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SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

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SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Shrykespeare » December 28th, 2009, 9:35 pm

Well, another year has come full circle. Congratulations to the (unofficial) Super Leagues winners: Geezer, who squeaked out victory in both the Ultimate FY and HY events, as well as undeadmonkey, who made a monster comeback from dead last to win the Box Office FY tournament. I myself was able to hang on for victory in the Box Office HY, so at least I have something to crow about next year!

Since it would seem that the one and only movie that WAS scheduled to come out on the momentous date of 1/1/10, the very same date that we will begin our next decade of film – Case 39 – has, to the surprise of no one, departed for an as-yet-undetermined release date, I’ll have to fill the dead air with something else. Most critics are, this week, regaling their loyal viewers with their “Ten Best” or “Ten Worst” films of the year list, but sadly, I can’t do that just now, because there are still too many movies that I haven’t seen in order to make a truly comprehensive list. And besides that, I’m sure that most of my “loyal” readers really couldn’t care less. (Grin.)

So instead of looking back, I will instead look ahead. More specifically, I will be announcing my Ten Most Anticipated Films of 2010 (Jan-Apr). Everything between New Years Day and the start of the summer season will fall under my microscope. It may differ slightly, or even vastly, from your own, but hopefully it will give me more viewing satisfaction than the ten films I want to see the most from this time period one year ago. To recap:

10. The Soloist – Good movie, but a little too psychedelic for my liking. (6/10)
9. Race to Witch Mountain – Entertaining, but corny as hell. (6/10)
8. State of Play – Taut and tense, but a rather disappointing ending. (7/10)
7. Bride Wars – The only one of the 10 that I waited for DVD on. So-so. (6/10)
6. Knowing – Such a great premise, but completely blew it. (3/10)
5. The International – Well-acted, well-shot. One of my faves of the year. (9/10)
4. Duplicity – A bit convoluted, but enjoyable. (8/10)
3. Push – Good action, good story. Quite underrated. (8/10)
2. Monsters vs. Aliens – Hysterically funny. My favorite animated film of the year. (9/10)
1. Watchmen – Liked it better the second time I saw it. Overhyped, but very good. (8/10)

So, in retrospect, nine of the ten got “so-so” or better, which, for January to April, I guess ain’t too bad. Anything not in summer or winter is either hit or miss, and I guess just being entertained is enough. Will the following ten films be as good, or maybe even better? On paper, I certainly hope so.

SHRYKESPEARE’S TOP TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS OF 2010 (JAN-APR)

10. Green Zone (3/12) – This was a tough choice, but I had to give the nod to the re-teaming of Matt Damon with his Bourne series director Paul Greengrass over other cool-looking films like Legion and Percy Jackson. Though not nearly as action-packed as our favorite amnesiac spy, Green Zone looks to be a well-acted political thriller with a very good supporting cast (Greg Kinnear, Brendan Gleeson, Amy Ryan, Jason Isaacs). Let’s hope that the Bourne-philes can make the bottom line a little better than Ridley Scott’s excellent but ill-timed Body of Lies.

9. Clash of the Titans (3/26) – This one SHOULD be higher, but something about this remake of the 1981 film just rubs me the wrong way. Maybe it’s just that the original, which was one of my all-time favorite movies when I was twelve years old – one of the last to be produced by Hollywood icon Ray Harryhausen and one of the very last to feature the legendary actor Sir Laurence Olivier – holds such a special place in my heart. Oh, the special effects have come so far since then, but mere effects are not enough to make a movie great anymore, at least for me. I expect a lot from director Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk), not to mention lead actors Sam Worthington (as Perseus) and Liam Neeson (as Zeus).

