May is upon us, and while Summer might technically be another month and a half away, for us movie lovers May means the beginning of the Summer blockbuster season. Of course, there will still be a few awards-worthy dramas sprinkled in with the Iron Man 3′s of the cinematic world, so there should be plenty for all types of filmgoers. After the jump, have a look at the ten films I am most excited about seeing over the next few months.
To be eligible for the list, the film has to have a wide release date anywhere between May and August. And as always, I’d love to hear what films you are most excited about, so be sure to leave your selections in the comments.
10. Iron Man 3 – directed by Shane Black, starring Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley, Rebecca Hall, Don Cheadle, Paul Bettany, James Badge Dale, and Jon Favreau (May 3) Joseph’s review, here.
IMBD Synopsis: When Tony Stark’s world is torn apart by a formidable terrorist called the Mandarin, he starts an odyssey of rebuilding and retribution. (Action/Sci-Fi/Thriller)
Big fan of the original, not so much for the sequel. Then The Avengers came and made me excited about the franchise all over again. Director Shane Black is a little unproven, his only other film behind the camera being Kiss Kiss Bang Bang around eight years ago, but he did well with Robert Downey Jr. then, so here’s hoping their chemistry carries over once more. I am most excited to see how Guy Pearce does as the villain (his creepy bad guy role in last year’s Lawless was pretty memorable).
9. World War Z – directed by Marc Forster, starring Brad Pitt, Mireille Enos, James Badge Dale, and Matthew Fox (June 21)
IMDB Synopsis: United Nations employee Gerry Lane traverses the world in a race against time to stop the Zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments, and threatening to decimate humanity itself. (Action/Drama/Horror/Thriller/Sci-Fi)
I have a twisted fascination with the inevitable zombie apocalypse, so as a means of increasing my chances of survival I have remained excited for this one, despite the production troubles the film has faced. It looks like a lot of fun, after all, and I am excited to see Mireille Enos (from the AMC series The Killing) on the big screen.
8. We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks – directed by Alex Gibney (May 24)
IMDB Synopsis: A documentary that details the creation of Julian Assange’s controversial website, which facilitated the largest security breach in U.S. history. (Documentary)
Julian Assange’s controversial – if not somewhat terrifying – website created quite the stir a few years back. Now, not only do we have this doc to look forward to in 2013, but we have the feature film, The Fifth Estate (starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Assange), coming as well. It will be interesting to see the real Assange before the portrayed one, won’t it? And Gibney has an excellent resume which includes Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005), Taxi to the Dark Side (2007; for which he won the Oscar), and Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God (2012). That’s enough to get any doc fan excited.
7. Before Midnight – directed by Richard Linklater, starring Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke (May 24) Clayton’s review, here.
IMDB 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. (Drama)
I have to first state that I only first discovered Jesse and Celine a few months ago, and while I didn’t quite fall for them in Before Sunrise (1995), I did warm up to them in Before Sunset (2004), the former being a little too starry-eyed for me, while the latter fell right in my age range, I suppose. Now the story drifts even closer to home, and I am excited to see how the couple has been living and how they deal with obstacles that most couples seem to endure along the way.
6. The Bling Ring – directed by Sofia Coppola, starring Emma Watson, Katie Chang, Taissa Farmiga, Leslie Mann, and Gavin Rossdale (June 12)
IMDB Synopsis: Inspired by actual events, a group of fame-obsessed teenagers use the internet to track celebrities’ whereabouts in order to rob their homes. (Crime/Drama)
When Ms. Coppola has been good (Lost in Translation; The Virgin Suicides) she’s been great, and when she has not (Marie Antoinette; Somewhere) she’s still been fun to watch. However, it’s
Hermione Granger Emma Watson that I’m most looking forward to seeing here. After impressing most of us in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, I’m looking forward to seeing her career progress.
5. Only God Forgives – directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, starring Ryan Gosling and Kristin Scott Thomas (July 19)
IMDB Synopsis: Julian, a drug-smuggler thriving in Bangkok’s criminal underworld, sees his life get even more complicated when his mother compels him to find and kill whoever is responsible for his brother’s recent death. (Crime/Drama/Thriller)
Who doesn’t want to see the director/actor combo of Drive (2011) reunite? This movie promises to be violent, bloody, and full of gristle, and with Kristin Scott Thomas playing the conspiring matriarch, what’s not to be excited about?
4. Star Trek Into Darkness – directed by J. J. Abrams, starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Benedict Cumberbatch, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Anton Yelchin, and John Cho (May 17)
IMDB 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. (Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi)
J. J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot just missed the cut for my top 10 list for 2009, and probably wasn’t too far away from getting an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture (Who knows, right?). From the moment he was cast, there has been nonstop speculation surrounding Cumberbatch’s character (is he or isn’t he Kahn?), but to be honest, I couldn’t care less as long as the film delivers close to what they brought in the original. I believe they will.
3. The Great Gatsby – directed by Baz Luhrmann, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Isla Fisher, Joel Edgerton, Tobey Maguire, and Jason Clarke (May 10)
IMDB Synopsis: A Midwestern war veteran finds himself drawn to the past and lifestyle of his millionaire neighbor. (Drama/Romance)
I have been trying for over a year not to get too excited for this one. Luhrmann’s Australia was downright terrible, and I’ve been absolutely terrified about what he has done to the great F. Scott Fitzgerald novel. But I have to admit to you now, I can’t help but get excited each time I see the trailer for the film. So here’s hoping this will be more Moulin Rouge than Australia. The presence of Carey Mulligan has me hopeful.
2. Elysium – directed by Neill Blomkamp, starring Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, and William Fichter (August 9)
IMDB Synopsis: Set in the year 2154, 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. (Sci-Fi/Action/Drama/Thriller)
Blomkamp’s directorial debut (feature), District 9, ranked fifth on my top 10 films of 2009, and received a surprising – yet deserved – Best Picture nomination from the Academy. So needless to say, I am more than thrilled about his sophomore effort. And I guess this shows that I am a sci-fi junkie. Elysium looks like it has the political/social commentary of District 9 mixed with the whole “chosen one” mythology of films like The Matrix or Star Wars. Count me way in.
1. Man of Steel – directed by Zack Snyder, starring Henry Cavill, Michael Shannon, Amy Adams, Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, and Christopher Meloni (June 14)
IMDB Synopsis: A young journalist is forced to confront his secret extraterrestrial heritage when Earth is invaded by members of his race. (Action/Adventure/Fantasy/Sci-fi)
I named my first born son after Superman. That’s just about all you need to know about how excited I am for this movie to finally get here!! After the disappointment that was Superman Returns (2006), I was worried we might never see a proper film reboot for the greatest superhero of them all. With David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan contributing behind the scenes, I feel the film is in the right hands.
Films that would have made the list if eligible: Frances Ha (limited May 17, no wide date scheduled); Fruitvale Station (limited July 26, no wide date scheduled; Terence’s review, here); Stories We Tell (limited May 17, no wide date scheduled)
Honorable Mentions: After Earth (May 31); The Iceman (May 2); The Way Way Back (July 5); Ain’t Them Bodies Saints (August 16)
Also Coming: This is the End (June 12); The Lone Ranger (July 3); Pacific Rim (July 12); The Hangover Part III (May 24); The Wolverine (July 26); Kick-Ass 2 (August 16); 300: Rise of an Empire (August 2)
What films are you most excited for this Summer?