Everyone has their lists, this one is mine. These are the films I'm looking the most forward to, not necessarily when associated with the Oscars. Anyway...(insert Joker voice here) Here. We. Go!
Plenty has already been said about this one in just about every place, especially by Nathaniel. The thing that gets me the most interested is how Daniel Day-Lewis' voice sounds. I know some people love the talents of Rob Marshall, but I was not impressed with Chicago (nor Memoirs of a Geisha for that matter), but I think this cast gives it a chance. This will either be mega-huge or a monumental failure, there won't be an in-between.
14. Taking Woodstock
I became incredibly interested since I saw one of my favorite comedians, Demitri Martin, starring in this film and in drag no less. I smell a breakthrough performance. That alone has my attention and Ang Lee behind the lens pushes it over the top. I also love the inspired casting of a Frances-McDormand-in-Almost-Famous-type Mom, this time with Oscar nominee Imelda Staunton.
13. Whatever Works
Woody Allen back in America, a great supporting cast (as always) and Larry David...I'm sold.
12. Green Zone
If I saw a movie in production about the intricate workings of how paint dries and it was directed by Paul Greengrass, I will watch it. Now that Bush is out of office, I think people will be much more inclined to like a moive about Iraq. I especially like Matt Damon in his first war movie since Saving Private Ryan convinces me enough. Expect some big bucks.
11. The Tree of Life
I haven't heard much about the story in great detail, but as long as terrance Mallick is directing, I'll be watching. Brad Pitt's agent deserves a raise with his career back in full swing and at the peak of creativity. Sean Penn will tag along for his second outing with Mallick after The Thin Red Line, where he was tragically underused.
10. The Road
Looks creepy and I don't know why they held it back, but it still looks like something worth seeing. And what is all this about big name actors in parts without any explanation? I'm talking to you Charlize Theron, Robert Duvall and Guy Pearce. This could be the best post-apocalyptic movie since Waterworld. High expectations, indeed.
9. Leaves of Grass
I'm proud of myself for talking about this before anyone else. The story follows an Ivy League professor (Edward Norton) who goes back home to help his pot-growing twin brother (also Norton) try to take down a drug lord (Richard Dreyfuss). That alone would get me in the doors, but having Tim Blake Nelson in the director's chair gives it a spot after his terrific holocaust drama with a twist, The Gray Zone. This could be a big breakthrough for him after some mild acting success (O Brother, Where Art Thou?).
8. The Lovely Bones
I am really worried about this one. I was very high on it when Ryan Gosling was in the main part (which is now in the shaky hands of Mark Wahlberg), but Peter Jackson might be the saving grace. If I recall, everyone thought The Lord of the Rings would bomb and that turned out all right. So, I'll be an optimist.
If the trailers are any indication, this is going to be one of the biggest hits of the year. It's definitely interesting to look at. The thing that really intrigues me is the fact that this comic book adaptation contains lots of violence and even rape. I just want to know how good it will be as opposed to just entertaining.
Everyone and their mother is saying this is going to be the biggest thing...EVER! But, I have my doubts. I think that it's very possible this could be a flop of monumental proportions, which is always a rish when a film involves space as a major setting. But, if anyone can get it right, it's James Cameron. It's been 10 years since some film technology has blown us away (The Matrix) and I think it might be time for another round.
5. Funny People
Judd Apatow gets movie number three with Seth Rogen and wife Leslie Mann again. Add Adam Sandler and Eric Bana to the mix and expect another comedy classic. I think Sandler could be the only reason this isn't a critical darling like Apatow's previous two films, but it will still make plenty of people smile.
Pixar has a near-flawless track record. This one looks just as magical. Just look at the classics they've made: Toy Story, A Bug's Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Cars (the only one I didn't love), Ratatouille, WALL-E and now this. Pixar has been really close in the past few years of breaking into Best Picture, and Up might just get it done.
3. Public Enemies
Michael Mann tries his hand at a period piece with Johnny Depp and Christian Bale holding it down. The two stills look pretty cool, but I won't be totally sold until I see a trailer. Still, it looks like it could be something really special.
2. Shutter Island
Let's see. Director of Goodfellas and The Departed directing an adaptation of a book by the same guy who wrote Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone with some of the best actors of the past 20 years, which include DiCaprio, Ruffalo, Kingsley, Clarkson, Von Sydow and that might not be the best performance in the film (attention: Emily Mortimer). I'm pumped.
1. Inglourious Basterds
I am a Quentin Tarantino fan. He would probably be in the top five of people I would most like to sit down and talk movies with. He obviously has a certian style and the war-movie genre fits it pretty well, don't you think? Not to mention, the casting has people intrigued. Brad Pitt with a porn mustache is cool, but Eli Roth? Ryan from The Office? Mike Myers? I refuse to read the script because I don't want my expectations to be based on the written words over how QT ca set it up. Still, I'm on board with scalping Germans. If you actually think about it, Pitt has already done it in Legends of the Fall. Go watch and try not to laugh about it. The comination of Brad Pitt, Quentin Tarantino and World War II gets my blood flowing. What about you?