8. The Wolfman (2/12) – I’m not a huge horror enthusiast, mainly because most horror is just crap that’s been recycled a million times. But when a classic horror story is retold, something just makes me want to see it. This centuries-old legend, which has spawned dozens of adaptations since moving pictures were first created, could be one of the best re-tellings in recent memory if done correctly. And given the cast, which includes Oscar-winning actors Anthony Hopkins and Benecio Del Toro, along with Hugo Weaving and Emily Blunt (who may win an Oscar this spring), I think this could easily be the best, and most profitable, horror film of 2010.

7. Daybreakers (1/8) – Yeah, I know, another horror movie. But what draws me to this is the fact that it takes a familiar horror premise and gives it a sci-fi twist. Imagine a world where just about everyone is a vampire, and what few humans remain are hunted down and drained of blood. Now imagine that such a world is entering a critical point, that being “what happens when there’s no blood left”? This will be the first film of 2010 that I see, and I am hoping that it kicks off the year in style. The trailer was really good, and I think you’ll agree, any movie that features Willem Defoe kicking serious ass is automatically good. And speaking of kicking ass…

6. Kick Ass (4/16) – All you have to say is the word “superhero” and I’m there. But this latest big-screen adaptation of a series of comic books, from the pen of author Mark Millar and directed by Matthew Vaughn (Stardust) looks to be about twelve different kinds of awesome. Starring Nicolas Cage, Mark Strong (Sherlock Holmes), and rising star Chloe Moretz as foul-mouthed, heavily-armed preteen Hit Girl, Kick-Ass could easily become the guiltiest pleasure of the year.

5. Shutter Island (2/19) – Last fall, this film was but two weeks away from an early October release when it was summarily packed up and moved to February; the reasons given were: 1) Paramount’s inability to muster the capital to promote the film during awards season, 2) star Leonardo DiCaprio’s unavailability to promote the film internationally, and 3) Paramount’s hope that the economy might rebound sufficiently in three months to make the film more viable. (Judging by the record-breaking Christmas weekend we just had, this would seem to be a wily decision.) This film, the latest from Hollywood legend Martin Scorsese, stars DiCaprio as a U.S. Marshal in 1954 who is sent to a mysterious island that houses a notorious institution for the criminally insane, where a woman has incomprehensibly gone missing. You’ve all seen the trailers... it’s all we’ve had for the last four months. Just release the damn thing, already!

4. Date Night (4/9) – I knew next to nothing about this film until the recent trailer, and even though it’s directed by Shawn Levy (Night at the Museum), the comedic potential of teaming up Steve Carell and Tina Fey, both of whom are red hot right now, is just too tantalizing. They play a married couple who, on a rare night out away from their kids, get sucked into a web of intrigue and danger. The supporting cast, which includes Mila Kunis, Mark Wahlberg, Ray Liotta and Mark Ruffalo, make Date Night look like a more slapstick-y version of True Lies. Given how sparse most of April looks, this actually looks like a breath of fresh air, even if it is formulaic as hell.

3. The Book of Eli (1/15) – A Denzel Washington movie? In JANUARY?? When was the last time that happened? Though some would say that Washington’s star has fallen somewhat, alternating as he has between projects for the two Scott brothers (Tony and Ridley), it’s good to see him, at 55 years old, go back into full-on badass mode. I’ve always been a fan of post-apocalyptic thrillers, and there is little doubt that Eli will be as action-packed as The Road was gloomy. And forget Dark Knight and Harry Potter, isn’t it just awesome to have Gary Oldman back in his wheelhouse, playing an OTT bad guy again?

2. Edge of Darkness (1/29) – Welcome back, Mel! That’s right, Mel Gibson, the former Road Warrior whose career took a crushing blow a few years ago with his infamous anti-Semitic rant, is now back on the big screen, in a big movie, for the first time since Signs in 2002. Edge of Darkness, which is helmed by director Martin Campbell (Casino Royale) looks to be in the same vein as 2009’s runaway hit Taken, with Gibson playing a homicide detective going all-out to avenge the death of his daughter, who he soon discovers led a rather… shall we say, controversial life. Co-starring Danny Huston (Wolverine) and Ray Winstone (Beowulf), Edge of Darkness looks to be a pure adrenaline rush, and hopefully will serve as somewhat of a rebirth for Gibson’s career.

