It’s a new year which means new film releases ahead in the UK and Ireland for the 2018 calendar year, with potential Academy Award contenders being released from now until the end of February, the traditional summer blockbuster season and the odd comic book film spotted here and there throughout the next twelve months. While this particular list is my own personal preference on what films I’m looking forward to the most, that means a good few films have been left out that I’m interested in (Shane Black’s spin of the Predator franchise with The Predator) and certain sequels in the pipeline that I think will do fine but it’s not high on my list (Ant-Man and the Wasp). Here is the twenty-five films I’m looking forward to the most at cinemas in 2018.
25. Bohemian Rhapsody
Directors: Bryan Singer and Dexter Fletcher
Starring: Rami Malek, Ben Hardy, Gwilym Lee, Joseph Mazzello and Allen Leech
Bohemian Rhapsody is a biopic drama focused on the life of Freddie Mercury as the frontman of Queen, chronicling the formation of the band, leading to their performance at Live Aid in 1985. Bohemian Rhapsody has been in development for some time, dating back to its original announcement in 2010 from guitarist Brian May, with Sacha Baron Cohen originally attached to play Mercury. Cohen left the project two years after, leading to the project with script problems and creative disagreements being an issue leading to Cohen’s departure, Deter Fletcher originally set to direct departed due to creative differences and Ben Whishaw jumping on board for the lead role only to depart as well. Once Bryan Singer was attached to direct and Rami Malek was to star as Freddie Mercury, the project finally went into production. Even with the recent issue behind the scenes, which seen Bryan Singer being fired and Dexter Fletcher brought in to shoot the remaining few weeks left in production, it’s a film I’m still interested in seeing how they tell the story? Will it be focused primarily on Freddie Mercury with the other members of the band in the foreground? Or will the film be more of an ensemble? We’ll find out in the end of the year and I look forward to see how Rami Malek portrays Freddie Mercury on the big screen.
24. X-Men: Dark Phoenix
Director: Simon Kinberg
Starring: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Sophie Turner, Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Evan Peters and Jessica Chastain
The Dark Phoenix saga is considered to be one of the classic stories in superhero comics and my first introduction to the tale was through the 1990’s X-Men animated series, which I absolutely loved as a kid. The X-Men eventually made its way to the big screen in the 2000’s and it slowly build on teasing the Dark Phoenix storyline which would lead to Jean Grey becoming Phoenix in 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand and…..it’s safe to say that the film didn’t handle the source material well. Fast forward to now and Simon Kinberg, who wrote the script for The Last Stand and has remained a part of the X-Men franchise as a producer on all of the instalments after the third (as well as wrote the scripts for Days of Future Past and Apocalypse instalments), will be making his directorial debut here. The majority of the Apocalypse cast make there return here and joining them is Jessica Chastain, who will be playing a shapeshifter named Smith though it’s heavily rumoured that she’ll infact be revealed as Lilandra, the Empress of an alien race known as the Shi’ar Empire and was heavily involved in the Dark Phoenix saga in the comics. It’ll be interesting to see how Kinberg does in the directors chair here and even more intrigued as to how Sophie Turner will handle the material. Hopefully it’ll be an improvement on The Last Stand.
23. I, Tonya
Director: Craig Gillespie
Starring: Margot Robbie, McKenna Grace, Sebastian Stan, Allison Janney, Julianne Nicholson, Caitlin Carver, Bojana Novakovic, Paul Walter Hauser, Bobby Cannavale and Dan Triandiflou
I, Tonya looks at the childhood of figure skater Tonya Harding, leading up to her competing in the 1992 Winter Olympics and then her connection to her Olympic rival and teammate Nancy Kerrigan in 1994. The film seems to be told in a more comedic style judging by the trailers, but it’s been receiving some award buzz over in the United States, particularly for the lead performance from Margot Robbie. It’s got a solid supporting cast with Allison Janney as Tonya’s mother LaVona Fay Golden, Sebastian Stan as Tonya’s husband Jeff Gillooly and there’s also Paul Walter Hauser of Kingdom fame as Jeff’s friend Shawn Eckhardt. Craig Gillespie is a decent enough director to, with his previous credits including Lars and the Real Girl, Million Dollar Arm and The Finest Hours, so I look forward to seeing this film in February.
