“A biologist signs up for a dangerous, secret expedition where the laws of nature don’t apply.”
To quickly sum it up. This movie is Predator on acid. Interpret that however you want.
I’m dead serious when I say that Annihilation, Alex Garland’s latest science-fiction film is an acid trip. Throughout the film I kept asking myself, “man this is going to be really difficult to write about.’ Annihilation is best served in dialogue when discussing the film, because it is such a complex and unique film. This is the definition of heavy science fiction, where it leaves you scratching your head long after the movie is over. I’m still digesting what I saw, because it asks so many questions, and like most great science-fiction movies, it doesn’t always give you the answers you are searching for. Now that can leave the average movie goer with a lot of frustrations because you invest your time and money into the movie, and don’t come away with certain answers to questions that are lingering throughout the entire movie.
I’ll say this first and foremost, this movie is not for everyone. You need to have knowledge in your taste in film going into Annihilation. Because this isn’t some grand science-fiction epic, with a ton of action and explosions. It’s also not a summer blockbuster like Black Panther which dropped last week. This is almost an art-house movie, in the sense that it seems small, but asks MASSIVE questions about biology, evolution and what it means to be human. When Alex Garland came bursting onto the scene in 2015 with Ex-Machina, he instantly became a fan favourite when it came to the science-fiction genre, so when he was attached to direct this movie, based on the best selling novel, people’s ears were perked up to say the least. Add in Natalie Portman as the star of the show, and now people were seriously intrigued. The first trailer dropped and I was instantly hooked and this became my fifth most anticipated movie of 2018. Here’s the thing about building up movies, sometimes they aren’t exactly what you want them to be, or simply don’t meet your expectations. Annihilation just wasn’t what I was expecting, so I can’t say it didn’t live up to what I wanted it to be. It would be unfair of me to criticize a movie just because it wasn’t what I thought it “should be.”
No one is going to go see this movie, not because it’s a bad movie, it’s currently sitting at 89% on Rotten Tomatoes, but because it’s so different. People just want to go into a movie and sometimes not have to think or be told a unique and insanely different kind of story. Comic book movies, sequels, prequels, they all rule the box-office right now, and it’s a shame, because I think if you can, you should head out and see this movie. It’s deep, it’s rich, it’s very thought provoking material, where I’m still not sure what the message or the ending means. When Kane (Oscar Issac) suddenly returns home, his wife Lena (Natalie Portman) is shocked beyond belief. Meeting each other in the military he went on a top secret mission and had now been missing for just over a year. Thinking he was dead, when he resurfaces, he just isn’t the same. Shortly after his return, he needs medical attention and slips into a coma, and that’s when we find out that he had entered the ‘Shimmer.” Lena is now in Area X, located just outside the Shimmer, she intends to find out what happened to her husband and embarks on an expedition inside it, along with 4 other crew members. Dr. Ventress (Jennifer Jason Leigh), Anya (Gina Rodriguez), Cass (Tuva Novotny) and Josie (Tessa Thompson). All these ladies excel in some sort of scientific background and want to know what exactly is at the hear of the Shimmer. This is a female led film, all of them giving great performances, I thought Gina Rodriguez was tremendous, and we should be again celebrating an all female cast, not just for that single reason, but also because it’s a fantastic movie. Everyone pulls their own weight, and Tessa Thompson is a freight train that cannot be stopped right now.
See something three years prior landed on Earth, at a lighthouse, and ever since, the Shimmer has be manifesting and growing. Every team they send in, never make it out alive, until Kane. Things start off normal, but the Shimmer is a myserteous place for a reason, and when they start to realize that the laws of nature do not apply here. They discover a crocodile that has been crossbred with a shark. From the very get-go the team realizes they are most likely on a one way mission, but they want to try to find some sort of answers. The further they get into the Shimmer, the weirder things become. Lena realizes that their own DNA has been compromised. You knew all of that from the trailers, so I won’t go any further into plot points or spoilers, because everyone should really have the opportunity to fully take in this flick. The visuals are simply stunning, with a 50 million dollar budget, the visuals are better than most blockbusters, and Garland really builds a world of his own. This is just a really ambitious movie, with imaginative story-telling. It’s almost the definition of mesmerizing because at times, you aren’t really sure what you are watching, because it’s so vastly different from anything you have ever seen before it. It can be terrifying in moments, fun in others, and all around suspenseful. It’s unsettling, you see things that make you want to look away, but get you so immersed in the movie, because you want to know why these things are going on. You really want to know what the Shimmer is, but it’s not about the end, it’s about the journey.
This is survival of the fittest, they are battling new elements that the human race has never seen before, but also one another. It leaves you scratching your head at times, because in certain parts they take you one way and you think this is where the movie is going, but then they flip things around, and you want to know why the movie shifted gears so quickly. Don’t worry the climax delivers copious amounts of that blood and gore and a ton of tension, you will get your fill. The landscape is miraculous, it’s a world that wants to shake you up a bit, it’s uneasy for a reason. Some things are better left unsaid, and in some instances unsolved. You don’t get all the answers you are looking for, but going on this acid trip is worth it. Sometimes you need to expand your own horizons, step out of your comfort zone and experience something new. Annihilation is just the thing you are looking for. It’s like creating a new cocktail and Annihilation is part Arrival, part Predator, and part 2001: A Space Odyssey and that is the greatest compliment one can give.
After saving all my movie tickets from 2017, I can officially say, I have a movie problem.
Another movie going season is in the books! Time flies when you’re at the theatre, and for me, that was pretty much every week. Upon further review, I believe I sat in a movie theatre seat roughly 50 times in the year 2017, by far the most in a single year for me. But hey, there were a ton of great movies this year, and some of the very best of 2017; I haven’t even had the opportunity to go see, because my local theatres haven’t gotten them yet. That’s why I haven’t written my top ten movies of 2017 list, because I feel some of the movies I haven’t seen yet are going to make the list! 2017 was full of incredible movies, but every time I went, it certainly wasn’t a home run. In fact, I think 2017 was full of the most disappointments that I can remember (I’m looking at you JusticeLeague and Alien: Covenant), but that’s all in the past. We are looking to the future now, 2018 to be exact, and boy oh boy are there some goodies coming up. The very first blog post I did on this site was “Most Anticipated Movies of 2017,” some lived up to expectations, while others fell flat on their face. Last year I did 10 movies, well this year, I’m doubling down because I’m going BIG! 20 movies are about to be listed, and I’m even going to do it in order! If you were upset, or underwhelmed with the movies in 2017, I think 2018 could be the year for you, or if you are like me and see roughly 50 movies a year, well start saving your pennies now, because 2018 is going to be awesome. Just like last year, I will miss some movies on this list, well some movies haven’t even be announced yet, but these are the 20 movies right now, that I cannot wait to see.
