December 11, 2015

Top 10 Most Anticipated Films of 2016

The end of 2015 is near. Let us take a look at the most anticipated films of 2016.

10.  Captain America: Civil War

Release Date: May 6
Director:  Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Cast:   Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson

The Russo Brothers directed 2013's "Captain America: Winter Soldier" and infused the film with Cold War-inspired themes. No other Marvel film has tried its hand at being half as creative as "Winter Soldier" is (the closest being "Iron Man").

Leave it to Captain America to bring another huge topic of debate to the forefront: Why should we trust these so-called superheroes? "Avengers: Age of Ultron" touched on this topic, but was too busy. Captain America films always find a way to go into depth while not cluttering the story. Plus, who doesn't want to see Cap and Iron Man go head-to-head?

Watch the trailer here.

9.  The Nice Guys

Release Date:  May 20
Director:  Shane Black 
Cast:  Ryan Gosling, Russell Crowe, Kim Basinger, Matt Bomer

Set in the 1970's, two Los Angeles detectives investigate the apparent suicide of a porn star.

Shane Black has a good track record for directing and his cast couldn't be better with Gosling and Crowe as a detective duo. There is also a certain romantic quality to Los Angeles. I'll admit that I love L.A. set films. They are some of the best films, because L.A. is diverse. I'm also a fan of gritty, late-period films (1950-1980). 

Watch behind the scenes footage here.

8.  The Magnificent Seven

Release Date:  September 23
Director:  Antoine Fuqua
Cast: Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke

Featuring an all-star cast and great director, this remake of the original "The Magnificent Seven" (1960) looks to be magnificent. Currently, Hollywood is seeing the slow rebirth of the Western. Quentin Tarantino is sealing the deal for Westerns to face superheroes in the near future, and the Oscars will be dressed in chaps and six-shooters.

7.  Moana

Release Date:  November 23
Director:  Ron Clements, John Musker
Cast: Dwayne Johnson

Disney Animation's last film, "Frozen" was a critical and commercial success so-much-so that there are still aftershocks from the film. While Pixar-released films are a given each year, Disney Animation is a blessing. Lately, each film released from the studio has been a gem in animation and film. Next year will feature two films from the studio: "Zootopia" and "Moana." 

"Moana" takes place in the ancient South Pacific world of Oceania. The first production still released featured bright colors, which is an animation lover's dream to see on the big screen.  Mix that with an ancient civilization, classic Disney humor, and Dwayne Johnson, and you get another classic animation in Disney's vault. 

6.  Deadpool

Release Date:  February 12
Director:  Tim Miller
Cast: Ryan Reynolds

It might not be the first R-rated superhero film, but it is definitely one of the most unique superhero films. This is also the first Marvel film where you can officially say that the superhero gets into some shenanigans. Ryan Reynolds seems to be comfortable in Deadpool's shoes, and everything about the trailer shows a fun film with a deft sense of humor.

Watch the trailer here.

5.  Hail Caesar!

Release Date:  February 5
Director:  Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: George Clooney, Josh Brolin, Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, Tilda Swinton

Exaggerated period pieces are the best when placed in the correct hands. There are no better hands to place this type of film in than the hands of Joel and Ethan Coen. Their last exaggerated period piece was the gorgeous epic "O'Brother Where Art Thou." The Coen Brothers have a knack for indelible screenwriting and are graced with a superb cast. 

4.  Doctor Strange

Release Date:  November 4
Director:  Scott Derrickson
Cast:  Benedict Cumberbatch, Rachel McAdams

Saying "Doctor Strange" is the "Inception" of the Marvel Cinematic Universe should be enough to catch anyone's attention. Plus having Cumberbatch as the titular character isn't too bad. 

3.  John Wick 2

Release Date:  Unknown
Director:  Chad Staheiski
Cast: Keanu Reeves

"John Wick 2" sees the return of director Chad Staheiski and writer Derek Kolstad along with Keanu Reeves, from the original 2014 film. "John Wick" brought tight action, gorgeous cinematography and a foolproof story based on a retired assassin who takes revenge on the mobsters that killed his dog. Let's hope no more canines die in this film.

2.  The Neon Demon

Release Date: Unknown
Director:  Nicholas Winding Refn
Cast:  Keanu Reeves, Jena Malone, Christina Hendricks, Elle Fanning

Director Nicholas Winding Refn has had a solid record in producing independent art. "Pusher" trilogy and "Bronson" placed Refn on the map, while "Drive" was one of the best films of 2011. Refn finds ways to create gorgeous shots in dirty places (look at "Drive" and "Only God Forgives"). Now comes the tale of a girl who has high hopes for Hollywood, but she might be a bit too beautiful for some of the girls in Los Angeles. 

1.  Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Release Date:  December 16 
Director:  Gareth Edwards
Cast:  Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Forest Whitaker

Set between "Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith" and "Star Wars: A New Hope", "Rogue One" follows a group of rebel fighters who are tasked to steal the Death Star plans.

Edwards proved he could direct a major blockbuster with 2014's "Godzilla." Now he is back behind the wheel for the first film in the Star Wars Anthology series. You can't deny the term, "The warriest Star Wars film." Each film has had its fair share of battles, but with this being called the "warriest", there is larger anticipation.

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