22. Deadpool 2
Director: David Leitch
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, T.J Miller, Leslie Uggams, Brianna Hildebrand, Stefan Kapičić, Zazie Beetz, Jack Kesy and Josh Brolin
To say that Deadpool was a massive hit for 20th Century Fox in 2016 would be an understatement, making over $738m worldwide on its $58m budget. While details of the sequels premise hasn’t fully been revealed yet, we shall see the introduction of time-travelling mutant Cable to the big screen, with Josh Brolin playing the role. We’ll also be introduced as well to Zazie Beetz as mutant mercenary Domino. I look forward to seeing how Wade Wilson and Vanessa’s relationship grows here as, for me, their relationship feels like one of the most authentic in the comic book film genre. I was massively impressed with the first film and I look forward to the rest of the marketing campaign for the sequel if the Bob Ross parody video is anything to go by.
21. Darkest Hour
Director: Joe Wright
Starring: Gary Oldman, Ben Mendelsohn, Kristin Scott Thomas, Lily James, Ronald Pickup, Stephen Dillane, Nicholas Jones, Richard Lumsden, Jeremy Child and Samuel West
Darkest Hour focuses on the early days of Winston Churchill becoming the Prime Minister of Great Britain and facing of the most defining trails and turbulent times in history: negotiate a peace treaty with Nazi Germany or stand firm and fight for the freedom of a nation. As the Nazis more across Western Europe and the threat of invasion imminent, Churchill most withstand his darkest hour and rally a nation as his own party plot against him. Joe Wright returns to doing a period drama after his misfire with Pan and while I enjoy most of Wright’s previous films, this film is being heavily discussed with a performance that may finally see Gary Oldman earn his Academy Award for his portrayal of Winston Churchill.
20. Last Flag Flying
Director: Richard Linklater
Starring: Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston, Laurence Fishburne, J. Quinton Johnson, Richard Robichaux, Lee Harrington, Cicely Tyson, Kate Easton, Deanna Reed-Foster, Yul Vazquez, Graham Wolfe and Ted Watts Jr.
Taking place in 2003, Last Flag Flying has us following former Navy Hospital Corpsman Richard ‘Doc’ Shepherd reuniting with ex-marines Sal and Mueller, who served together in the Vietnam War, on a mission to bury Doc’s son who served and was killed in the Iraq War. Deciding to waive burying his son at Arlington Cemetery and with the help of his old war buddies, take the casket on a bittersweet trip up the East Coast to his home in New Hampshire. After Boyhood and Everybody Wants Some!!!, it’s interesting to see what Richard Linklater does with the material of Darryl Ponicsan’s novel of the same name and with a terrific lead trio in Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston and Laurence Fishburne, the film already has me sold.
Director: Alexander Payne
Starring: Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Kristen Wiig, Hong Chau, Jason Sudeikis, Maribeth Monroe, Udo Kier, Rolf Lassgård, Ingjerd Egeberg and Søren Pilmark
Downsizing tells the story of a couple who decide to undergo a newly-invented procedure which shrinks their bodies, so that they can start a new life in an experimental community. When his wife Audrey refuses to undertake the procedure at the last minute, Paul Safranek has to reassess his life and choices after befriending an impoverished activist. Alexandr Payne is a director whose work I rather like, from Election to Sideways, to some that I just couldn’t get into, like About Schmidt. Downsizing however is a concept that has me intrigued as to what Payne is looking to tell here and the cast seems strong enough.
Director: Ruben Fleischer
Starring: Tom Hardy, Riz Ahmed, Michelle Williams, Jenny Slate, Reid Scott, Scott Haze and Woody Harrelson
I’ll be honest in saying that I think Sony Pictures has a poor track record when it comes to handling the material of Marvel’s Spider-Man. Outside of Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2, I honestly couldn’t care less about the rest of Raimi’s trilogy and Marc Webb’s Amazing run. One such poorly handled character was Venom in 2007’s Spider-Man 3. So in theory, I really shouldn’t be looking forward to Venom as much as I should be, as the studio looks to create a Spider-Man universe without having it linked to Disney’s Marvel cinematic universe, but there was one name initial that as soon as it was attached to the project I was instantly in…..Tom Hardy. There’s still no details yet to the premise of the project, but the ensemble is much better than anticipated and with only one bit of marketing surrounding the project (‘We Are Venom’ banner at Brazil Comic-Con), it shouldn’t be too long before the studio releases a trailer (probably just in the summer) as the film is in the middle of production.