20.) X-Men: Dark Phoenix. director/ Simon Kinberg. 2/11/18
The wonderful band of misfits is back. The fourth entry into this new X-Men saga will be the follow-up to 2016 X-Men: Apocalypse, which wasn’t met with great reviews by fans and critics. This time we get the story of Dark Phoenix, Jean Grey’s split personality, where we will see her go to the dark side. This was explored in the first X-Men trilogy, but it wasn’t done very well, so I’m excited to see them tackle it again. This is director Simon Kinberg’s first time up to bat, being a producer on pretty much every X-Men movie ever made, he should have a good feel and understanding on what the fans want to see. These movies always have a fantastic cast, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Sophie Turner, and Evan Peters and now add in Jessica Chastain to play the villain role, sounds good to me. They just need great execution on that villain part, because that was the major flaw in Apocalypse. I dig these X-Men movies, but after the last outing I’m a little skeptical, so that’s why I have it last on my list! This will also be the last X-Men movie done by FOX, seeing how Disney bought them, so if you really love these movies, well this will probably be the last one, until we see these characters reintroduced into the MCU. For the love of god, send a garbage truck full of money to Hugh Jackman’s house so he can play Wolverine again.
19.) Bumblebee. director/Travis Knight. 21/12/18
I bet at first glance you thought this was a sequel to Bee Movie didn’t you? Well if you did I’m sorry to disappoint you, it’s actually the first spin-off of the Transformers franchise! Now before you start to roll your mechanical eyes at me, you need to know that I am indeed a sucker for these movies. Guilty pleasures, but I will say the last two installments have just been awful, and I’m hoping this movie provides a much-needed spark to this franchise (That was a transformers pun, in case you missed it). Bumblebee for me at least, was always the best part of these movies and now you’re telling me he gets his own movie? That’s pretty cool. We’re also going back in time, because this is taking place in the late 80’s, everyone’s favorite time, and we will see John Cena and Hailee Steinfeld (Charlie Watson) team up with this loveable robot. If director Travis Knight, who did the fantastic Kubo & The Two Strings, can keep things simple, and make the action easy to follow, I think Steinfeld and Cena can carry this movie together, I’m really interested to see how this turns out, because it could actually be the worst movie of the year, Autobots, roll-out.
18.) Ant-Man & The Wasp. director/Peyton Reed. 6/7/2018
If someone would have told me, that back in 2015 when Ant–Man was released, that I would have watched it once, forgotten about it, and now we are getting a sequel, I would have said, “Yeah, that sounds about right.” Jokes aside, I did enjoy Ant-Man when it came out, it had great humor and Paul Rudd was fantastic as Scott Lang. He even had a great moment in Captain America: Civil War, but now this will apparently be the first “Rom-Com” Marvel movie. That’s right, they are going Rom-Com on us folks, and we will probably all love it. Kevin Feige and the people over at Marvel are about to deliver the greatest love story every told. Move over Romeo and Juliet. Ant-Man is struggling being a Dad and a Super Hero, so when a mission comes along about his past, he needs to team up with The Wasp. I’m a big fan of Evangeline Lilly who plays The Wasp, her and Paul had great chemistry in the first. They added Michelle Pfeiffer and Laurence Fishburne to the cast, I’m sure this movie will be great. On a serious note, we now have more solo Ant-Man movies then Batman movies since the year 2012 what a strange and wonderful world we live in. Fun fact, this movie and Bumblebee have something in common, actress Vanessa Ross, who plays “The mean girl” in Bumblebee and “The hot jogger” in Ant-Man, you go girl!
17.) Rampage. director/ Brad Peyton. 4/20/2018
“I was just thinking, the only thing missing is a giant crocodile”
Coincidence that a movie about giant animals smashing through buildings is being released on 4/20, I think not!! Seriously the trailer alone sold me on this goofy concept. Like what more do you want? Dwayne Johnson kicking ass, check. Giant monsters running around Chicago destroying everything in sight, check. Jeffrey Dean Morgan, check. This is looking like the leading candidate to be the best video game movie of all time people; the curse could finally be over! Video game movies are like airport sushi, you think it’s a good idea, until about 90 minutes later. If this movie turns out to be a huge pile of well, monkey shit, I won’t be shocked. But it’s got a great cast, toss in Joe Manganiello, Malin Akerman and Naomie Harris, alongside Dwayne. Here’s the thing, the trailer is so awesome, and they didn’t really even show anything, it helps when you have a Smashing Pumpkins song playing during the trailer, but I think this movie is going to be a ton of fun. Wouldn’t it be nice if this was the turn around video game movies needed. I will also see anything with Dwayne Johnson in it, because that’s the bottom line, because Nathan Wallace said so.
Okay so very little is known about this movie so far. But, I’m fairly confident they are just re-making Diehard, but replacing Bruce Willis with Dwayne Johnson. If that doesn’t make a little pee trickle down your leg, then I don’t really know what will. Seriously nothing on IMDB about the plot, it stars Dwayne and Neve Campbell, who never really had the career I thought she would, but we all know she can throw down if she has too. I didn’t purposely put the two Dwayne Johnson movies back to back, I actually don’t know which one I’m more excited for. One has a trailer the other movie does not. Judging from his social media though, Skyscraper appears to be one epic movie, tons of stunts and explosions going on. Rawson Marshall Thurber, who might have the best directors name going, did Easy A, so I have high hopes for this, because that movie is awesome. I’m hoping for this to be a little more serious in tone as well, I like to see Dwayne act a little more, and be in some tense and serious scenes would be a nice change.
