2017 is still in its infancy, which means its not too late to speculate and be excited about the plethora of films coming out over the next 12 months. Since lists are really popular now I figured I would post the 10 films I am most excited to see, plus 5 honorable mentions.
10. Star Wars: Episode VIII – December 15
With Rogue One finally in theaters, we can no focus our attention on the next installment of the Star Wars saga. Director Rian Johnson has said that this film will pick off immediately where Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens leaves us. Which is great. It will be interesting to see he dynamic between Rey and Luke play out on screen instead of in exposition. I think this film will also determine whether The Force Awakens was a good film that setups a new story or just a rehash of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. If Episode VIII follows in the footsteps of Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back then we know Disney is taking a formulaic approach to the new trilogy, which could leave a sour taste in the mouth of Star Wars fans everywhere.
9. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5
James Gunn’s first Guardians of the Galaxy was a fun film that went against most of the conventions of a superhero team up movie. Over the course of two hours we fell in love with a group of thieves, and murderers who realize that together they are able to achieve a greater good. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 looks like it will capitalize on the success of the first film and further develop its characters and its own unique space in the Marvel Cinematic Universe without compromising story in order to set up other aspects of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Dan Abnett’s run on Guardians of the Galaxy in 2008 is what drew me into comics (after Alan Moore’s Watchmen) so good or bad, the Guardians of the Galaxy will have a special place in my heart.
8. Blade Runner 2049 – October 6
I hated Blade Runner the first few times I watched it. After the third viewing, and reading several reviews and opinions of the film, I started to understand its place in cinematic history and the deeper meaning to it. In the hands of Denis Villeneuve, Blade Runner 2049 looks like it will successfully match the tone and capture the world of the original Blade Runner. The trailer looks incredible, and the synopsis sounds interesting. Hopefully this film will follow the footsteps of Mad Max: Fury Road, more than Terminator: Genesys, or Independence Day: Resurgence.
7. Silence – January 13
Silence tells the story of Jesuit Priests and the spread of Christianity to Japan in the 17th century. Its a project that Martin Scorsese has been trying to get off the ground since sometime in the 1980’s or 1990’s. With Andrew Garfield, Adam Driver, Liam Neeson portraying the main characters, Silence looks like it has potential to be Oscar worthy.
6. War for the Planet of the Apes – July 14
The third installment in the Planet of the Apes reboot, War for the Planet of the Apes, introduces Woody Harrelson as the new Human antagonist to the Ape regime. After the events of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, War for the Planet of the Apes will further show the growing tensions between humans and apes as war continues to progress between the two species. Andy Serkis really deserves an Oscar for his portrayal of Caesar in these films, and perhaps this is the year we will see this happen. I have high hopes this is the film that will also see the end of the humans entirely in the new Planet of the Apes franchise as well as finish off Caesars arc in the process. I’ve read that director Matt Reeves has no intentions of remaking Planet of the Apes, but depending on how successful this film is, I have a feeling we’ll be seeing one more film in this franchise.
5. Logan – March 3
Regardless of what the current rumors are about Hugh Jackman’s future in Fox’s X-Men franchise, I think Logan will be the end of Hugh Jackman’s arc that started with 2000’s X-Men. Fox is poised to be the first studio to potentially replace one of their franchise favorites with a new actor in a new capacity for future installments, which is both sad and exciting. With Johnny Cash’s rendition of Hurt playing over the first trailer, Logan seems like it will be a deeper, and more emotional character study than any of the previous films in the X-Men franchise.
4. Free Fire – March 17
Free Fire is a little bit different than all the other films on this list because it is the one of the few that is not a sequel and it isn’t science fiction story. Free Fire takes place in 1970’s Boston in a warehouse where communication has broken down between two gangs during an arms deal. The entire film looks like it will be a one location, dark, comedic, shootout for an hour and a half. With a cast featuring Brie Larson, Armie Hammer, Michael Smiley, Cillian Murphy, and Sharlto Copely, Free Fire has potential to be a fun, interesting, film.
3. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – July 21
I’ll be honest, I am mostly excited for this film because of how excited the director was to make this film. This is the film Luc Besson has transpired to make his entire career, and he now feels like the technology is ready to bring his vision to the screen. Based on the french Valerian and Laureline comic series, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is about a futuristic spatio-temporal agent and the adventures he goes on with his partner, Laureline. The trailer is notable for being the first trailer to feature a Beatles song in it, which helps create the weird tone the film is going for. Its a space opera, with new and interesting characters. After Besson’s The Fifth Element I have complete confidence Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets will be a fantastic film.
2. Alien: Covenant – May 19
After waiting 5 long years, Ridley Scott’s sequel to Prometheus will finally see the light of day. Ultimately, I am excited for this film even though I’ve gone back and forth from cautiously optimistic to full on worried that this film will flop. My biggest fear is that Fox is forcing Ridley Scott to reintroduce the Xenomorph earlier in this new trilogy than he had originally planned to after how divisive Prometheus was. In spite of that, the first trailer looked incredible. It looks like Ridley Scott is bringing the Alien franchise back to its horror roots, while adding to the mythology of the engineers. Plus, anything with Michael Fassbender is worth trying, right?
1. T2: Trainspotting – March 10
After 20 years we are finally getting the sequel we didn’t know we wanted. T2: Trainspotting will take 20 years after the events of the first film as Ewan McGregor’s Renton tries to find his place back in his hometown after betraying his friends the first time around. If you’ve never seen Trainspotting, I highly recommend it. Its a dark comedy that deals with the realities of heroin addiction and the lifestyle that comes with it. It deals with themes of friendship, and belonging, as well as what it means to be successful and what matters most in life. Danny Boyle is back to direct this sequel, as well as the original cast consisting of Ewan McGregor, Kelly MacDonald, John Lee Miller, Robert Carlyle, and Ewen Bremner.
The Lego Batman Movie – February 10
The Lego Movie is easily my favorite animated/kids movie. Combine that with Batman, and an amazing cast, you can bet I’ll be first in line for this film.
Dunkirk – July 21
After the success of the Dark Knight Trilogy and Interstellar it will be interesting to see Christopher Nolan tackle a story that seems more grounded than any of his other films. Dunkirk looks like it will be vastly different than any other Nolan film, and because of that he has my attention.
It – September 8
Another adaptation of Stephen King’s book, 2017’s It already looks like it will be significantly more terrifying than the TV movie from 1990.
Split – January 20
M. Night Shyamalan has had a tough go. His first indie film, The Sixth Sense, was a runaway success followed by the equally successful Unbreakable. The rest of his filmography has been more and more unsuccessful with each subsequent film. Early reviews for Split are largely positive. Perhaps, this will bring Shymalan’s career back from the dead (or has it been dead all along?).
A Cure for Wellness – February 17
This movie looks weird. With a haunting rendition of “I wanna be Sedated” playing over the trailer, and lots of weird medical images. A Cure for Wellness has potential to have an interesting mystery, as long as it pays off in the end.
What do you think? What films are you excited to see this year? Leave a comment below!