Every year there seems to be a bunch of movies I want to see, mostly superhero related. This year is no exception. This list would be one movie longer if I'd written it sooner, but since I saw Iron Man 3 recently, there is no reason for me to predict it...though all my predictions would have been wrong, to tell the truth. However, there are more must-see movies for me to talk about. This is the same as last year's blog: Me putting my thoughts out on the upcoming blockbusters. No need for more explanations. Let me get right to it.
MAN OF STEEL: For the second year in a row, DC has the number 1 movie that I want to see (okay, Iron Man 3 may have been number 1, but that doesn't count anymore). Like last's year The Dark Knight Rises, DC and Warner Brothers are working with none other than Christopher Nolan, my favorite director of all time. Except that Zack Snyder (director of Watchman and 300...neither of which I've seen) is helming the film, with Nolan producing. Fortunately, he is writing as well, along with his Dark Knight Trilogy scribe David S. Goyer. All that plus music from Hans Zimmer should make this movie good. Interestingly enough, one of my least favorite films ever is Superman Returns, which I guess is a technical predecessor of this film. I say "technical" because Man of Steel is a reboot of the franchise which Superman Returns killed seven years ago. Once again, Nolan and Goyer are helping to bring a recognizable hero back onto the big screen with a film that actually looks promising. The story revists Superman's (Henry Cavil) fabled origins, from crashing to earth as a baby to his growing up as a hero. I have a theory about the story, though: In one trailer, Lois Lane (Amy Adam) refers to him as a man who "covers his tracks." This makes me posit a question. Is Superman running from his true responsibility? Trailers have shown him in a fishing village or hitchhiking. Is he wandering around, helping whenever he can, trying to get an idea of his identity? That would be neat character-wise. Alas, wandering cannot last forever. For some reason, General Zod (Michael Shannon) has come to earth. To take it over? To destroy Superman? Whatever the reason, Supes is going to have to don the red-and-blue costume to FINALLY go toe-to-toe with a villain who matches, if not exceeds, him in power. No more pathetic Luthor. I'm excited because (amongst other reasons) Superman has a baddie he can toss around and beat up. Maybe after this film we can finally get a decent Superman franchise, which could very well lead us into an eventual Justice League movie.
THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG: The title for this movie puzzles me, for grammatical reasons. Let me get a little nerdy on you for a bit. Is "desolation" being used here as a verb or noun? Is it what Smaug has desolated? Or will it be his own desolation, his death? Either way determines where the movie ends. Will Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch..who also looks to be the coolest villain of the year in Star Trek: Into Darkness, which I have not included here) meet his doom from Bard? Or do we have ANOTHER year after this December to see the death of the firedrake? No matter how it turns out, I am very excited for this next Hobbit film. The first Hobbit was the best movie based off a book that I've seen yet (or, as one friend of mine likes to joke, best "one-third of a movie"), so we'll see how the next compares. Having escaped the Goblins in the Misty Mountains, Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), Gandalf (Ian McKellan), and Thorin (Richard Armitage) and his company of Dwarves (too many actors to list here) journey on towards Erebor. Along the way, I'm pretty sure they'll bump into spiders, Elves, and a giant man named Beorn (who can also transform into a bear). Not only that, but they're being pursued by a group of Orcs led by the revenge-hungry pale Orc, Azog the Defiler. Add in a bit of mystery surrounding the rise of the Necromancer (also voiced by Cumberbatch...dude's busy), who is believed to be the Dark Lord Sauron, and T.H.T.D.O.S. will be an action-packed film that may see the epic confrontation between Thorin and Azog (few things here: First off, I sniggered as I wrote that, because I find Thorin to be immensely lame. I enjoyed Armitage's performance, but the character was still lame...just watch the part where he charges down the tree at Azog in the last flick. Secondly, I think Azog will die. In the book, the band of Orcs at the Battle of Five Armies was led by Bolg his son...Azog actually dies before the book, so the moviemakers have changed things up. If they stick with that, Azog could be killed by Thorin in this second film). And I don't know how I want the film to end. On the one hand, if Smaug dies, the Battle of Five Armies would have to take up a lot of time in the third movie (apparently called "There and Back Again"). On the other hand, we have to wait another year before he DOES die. If anything, the film (I think) should captialize on the Thorin/Azog conflict. That should be interesting, especially since Thorin gives in so easily to his emotions (watch aforementioned scene). Yeah, Thorin will win, but I hope Azog gives him a good fight.
THOR 2: THE DARK WORLD: Iron Man 3 isn't the only movie that Marvel is putting out this year. The second Thor comes out this fall. According to Wikipedia, the film will pit Thor (Chris Hemsworth) against Malekith, lord of the Dark Elves, who's threatens all the Nine Realms (which includes our world...why do bad guys always attack OUR world?). In the trailer I've seen, Thor brings his Earthly love Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) to Asgard. However, later on, Malekith seemingly holds her hostage, maybe forcing Thor to make a choice. Plus, Thor looks like he needs to turn to assistance from his brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), who was the villain from both the first Thor and the Avengers. Will Loki give up his evil ways and help Thor? Or does he have a plan to backstab his brother? One thing that hit me about the first film was the character development of Thor. Being a prince of the Norse gods, one would expect the God of Thunder to have issues with a superiority complex. He seems to have gotten over that, but I wonder if there will be a character issue for him to wrestle with in this film. Will it be in dealing with his brother? Maybe. Maybe not. We'll have to see when November rolls around. I've heard from a few friends of mine that Thor was the worst Marvel film yet. While I respectfully disagree (Marvel has an Ant Man movie coming. If something tops that in the bad department, I will surprised. I mean, Ant Man? Seriously?), it will be interesting to hear people's thoughts on this one. I normally cannot lambast a superhero movie (though there are a few exceptions), so I'll most likely give this positive reviews when it comes out.
THE WOLVERINE: Another Wolverine movie does not surprise me, though X-Men-related movies always manage to sneak up on me. Creatively titled "The Wolverine" and based on a story arc by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller, 2013's third Marvel flick will depict Wolverine (played by Hugh Jackman, as always) as he travels to Japan. Apparently, he saved the life of some businessman in Hiroshima, so now the man wants to return the favor. This favor is making him mortal (which I assume is by removing his healing factor...Wikipedia gives me nothing on that one), which seems like a contradiction in terms. A favor by making him vulnerable? Okay. We'll see how that works out. Wolverine's supposed to be invincible, but I guess the point of the movie will be to push him to his limits and make him stronger by that. Also according to Wikipedia, the movie will show the Silver Samurai (a samurai...who dresses in silver armor...I am good) as well as Viper, who could very well be enemies. It will also involve a romance between Wolvie and the daughter of a Japanese ganglord. If comics are anything to rely on, it will not turn out happy. But that's just a prediction. However, if we're being honest, what Wolverine story ever turns out happy? One more little note to make: The film takes place after The Last Stand, the third X-Men movie, so I wonder if this a sequel of sorts? Or at least some sort of attachment. Plus, Wikipedia also says Jean Grey will make an appearance. Hmm. Wolvie killed her in the last movie. This seems highly improbable. But we'll see what happens. Maybe a flashback? The article says the actress "reprises her role," so it can't be footage from the last movies. I'm curious as to what they'll do.
Those are the main movies I want to see this year. As always, superheroes lead the way, but the next third of The Hobbit is going to be pretty awesome. Lots of great actors. Cool-sounding stories. The people involved have done this stuff before. We're dealing with veterans this year, so it might be hard for them to screw things up. I'm excited. But then, I always am.