Thursday, March 27, 2014

What You Should Absolutely Have On Your Movie Radar for 2014

1.       "Only Lovers Left Alive" (April 11) – Director Jim Jarmusch tells the story of Adam ('Tom Hiddleston), an underground musician and vampire  who along with his lover for centuries (Tilda Swinton) are both depressed  and tired with the direction human society has taken and devolved into.  A dark drama –slight comedy.   O

2.       "Locke" (April 25) – Actor Tom Hardy (“Baine” from Batman) gets his own "Drive" from writer-director Steven Knight: "A man's life unravels  when a single phone call causes the life of a successful construction manager to unravel during a mysterious 90-minutes race against time.

3.       "Maleficent" (May 30) -  Angelina Jolie plays the evil queen in this new take on Disney's "Sleeping Beauty."

4.       "Edge of Tomorrow" (June 6)  -  Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt star in this sci-fi thriller from director Doug Liman. A soldier fighting in a war with aliens finds himself caught in a time loop of his last day in the battle, though he becomes better skilled along the way.

5.       "The Fault in Our Stars" (June 6) - Hazel and Gus are two teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them on a journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous given that Hazel's other constant companion is an oxygen tank, Gus jokes about his prosthetic leg, and they met and fell in love at a cancer support group.

6.       "Jersey Boys" (June 20) - Clint Eastwood directs this adaptation of the hit Broadway musical about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. O

7.       "Jupiter Ascending" (July 18) - "Jupiter Ascending," an original sci-fi film from Andy and Lana Wachowski (Matrix Trilogy)  is just a great big mess of potential. Mila Kunis as the universe's only hope? Channing Tatum as a wolf-human hybrid? An original score cue from Michael Giacchino? This could be the year's craziest ride or a total disaster. Whichever end of the scale it winds up on, however, one thing is clear: it's a must see.

8.       "Get On Up" (Aug. 1) - Chadwick Boseman,  who played Jackie Robinson in "42," stars as James Brown in Tate Taylor's ("The Help") new film.

9.       "Lucy" (Aug. 8) - Lucy (Scarlett Johansson), a woman living in Taipei, Taiwan, works as a drug mule. The drug she inadvertently takes goes into her system, changing her into a metahuman. She can absorb knowledge instantaneously, is able to move objects with her mind and can't feel pain and other discomforts. O

10.   "Jane Got A Gun" (Aug. 29) – Natalie Portman plays a woman who asks her ex-lover for help in order to save her outlaw husband from a gang out to kill him.

11.   "This Is Where I Leave You" (Sept. 12) – The 2014's version of "August: Osage County"? Shawn Levy directs this adaptation of Jonathan Tropper's beloved novel, with Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver, Jane Fonda, Rose Byrne, Connie Britton, Timothy Olyphant and more in the cast.

12.   "The Equalizer" (Sept. 26) - Denzel Washington reunites with "Training Day" director Antoine Fuqua for "The Equalizer," a reboot of the popular '80s television series.

13.   "Gone Girl" (Oct. 3) - David Fincher's follow-up to "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" is another novel adaptation: "Gone Girl," Gillian Flynn's mystery thriller. Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike star, with Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry in supporting roles.  O

14.   "The Judge" (Oct. 10) - Free from Iron Man for the moment, Robert Downey Jr. stars as a man who returns to his hometown for his mother's funeral and then finds out that his estranged father has been arrested for murder. Robert Duvall, Billy Bob Thornton, Melissa Leo and Leighton Meester co-star. O

15.   "Interstellar" (Nov. 7) – This will probably be the most talked about and the most highly anticipated film for 2014 - Christopher Nolan's first film since "The Dark Knight Rises" is a sci-fi epic starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway and many others. The trailer elicits goose bumps with the smallest of details. Imagine what the finished film might do. O

16.   "Untitled Brad Pitt WWII Movie" (Nov. 14) - Formerly titled "Fury," this film stars Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Jon Bernthal, Michael Pena and a tank on the first month into the Iraq war. O

17.   "Exodus" (Dec. 12) – The second most anticipated film for 2014,   an account of Moses' hand in leading the Israelite slaves out of Egypt. Director Ridley Scott and Actor Christian Bale. O

18.    "Annie" (Dec. 19) – A reboot with a modern urban twist on this popular musical. Starring  Quvenzhane Wallis as the title little orphan and Jamie Foxx and Cameron Diaz as, respectively, Benjamin Stacks (the new Daddy Warbucks) and Miss Hannigan.

19.   "Into The Woods" (Dec. 25) - Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp, Anna Kendrick, Emily Blunt and more star in this adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's hit musical. O

20.   "Unbroken" (Dec. 25) – My pick for the best slipper film for 2014, Angelina Jolie directs this amazing true account of Olympian Louis Zamperini, who participated  in Hitler’s Germany Olympics during  and then as an officer was taken prisoner by Japanese forces during WW2.  O

21.   "Foxcatcher" (TBD) - Bennett Miller's presumed 2014 Oscar contender from Sony Pictures starring Steve Carell, Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo all star in the true story of Olympic Wrestling Champion Mark Schultz and how paranoid schizophrenic John duPont killed his brother, Olympic Champion Dave Schultz. O

22.   "Inherent Vice" (TBD) - Paul Thomas Anderson adapts Thomas Pynchon's 2009 novel in Los Angeles in 1970, drug-fueled detective Larry "Doc" Sportello investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend..Joaquin Phoenix, Reese Witherspoon, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Jena Malone, Maya Rudolph and many more all star. O

The “O” means strong Oscar contender.

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