This movie should probably be a lot higher on my list, but that’s just a testament on how good some of the movies are in 2018. It also doesn’t help that I HATED the trailer, and I think this movie is going to flop at the box-office. I don’t know, they seem to think, “bigger is better” with these new Jurassic Park movies, and that shouldn’t be the case. I love Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard is great also, and I think she won’t be running away from a T-Rex in high heels in this one (lets pray). I’m just so uncertain about this movie, I really hope I’m wrong about it, because I want to love it, I want to go back to 1993 and feel the same way I did when I saw the original. Just make it rain, have it be dark and make humans try and get away from scary ass dinosaurs, it’s not complicated. We don’t need hybrids, we don’t need humans and dinosaurs being friends, just stick to what works. A guy getting eaten when sitting on the toilet is a fail-safe plan. J.A Bayona has pretty big shoes to fill after the historic and massive success of Jurassic World, that can be a lot of pressure for a guy. The last one made over a BILLION dollars, so I’m sure they are going to try and one-up everything from its predecessor. I don’t even think the return of Jeff Goldblum will be enough to save this bloated and forgettable sequel. Sorry Chris Pratt, I still love you.
14.) A Quiet Place. director/ John Krasinski. 4/618
If you make noise, you die! I would be screwed, because I am a very loud chewer. That’s the premise for what appears to be 2018’s breakout horror film. Real life husband and wife, John Krasinski and Emily Blunt are teaming up! When I first saw the trailer I was hooked, after the success of IT this past year, I have tried giving the horror genre another chance, and this looks really good. Krasinski even has a pretty awesome beard in it, so you know it’s going to be serious as hell. Like I said, you make noise, something comes out to try to kill you. Seems like a pretty difficult task, and when some dipshit kid knocks over a lantern, well all hell breaks loose. The trailer just leaves everyone very intrigue about the concept of the film. Why can’t you make noise? What are those creatures that come out when you do? When was the last time anyone in this movie farted? All these questions I’m sure will be answered in due time. The two stars of the movie are a real life couple, the chemistry will be undeniable, and I think this movie is going to crush it at the box-office. Krasinski is even directing this, so you know this is a passion project for him, which makes me believe that this movie is going to be really special.
13.) Super Troopers 2. director/ Jay Chandrasekhar. 4/20/18
Okay I definitely know this one isn’t a coincidence being released on 4/20. Am I happy to have a Super Troopers 2 in my life? Yes. Do I wish it were Weed Fest instead? Absolutely. I’ll settle for some more Car RamRod fun though. I love these guys, they work so well together and this was something they wanted to make for a really long time. They even got some fan feedback about what they wanted in the sequel. I’m sure they will even bring back some of the old jokes we have all come to love, after watching this movie a hundred times over the last 17 years. That’s right, 17 years since SuperTroopers was released, that is crazy talk. I know it’s kind of a cult classic at this point, but die-hard fans can’t wait for this one, and everything these guys put out is really good. Sometimes you got to root for the little guys, because in a world chalk full of blockbusters this one certainly won’t be on many people’s radars. And if you haven’t ever seen SuperTroopers, well shame on you.
I bet you one million dollars, that at some point during this movie, Tom Cruise will be running. It’s a Tom Cruise movie tradition now, and I love it. He also does all his own stunt work, and I’m sure like most Mission Impossible he will go bigger in the latest installment. If you thought Henry Cavill looked stupid in JusticeLeague, you can blame this movie. That’s right, they added Superman to the already packed cast of this franchise, and I couldn’t be happier. Plot is unknown at this time, but I’m sure that Ethan Hunt will be saving the world with a little help from his friends. The Mission Impossible franchise kind of reminds me of the Fast & Furious franchise. It was kind of dead in the water and forgotten about after the third, and then Ghost Protocol came out and everyone was blown away by it. 5 years had passed since MI3, but that kind of jump-started the franchise back to life. These are always just really well made, fun action/adventure movies, Tom Cruise and Simon Pegg work so well together, and I’m really curious to see Henry Cavill’s role in this movie. I hope he becomes a regular addition to this franchise, Ethan Hunt kind of needs some muscle on his side. The movie also boasts a stellar female cast; Ethan Hunt might have his hands full.
11.) Incredibles 2. director/ Brad Bird. 15/6/18
“You have powers! Yeah baby!”
A sequel 14 years in the making. What I love most about the fact that we are finally getting a sequel to the greatest Pixar movie ever made, is that, well 14 years have passed, but they are starting right where they left off. That’s right its been a long time since we last saw the Parr family, and honestly I thought they were going to do a time jump, but I’m really glad they aren’t. Jack Jack is so awesome, and now he’s got powers and that’s going to be really cool to see. I love the first one so damn much; I’m really nervous and excited all at the same time for this. I just want it to feel right, not over done, and I pray they just don’t ruin a good thing. They told such a great story the first time, and I know Brad Bird, the director cares so much and has so much passion for these characters that I know this won’t be a waste. Everyone does such fantastic voice work, I’m excited to see Frozone back, and my guess is, they will have a female villain this time around. I have extremely high hopes for Incredibles 2. Just remember, no capes!
10.) Pacific Rim: Uprising. director/ Steven S. DeKnight. 3/28/18
PacificRim all the way back in 2013 is a movie going experience that I will never forget. I thought it would be a loud, clunky mess, which featured cool looking robots and gigantic monsters. That wasn’t the case at all, watching Guillermo del Toro’s monster movie epic. Was like watching poetry in motion. It was simply beautiful to look at; something that chaotic, yet you could fully comprehend what exactly was going on, and it really blew me away. It was one of my favorite movies of the year and I couldn’t wait for a sequel. Well here we are 5 years later, and John Boyega is trading in his light sabre for a Jaegar. It looks like 10 years have passed, he’s playing the son of Idris Elba’s character from the first, and I bet giving bad ass speeches about the world ending runs in the family. Charlie Day is back as well as Rinko Kikuchi, and adding Scott Eastwood. I’m fearful about Del Toro not coming back to direct, but hopefully he left this franchise in good hands, because my expectations couldn’t be any higher. It’s cool looking larger than life robots fighting these incredible looking monsters, it won’t take that much to please me, and the trailers have even been really good. They used a giant submarine as a ninja sword in the first one, can’t wait to see what they use in Uprising!