17. Alita: Battle Angel
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Starring: Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, Jacke Earle Harley, Keenan Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Lana Condor, Eiza González, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., Leonard Wu and Marko Zaror
Alita: Battle Angel is the live-action adaptation of Yukito Kishiro’s manga series titled Battle Angel Alita, which is set centuries in the future where Alita is found in a scrapyard of Iron City by a cyber-doctor named Ido. Alita awakens with no memory of who she is nor the world she finds herself in. Determined to uncover the truth behind her past with the help of street-smart new friend Hugo, Alita sets out on a journey that will lead her to take on the injustices of this dark, corrupt world. Alita has been long in development with James Cameron attached to the project for the best part of two decades. With Robert Rodriguez coming out of his wheelhouse to direct this studio film and an interesting ensemble attached, Alita: Battle Angel certainly has my curiosity and attention, especially with the official trailer released recently.
16. Ready Player One
Director: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Mark Rylance, Simon Pegg, T.J Miller, Lena Waithe, Hannah John-Kamen, Win Morisaki, Philip Zhao and Ralph Ineson
Set in the year 2045, Ready Player One takes place in the world that is on the brink of chaos and collapse, but people have found salvation in an expansive virtual reality known as the OASIS, created by James Halliday. One day Halliday dies, leaving his immense fortune to the first person to find a digital Easter egg he has hidden somewhere in the OASIS, sparking a contest that grips the entire world. An unlikely young hero named Wade Watts joins the contest, where he finds himself on a treasure hunt filled with mystery, discovery and danger. Steven Spielberg directing the film adaptation of Ernest Cline’s novel on paper seems like the perfect fit and judging by the few trailers that have been released already, it looks set to be filled with plenty of pop culture references. While the special effects look great, hopefully the story will be entertaining as well. Looking forward to seeing if this will be the film for Tye Sheridan that will lead to him getting more lead roles in big studio productions.
15. The Post
Director: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Sarah Paulson, Bob Odenkirk, Tracy Letts, Bradley Whitford, Bruce Greenwood, Carrie Coon, Matthew Rhys, Alison Brie, Jesse Plemons, David Cross, Zach Woods, Pat Healy, Michael Stuhlbarg, Jessie Mueller, Stark Sands and Neal Huff
The Post focuses on Katharine Graham, the first female publisher of a major American newspaper; The Washington Post. With the help of Post editor Ben Bradlee, the two race to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of Government secrets that spanned three decades and four U.S Presidents. Together, they have to overcome their differences as they risk their careers, and freedom, to help bring long-buried truths to light in publishing the Pentagon Papers. I love a good political drama as much as the night one, especially when it’s focused from a journalism standpoint.
Director: James Wan
Starring: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Willem Dafoe, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Temuera Morrison, Dolph Lundgren, Nicole Kidman, Ludi Lin and Michael Beach
Honestly I didn’t think we’d be getting a big screen outing of Aquaman so soon, let alone one that I’m actually looking forward to. Learning that he is heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, Arthur Curry is caught between the surface dwellers that are always polluting the globe and the Atlantians that are ready to invade the surface. I understand some peoples reluctance to anticipate good things to come from this solo outing, considering what has come before in the DC Film Universe, but I enjoyed are introduction to Jason Momoa’s Aquabro in last years Justice League and with James Wan helming the film, I’ve a good feeling that Aquaman will be a good film.
13. Lady Bird
Director: Greta Gerwig
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Beanie Feldstein, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Lois Smith, Jordan Rodrigues, Marielle Scott, Odeya Rush, Jake McDorman, Laura Marano, Kathryn Newton and John Karna
Lady Bird is a coming-of-age drama focused on Christine ‘Lady Bird’ McPherson, a teenage girl in Sacramento, is drifting through her final year of high school. Thinking about where she aspires to be heading to college, which could perhaps be unrealistic, she frequently clashes with her mother Marion, who works to keep her family afloat after her husband loses his job. Lady Bird has been critically praised, earning itself a 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 214 critic reviews counted and it’s picking up some award season buzz for its director Greta Gerwig and lead Saoirse Ronan.
