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Movies To Look Forward to in 2008
Let's face it, 2007 was a mediocre year for movies. Although there are still a couple months left for 2007 to prove it's cinema value, overall it was a disappointing year. Sure Hollywood gave us "300", "Zodiac", and "Once", but we also got "The Number 23", "Norbit", and "Code Name: The Cleaner". So I have my eyes set on 2008, which seems to have a wonderful slate of features for us to see at the multiplex.
1. SYNECHDOCY, NEW YORK
RELEASE DATE: Early 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Charlie Kaufman
CAST: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Catherine Keener, Samantha Morton
PLOT: Hoffman plays a theater director who attempts to put on a play by creating a life-size replica of New York City inside a warehouse. He then finds out there is something wrong with him after a trip to the dentist. The movie goes into themes such as the nature of family, of home, and of male-female relationships. It sounds complex, confusing, and complicated, which (coming from the mind of Kaufman) is exactly why you shouldn't miss this movie.
2. BE KIND REWIND
RELEASE DATE: January 23, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Michel Gondry
CAST: Jack Black, Mos Def, Danny Glover, Melonie Diaz, Mia Farrow
PLOT: Jack Black plays a junkyard worker who inadvertently causes his brain to become magnetized, leading to unintentional destruction of all the movies in his friend's (Mos Def) video rental store. In order to keep the store's one loyal customer, an elderly lady with a tenuous grasp on reality, the pair recreates a long line of films, putting themselves and their townspeople into it. I've seen the previews for this, and it looks hilarious.
Check out the rest of the list after the jump...
Photo by Kris Kros via Flickr
3. THE DARK KNIGHT
RELEASE DATE: July 18, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Christopher Nolan
CAST: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman
PLOT: Batman returns to face The Joker (Heath Ledger). This darker and grittier sequel to the well-received Batman Begins is sure to continue the successful reworking of this franchise. As long as Christopher Nolan is manning the helm, I will be there waiting in line at the cineplex.
4. 3. STAR TREK
RELEASE DATE: December 25, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: JJ Abrams
CAST: Zachary Quinto, Eric Bana, John Cho, Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Simon Pegg
PLOT: JJ Abrams has been given the torch to reignite this struggling franchise. The film will feature a young Kirk (Chris Pine) and Spock (Zachary Quinto) as they battle a villain called Nero (Eric Bana). Whether you're a trekkie or not, with this outstanding cast and creative team, you can't help but wait to see how this movie will pan out. There is a lot riding on this movie. If Abrams hits the right chord, expect to see more Star Trek movies.
5. INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOME OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL
RELEASE DATE: May 22, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: George Lucas/Steven Spielberg
CAST: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Cate Blanchett, John Hurt, Shia LaBoeuf
PLOT: Indiana Jones is back in the fourth installment of the series. Not much is being said about the plot, but Cate Blanchett and John Hurt will play the villains, and Shia LaBoeuf will be Indy's greaser sidekick. But after almost two decades there since the last Indiana Jones there are still plenty of questions. Will Spielberg and Lucas be able to reunite and revitalize this franchise, or is it simply too late? Will George Lucas fuck this up too? Do people still care about Indiana Jones?
RELEASE DATE: Summer 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Clark Gregg
CAST: Sam Rockwell, Anjelica Huston, Kelly MacDonald
PLOT: From the same writer that brought you Fight Club, Choke is about a sex addict (Sam Rockwell) who works as a Revolutionary War reenactor to support his hospitalized mother (Huston). He cons others by pretending to choke at restaurants to get money from his rescuers.
RELEASE DATE: June 27, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Christopher McQuarrie/Bryan Singer
CAST: Tom Cruise, Kevin McNally, Eddie Izzard, Christian Berkel, Bill Nighy
PLOT: Valkyrie reunites Singer and McQuarrie (The Usual Suspects) to tell the story of Count Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg in his plan to assasinate Adolph Hitler. There is no truth to the rumors that Cruise will be playing Hitler.