9.) Black Panther. director/Ryan Coogler.16/2/18
Yes another MCU movie is on my list, and it certainly won’t be the last. Black Panther is finally getting his own movie, a comic book movie centered on a black character, about time. Who better to do it than Chadwick Boseman, who’s Black Panther ripped his way onto screen in Civil War back in 2016. The cast is simply brilliant, and I’m not going to name the 20 or more incredible actors and actresses appearing in this movie. Ryan Coogler is behind the camera and he does fantastic work. I loved Creed so I know this will be something special, some say this could be the best MCU movie to date. This movie looks hip, it’s got all sorts of style and it appears to be different from any MCU movie that has come before it. It looks like Marvel and company just let Coogler make the movie he has envisioned for a long time. When you have a terrific filmmaker behind the camera you want them to be able to spread their wings on the project, and that appears to be the case for Black Panther. Really excited about this one!
8.) Venom. director/Ruben Fleischer. 10/5/18
If you could create a time machine and replace Tom Hardy with Topher Grace in Spider-Man 3, that would be really nice. That can’t happen, so we are getting a Venom movie, Hardy is playing Eddie Brock, and very little is known about it. I’m fairly confident that Spider-Man, or even Tom Holland won’t be showing up in this movie. Which is a really weird thing to say, because I feel like you need those two people together in the same movie to really make it work. Don’t get me wrong, I think Hardy is going to crush this role, he did a fantastic job as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, and he’s a phenomenal actor, so I think he’s really going to dive deep into this role. Venom is one of my favorite characters in all of comics, so to think we are getting a standalone movie about him, wets my beak a little. Michelle Williams, Woody Harrelson and Riz Ahmed round out the cast, and it’s been rumored that Riz could be playing Carnage. If that happens, boy oh boy. I just don’t see them passing up the opportunity to introduce Spider-Man as well in this, I think it would be a failure if they don’t. This is a trailer I’m really curious to see, because I really have no idea which kind of direction they are going to take this movie. It can’t possibly be worse than the version we got to see in Spider-Man 3.
7.) Untitled Deadpool Sequel. director/ David Leitch. 6/1/18
Here’s the thing, I’m pretty sure that will be the actual title to the movie. Which makes perfect sense given the movie. Deadpool was a colossal box-office hit back in 2016. It was the reason for Logan, and it’s the reason for any rated R Super Hero movie you will see going forward. It broke so many boundaries for movies like these, and on top of that, it’s one of the best Super Hero movies ever made. Josh Brolin was added for this sequel, he’s playing Nathan Summers, AKA Cable. Who is a complete and utter badass, and I can’t wait to see the chemistry between Reynolds and Brolin. The comedy in Deadpool was perfect, the whole movie was pretty much flawless, now they have more money, and I’m sure a really good story to tell. Ryan Reynolds was born to play this role, and he loves playing Deadpool, he’s pretty much Van Wilder, but a Super Hero. Nothing really has come out yet, plot wise, and there hasn’t even been a real trailer yet, but you don’t need to sell people on this movie. I just hope it doesn’t suffer from sequel fatigue, but since there is so much passion behind this project, I highly doubt that will happen. Like they brought back Dopinder, this movie cannot fail!!!
6.) The Predator. director/Shane Black. 3/8/18
Predator was released before I was even born. I saw that movie maybe a little too early into my childhood, but hey, it’s one of the reasons why I fell in love with movies at such a young age. I’m talking like 6 years old here, and Predator is a hard R movie, thanks Grandpa! I love the Predator so goddamn much, they are bad guys, but I always want them to win. I actually love seeing them get the best of the human characters in their movies. All three “Predator” movies that have come out, in my opinion are fanfuckingtastic. The AVP movies, not so much, but again the Predators are the best things about those movies. So when Shane Black (director) who also happens to star in the 1987 original, he’s the first guy to meet the Predator, yeah not good. So you know a couple things, one Shane Black is an extraordinary filmmaker, he even helped write the original, and like I just mentioned, he was in it. So you know he’s got a taste and a ton of passion for this character and this franchise. The cast is chalked full of incredible people that I can’t wait too see meet their demise in this movie. Reek from Game of Thrones is in this and if he thought getting his wee-wee chopped off was brutal, well just you wait pal. My one big fear about this movie, is doing what all movies seem to do these days, some how find a way to make it “BIGGER AND BETTER.” We don’t need a modified Predator, which the government has cooked up in a lab. We don’t need a new and improved Predator, drop some people somewhere and have them be hunted one by one, pretty simple. Toss in some jokes, which Shane Black is known for and you’re golden. He’s been part of this mythology since the beginning; there is no way he screws this up right?
5.) Annihilation. director/Alex Garland. 23/2/18
I don’t know what it is about this movie. Perhaps it’s the insanely strong female cast? Maybe it’s because Alex Garland makes it? The fact that I still don’t know what the hell is going on in the trailers? Whatever it is, I’m fully onboard with Annihilation. Shrouded in mystery, like most good science-fiction stories, this one is no different. Something wicked has come to Earth, and we still can’t explain it ourselves. So when Natalie Portman’s husband (Oscar Issac) comes back from the “Shimmering” he is infected with some sort of disease. I’m getting some District 9 vibes, and a little Aliens, if that’s not a compliment, I don’t know what is. I think it’s so high on my list because of just the secrets involved in the movie, and I can’t wait to see them play out on the big screen. The acting will be top notch, I’m not worried about that, I just hope the story doesn’t become some crazy web of messiness, I guess is the best way to describe it. For science-fiction junkies, where it seems the laws of nature have been tossed out the window, Annihilation might be their most anticipated movie of the year.
4.) Ready Player One. director/Steven Spielberg. 30/3/18
“My name is Wade Watts. My Dad picked that name because it sounded like a Super Heroes alter ego”
There’s a saying, that when a movie is adapted from a book, it’s never as good. That is the case yes, but it doesn’t mean that the movies aren’t just as fantastic. Example, ReadyPlayerOne. Without doubt, one of the most enjoyable reads of my entire life, I felt like I myself was rushed off to the Oasis, and disappeared from reality. The legend himself, Steven Spielberg is helming what appears to be a masterpiece. I know it will vastly differ from the book, I understand that, but it’s the concept of the book that will make the movie so intriguing. The trailers have even been really well done; Ernest Cline (author of the book) is going to be really proud of the film that gets released. I just can’t wait to see all these different characters from so many different things I love come together. Iron Giant, Chucky, Joker and Harley Quinn and that is honestly 1 percent of the characters we will see in this movie. It’s going to be a ton of fun, and I highly recommend reading the book, because well reading is good for you. This has all the potential to be my favorite movie of 2018.
