We’re starting to move past the doldrums months, where not much of interest comes out. The past few weeks have largely featured a string of uninteresting movies as the studios unload their weakest product along with awards caliber films that didn’t make it out of New York or L.A. by New Years. Looking over the tentative slate for this year, there’s a fair amount of interesting material set for release. What’s heartening is how many original stories there are. I bristle at the complaints movies have headed downhill, what with all the sequels or adaptations. Let’s not forget, after all, that The Godfather was an adaptation of a novel many considered a cheap pulp potboiler, and also that many consider it’s sequel better than the original.
That’s a digression from my main point, which is to list the movies I think, sight unseen, have the biggest potential for being amazing in 2013. Between the film makers involved, the casts, and the interesting subject matter chosen, these are the movies I’m clamoring to see when they hit theaters this year.
1.) Room 237
This fascinating documentary was a big hit at festivals last year, and begins a theatrical run in March. It details a number of theories people have developed around Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, and it looks like a fascinating view into our desire to find patterns, whether they’re really there or not.
2.) The Place beyond the Pines
I caught the preview for this a few weeks back, and it looks like the kind of gritty, intense drama that practically welds you to the seat.
Danny Boyle’s kinetic film making has always been thrilling to watch, from Shallow Grave on through his Oscar winning Slumdog Millionaire and nominated 127 Hours. If this is up to his normally high standard, it should be very entertaining.
4.) Before Midnight
5.) Pacific Rim
Giant monsters and giant robots. This movie is tailor made for the twelve year old me, and with Guillermo del Toro directing the grown up me’s pretty excited as well.
Neil Blomkamp blew me away with District 9, his earthy high-concept Sci-Fi classic. His latest looks to once again use action driven science fiction to comment on society. Between his sharp eye and the stellar cast, this could be very impressive indeed.
Possibly the movie I’m most anticipating, on a list of very exciting upcoming films. Alfonso Cuaron returns with his own Science Fiction tale, taking us into space for a journey filled with long unbroken shots and (again, based on early reports from test footage) gorgeous visuals.
8.) Captain Phillips
Paul Greengrass directs Tom Hanks in the true story of the captain of the Maersk Alabama, who was captured by Somali pirates in 2009. Although how the event turned out is common knowledge, Greengrass is exceedingly talented at building tension, so this could be a real nail biter.
9.) The World’s End
Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost cap off their Cornetto Trilogy with their skewed take on disaster films. Really, there’s not much else that needs to be said.
Before JJ Abrams takes off for the Star Wars universe, we have one more trip on the Enterprise with him at the helm. Make all the lens flare jokes you want, his reboot of the Star Trek brand was thrilling, and the cast did an excellent job breathing new life into the characters. The big speculation is around whether or not Benedict Cumberbatch is playing Khan this go-around, but regardless I’m excited to see what Abrams does now that the world-(re)building is complete and he can just run with his very own adventure in the Star Trek universe.
Which movies are you most looking forward to in 2013?