And finally…

1. How to Train Your Dragon (3/26) – After the godawful Bee Movie, I am happy to announce that I am back on the DreamWorks bandwagon. Following the well-deserved success of Kung Fu Panda and Monsters vs. Aliens, this latest 3-D outing from DreamWorks comes from the same pair of directors who brought us Lilo & Stitch. The setting: a medieval Scandinavian (I presume) village where dragons are prevalent, and dragon-hunters are revered. A young boy (Jay Baruchel), in an attempt to prove himself worthy, discovers a secret about the so-called mindless beasts that threatens to change both societies. Can DreamWorks’ streak of awesomeness reach three? I’m willing to be that it will. The bigger question is, can their fourth and final Shrek film wash over the mediocrity of the third film upon its release in May?

The next ten most anticipated (in chronological order): Legion, Extraordinary Measures, From Paris With Love, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, The Crazies, Alice in Wonderland, The Bounty Hunter, Hot Tub Time Machine, Repo Men, The Losers.

And, finally, the ten LEAST anticipated: The Spy Next Door, When in Rome, Dear John, Valentine’s Day, Remember Me, She’s Out of My League, Our Family Wedding, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Furry Vengeance, The Back-Up Plan.

And, lest I forget, here are my predictions for this weekend, which consists of nothing but holdovers. My god, Avatar is a bat out of hell, isn’t it?


My predictions for the weekend of January 1-3, 2009:

1. Avatar - $47 million
2. Sherlock Holmes - $38 million
3. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel - $30 million
4. It’s Complicated - $12 million
5. Up in the Air - $8 million


Well, that will do it for me for another YEAR!!! Next week, I will kick off 2010 with the first three wide-release films of the year, which are: Daybreakers, a futuristic vampire film starring Ethan Hawke, Sam Neill and Willem Defoe; Leap Year, a romantic comedy starring Amy Adams and Matthew Goode; and Youth in Revolt, a comedy with Michael Cera as a young man who goes to bizarre lengths to win the girl of his dreams.

Later, and Happy New Year!
Happy 40th birthday Ginnifer Goodwin! (5/22/18)
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Buscemi » December 28th, 2009, 10:47 pm

My Top Ten list for January-April

10.Legion
9.Oceans
8.The Book Of Eli
7.The Crazies
6.Green Zone
5.Edge Of Darkness
4.The Wolfman
3.Kick-Ass
2.Shutter Island
1.Hot Tub Time Machine

Ten I Have Absolutely No Interest In
Daybreakers (Repo: The Genetic Opera with vampires from hacks who haven't directed since 2002? No thank you.)
The Spy Next Door (What happened to Jackie Chan's career?)
Tooth Fairy (Why, Billy Crystal?)
When In Rome (Kristen Bell, please fire your agent.)
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (So what will it be, worse than The Seeker or worse than Jumper?)
Remember Me (No comment.)
The Last Song (Miley Cyrus actually trying to act? Oy vey.)
Date Night (A basterdized remake of True Lies is not what Steve Carell should be doing with his career.)
The Back-Up Plan (I thought Jennifer Lopez disappeared after her movies started to go straight-to-video.)
MacGruber (Another Lonely Island movie? Dear God, make it stop.)
Everything on this post is strictly the opinion and only the opinion of Buscemi.