3.) Creed 2. director/Steve Caple Jr. 21/11/18
That’s right! Apparently I can see into the future, that tweet is from 2 years ago. Moments after I saw Creed, which was one of my favorite movies of 2015, I just knew the direction the sequel had to go. Adonis Creed needed to fight Ivan Drago’s son, because well why wouldn’t you bring back Ivan Drago, and now have his kid be a boxer as well. It all made perfect sense, to me at least. Now here we are, Creed 2 is in the works, and guess what? Adonis looks to get revenge against the man who killed his father. BOOM! Now there is no way he’s actually fighting Dolph Lundgren, that would be insane, but rather he will get his revenge by beating his son. Sly Stallone and Michael B Jordan are both back, but unfortunately, Ryan Coogler is off making Black Panther, and so Creed 2 is falling into the hands of Steven Caple Jr., who seems up to the task. Now I love Creed so much, I love the entire Rocky franchise and universe so damn much. I love Rocky 4 more than almost any movie ever. So when you tell me Ivan Drago is coming back into my life, please don’t screw this up! There is so much potential and incredible story telling that can happen here, and I’m so curious to see where they take this. I can’t possibly be wrong about his son getting involved, so who will play him? Will they get an unknown? So many questions, so many possibilities, but one thing is certain, this movie is going to kick so much goddamn ass. Sage Northcutt a UFC fighter auditioned for the role of Drago’s son, and my god, he certainly has the look. He’s a genetic freak, who happens to look like a mini Ivan Drago, so if he’s got the acting chops to stand in the ring with Michael B Jordan, that’s my pick.
2.) Aquaman. director/James Wan. 21/12/18
Did Justice League kind of suck? Yes it did. Do I blame the studio for interfering and destroying Zack Snyder’s original vision? Yes. Was Aquaman totally badass and I can’t wait to see his solo film? Yes again. Justice League is a thing of the past; let it go, let the past die. Aquaman has all the makings to be a terrific solo movie, much like WonderWoman. You have a passionate and fantastic filmmaker behind the camera in James Wan. The star of the show LOVES playing the titled character, and I mean he loves being Aquaman. Jason Maoma looks like be could live underwater and be King of Atlantis. Everything we saw from Aquaman in JusticeLeague was incredible, and I can’t wait to visit Atlantis again, and learn more about Arthur Curry. Amber Heard is back as Mera, who little screen time that she got, was pretty kick ass. She looks like she will have great chemistry with her co-star Mamoa. Nicole Kidman, Dolph Lundgren, William Dafoe, Patrick Wilson and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II round out this amazing cast. Lets talk about Yahya for a second, because he is playing Black Manta, who is honestly one of the most badass characters in DC comics, for me at least. I pray they get his look right, because he’s a pretty powerful villain for Aquaman, and I can’t wait to finally see him on the big screen. I get it; the DCEU is on its last legs. This is the next movie they are releasing, so to say there is a lot riding on Aquaman, is an understatement. They need not only for this to be received much like WonderWoman, but it also needs to crush it at the box-office. Personally I have a ton of faith in this project because all the people involved, and believe that Warner Brothers is going to let James Wan make the his own movie and not get to involved. That’s what they did for Patty Jenkins and that turned into a massive success. Everyone sleeps on Aquaman because they think he isn’t cool or has stupid powers, I’m telling you this right now. Remember how big Aquaman was in Entourage?Well think of that but actually good. Another trailer I can’t wait to see!
1.) Avengers: Infinity War. director/Russo Brothers. 4/5/18
Cliché I know. I can’t help myself when it comes to the MCU. Back off because this movie looks like the bees knees. I’ve been waiting a decade to see Thanos come to Earth and really mess some shit up. It’s all hands on deck for his epic showdown and its only part 1! Let me tell you something, people will die. This movie looks to pack an emotional punch. A lot is at stake here, and that’s something very uncommon in an MCU movie. I can’t wait to see it all play out. Nothing ever seems to be at stake in these movies, because they certainly play it off like everything is hunky dory. There are far too many characters to even list, but anyone who is anyone who has shown up in an MCU movie will appear in Infinity War. Actually a pretty ballsy task if you ask me, that’s a lot of characters for probably a movie that will run 2 hours and 30 minutes long. Unlike this years JusticeLeague I know going in that this movie will be great, they do such a fantastic job with these movies, and this is the end of everything, no one will be safe. I just hope they don’t play it safe, I want to see blood and carnage and legit heroes dying. I want a “Holy shit – did they just do that!” kind of moment in this movie. I’m just excited to see Thanos on screen; no villain has been built up like him in movie history. It’s been 6 years since we first saw him smile at the end of Avengers, and ever since I wanted to see our heroes throw down with this guy. It just makes me sad at the same time, because I’m a DC guy through and through and I wish this were a DC property we were talking about. I wish the DCEU had this much success; I just want them to get it right. Marvel makes it look so easy, and if this movie is as good as I think it’s going to be. DC is never catching up to Marvel. Rocket Raccoon and Spider-Man better have a scene together or we riot!
Well that’s all she wrote. My 20 most anticipated movies of 2018! So I know for a fact I will be seeing at least 20 movies this upcoming year, plus multiple viewings of some add in the movies I didn’t put on the list and the movies I don’t even know about yet. Add all that together and I think reaching 60 visits to the theatre isn’t out of the question. Writing this and saying it out loud back to myself, makes me realize one thing……I’m awesome!
This is the female Ghostbusters movie we all wanted.
Writer and director to the epic sci-fi masterpiece Ex-Machina looks to be following it up with another stroke of genius with Annihilation. This movie and this trailer is shrouded in mystery and it looks like a really great new science fiction movie, something we need right now. Everything we have seen so far regarding this movie has been incredible, and for lovers of science fiction movies, this could quite possibly be their most anticipated movie of 2018.
