Coming up with a list of the 5 films I’m most looking forward to for 2010 turned out to be a little harder than I thought… cause there’s so many to choose from. Buoyed by a very successful year at the box office, and by figuring out that a film doesn’t have to be mass market schlock to be successful, Hollywood has cranked up the awesome factor for this year. Below you’ll find the cream of the crop from what was a series of agonising decisions about which movies get me more excited. Get out your bibs, ’cause it’s time to start drooling!
5. Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (February 12) – While I might not be familiar with the books that this franchise is based on, I am very well acquainted with the source material from which they draw. Before I began my lifelong relationship with comic books, my eyes had been opened to the rich and incredible world of Greek mythology, and I am all for bringing in a new generation who didn’t grow up with Hercules cartoons. Percy Jackson, thinks he’s a regular kid, growing up in New York City. What he doesn’t know is that he’s the demigod son of Poseidon, god of the sea, and that the gods of Olympus all suspect him of stealing Zeus’ lightning bolts. Sounds like a mystery involving a group of young adults, infused with magic and adventure. Sound like a recipe for success? While they won’t win awards for anything other than special effects, I’m sure they will dazzle audiences. Oh, and Rosario Dawson’s in it, so that helps.
4. Centurion (release date TBC) – I hadn’t even heard about this movie until a few days ago, but as a huge fan of Neil Marshall, I am so psyched to see how this plays out. It’s supposed to tell the story of the legendary 9thLegion, back in the last days of the Roman Empire, who cross Hadrian’s Wall into Scotland to do battle with the Picts (the barbarians behind the crazy face paint William Wallace and his cronies were wearing in Braveheart). For those unfamiliar with Neil Marshall, he directed cult favourites The Descent and Doomsday, and will now be working with Dominic West (The Wire‘s Jimmy McNulty) and Michael Fassbender (Archie Hicox from Inglourious Basterds). Should be a great opportunity for some visceral swordplay and bloodshed, as well as some top notch acting from two actors right on the cusp of greatness.
3. Kick-Ass (April 16) I’ve been gushing about this movie for a few months now and with good reason I think. Despite having Nic Cage on board as the patriarchal crimefighter Big Daddy, I hope that up and comer Chloe Moretz will be able to eclipse him with her performance. Essentially, the movie is about a kid who decides he wants to be a costumed crimefighter. On his first night out, he’s caught on Youtube getting his ass handed to him by a group of thugs, and suddenly he’s a celebrity inspiring a whole bunch of other masked crusaders out of the shadows. It’s been an absolute joy just watching the trailers, so there’s no telling how blown away I’m gonna be seeing a whole movie. With Mark Strong on board, probably due to Matthew Vaughn having been his director in Rocknrolla, there’s some great talent holding up the villain end of things too, so there’s lots of way to enjoy this one. Stay tuned to our podcast in the coming weeks, ’cause we’re gonna have some local comic book connoisseurs on the show to discuss Kick-Ass and what the prospects for its adaptation really are.
2. Tron Legacy (December 17) – How long has it been since Tron? 28 years? Jiminy Christmas! That’s gotta be some kind of sequel record or something. How many computer based films can you name that were still as relevant almost 30 years after they were first released? This time around, it sounds like Flynn (with Jeff Bridges returning to play him) might actually be a bad guy. Or maybe it’s just his pixelated alter-ego Clu? Kevin Flynn has apparently retreated into the computer world again and has been living there for the last 25 years or so. Now Flynn’s son finds him, and together, the two of them embark on an adventure in this binary-coded world that is apparently a lot more sinister and dangerous now. But who cares? They’ve got even cooler Light Cycles now! To this day I still think that crazy laser-Frisbee combat is one of the most badass forms of combat around. Hey, it was cool enough to make Bruce Boxleitnerinto a tough guy. There’s basically almost a full year to wait for this one, so there’s no telling what new tidbits the hype machine will continue to churn out, but with Disney putting some serious weight behind this you know it’s gonna be tantalizing.
1. Iron Man 2 (May 7) – If you had told me 3 years ago that Iron Man was going to be the flagship superhero for Marvel Studios, I’d have called you a wanker and booted you in the nuts for spreading lies. Tony Stark was always the douchebag millionaire alcoholic with no powers and who was only invited to join The Avengers because he told everyone they could use his mansion. Who knew that Jon Favreau and Robert Downey Jr. were going to be able to breathe so much life and coolness into the guy? When you’re watching Tony Stark up on the screen you’re having a good time, because he’s having a good time (except when he’s been kidnapped by insurgent mercenaries, but that was still cool). This time out there are some new characters on boththe good and bad side, there’s some new gadgets, and some new problems for Tony Stark who decided to spill the beans on his secret identity at the end of the first movie for some reason. With comeback kid Mickey Rourke playing the over the top bad guy opposite comeback kid Robert Downey Jr.’s over the top good guy, there’s gonna be all kinds of fireworks to go along with Scarlett Johansson, Don Cheadle, and the inimitable Sam Rockwell filling out the background. And best of all: This is just the tip of the iceberg, as this movie is supposed to hint out in a lot of directions at all the elements leading up to The Avengers movie coming sometime in 2012.