As we come out of what is known as the dumping ground of film (January to March), many new and exciting films are coming out. So, in a week that’s short of movie news, here is a list of the top five most anticipated films of 2015.
The Fantastic Four (Aug. 7)
Many were upset with the two previous films adapted from the Fantastic Four comic books, released in 2005 and 2007. While I liked them as a preteen boy, they are admittedly hokey and have horrible screenplays. So, Fox is rebooting the franchise with a new film set to come out in August. The trailer, released in December, shows an Interstellar like premise of explorers going into another dimension where they presumably get their powers. Mr. Fantastic, previously played by Ioan Gruffardd, will be portrayed Miles Teller, who recently starred in the acclaimed film Whiplash. The four superheroes are all set to be much younger than their portrayal in previous films. Because of the rapid departure from previous films, the brooding atmosphere of the trailer, and the possibility that this new film will cross over with X-Men, Fantastic Four is set to be a very welcome reboot.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (Nov. 20)
The Hunger Games film series has been a rare case where each new installment improves upon the previous one. I was not a fan of The Hunger Games, but Catching Fire raised the stakes. The screenplay improved and the editing gave the film weight. All of these factors made the film much more relatable than the first one. Mockingjay Part 1 raised the bar even more, making Panem a much deeper political allegory of the current state even more than the second film. The action was great, and the character development gained further investment. The conclusion of Mockingjay Part 1 ends the penultimate film with a perfect sense of suspense, and the climax, if following in the trend of the past two films, should be the best Hunger Games film yet.
Jurassic World (June 12)
As a huge Godzilla fan, I can say that no one loves monster movies more than me. The first movie I remember seeing in the theaters was Jurassic Park III. Contrary to popular belief, I love the third Jurassic Park and feel it delivers exactly what a good monster movie should: action, fights, and an irresistible sense of fun. The second film, The Lost World, was not a good movie on any accounts. The first film is undoubtedly a masterpiece, satisfying both the urge for monster fighting and a powerful screenplay. I was fortunate enough to catch the first film’s rerelease in IMAX 3D. Seeing the dinosaurs on big screen was an absolute pleasure. So, this new film has me very excited. Starring Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, the new film introduces cross breeding dinosaurs to create a super dinosaur, sure to be deadlier than the T-Rex and spinosaurus from previous films. I can’t wait to return to the island come June.
In the Heart of the Sea (Dec. 11)
Along with monster movies, I am a huge fan of historical epics, particularly seafaring adventures. Ron Howard’s In the Heart of the Sea is a dramatization of the true story of the whaling ship Essex, attacked by a whale in 1820, leaving the survivors adrift in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. A period peace along the lines of Mutiny on the Bounty and Master and Commander, the film will certainly have the triumph of the human spirit found in Castaway. Originally set to come out this March, In the Heart of the Sea was pushed back to December. Many speculate that this shows studio confidence for releasing the film so close to Oscar season. In the Heart of the Sea is the second most anticipated film for me coming this December.
Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (Dec. 18)
It comes as no surprise that Star Wars is the most anticipated film of the year. The first Star Wars film released in ten years, this film will be directed by JJ Abrams. After what Abrams did to reinvigorate Star Trek in 2009, he is surely the right man to start up Star Wars again after three mediocre prequels ten years ago. Starring mostly unknowns, the film will have the return of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fischer, and Harrison Ford, the starring trio of the original trilogy. Set 30 years after the original trilogy, The Force Awakens is sure to be a welcome comeback for the series.