Natalie Portman stars as a biologist who is headed into the unknown, or as it’s referred to as “the shimmer,” she’s in search of something that has come in contact with her husband (Oscar Issac), and wants some answers. She leads a team of other badass women, Tessa Thompson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez and others, into this place, where it seems the laws of nature no longer apply. Animals are cross breeding, strange plants are growing and some cool ass monsters are lurking in the darkness. Things are going to go up shit creek for these ladies, and it seems like they all won’t make it out alive. The visuals are simply stunning, but that should come to no surprise, seeing this is coming from the guy who made Ex-Machina. Portman is going all sorts of Ripley in this trailer, and she’s really pulling it off, she’s unloading her gun on god knows what, a bunch of times throughout the trailer. I’m just so intrigued by all of this, the landscapes, the creatures, what a place like this is doing on Earth, and I’m sure we will get all these answers in the movie. Trailers should leave you with wanting more, and this one certainly did it’s job. We have a real winner on our hands here I think!
Simply marvelous, one of the best science fiction movies of the decade. Unlike anything I’ve ever seen
A sequel 35 years in the making, some people have been waiting their wholes lives for a follow up to the masterpiece that was 1982s Blade Runner directed by the legendary Ridley Scott. It’s crazy to think about a sequel being made 35 years later, and it turns out to be one of the greatest sequels in the history of cinema. This is why we go to the movies; it’s movies like Blade Runner 2049 that make people like myself realize why I love film so much. It had everything I want in a movie it is simply marvelous. This dark and twisted, futureristic, neo-noir film, that is exstential in every sense of the word, is just all around stunning. Denis Villeneuve directs the follow up, and he is fast approaching becoming one of the best, if not the best director in Hollywood right now. Villeneuve’s track record right now is uncanny and something I can’t really fathom at this point. Every time he steps up to the plate, he hits a walk off home run. I think it was a mistake not getting this man to direct Episode IX because he is the perfect man for the job, especially after watching this science fiction masterpiece. Blade Runner 2049 is the kind of movie that inspires young filmmakers, or creates new ones. This will be a vague review because I don’t want to spoil a single thing about this movie, you need to go experience this for yourself, because it’s unlike anything I have ever seen. I knew it would be one of the most beautiful movies, but it even exceeded my expectations in that regard.
So the movie follows Blade Runner, Agent K (Ryan Gosling) as he is investigating a case from the past. As he learns more about the case and himself, he starts to question everything he knows and his beliefs. The case ultimately leads him to Deckard (Harrison Ford) and the two of them must work together for the common good. I’m really going to leave it at that, and not getting into any specific plot points, because going in and just experiencing this movie is what it’s all about. Everyone knows that Ryan Gosling is an A-list actor, a movie star, but he reaches new heights in this. It’s weird, I don’t think anyone else could have been in this role, Gosling does so much acting in his face, and he really is a master brooder. He really showed that he could lead a franchise, that he is more than just a love interest in a rom com. Like I said, everyone already knows this, but I don’t know I was just really blown away by his performance, and he worked really well alongside Harrison Ford. Imagine playing a character 35 years later. I thought he might mail it in here, but Harrison Ford was simply delightful as Deckard again. He did not take any scenes off and he seemed to relish being back playing this character. This is his best performance in a long time, I know he came back as Hon Solo, but this role and performance is vastly superior to his in The Force Awakens. I think Ford fed off Ryan’s intensity and they just complemented each other so well here, and I would really love to see them work together again. The rest of the cast is fantastic, Dave Bautista is great, and he just keeps on impressing me after his shift towards becoming an actor. Some of the cast has very minor roles, where they are only in a few scenes, but the scenes that they are in, they are all in for their roles, and that’s what you need in a movie like this. Everyone committed and wants to be the best they can be. Robin Wright as Joshi, who is K’s boss is also great, she’s good in every thing, so that should not shock anyone. Jared Leto who plays Niander Wallace is good. It’s Leto and I think there’s a fine line between people really loving Leto and people who are just sort of “mehh.” I like Leto so I thought he was great as the bad guy Wallace, I guess he really isn’t a bad guy; it’s hard to describe his character. The two people I was pleasantly surprised about were Ana de Armas who plays Joi; I’m not going to go into detail about her character, because it’s actually really interesting and unique, so I will just say that I thought she did a fantastic job. She’s in a ton of scenes with Gosling and they were so good together. But for me besides the two leads in Gosling and Ford, the best performance has to go to Sylvia Hoeks, who plays Luv. She is Wallace’s assistance/body guard, and she is menacing and just really stood out in the movie. Again I don’t want to say to much, but after the movie, I thought this women, just got a lot of people’s attention and we will be seeing her in more things to come.
But the real star of the movie is the cinematographer Roger Deakins. I can’t overstate how beautiful this movie is. At times and certain moments the visuals are actually distracting because of how beautiful they are, you’re almost not paying attention to the actual movie, but rather taking in all the scenery. Without doubt the best cinematography that I can ever remember seeing in the movie theatre. Some of the visuals and imagery are breathtaking and I couldn’t really believe what I was looking at. The movie takes place in the year 2049, and I swear, there wasn’t one moment where I thought, yeah that looks fake, or that’s too much CGI. It’s flawless, and perfect and so crisp looking. The detail and the colors are so incredible, and again it’s just something you need to go see, because it’s so hard to describe and put into words. Just give Roger Deakins his Oscar now, like don’t even bother having the cinematography category this year, because there really is no dog in this fight other than Roger. This movie will win a bunch of Oscars, the score and the sound is also perfect. You need to go find the biggest screen you can, that has the loudest speakers, get a large soda and popcorn and just get transported to this world. The reason I go to the movies is to escape from life, you want to be transported to another world, and this is exactly what happens. Blade Runner 2049 is a film from start to finish. One of the best parts about this movie is that it just wanted to be its own movie. They didn’t try to build this massive universe that will have a ton of other sequels or spin off movies. They had an idea in mind for the movie and they executed that plan to mere perfection. You just get immersed into this world and you don’t want to leave, I know I didn’t. At a run time of almost 3 hours, it flew by, because you just want to keep seeing these incredible landscapes and I felt that the movie was paced beautifully. The movie is also very thought provoking they ask you questions and challenge your way of thinking. Just like the original, they want to open your mind and that’s exactly what happens.
I really can’t express enough how much I loved this movie; it’s one of the best sequels ever made and also one of the best science fiction movies ever made. It’s a shame that I don’t think a lot of people are going out to see this movie, so I think with word of mouth that could change. I can also see this movie not being for everyone. This is a piece of movie art that will live on forever. I really can’t wait to see it again. This is one of the best movies of the year! GO SEE THIS MOVIE.
