Another year of film has passed and a new year beckons, but before we get stuck in to 2015, let’s take a look at what films 2015 has to offer! As usual, we have our fair share of sequels and the new beginnings of franchises, but there are also some interesting original films that look appetising. Here are I take a look at my most anticipated films of the year:
So starting in January, we have a lot of the Awards Contenders – ‘Birdman’, ‘The Theory Of Everything’, ‘Whiplash’, ‘American Sniper’, ‘Wild’, ‘A Most Violent Year’, ‘Inherent Vice’, ‘Big Hero 6’ and ‘Selma’, but the one that stands out the most to me is without a doubt, ‘Foxcatcher’. It has rave reviews and the trailers look fantastic – a very slow, brooding picture filled with excellent performances from the film’s main cast – Steve Carrell, Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo. If you heard these names in a cast (well, maybe not Mark Ruffalo), you’d be stunned to hear that they’re in an Awards contender. This is definitely one to watch!
There are also some non-awards contenders coming out in January and the standouts are ‘The Woman in Black: Angel of Death’, ‘Taken 3’ and ‘Mortdecai’. I LOVED the 2012 adaptation of Susan Hill’s ‘The Woman in Black’ and it was my favourite film of that year. It was dark, suspenseful and very atmospheric and Daniel Radcliffe had really matured in such a short amount of time from the final Harry Potter the previous Summer. I’m a little bit worried about the sequel as the first film ended beautifully and there hasn’t been a demand for it at all. This looks like a cash grab from Hammer, but I’ll reserve full judgement until seeing the actual film.
‘Taken 3’ is another interesting film as it deviates from the standard formula that these films are based on, someone being kidnapped. Here Bryan Mills is on the run for a murder that he supposedly did not commit. I’ll be interested to see how this one gets received considering the 2nd one was critically panned (I thought it was just alright) and considering they’re changing the formula, it’ll be interesting to see if the film can still be as entertaining as the first two.
‘Mortdecai’ is a very strange case as I didn’t hear of it until watching the sublime first trailer which looked quite funny. It essentially looks like a new take on last year’s critical darling ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ this time with Johnny Depp as the leading man. Will it be a redeeming film for Depp after he’s suffered negatively received ‘Transcendence’ (which I really liked) or ‘The Lone Ranger’? We’ll have to wait and see.
Moving on into February, we have ‘Jupiter Ascending’ by the Wachowski’s where we’ll find out if they’ve still got it or not after a number of disappointing features. Their last film ‘Cloud Atlas’ was, in my opinion, ambitious but ultimately overlong and not particularly entertaining. We then have Matthew Vaughn’s, ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ which I’m particularly interested in as it looks like a ‘Kick-Ass’ version of a James Bond film. With Vaughn, I’ll be surprised if it doesn’t hold up to his reputation of consistently making good films and this should be good fun to watch.
How can I not talk about ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’? Well, I’m not particularly enthused by it, but it’s definitely a prominent film this year. Will it hold up to the bestselling novel or will it be another weak adaptation of a novel?
In to March, we have ‘The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ which its predecessor, I thought was a light and touching film so I’ll be watching this and then, a very interesting concept in the form of ‘Chappie’ by Neill Blomkamp, director of ‘District 9’. Whilst the critics were mixed over his follow-up of ‘Elysium’, I thought there were a lot of interesting concepts despite it being a very flawed film, but this looks like an adult’s version of ‘Wall-E’ that has a good cast with Hugh Jackman leading and of course, Sharlto Copley (a Blomkamp regular) is voicing the robot itself.
I won’t be watching ‘The Divergent Series: Insurgent’ because I thought the first film was rubbish, but I feel that I should mention it as there will no doubt be an audience (mainly in the form of teen girls) for this.
Whilst there are not a lot of details yet for ‘Child 44’, it intrigues me with its stellar cast which includes Tom Hardy, Noomi Rapace, Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Dev Patel, Jason Clarke and Vincent Cassel. Hopefully we’ll get a trailer shortly to confirm that this is a film worth the watch as it’s got a very strong cast.
