I‘ve already listed my right here, I simply didn’t know how to write the headline other than to just say these were my most anticipated movies without any further distinction.
That said, I think I have a nice rounded list for you here. Obviously several from the major studios, but also a few overseas entries to spice things up. Plenty of Tom Hardy and Jake Gyllenhaal and a couple starring Rachel Weisz along with several of my favorite directors coming with new films for the new year.
If you’re wondering where films such as Nicolas Winding Refn‘s The Neon Demon and Joel and Ethan Coen‘s Hail Caesar! are, well, I tried to keep this to movies with the best chance of hitting theaters in 2015, or at least playing 2015 film festivals rather than typing up a list of movies that might not hit theaters for two years such as Alexander Payne‘s Downsizing. In this day and age we get so caught up with what’s coming years from now that we forget to celebrate what’s right around the corner and looking forward to the next 12 months, I think, is enough.
So, without further delay, let’s have a look at my most anticipated movies of 2015 and then please share yours in the comments below…
DIR: Warren Beatty
In large part this is a film that has me more curious than anything else. Warren Beatty is going behind the camera for the first time since 1998’s Bulworth and in front of the camera since 2001’s Town & Country as he’ll play Howard Hughes in this picture, that doesn’t focus on Hughes, but instead on Hughes’ assistant played by Alden Ehrenreich and his romance with a young woman (Lily Collins). The film also stars a fleet of names including Alec Baldwin, Haley Bennett, Taissa Farmiga, Chace Crawford, Matthew Broderick, Martin Sheen, Annette Bening, Candice Bergen, Oliver Platt and Joshua Malina.
What brought Beatty out of a 16 year hiatus? I’m curious to find out.
#19 Black Mass
DIR: Scott Cooper
I like gangster films and I like director Scott Cooper, but I guess the only thing that makes me a little hesitant about Black Mass is Johnny Depp playing James “Whitey” Bulger in this story of Bulger and his childhood friend John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) as their lives went two dramatically different ways. I expect comparisons to Depp’s performance in Public Enemies will be made as people (myself included) have something of a love/hate relationship with that movie.
But on top of Depp and Edgerton, Cooper has stacked this cast with names including Dakota Johnson, Jesse Plemons, Juno Temple, Benedict Cumberbatch, Adam Scott, Sienna Miller and Kevin Bacon. My hopes are high.
DIR: Alejandro AmenÃ¡bar
Alejandro AmenÃ¡bar‘s The Others remains one of my favorite ghost stories of all time and his follow-up, The Sea Inside, was quite good as well, but Agora was a mess. So, what to make of Regression, a psychological thriller starring Emma Watson and Ethan Hawke in which Hawke plays Detective Bruce Kenner who’s investigating the case of young Angela (Watson), who accuses her father, John Gray (David Dencik), of an unspeakable crime. When John unexpectedly and without recollection admits guilt, renowned psychologist Dr. Raines (David Thewlis) is brought in to help him relive his memories and what they discover unmasks a horrifying nationwide mystery.
The story sets up the possibility of this thing relying heavily on flashbacks, and traumatic flashbacks at that, the thought of which makes me cringe a little. But I’m hoping Amenabar can make a return to form with this one and deliver something chilling and effective.
DIR: Tarsem Singh
My anticipation here lies solely with director Tarsem Singh. His visual eye is something I love seeing on the big screen and hell, I even liked Mirror Mirror, a far better story of Snow White than the awful Snow White and the Hunstman. That said, I’m not sure what to make of the plot line for his latest, Selfless (aka Self/Less), as it seems to be pulling the whole “body switch” thing, though with something of a twist:
An extremely wealthy elderly man, dying from cancer, undergoes a radical medical procedure that transfers his consciousness to the body of a healthy young man, but all is not as it seems when he starts to uncover the mystery of the body’s origin and the secret organization that will kill to protect its cause.
The cast includes Matthew Goode, Ryan Reynolds, Ben Kingsley, Michelle Dockery, Natalie Martinez, Victor Garber and Derek Luke.
I can see where Singh might be able to explore the visual space, but will the film feel fresh and compelling enough to rise above territory it seems many others have tread before, most of which rather unsuccessfully.
DIR: Paolo Sorrentino
I wasn’t as enamored with Paolo Sorrentino‘s The Great Beauty as others were, but I loved it’s lush cinematography and what Sorrentino was going for. Now the Italian director is teaming with Michael Caine and Paul Dano for The Early Years, a film that boasts a cast that gets even more impressive than that and a curious little plot:
Fred and Mick, two old friends, are on vacation in an elegant hotel at the foot of the Alps. Fred (Caine), a composer and conductor, is now retired. Mick (Dano), a film director, is still working. They look with curiosity and tenderness on their children’s confused lives, Mick’s enthusiastic young writers, and the other hotel guests. While Mick scrambles to finish the screenplay for what he imagines will be his last important film, Fred has no intention of resuming his musical career. But someone wants at all costs to hear him conduct again.
The supporting cast includes Rachel Weisz, Jane Fonda, Harvey Keitel, Tom Lipinski and Ed Stoppard. This could really be something special.