12. The New Mutants
Director: Josh Boone
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams, Charlie Heaton, Blu Hunt, Henry Zaga and Alice Braga
It could potentially be a real shame that Disney have bough 20th Century Fox. Granted one one hand, the prime X-Men series of films that focus on the ensemble of Professor X, Magneto, Beast and Mystique may be slightly getting repetitive now with no real sense of continuity (which has been a joke or two at the studios expense for quite some time) but in the last few years, their X-Men films and television shows outside of that core ensemble, i.e Deadpool and Logan on the big screen and Legion and The Gifted on the small screen, have been quality products. This is the primary reason as to why I’m excited to see what Josh Boone does with The New Mutants as it looks to establish a new set of characters outside of the core group and judging by the official trailer, the dark horror vibe is definitely something that I’m into. It’s got a really good young up-and-coming ensemble, particularly Anya Taylor-Joy has been terrific the last few years, and I’m hopeful that if the film does well, that the Big Mouse will not tamper with this sandbox.
Director: Dan Gilroy
Starring: Denzel Washington, Colin Farrell, Carmen Ejogo, Amari Cheatom, DeRon Horton, Amanda Warren, Nazneen Contractor, Shelley Hennig, Joseph David-Jones and Andrew T. Lee
Roman J. Israel, Esq. is a driven, idealistic defence attorney that finds himself in a crisis after a series of explosive events, leading him down the road to extreme action. This dramatic thriller is Dan Gilroy’s directorial follow-up to 2014’s Nightcrawler, which not only my favourite films of the decade, it has one of my favourite performances on film in Jake Gyllenhaal. While the film didn’t gain as much critical acclaim as Nightcrawler after it premiered at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) 2017, the film was re-structured and parts of the narrative were re-focused and it’ll be interesting to see how the final cut will fare in February. Another reason I’m really looking forward to this Dan Gilroy film is the fact that Denzel Washington is in the lead role and I’d watch that man in anything.
10. Incredibles 2
Director: Brad Bird
Starring: Holly Hunter, Craig T. Nelson, Sarah Vowell, Huck Milner, Samuel L. Jackson, Brad Bird, John Ratzenberger, Bob Odenkirk and Catherine Keener
Fourteen years. In fourteen years we’ve had two Cars sequels, the ‘conclusion’ to the Toy Story trilogy, and two follow-ups to Finding Nemo and Monsters Inc. in Finding Dory and Monsters University, before Pixar finally got around to announcing a sequel to their 2004 superhero family smash-hit The Incredibles. The apparent premise for the sequel sees The Parr family struggling to maintain normal lives as Helen Parr, aka Elastigirl, is out fighting crime while Bob, aka Mr. Incredible, remains at home looking after their children; Violet, Dash and Jack-Jack. While Bob discovers that Jack-Jack has secret powers, a villain named The Underminer appears with a sinister plot. I’ve been looking forward to an Incredibles sequel for far too long and while we haven’t seen much footage bar a teaser, I’m expecting great things from this sequel with the majority of the voice cast returning along with director Brad Bird.
09. Black Panther
Director: Ryan Coogler
Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Florence Kasumba, John Kani, Sterling K. Brown, Sydelle Noel, Isaach de Bankolé, Nabiyah Be and Andy Serkis
After the events of Captain America: Civil War, T’Challa returns to the technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda, to take his place as the country’s new King. T’Challa soon finds himself being challenged for the throne from factions within his own country. When two of his enemies team up to destroy Wakanda, T’Challa must team up with C.I.A Agent Everett K. Ross and members of the Dora Milaje (Wakandan special forces), to prevent Wakanda from being dragged into a war. Ryan Coogler has been making quite the name for himself, after directing small indie film Fruitvale Station in 2013, then following that up with a Rocky spinoff I didn’t know I wanted in 2015 with Creed. Now, Coogler is playing with Marvel’s sandbox, a big budget blockbuster focused on black superhero Black Panther. The trailers for the film give us an epic feel, introducing audiences to the nation of Wakanda and an all-star black cast that includes Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira. Chadwick Boseman reprises the role from Civil War as T’Challa and I look forward to seeing him going up against Michael B. Jordan, whose benefitted majorly in the last few years collaborating with Ryan Coogler. By the way, I’m definitely interested with the recent news of Kendrick Lamar producing the soundtrack for the film.