Check ya later
Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Blade Runner 2049 = 96/100
I could never decide what was scarier, the aliens or Newt carrying around that doll head.
See I told you, I’m a man of my word, and this week I just watched Aliens, highly regarded as one of the greatest action movies of all time! Again this movie was released even before I was on planet Earth, in 1986, directed by the legendary James Cameron, he took what Ridley Scott did in Alien, but he made it his own. Right off the bat I’ll say this, it would have been pretty damn easy for James Cameron to take this franchise and these characters and just ruin them, or try to change them, but he doesn’t. He didn’t try to redefine the Alien franchise, he simply expanded on it, and made Aliens his own thing, and well it’s just short of perfection. I remember growing up; I would always call this movie the sleepover movie, or the birthday party movie. I can recall countless times this is the movie that would be put on at night, because at the time there just weren’t too many movies like it, and it just kicks so much ass. I fell in love with this franchise at a very early age, and I’m glad I did because there are some wackos out there who’ve probably never even seen this movie. That’s simply just a crime against humanity, or maybe that’s just me being a complete and utter nerd, someone step up and tell me please!
So Aliens takes place 57 years after the events of Alien, our hero Ripley has been floating in her stasis pod the entire time, and by dumb luck a cargo ship comes across her vessel and BAM, our story continues. As she tells the tale of her encounter with the Xenomorph, the company she works for just isn’t buying it, seeing how since she’s been in deep sleep, there is now a colony of people living on the planet where her and her crew stumbled across the parasite (face hugger) in Alien. So relieved of her duties, it isn’t till a few days later, where suddenly they have lost all contact with anyone on LV-426, mysteriously after no events of anything happening, now dead silent. So they are sending in the Marines, and they want Ripley to tag along to be a special advisor to the operation, seeing how she’s the only one who knows first hand with what they are dealing with. Sigourney Weaver was nominated for an Oscar with the performance she gave in Aliens. Just stop and think about that for a second, that is unheard of. Someone from a massive summer action blockbuster being nominated for an Oscar, not in this day in age, so kudos to Sigourney, because she is actually simply spectacular in this movie. Ripley decides to tag along with these Marines, and that’s where we meet the rest of our lovable cast! Corporal Hicks (Michael Biehn), the leader of the crew, who is our main male character in the movie, Bishop (Lance Henriksen) a droid who Ripley isn’t to fond of due to the fact that the last droid on her mission tried to kill her, but Bishop really becomes a hero at the end. We have Vasquez (Janette Goldstein) and can I just say, I’ve always loved this woman in Aliens, she’s such a badass character and honestly they don’t really have female characters like this in movies anymore. Well they try to but they usually fail miserably, Vasquez always sticks out in my mind for being one of the first real tough, badass chicks in movies. We got the Sergeant of the group, Apone, who just has some of the best lines in the movie, “you know the drill, assholes and elbows everyone!” Kind of wish he stuck around longer in the movie, and we got to see him kind of do some ass kicking of his own. The slim ball company man of the group Burke (Paul Reiser), what can I say about his character, another than the fact that he’s simply just an asshole. He is truly the films main villain and the movie does a great job not really showing us that card until the last third of the movie, and I always thought that was pretty cool. It’s not a twist or anything, there are clues along the way, but going into Aliens, you would think the bad guys would just be the creatures themselves, when in fact their biggest threat was actually one of their own. Rounding out the crew, good old Hudson played by the phenomenal man Bill Paxton himself. We lost this great man earlier this year, the only person who could say that they’ve been killed by a terminator, an alien and a predator. Now that’s some legendary stuff. He’s the comedic relief of the movie, and his most infamous line “game over man, game over!” was actually improvised during that scene, which makes it all that much better. He’s almost the best part of the movie, but that title always stay with Ripley, he’s a goofy douche, but can throw down with the best of them, and is a Xenomorph killing machine. We simply lost this man way too soon. So these Marines land of LV-426, only to find it deserted and what once was a rescue mission, quickly turns into a survival mission. The only survivor is a little girl, known as Newt. She has somehow survived weeks, living in the air vents and when you think about it, she’s honestly just such a little trooper, I would have lasted all of 10 minutes before one of those things would get me. One of the big reasons Newt is such a vital part to this story is that when Ripley was in her deep sleep, she lost her daughter, she simply died of old age and when Ripley hears about this, it crushes her. It makes her realize just how long she’s been gone for and how different the world must be. So when they find Newt, Ripley takes it upon herself to not only be a mother figure to this poor helpless girl, but to protect her at all costs. It just added a nice extra layer to Ripley’s character and made her just seem a little more human and have compassion for someone in such a dire and intense, life-threatening situation.
So once they find Newt, they start to dig deeper into the complex, to see if anyone else is still alive, and they just so happen to stumble across the alien hive. Not knowing this of course sets our Marines up for total annihilation and the majority of them are wiped out before our very eyes. The hive scene for me will always be one of my favorites from all of cinema. I think its perfect, to how its shot, you have the Marines point of view, and then you have the view of Ripley and the others watching horrified through monitors, as they see them being picked off one by one. It manages to blend horror, suspense and action all into one and James Cameron does it tremendously. It’s really hard to blend so many different feels, and movie genres all into one scene without over doing it. The hive is just so cool looking, as the aliens use the walls of the cocooned hive to camouflage themselves so well, that when they re moving towards our Marines, even though they have a motion sensor tracking system, they simply just cannot see them coming. This always stands out to me, as just masterful filmmaking. Just one of the many iconic scenes throughout the movie, when it’s all said and done, only a few Marines are left standing and now it’s time for them to find a way off this rock. Trapped on the planet with the aliens, this is where James Cameron really gets to show off the awesome weaponry. For being made in 1986, the weaponry in Aliens is some of the best stuff I’ve ever seen in film. From the sentry guns, to the pulse rifles, to the guns I don’t even know the name of, you know the BFG’s that Vasquez and Drake use in the hive scene, those things will cut you in half.