RELEASE DATE: January 18, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Matt Reeves
CAST: Mike Vogel, Lizzy Caplan, Jessica Lucas, T.J. Miller
PLOT: The film follows a group of friends in New York City during one January night (January 18th) when some kind of monster attacks. The whole film is shot from the perspective of a consumer video camera that the college-age group bring along for the adventure. So it's like the Blair With Project meets Independence Day.
8. IRON MAN
RELEASE DATE: May 2, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Jon Favreau
CAST: Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, Terrance Howard, Leslie Bibb
PLOT: "Robert Downey Jr. plays Weapons designer Tony Stark, who is injured by shrapnel in his heart while in Afghanistan to introduce his new missile design. His captors order him to assemble a missile for them, giving him access to a workshop. He puts his creativity to use by assembling a bulletproof set of power armor, complete with pacemaker and flamethrowers, and uses it to free himself. Back at home, he becomes Iron Man, developing a flying suit with the red and gold scheme and advanced weapon capabilities." This should be a fun popcorn movie, can't be any worse than Daredevil, right?
9. WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE
RELEASE DATE: October 3, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Spike Jonze
CAST: Forest Whitaker, Michelle Williams, Catherine Keener, James Gandolfini
PLOT: Every kid has read the classic illustrated Maurice Sendak book, about Max, a mischievous little boy, creates his own world - a forest in habited by fabulous wild creatures who crown Max as their ruler. Music Video turned filmmaker Spike Jonze has always created some visual and conceptual masterpieces, and this shouldn't be an exception. Sounds like a great movie to do acid on.
RELEASE DATE: Fall 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Guy Ritchie
CAST: Gerard Butler, Jeremy Piven, Thandie Newton, Tom Wilkinson
PLOT: After being pussy-whipped by Madonna (see Swept Away), we haven't heard a peep out of Guy Ritchie, so it was nice to hear that his next movie will be a return to what he does best, British gangster flicks. Ritchie returns to the London criminal underworld where a Russian mobster's shady land deal puts millions of dollars up for grabs. Sorry ladies Gerard Butler (300) will not be bare-chested throughout the whole movie.
11. THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON
RELEASE DATE: November 26, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: David Fincher
CAST: Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Tilda Swinton, Elle Fanning, Jason Flemyng, Elias Koteas
PLOT: Based on the 1922 short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Benjamin Button (Pitt) is born as a feeble old man, and ages in reverse until he becomes a baby at the end of his life. This causes complications when he falls in love with a 30-year-old woman (Blanchett). Fitzgerald has noted that "This story was inspired by a remark of Mark Twain's to the effect that it was a pity that the best part of life came at the beginning and the worst part at the end." American Literature plus Brad Pitt doesn't sound enticing, but with Fincher at the helm, it could work.
12. GET SMART
RELEASE DATE: June 20, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Peter Segal
CAST: Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, The Rock, Alan Arkin, Terence Stamp, Masi Oka
PLOT: Steve Carell stars as Maxwell Smart in the big screen adaptation of the classic Mel Brooks comic spy television series. Anne Hathaway plays Agent 99, Dwayne Johnson plays Agent 23, and Alan Arkin is the Chief. The casting seems perfect, and if this is as good as I think it'll be, expect a new comedy franchise.
13. TRAILER TRASH
RELEASE DATE: August 22, 2008
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Eli Roth
PLOT: A whole entire film made up of connected faux horror movie trailers, what a splendid idea! If you enjoyed the fake movie trailers in the middle of Grindhouse, you will love this movie. Roth, who made the Thanksgiving trailer, will also feature a new Thanksgiving trailer, as well as the trailer for "The Leap Year Killer", a killer who only kills one day every four years. This is sure to be bloody fun.
So what movie are you looking forward to see in 2008, post them in our comments section.