08. Phantom Thread
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lesley Manville, Vicky Krieps, Richard Graham, Camilla Rutherford, Harriet Sansom Harris, Brian Gleeson, Julia Davis, Nicholas Mander, Lujza Richter, Gina McKee, Philip Franks, Phyllis MacMahon, Silas Carson, Martin Dew and Jane Perry
It’s 1950’s post-war London where we follow dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock and his sister Cyril. The duo are at the centre of British fashion, dressing royalty, film stars and dames with the distinct style of The House of Woodcock. Women come and go through Woodcock’s life, providing him inspiration and companionship. Now we meets Alma, a young woman who becomes his muse and lover, making his once carefully controlled and planned life disrupted by love. Paul Thomas Anderson is a director whose work I’ve enjoyed for the most part and while the story may not usually something that intrigues me, it’s the PTA collaboration with Daniel Day-Lewis that has me the most interested about Phantom Thread, especially since it’s Day-Lewis’ last role.
07. Molly’s Game
Director: Aaron Sorkin
Starring: Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba, Kevin Costner, Michael Cera, Brian d’Arcy James, Chris O’Dowd, J.C MacKenzie, Bill Camp, Graham Greene, Jeremy Strong, Matthew D. Matteo, Joe Keery, Natalie Krill, Claire Rankin, Madison McKinley, Khalid Klein, Victor Serfaty and Jon Bass
Molly’s Game focuses on Molly Bloom, a beautiful young Olympic-class skier who ran the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game for a decade before being arrested by the FBI. Her players included Hollywood royalty, sports stars, business moguls and, unbeknownst to her, the Russian mob. Her only ally is her criminal defence lawyer Charlie Jaffey, who learned that there is more to Molly than the tabloids led people to believe. Aaron Sorkin has been responsible for writing the scripts for some of my favourite films of this decade (The Social Network and Moneyball) and here we see Sorkin take the step up in making his directorial debut. With Jessica Chastain appearing the underrated Miss Sloane last year, which was Sorkin-esque in dialogue, it’ll definitely be interesting to see her be a powerhouse here with actual Sorkin dialogue.
06. All The Money In The World
Director: Ridley Scott
Starring: Christopher Plummer, Michelle Williams, Mark Wahlberg, Romain Duris, Marco Leonardi, Charlie Plummer, Timothy Hutton, Andrew Buchan, Giuseppe Bonifati, Nicola Di Chio, Kit Cranston and Maya Kelly
All The Money In The World tells the true story of the kidnapping of John Paul Getty III back in 1973 in Rome. Even with his favourite grandson being abducted, Jean Paul Getty, the richest man in the world, won’t part with any of his fortune to the kidnappers. John Paul’s mother, Gail attempts to sway her father and he sends his security man Fletcher Chace to look after his interests, where the two race against time to save her son. All The Money In The World is a Ridley Scott film that’s been picking up some award buzz lately, even with the controversy of removing it’s star Kevin Spacey after the numerous sexual harassment and sexual assault allegations, who originally played John Paul Getty. While some figured the film would be shelved to a later date, maybe a year, for reshoots, not only did they quickly recast Spacey’s role with Christopher Plummer, he done the reshoots in within two weeks. The story is one that was just waiting to be adapted for the big screen, but now it’s even more intriguing now to see how seamless an editing job Claire Simpson has done.
Director: Lee Unkrich
Starring: Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Alanna Ubach, Renée Victor, Ana Ofelia Murguía, Edward James Olmos, Alfonso Arau, Selene Luna, Dyana Ortellí, Herbert Sigüenza, Jaime Camil, Sofía Espinosa and Luis Valdez
Despite his family’s generations-old ban on music, Miguel dreams of being a musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colourful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events. Along the way he meets trickster Hector and, together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history. Coco is the Pixar film release this year that looks set to sweep up all the awards in the Best Animated categories, with a tremendous voice cast and while visually there may be some similarities to The Book of Life, if the word of mouth is anything to go by, Coco may be the best animated film from Pixar since Toy Story 3.
