It’s hard to imagine 2014 topping 2013 at the movies, but there are some releases slated for this year that I am hotly anticipating, not to mention some 2013 releases that we are only getting in Montreal in 2014, like Her and La Grande Bellezza and The Past. Check out my top 10 most anticipated movies of 2014 below.
The last movies in the X-Men and Spider-Man series breathed new life in the movie franchises, and after the underwhelming Wolverine, I am definitely looking forward to a return to form for Hugh Jackman and the rest of the X-Men. Days of Future Past was shot in Montreal and will feature some sort of time-travel plot, wherein the characters will be seen young and older. As such, the cast includes: Michael Fassbender and Ian McKellen, James McAvoy and Patrick Stewart, Jackman, Jennifer Lawrence, Peter Dinklage and Halle Berry, among others. You can see the trailer for X-Men: Days of Future Past here. It’ll be released May 23. Meanwhile, in the Marvel universe, Andrew Garfield returns as the neighbourhood-friendly Spider-Man in the May 2-slated The Amazing Spider-Man 2. I was one of many who discounted the first one for rebooting a film series that had started just a decade prior, but I was really impressed with Marc Webb’s handling of the character and story. Garfield, Emma Stone and Sally Field return, joined by Jamie Foxx, Paul Giamatti and Dane DeHaan. The first trailer for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is here.
9. Veronica Mars – March 14
The Kickstarter-funded Warner Bros. movie of the prematurely cancelled CW series is coming out March 14. Most of the old gang is back, with Veronica Mars seeing Veronica return to Neptune for her 10-year high-school reunion. She’s a hotshot lawyer in New York – and ended up with Piz (Chris Lowell) – who’s going to help old flame Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring) beat murder charges. Whatever they were going to have Veronica doing, I would have been there. I watched the series on DVD after it ended way faster than I care to reveal.
8. Dumb and Dumber To – Nov. 14
I hate everything about this, from the misspelled To in the title, to the Farrelly Brothers’ terrible track record of the last decade, but a Lloyd Christmas-Harry Dunne reunion 20 years in the making is the kind of stuff my cousins’ and my dreams are made of.
7. Gone Girl – Oct. 3
Because it’s David Fincher, but I’ve also been meaning to read the Gillian Flynn book and now I won’t have to (jk, I’ll read it now that I know the main characters are supposed to look like Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike).
6. Muppets Most Wanted – March 21
I loved the James Bobin-directed 2011 Muppets revival starring Amy Adams and Jason Segel with songs by Flight of the Conchords‘ Bret McKenzie and music by Montreal-born composer Christophe Beck. Bobin returns to direct the 2014 sequel which stars all the Muppets and Tina Fey, Ty Burrell and Ricky Gervais, among a thousand celebrity cameos, if the trailers are to be believed.
5. Inherent Vice – TBD
Inherent Vice, Paul Thomas Anderson’s follow up to 2012’s The Master, reunites the director with Joaquin Phoenix in the 1970s-L.A.-set film based on the Thomas Pynchon novel that also stars Jena Malone, Reese Witherspoon, Josh Brolin, Benicio Del Toro and Maya Rudolph.
4. Interstellar – Nov. 7
If you need an idea of the kind of non-Batman stuff Christopher Nolan is capable of, Inception, Insomnia, The Prestige and Memento are exhibits A to D. Interstellar is written by Nolan and his brother Jonathan, and stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain and Nolan-regular Michael Caine.
3. Magic in the Moonlight – TBD
Woody Allen has directed a feature film every year since 1977’s Annie Hall and has even gone through a reinvention of sorts in the 2000s. Magic in the Moonlight finds Allen in the south of France with a cast that includes Emma Stone, Colin Firth and Marcia Gay Harden.
2. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part I – Nov. 21
The beginning of the end. Francis Lawrence took over the franchise for Catching Fire, a great adaptation of the book and solid sci-fi film, and will wrap up the series with both parts to Mockingjay, currently filming. Julianne Moore and Lily Rabe join the returning Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Sam Claflin.
1. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – July 11
Rupert Wyatt’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes exceeded all my expectations and even surprised me with its depth. The 2011 film easily ranks among the best action and sci-fi movies of the new decade. The sequel, slated for July 11, will be helmed by Matt Reeves, who directed Let Me In and Cloverfield. Gary Oldman and Keri Russell lead the human cast, with Andy Serkis donning the CGI suit to reprise his role as Caesar.
Honourable mentions: Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher starring Steve Carrell and a prosthetic nose; Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu’s Birdman; Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel; Darren Aronofosky’s Noah; Xavier Dolan’s Tom à la ferme; Denys Arcand’s Deux nuits; David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars.
Other 2014 observations: Reese Witherspoon will be in four movies released in 2014, three of which (Wild, Devil’s Knot and The Good Lie) are directed by Canadian filmmakers (Jean-Marc Vallée, Atom Egoyan and Philippe Falardeau); Denis Villeneuve’s second film with Jake Gyllenhaal Enemy is due out in theatres March 14; Xavier Dolan’s Tom à la ferme hasn’t received a theatrical release yet and the director may also be releasing his next directorial effort, Mommy, in time for Cannes.