And now we get the big blockbuster – ‘The Avengers: Age of Ultron’, the hotly anticipated follow-up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Even though it was flawed, I still like the first entry and with all the build-up to this chapter from ‘Iron Man 3’, ‘Thor: The Dark World’, ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ and ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, this is a film not to be missed.
Just glossing over, ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’, ‘Tomorrowland’ and ‘Jurassic World’ are the next blockbusters, but it’s ‘Insidious: Chapter 3’ that I’m personally really looking forward to. With James Wan stepping down from the director’s chair, Leigh Whannell, his partner with ‘Saw’ and screenwriter for most of his films, it’ll be interesting to see if Whannell can pull it off and interesting to where he takes the story to.
I’ll be watching ‘Terminator: Genisys’, the fifth entry into the franchise and Arnie himself is returning to the franchise after sitting out of the fourth instalment. The trailer for this looked a bit puzzling, with sub-par visual effects (probably because they’re not finished yet) and a bit of a cliched story, but I’m still going to give it a chance and see if Alan Taylor (director) can pull it off.
‘Ant-Man’ and ‘The Fantastic Four’ are the other two offerings we have this year in terms of superhero films. To me, ‘Ant-Man’ intrigues me more, but it has had a very troubled production with the loss of director Edgar Wright and many cast and crew members, so it’ll be interesting to see if Marvel can have another hit especially after last year’s ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ and ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’.
It’s a return from Pixar this year as well who have two films to make up for an empty year last year. In the Summer, we have ‘Inside Out’, a film that takes place in the mind of a little girl and is directed by Pete Docter, who made ‘Monsters Inc’ and ‘Up’, the latter in my opinion was an exceptional film. In the Winter, Pixar are releasing ‘The Good Dinosaur’ which had a very troubled production with the loss of its director Bob Peterson, but it’ll be interesting to see what Pixar can make of this.
‘Pan’ and ‘Assassin’s Creed’ round off the Summer and these two films are also going to be quite a gamble, especially with ‘Assassins’s Creed’ which has a very big fan base.
Moving into the late part of 2015, in September, we have ‘Suffragette’ and ‘Everest’, ‘Suffragette’ being a historical film of the suffragette movement and stars Helena Bonham Carter and Meryl Streep and ‘Everest’ is the next film for Jake Gyllenhaal to play in, who has made some excellent films lately with ‘Nightcrawler’, ‘Enemy’ and the terrific ‘Prisoners’. The latter two films are directed by Denis Villeneuve who also has a film called ‘Sicario’ coming out this year, but it has an unconfirmed release date. Details of the plot are quite scarce at the moment but it stars Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro so with this great cast, it’s got to be good!
And now for the usual Halloween fare, this year we have ‘Victor Frankenstein’, ‘Crimson Peak’ and the remake of ‘Poltergeist’. ‘Crimson Peak’ looks the best out of the three and is directed by Guillermo Del Toro, so expect a very Del-Toro-esque style and also we probably won’t see any of his creative monsters this time as this is a gothic, supernatural horror – simple, but if done correctly, it could be another great film to add to Del Toro’s repertoire.
Jon Favreau’s vision of ‘The Jungle Book’ is out in October as well, the first of two visions, the next one being an origins story by Andy Serkis which is out in 2017.
The new James Bond film ‘Spectre’ is also coming out and after the heels of ‘Skyfall’, this should be a very good film now that we have our new M, Q and Moneypenny and with rumours of Christoph Waltz playing arch-nemesis Blofeld, this is too irresistible to miss.
The final Hunger Games film ‘Mockingjay Part 2’ is out in November and this should hopefully round the series off nicely and pay off all the build up in the below-par first part.
Then we have the very hotly-anticipated ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’. I’m not a particular fan of ‘Star Wars’ myself but I know there is a huge fan base for this, so I’m sure it’ll be a good film for the fans. ‘Kung-Fu Panda 3’ rounds off the year and I’m a fan of the first two which are good fun and quite humorous.
So 2015 looks like quite a monumental year for film, with lots of sequels and big franchise films on the horizon. There are also a lot of original films coming out (and plenty more as the year rolls on) so for those disappointed at the ton of sequels this year, there’s something for everyone. I’m sure it’ll be a very interesting year for film.