04. Avengers: Infinity War
Directors: Anthony and Joe Russo
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Pratt, Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Hiddleston, Sebastian Stan, Chadwick Boseman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Pom Klementieff, Paul Rudd, Anthony Mackie, Tom Holland, Benicio del Toro, Danai Gurira, Don Cheadle, Letitia Wright, Terry Notary, Tom Vaughan-Lawlor and Peter Dinklage
2008 was the birth of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the introduction of Iron Man. 2012 we witnessed the Avengers Assemble and the process, be introduced to The Mad Titan known as Thanos. Since then we’ve had multiple films from Marvel Studios, some great, some fine and some disappointing, we now reach the 10th anniversary of the MCU and now we finally get to see the Avengers having to face-off against the galactic threat of Thanos. The fate of Earth and existence itself is in the balance as the Avengers must stop Thanos from achieving his goal….collecting all six of the Infinity Stones, artifacts of unimaginable power and use them to inflict his twisted will on all of reality. I really loved what the Russo brothers have done with the Captain America sequels (in particular The Winter Soldier) and with them helming this Avengers sequel and the first trailer that was released recently, I’m excited to see what they do with Thanos on the big screen.
03. Three Billboards Outside Of Ebbing, Missouri
Director: Martin McDonagh
Starring: Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, John Hawkes, Peter Dinklage, Lucas Hedges, Abbie Cornish, Samara Weaving, Caleb Landry Jones, Clarke Peters, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Kathryn Newton, Kerry Condon, Željko Ivanek, Amanda Warren, Sandy Martin, Christopher Berry and Nick Searcy
After months have passed since her daughter’s murder and the murderer hasn’t been caught, Mildred Hayes is so angry over the lack of progress in the investigation that she rents three abandoned billboards leading into her town and paints three signs with a controversial message directed at Sheriff Bill Willoughby. While the community get upset over the billboards’ content, Officer Jason Dixon, an immature mother’s boy with a penchant for violence, gets involved, the battle between Mildred and Ebbing’s law enforcement is only worsen. We’ve been waiting quite some time for Martin McDonagh’s next film after Seven Psychopaths and this is a premise that not only sounds interesting, it feels different to other releases we’ll be getting this year. Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell are back to collaborate with McDonagh again after Seven Psychopaths, but the real powerhouse here is Frances McDormand, who looks set to be in contention for all the Best Actress awards this year.
02. The Shape Of Water
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Starring: Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins, Octavia Spencer, Doug Jones, Michael Stuhlbarg, Lauren Lee Smith, Nick Searcy and David Hewlett
The Shape of Water is set in the Cold War era of America, 1962. In a hidden high-secuirt government laboratory where she works, a mute janitor named Elisa Esposito is trapped in a life of isolation. Elisa’s life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda discover a secret classified experiment, a amphibian-humanoid creature, which Elisa develops a bond with. Guillermo del Toro is a director that I’m a fan of and from what I’ve heard online, along with the award buzz it’s been getting, The Shape of Water seems to be his best work to date, or his best since Pan’s Labyrinth, depending on who you ask. Sally Hawkins is one of the most overlooked actresses around at the moment and I’m interested to see her performance here and how she interacts with Doug Jones (another underrated actor) amphibian-humanoid.
Director: Stefano Sollima
Starring: Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, Isabela Moner, Jeffrey Donovan, Manuel Garcia-Ruflo, Matthew Modine, Catherine Keener, David Castaneda, Elijah Rodriguez, Ian Bohen, Jackamoe Buzzell and Silvino Suarez
My most anticipated film of 2018 is the followup to Denis Villeneuve’s 2015 original Sicario. After the events of the original, the drug war on the US-Mexico border has escalated as the cartels have begun trafficking terrorists across the US border. To fight the war, federal agent Matt Graver re-teams with the mercurial Alejandro. I absolutely loved Sicario and while I’m disappointed that Villeneuve couldn’t return to direct Soldado, I believe they found the right director in Stefano Sollima, if his work on the television series Gomorrah is anything to go by. It also helps that Taylor Sheridan returned to pen the script for the sequel, as he’s been killing it recently with Hell or High Water and Wind River. While I can understand why some people are upset that Emily Blunt’s character isn’t returning here, from the premise and the way that Sicario concluded, it makes sense that the story focuses on exploring not only the relationship between Graver and Alejandro, but get more backstory into their characters. Brolin was really good in the original but del Toro provided his best performance in years as Alejandro and as a character, I’m very much looking forward to know more about him.
That’s the twenty-five films I’m looking forward to seeing the most in 2018. Is there any films that aren’t on the list that you are looking forward to the most?