Alexander Glover looks ahead at the film releases we can expect before Christmas.
Established franchises have dominated the box office during the first three-quarters of 2017. A look at the highest grossing films shows Beauty and the Beast on top, followed by the likes of Wonder Woman, Despicable Me 3, Logan, and another Transformers film.
If action films get you reeling, you’re in luck because there’s more coming before the year is out. Hollywood, however, is becoming a little bit less predictable in its output and there are some original ideas sneaking out of the cracks. Here are the films to watch out for during semester one, be they good or bad.
The big-budget blockbusters this side of Christmas all come from bankable, established franchises.
The big-budget blockbusters this side of Christmas all come from bankable, established franchises. The first one up is sci-fi film Blade Runner 2049 in October which is the long-awaited sequel to 1982’s Blade Runner. Harrison Ford returns as Rick Deckard and Ryan Gosling plays the new guy tasked with tracking him down.
Next up is The Lego Ninjago Movie, the third installment in the series spawned by Lego toys. This time the story focuses on six young ninjas who must defend their homeland. The cast of voice actors is impressive just like the first two films, this time starring Olivia Munn, Justin Theroux, Dave Franco, and Jackie Chan.
Thor: Ragnarok, the next Marvel film, also has an October release date. This, the third film, sees the hero face off against the Hulk in a seemingly more light-hearted take on the superhero showdown.
The big release of November is the hotly anticipated Justice League. DC fans have been waiting for this film for so long and, yet, it still feels rushed. This is the marquee event that will bring six of the company’s hottest commodities together in one big superhero team-up. Unfortunately, audiences still haven’t had a lot of face time with each individual character. Storytelling and character development have lacked in the previous films in the DCEU, hopefully Joss Whedon can rectify these issues.
The only critically successful entry in the latest slate of DC films is Wonder Woman. Capitalising on this, Professor Marston and the Wonder Woman opens in cinemas a week before Justice League. This is the true story of Wonder Woman’s creator, psychologist Dr William Moulton Marston who drew inspiration for the character from two women, his wife and their lover.
Stories following the lives of artistic creators seem to be trending for this upcoming quarter. September offers us the release of Goodbye Christopher Robin, a film set in the 1920s which focuses on British author A.A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) as he is inspired by his son to write Winnie-the-Pooh. Margot Robbie stars as the author’s wife.
James Franco also tries his hand at this biographical genre by directing December’s The Disaster Artist. Focusing on the production of 2003’s The Room, which is considered one of the worst films ever made. Also in December, we’ll get The Man Who Invented Christmas, detailing the six weeks in 1843 when Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens) penned his classic A Christmas Carol.
Loving Vincent paints the picture of the mysterious death of Vincent Van Gogh, literally. Robert Gulaczyk plays the famous artist in the first fully-painted feature film, and it is truly like no other. 125 painters worked on the production and the creative development took six years. The film will have a limited release in Irish cinemas on October 13th and has roles for two of our biggest homegrown stars, Saoirse Ronan and Chris O’Dowd.
A couple of other biographical flicks to look out for are Borg/McEnroe (Shia Labeouf), which tells the story of tennis’ greatest rivalry, and Stronger. Stronger depicts the struggle of Jeff Bauman (Jake Gyllenhaal) who lost both of his legs during the Boston Marathon Bombings in 2013.
Storytelling and character development have lacked in the previous films in the DCEU, hopefully Joss Whedon can rectify these issues.
Adaptations are big as always in the coming months. Books-turned-films on their way to the screen include Jo Nesbø’s the Snowman, Charles Martin’s The Mountain Between Us and Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express.
Disney’s next animated feature Coco doesn’t reach Irish screens until January, clearing the stage for Fox’s Ferdinand in December. The film is an adaptation of The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf, the children’s story of a bull who would rather smell flowers than be in bullfights. The feel-good family film may also appeal to older audiences features the voice of John Cena.
Cena also plays a prominent role in another big film this winter, Daddy’s Home 2, which hits Irish cinemas on November 22nd. Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg reprise their roles as warring fathers in the comedy sequel which also introduces John Lithgow and Mel Gibson as their own respective fathers.
More sequels coming our way are Pitch Perfect 3, Paddington 2 and A Bad Mom’s Christmas. Not to mention, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and the next Star Wars installment, The Last Jedi. Amidst these, look out for originals like The Killing of a Sacred Deer and Roman J Israel, Esq.
With so many films heading our way, between classes, college stress, and assignments be sure to take time out for yourself and treat yourself to a cinema night to check out your favourites.