So with a new year on the horizon, and 2014 is wrapping up (like 2013, a pretty strong year for film), it’s time to talk about (hopefully)the strong movies that are to follow in the new year of 2015. There sure looks like there will be a lot of great ones and was rather difficult to narrow this down to just 20. Why 20? Well the answer to that question is, no reason really, I just have a lot of movies I am excited for! My 20-10 I will merely list, while my 10-1 I will go into more detail about why I am so excited.
To lay some ground rules first, the release of the film most be in 2015. The film can’t have had a limited release in 2014 and get a wider one in 2015 and qualify for this list. For example, “American Sniper” is getting a wide release on January 16th, but already it got a limited release for 2014 on Christmas day. To break it down more simply if a film is getting considered for the 2014 Oscars then it does not count for this list (Same reason “Lone Survivor” did not make my list last year). So here you have it, my top 20 most anticipated films of 2015!
#20-Mission Impossible 5
#18-Kingsman: Secret Service
#15-The Good Dinosaur
#10-The Hateful Eight
What should get you excited is first this is a Quentin Tarantino film. Tarantino’s name alone is enough to excite; “Pulp Fiction”, “Django Unchained”, “Kill Bill”, he has no shortage of good movies and next is the film at first we thought might not get made. After the film’s script was leaked, Tarantino threatened not to make the film but cooler heads prevailed and Taratino assembled an all star cast of Channing Tatum, Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, and many others. Not to mention that this is a western and I am a sucker for a good western.
#9- Mad Max: Fury Road
A while ago this might not have made my top 20, (let alone my top 10) but the two trailers have absolutely blown me away. The original “Mad Max” trilogy was a bit ahead of its time and has influenced so many other creations (in either film, novel, or video game form). Now we return to that world with acting superstar Tom Hardy stepping into the Mel Gibson role of Mad Max and the original creator George Miller back into the director’s chair. The film looks like chaos combined with almost poetic action; with a nice blend of real stunts and CGI. To add to my excitement I have heard from a few people that have seen it early, and the buzz is very positive.
A film I’m surprised is not on more people’s lists, “The Peanuts”! Blue Sky Animation may be a bit hit or miss with their animated films, but they adapted the only well done Dr. Seuss feature outside of the original cartoons in “Horton Hears a Who”. So perhaps adapting source material might be “their game”. Along with bringing in members of the Schulz family really makes me believe that this studio has a real admiration for the original source material and wants to respect it while also pushing it forward. I was very impressed with the teaser. Blue Sky seem to have found a happy medium between the CGI animated world of today with the 2-D world we are accustomed to with past “Peanuts” features. I really believe that this could be pulled off and am excited to see Charlie Brown and Snoopy on the big screen again.
(Why is the spell check on my computer telling me I spelt Genisys wrong? ) Okay stupid title aside, I had mild interest in this for a while. The studio hired director Alan Taylor whom directed several “Game of Thrones” episodes and the very well done “Thor: The Dark World”. Taylor also assembled a great cast of actors behind him, Jason Clarke, Emile Clarke, J.K Simmons, brought back Arnold Schwarzenegger, and added Jai Courtney (whom I think has potential to be better then he has shown). I may be a bit disappointed that they aren’t continuing the “Terminator Salvation” storyline (despite how underwhelming the film actually was). But, I like the “Star Trek” (2009), and “X-Men: Days of Future Past” type narrative (where the timeline is changed via time travel) and the trailer honestly gets better the more times I watch it. Maybe not everyone feels this way about the latest “Terminator” but I’ve got a good feeling about this one.
#6-The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part II
If there is a young adult movie series that is made without the thought of stooping low and catering to the young teen crowd it’s “The Hunger Games” series. I remember when the first one came out (having not read the books or anything) and being blown away with just how good “The Hunger Games” was. It was smart, thrilling, well acted, metrically directed and emotional to the core. Francis Lawrence matched the first one with “Catching Fire” and would helm the series from then on. I liked “Mockingjay Part I” but I felt it didn’t reach the heights of the first two and it felt a little bogged down being a two part finale. Yet still, we have reached the concluding chapter in what has been a very strong series and hopefully Part II will validate the two films being split in half.
#5- Inside Out
You stick Pixar’s name in front of something and I am instantly excited. I don’t need to go through all their accolades because you’ve seen them all by now. Of course now, there is the question is Pixar is stumbling in quality, but I think we are quick to question Pixar and “Inside Out” is prime example of why we shouldn’t. “Inside Out” has a really fun, interesting premise, made to feel completely original by Pixar. Not to mention that terrific teaser that studio put out, that has everyone gut busting laughing. Along with the extremely good word of mouth coming out of the early previews at D23, this is a sure fire hit waiting to happen.
Daniel Craig James Bond movies have been nothing sort of excellent (with the exception of Quantum of Solace). “Casino Royale” was an revelation, and “Skyfall” blew everyone out of the water. Now the director of “Skyfall”, Sam Mendes, is coming back for another round with Bond in the director’s chair. If that alone doesn’t get your excitement flowing then this should, the return of the long dormant James Bond nemesis, Spectre. This is the group that murdered James Bond’s wife in cold blood, and after Mendes help brought us one of the best Bond villain in years (in Javier Bardem ‘s Silva) and can’t wait to see what Mendes does with Bond’s arch nemesis ( adding Christoph Waltz to the cast doesn’t hurt things either.)
If there is one thing that anyone should know about me is “Jurassic Park” is one of my favorite movies of all time That was the movie that made me love movies, I think I watched the” making of” on the DVD as many times as I watched the movie. Like everyone on the planet however (and I’m generalizing here), I didn’t like “Jurassic Park 3” (I do however have a soft spot for “The Lost World”). So naturally I am excited that they are finally going back to the original island and locations. The trailer hit me at an emotional level, I felt like, “yes we are back.” I still may not be quite on board with the whole, dinosaur splicing plotline, but the trailer helped me cope with the change and it may be the perfect step forward for the franchise; it’s been too long since we’ve seen Dinosaurs on the big screen.
#2-Avengers: Age of Ultron
This is sure to be on the top of most people’s lists. Why? Well it’s Marvel and it’s “The Avengers”, that’s why. Granted I didn’t love “The Avengers” the same way most people did but it is still without a doubt an incredible fun time at the movies; the perfect escapism for the summer, and this looks like it will take things to a whole new level. “Avengers” is fun, but this looks like it will be a more serious and dramatic take on the story where the stakes are high and people could die. I was so surprised by the sudden shift to a darker tone but it’s a welcome surprise. To add to this the trailer already put out for this film is one of the best trailers I’ve seen in a long time. I’ve watch that trailer more times than I care to admit. Plus, Marvel is on a hot streak right now with, “Thor: The Dark World”, “Captain America: Winter Solider”, and “Guardians of the Galaxy”. They are all excellent and I can’t wait to see this newest entry in the continuing saga.
#1- Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens
It’s hard to imagine this will not be on the top of everyone’s lists for most anticipated of 2015. It’s “Star Wars’! One of if not the most influential series in all of cinema history, and now after it’s dormant period, it’s back and in the more than capable hands of Disney, Lucasfilm and director J.J. Abrams. The original cast are returning! We will see Luke, Han, and Leia again with a great cast of newcomers. I love Star Wars (and no I don’t hate the prequels; even if they are without a doubt much weaker than the original trilogy) and to see a new start to a new era of Star Wars it is very exciting to me.
So that’s my list, whats yours? Leave your thoughts and comments in the comment section below and let everyone know. Hopefully 2015 is incredible!