured, and since there’s quite a few films coming out this year, let’s see what cracked my top 15:  (Current UK release dates unless specified)

15. The King’s Man

Release date: 12th March 

How this film must have wished it held on to that initial November 2019 release date. No film has been delayed quite as much as this prequel film to the Kingsman series. This time around there’s no Eggsy or Harry Hart. Instead the film promises to be a look at how the Kingsman agency came to being in the first place. With Matthew Vaughn once again directing, with a packed cast including Ralph Fiennes, Matthew Goode, Tom Hollander, Charles Dance, Djimon Hounsou and Daniel Brühl.

14. Eternals

Release date: 5th November (USA)

The Infinity Saga might have wrapped up 23 films worth of MCU build up, but even after all that, the folks at Marvel are not showing any signs of slowing down. The studio has proved that it can take lesser known properties in their roster of heroes, and make extremely entertaining movies out of them. With an exciting cast, and Chloe Zhao in the director’s chair the studio will be hoping they have another Guardians of the Galaxy on their hands.

13. In The Heights

Release date: 30th July

One of the first of many films on this list that has had its release date delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lin-Manuel Miranda is synonymous with creating stories that have some excellent music, gaving written songs for Moana, as well as his starring role in the Tony award winning musical Hamilton. The latter of which was given a worldwide audience after a recording of the musical was released to Disney+ last year, to much acclaim from audiences that were stuck at home.

With In the Heights, fans will recognise Miranda’s trademark lyricism, but it promises to be a very different type of musical in comparison to Hamilton. With Crazy Rich Asians director Jon Chu on board, it promises to be a landmark moment for diversity on screen, due to its Latinx cast, and the fact that the film will be set in the Latin Washington Heights district of New York.

12. Malcolm & Marie

Release date: 5th February

John David Washington and Zendaya in a film together. I mean, is there anything more that needs to be said?

11. Nomadland

Release date: 

When you have two time Academy Award winner Frances McDormand in a starring role, that by itself should be enough to capture the attention. Added to the fact that this film has been receiving overwhelmingly positive reviews during its festival run last year, most notably for McDormand’s performance and for the direction by Chloe Zhao, both of whom are heavily tipped to be in the running for awards.

 

Please click on the next page for top 10!

Posted in 2010-2019, Film Review

Most Anticipated Films of 2016

Most Anticipated Films of 2016

It is 2016!!! And with a new year comes more films for film fans across the globe  to get excited about. Those who may have been hoping for the death of the comic book franchise are set to disappointed with a considerable number of both old and new comic book properties to get films. The Coen brothers are making their return, and of course there are plenty of sequels to come, with some new stories from franchises we know and love. 2015 was quite the year in terms of the Box Office, but 2016’s offerings could very well give 2015 a very good run for its money. Lots to be enjoyed, with hopefully some great gems.

I know a lot of Oscar type movies like The Hateful Eight, Creed, The Revenant, The Big Short and others are all out in January in the UK, but I am counting these as 2015 films and as such they will not be featured here. Also I do have some honourable mentions:

Bourne 5, I can’t quite get excited because there isn’t much to go on, as we haven’t had a trailer yet, but Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass reuniting should mean some more greatness from this franchise, with the likes of the very talented Alicia Vikander joining the cast.

Fantastic Beasts, I really enjoyed the Harry Potter films and the expansion of this world is very intriguing, with Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne in the lead, with David Yates at the helm, it looks like more magical fun from the wizarding world.

Passengers, a film with Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence, directed by The Imitation Game’s Morten Tyldum. Don’t know much more about it than that, but the stars as well as the director of my favourite film of 2014, yes please!

The Nice Guys, Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling, two very good actors, in a comedy directed by Shane Black. The trailer was extremely funny so sign me up please!

With all that said and done, I give you my top ten most anticipated movies of 2016 starting with:

10. Finding Dory

The long awaited sequel to 2003’s Finding Nemo, in which the focus turns on the lovable but forgetful Dory, voiced by the awesome Ellen DeGeneres, as she goes in search of her family. Last year Pixar triumphed with Inside Out, and while some of their sequels haven’t always delivered, hope remains that this can match the quality of the 2003 hit, which definitely ranks among Pixar’s best.

Release date: 29th July 

©2013 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

9. Hail Caesar!

The next film by the Coen brothers looks set to be extremely entertaining. focusing on 1950s Hollywood and the production of a film incidentally called Hail Caesar! With a very large and very talented cast that includes George Clooney, Ralph Fiennes, Scarlett Johansson, Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, and Josh Brolin. It promises that eccentric, but brilliant humour that the Coens are so good at, with a very interesting and unique story among the many sequels we will get this year.