So when it’s just down to Ripley, it’s her duty to save Newt from her potential fate, so she has to go back into the hive but this time around she stumbles across the queen! Surrounded by eggs, Ripley grabs Newt and they think they are in the clear. It’s then they notice the queen has attached herself to their ship and it’s time for one last showdown between the queen and Ripley, in a some kind of cargo moving mech suit! You know “get away from her you bitch!” line. Again this is just such an iconic scene and one that I’ll certainly never forget. How else were we expecting Ripley to go toe-to-toe with the mother of all aliens, the queen! For what this fight is, obviously it’s slow but powerful, and you couldn’t really expect much else from two huge things battling it out! They just simply don’t really make movies like the used too, 1986 and it still holds up to this day. My opinion, the greatest science-fiction action movie ever created and one of my all time go to movies. It’s just damn near perfect, I can’t think of a single flaw in Aliens, I can try and maybe if I think long and hard about it, I could nitpick something, but what’s the fun in that. James Cameron made a masterpiece and one thing I’ll say about James Cameron. His ability to find young actors and get the most out of them, whether it’s Newt from Aliens or Edward Furlongs character in Terminator 2. These were both their first roles and you wouldn’t have guessed that for a second, it really is something special, an underrated talent of directors. Up next is a film that I think is way undervalued and that would be Alien 3!
Nobody and I mean nobody drops better angry F-Bombs than Ryan Reynolds
In space no one can hear you scream, and in Life there was a boatload of screaming to be had. Space movies always remind me of one thing; space is scary as hell! Especially when you are trapped on the International Space Station with a newly discovered alien life form.
So aboard the International Space Station is a multinational six-member crew that is comprised of some of the brightest minds on Earth. They intercept an incoming space probe that is returning from a successful trip from Mars. They collect a soil sample, where the crew is tasked to study it, which could ultimately end up being the first evidence of life outside of Earth. The crew quickly discover that not only is this the first sign of life, but that it is “all muscle, all brain and all eye,” which sounds scary as shit if you ask me. After the organism evolves, it is given a name, Calvin, after a school in America. Calvin quickly becomes more evolved and smarter as the day’s pass, and the crew slowly begins to realize, that they might have bitten off more than they can chew. As they find themselves in a fight for their lives, they must work together to stop Calvin from reaching Earth. As they’re picked off one by one, Calvin not only evolves, it gets smarter and smarter, and the crew realizes that maybe they should have left this creature back on Mars, where it belongs.
The crew itself is comprised of an American senior medical officer, David Jordan (Jake Gyllenhaal), who has been in space for the longest period of time in human history, with just over 430 days served in space. David mostly keeps to himself, remaining quite, but when push comes to shove we find him becoming a little more of a badass. Dr. Miranda North (Rebecca Ferguson), she serves as the British Quarantine Officer, and the captain of this mission. She is in charge of the “firewall protocols” which serve as the safety plans in case anything goes wrong onboard the space station. She knows more information than the crew does, and keeps a few secrets from them as well. Rory Adams (Ryan Reynolds) the American pilot of the space station is the crews class clown, and leader of the group. Ryan Reynolds was probably the standout of the movie for me, providing us with the best scene of the movie that’s for sure. As usual, he’s a wise cracking, know-it-all something we have become accustom too in his movies. Not saying that’s a bad thing, I actually really liked his performance in Life, it was nice to see him branch out a little bit. The Japanese systems engineer Sho Murakami (Hiroyuki Sanada), the strong but silent type. Who just wants to get home so he can see his newly born daughter. The Russian commander of the mission, Katerina Golovkina (Olga Dihovichnaya) willing to step up and take charge when need be, a strong woman who’s not afraid of a little perseverance. Finally we have the crew’s biologist, a British man Hugh Derry (Ariyon Bakare) who is the most excited about the specimen on board and wants nothing more than to study it and make the human population proud. Remember this is a movie that takes place in space with a alien, these people are going to be disposable, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t start to care for them, and root for them to win. People are going to die in a movie like this, it’s just the nature of films like this. Life borrows a lot of elements from the original Alien movie, the movie that redefined the genre of science-fiction. I’m a huge Gyllenhaal fan, and I thought that he didn’t really have a whole lot to do in this, I felt that he was very underused in the first 2/3 of Life which was kind of a let down. He’s a great actor and I wish the director would have given him more to do. It felt like they just didn’t know what to do with his character at times, and being the lead of the movie it felt out of place at times. Speaking of the director, it’s Daniel Espinosa (Safe House) and he was almost the star of the movie. This is on the edge of your seat kind of suspense, with great tense moments, along with some really scary situations. Daniel did a fantastic job bringing all this together and create one hell of a landscape for the movie. This movie has some really intense moments where I was even almost looking away (I’m a baby) but when a movie can do that, it’s doing its job. Taking place only on the space station, Daniel does a great job shooting the movie very confined and tight, which makes for an even more enjoyable movie watching experience.
Life is a slow-burn, which means it takes awhile to get going and it takes its time for things to come together, but in the end it usually pays off. My biggest gripe for the movie was I wasn’t a fan of the ending. As the movie was winding down, I knew it only had a few outcomes to showcase, and I just wasn’t a fan of how things wrapped up, and it was an ending that didn’t really answer all the questions. Leaving the audience with a lot of “what ifs” and seeing how I don’t think Life will be getting a sequel that can be very frustrating for the movie goer. I’m not saying I knew from the beginning how the movie was going to end, but you could see all the twists of the movie happening before they actually did. Nothing ever really shocked me in Life, so I just wish they maybe threw one more curve ball at us, or maybe just didn’t follow the exact cookie cutter formula that most of these space movies follow. That doesn’t mean this is a bad movie by any means, or that I liked it less, it just means that you know what’s going to happen next before it actually happens in the movie. You spend two hours investing your time into the movie and sometimes you just want to be rewarded at the end of it, and not left scratching your head about possible outcomes or what kind of message the filmmaker is trying to get across.
Life is not a game changer by any means for the genre, but it does some things really well. This a good science-fiction horror/thriller, that people should go out and see. If you’re a fan of these kinds of flicks, then you won’t be disappointed in the outcome. Like I said it has some good performances, enough scares, and tense moments to have you on the edge of your seat in certain moments, and I thought Calvin was a pretty cool alien. It was different to see something that wasn’t so terrifying looking, as say some other monster movies, but it didn’t need to look scary, to show the audience just how much damage it could possibly inflict on the human population. I just know if they keep making movies like this I will never find myself going on a space vacation in the year 2050.