Time to brush off the autumn dust and the holiday slumber and launch into a new year of movies. There are plenty of films that I’m looking forward to in the new year (here’s my 2017 Movie Watch List) but let’s take things one step at a time in what will be a very busy year.
While January through March aren’t known for their “good” movies, these are the first ten films of 2017 that I’m looking forward to watching.
Underworld: Blood Wars (Jan. 6)
Look, there’s no question this franchise has gone on way too long. While Awakening was entertaining enough, it still paled in comparison to the first couple of Underworld movies. More than anything, this is the Saw effect. I’ve slogged my way through four movies so far (and Kate Beckinsale still looks great in leather), so what’s one more movie. But dammit this better be the last one. (It won’t be.)
A Monster Calls (Jan. 6)
I had a few opportunities to see this film back in December, but work and the holidays essentially wiped out any chance of making it to a screening. Which is why I’m looking forward to seeing this Felicity “Jyn Erso” Jones led movie when it goes wide on January 6. The film also stars Sigourney Weaver and Liam Neeson in case you needed an extra nudge.
The Comedian (Feb. 3)
Look, I’m not going to mince words here. The Comedian has had a rough start in it’s limited run with critics aggregating a 17% rating on RottenTomatoes and Metacritic giving it a 47/100 rating. It also has Robert De Niro who has taken the quantity over quality approach to his golden years of acting. But I’m willing to give it a chance (via Redbox) because the cast looks promising and director Taylor Hackford is capable of good things.
xXx: The Return of Xander Cage (Jan. 20)
I’m no expecting much from this movie. I know the stunts are going to be ridiculous, but that’s okay because it’s Vin Diesel performing said ridiculousness.We get the added bonus of Donnie Yen action sequences. That combination is worth the price of admission alone.
A Dog’s Purpose (Jan. 27)
I’m predicting right now that this will be one of the “surprise” breakout movies of early 2017 and I will be right there to witness it. Unfortunately the trailer gives away one of the big twists in the movie but that’s okay (well, not really) so press play if you’re immune to spoilers.
John Wick: Chapter 2 (Feb. 10)
Speaking of dogs, Keanu is back to whoa us with what should be another awesome installment of the John Wick chronicles. No puppies will be harmed this time around, but you can bet John Wick will be bustin’ caps left and right when the film hits theaters on February 10.
Lego Batman Movie (Feb. 10)
It’s Batman in a LEGO movie spin-off and the trailer looks fantastic. Up to here, I’ve listed movies that I’m lukewarm-ly looking forward to, but this spin-off is the first hands down movie I’m looking forward to in 2017.
Logan (March 3)
It’s going to be bittersweet to see Hugh Jackman hang up the adamantium claws to one of my favorite superheroes but it’s time. The film is inspired by the story line of Marvel’s Old Man Logan series. I’ll be curious to see how much the movie can make back its $127 million budget and turn a profit ($250 million would break even) especially with what looks like a very dark and somber tone. Really good trailer analysis here and watch the red band trailer here.
Kong: Skull Island (March 10)
I’m very curious to see how much of this movie is used as a standalone film and how much will be used to set up the showdown with Godzilla later on this decade. Regardless, the trailers have looked fantastic, the cast looks great, and the film is in the very capable hands of Jordan Vogt-Roberts (who directed the excellent Kings of Summer in 2013).
Beauty and the Beast (March 17)
So far, Disney has done a very good job at bringing their animated classics to life with their live action adaptations but one wonders when this bubble is going to burst. Obviously we already know the story (Cinderella, The Jungle Book, etc.) and we know that Disney is going to throw a lot of money at the production and do a damn good job at bringing the story to life. As much as I love Emma Watson, I’ve been very lukewarm about this movie. I’m waiting for it to wow me with it’s Disney magic when the film arrives in theaters March 17. I’ll say this much though – Luke Evans is perfectly cast as Gaston!
So there’s the first ten movies I’m looking forward to in the new year. Granted it won’t be until March when the big blockbusters arrive but there’s enough sprinkled in the first couple of months to get things warmed up.
Which movies are you looking forward to in early 2017?