Release date: 4th March

Hail-Caesar-trailer

8. X Men Apocalypse

The climax of the trilogy that started with 2011’s First Class, then continued with the brilliant Days of Future Past and will end with Apocalypse. No one knows this franchise better than Bryan Singer, and with primarily the First Class cast as well as younger versions of popular mutants such as Jean Grey, Storm, Cyclops, and Nightcrawler facing off against the incredibly powerful Apocalypse played by Oscar Isaac.  It promises to be an even bigger spectacle than Days of Future Past was, even without Mr Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, with a very impressive and large cast.

Release Date: 19th May

x men apocalypse

7. Doctor Strange

The second helping of Marvel that we will be treated to, and unprecedented territory as we venture into the world of magic with Dr Stephen Strange, who will be portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch, along with a decent cast including Chiwetel Ejiofor. With the director of Sinister Scott Derrickson at the helm, this could be a very interesting and very different kind of film from Marvel.

Release date: 28th October

doctorstrange

6. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice

DC’s icons are going head to head, with two of the biggest ever superhero characters fighting. After 2013’s Man of Steel, this along with Suicide Squad will kickstart the DC universe at long last. Ben Affleck looks great as Batman despite the naysayers, Gal Gadot looked sweet as Wonder Woman, but the latest trailer did reveal A BIT too much. That being said, it’s still on this list because of the aforementioned fact that Batman and Superman are gonna kick the shit out of each other, and that is AWESOME! I just hope certain things such as Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor works, cos I am not 100% convinced.

Release date: 25th March

batman-v-superman-and-wonder-woman

5. Star Trek: Beyond

The third film in this rebooted version of the Star Trek franchise. Unsurprisingly since he went off to make Star Wars, JJ Abrams is not directing this instalment. The captain’s chair is now occupied by Justin Lin of Fast and Furious fame. While the new trailer does promise lots of action, it does have the feel of Fast and Furious in space. Which is not necessarily a bad thing, but with all of the same cast back and Idris Elba as the villain, this does have a lot of promise.

Release date: 22nd July

stb

4.  Deadpool

The Merc with a Mouth is getting the proper big screen treatment. With the plethora of superhero films we have had in recent years, we have not had one that looks set to be as violent and as vulgar as Deadpool is looking set to be, and all the better for it! Ryan Reynolds is back as the titular character and from the trailers and various promotional material we have seen, this could well prove to be an absolute smash, and a very bloody one at that!

Release date: February 12th

DEADPOOL Ryan Reynolds is Marvel Comics’ most unconventional anti-hero, DEADPOOL. Photo Credit: Joe Lederer TM & © 2015 Marvel & Subs.  TM and © 2015 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.  All rights reserved.  Not for sale or duplication.

3. Rogue One: A Star Wars story

The first Star Wars anthology movie that is set somewhere before the events of the first Star Wars movie, in which a band of rebels, led by Felicity Jones, set out to steal the plans for the first Death Star. Not much is known beyond this, except for the fact that Godzilla’s Gareth Edwards is in the director’s chair. 2015’s The Force Awakens reinvigorated the franchise, and has recently passed the one billion dollar mark at the global box office, and counting.

Release date: 16th December 

star-wars-rogue-one

2. Captain America: Civil War

2014’s The Winter Soldier was for me, the best movie the MCU has given us so far, and with the Russo brothers back directing this follow-up, yes give it to me. The story focuses on the Superhero Registration Act (or Sokovia Accords as per the trailer) and a divide between the heroes with Captain America and Iron Man on opposite sides of the spectrum. With Cap being against the act, and Iron Man being for it, it promises an epic clash between arguable the two most popular Avengers. The trailer that was released teased some very interesting set pieces, and some cool action sequences, including our first look at Black Panther. The film looks set to be a big movie for Marvel, and the launch of Phase 3 of their Universe, with some possible big ramifications going forward.

Release date: 29th April

civil war

 

1. Suicide Squad

Those who know me well will know that I am a big fan of Marvel and their cinematic universe, but it’s this story from the new DC universe that has me the most excited and earns the title of my most anticipated movie of 2016! As director David Ayer put it: it’s not your usual good vs evil that we so often see in comic book movies. This time it’s bad vs evil, and that is an unprecedented premise for the superhero genre. In addition, the film has a top cast, including Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Will Smith as Deadshot, Cara Delevigne as the magical Enchantress and Jared Leto as a new incarnation of the Joker. The trailer that was dropped at Comic Con last year was awesome, with a very eerie and sinister tone to it, and I just get the feeling this could be DC’s answer to the Guardians of the Galaxy, except with a lot less humour, but hopefully the same amount of awesomeness that Guardians had.

Release date: August 5th

Suicide Squad