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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby J.I. » December 29th, 2009, 12:41 am

Shryke, I agree with you on How to Train Your Dragon. Of course, John Lasseter did kick Chris Sanders off of Bolt so I don't know if he actually is a good director or not, but it should be funny.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby thswrestler160 » December 29th, 2009, 2:15 am

just out of curiosity buscemi in what way do you think daybreakers is going to be like repo other than its set in the future and is going to be awesome?
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Buscemi » December 29th, 2009, 2:18 am

The imagery and the look is almost exactly like Repo. Also, it's full of has-been actors and is basically a vanity project by a one-note director.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby BanksIsDaFuture » December 29th, 2009, 3:04 am

I can't be the only one who's mildly interested in Dear John? It has a great trailer and pretty good cast. Both Tatum and Seyfreid are proven (A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints/Mamma Mia) and you almost can't go wrong with a Nicholas Sparks book.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby thswrestler160 » December 29th, 2009, 3:46 am

I'll give you that the imagery might share some resemblance but both movies have amazing casts, has-beens or not; ethan hawke, paul sorvino, anthony stewart head, William DaFoe, and Sam Neill are all amazing actors. Yes Darren Bousman has only done gory horror movies but you couldn't have watched repo and thought that it had any resemblance to saw other than it had blood. Also I dont really think you can classify the Spierig brothers as a one-note director either when they have made a total of 2 movies one of which you haven't seen yet.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Buscemi » December 29th, 2009, 4:04 am

But that one film of theirs that I did see was perhaps one of the worst films to ever come from Australia. It's no surprise that no distributor in Australia would release it and that it took three years to find a US release. However, it is a surprise that they got to make a second film while good horror directors (like James Gunn) struggle to get projects made.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby becs » December 29th, 2009, 12:16 pm

BanksIsDaFuture wrote:I can't be the only one who's mildly interested in Dear John? It has a great trailer and pretty good cast. Both Tatum and Seyfreid are proven (A Guide To Recognizing Your Saints/Mamma Mia) and you almost can't go wrong with a Nicholas Sparks book.


*shrug* It looks like The Notebook 2 to me, I'm much more interested in the other Nicolas Sparks adaptation upcoming The Last Song, despite Hannah Montana. I'll probably see neither till they are out on dvd though.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby W » January 1st, 2010, 9:24 pm

Daybreakers currently has an 8.6 IMDb with over 600 votes and a 100% RT rating with 9 reviews. I'm sure that's mostly by fanpeople, but with the above knowledge, you should at least reserve judgement.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby numbersix » January 2nd, 2010, 9:02 am

Tracking for Daybreakers is looking like it'll open in the late single-digits, possibly early teens. Which isn't great (as it'l probably be beaten by Avatar, Alvin, and Sherlock, and quite possibly Leap Year, which is tracking to open in the mid teens).

I don't buy the Repo comparison. The imagery is the same because it's one of the hundreds of films that uses cyber-punk set and costume design. By your logic I could say that Daybreakers will be a huge success because it has similar imagery to The Matrix! It's more of an issue with its marketing campaign at this stage
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Buscemi » January 2nd, 2010, 9:32 am

Repo is a futuristic film about the selling of body parts, directed by a horror director and distributed by Lionsgate. Daybreakers is a futuristic film about blood transfusions, directed by two horror directors and distributed by Lionsgate. The only differences that I see are that one focused on humans and one focused on vampires.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby Shrykespeare » January 2nd, 2010, 12:14 pm

Leap Year is tracking in the mid-teens? No one I know outside these boards has even heard of it! I've seen all of three commercials for it.

I would be surprised if Leap Year outgrossed Daybreakers. Really I would.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby numbersix » January 2nd, 2010, 12:45 pm

Shryke, I got those figures from a HSX forum, so not sure how reliable they are.

And Bousch, you neglect to mention that one is a sci-fi muscial with a limited release, and one is a sci-fi vampire flick on wide release.
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Re: SPEARE'S TIPS - TEN MOST ANTICIPATED FILMS (1/10-4/10)

Postby BanksIsDaFuture » January 2nd, 2010, 2:39 pm

My 10 for the first quarter:

1. Kick-Ass
2. Clash Of The Titans
3. The Book of Eli
4. Date Night
5. Hot Tub Time Machine
6. Cop Out
7. Percy Jackson
8. Brooklyn's Finest
9. A Nightmare on Elm Street
10. Edge of Darkness
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