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Angela Jan 4, 2009 (edited Mar 4, 2009)

Perusing Adam's handy-dandy movie schedule site, I've already made a preliminary listing of the films I'm looking forward to seeing in 2009.  There aren't quite as many prolific ones as past years, but maybe a few surprises will turn up, like how Speed Racer and Tropic Thunder was.

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Up - I have really high hopes for Pixar's Up, and I'm keeping to my personal declaration that it's going to be incredible.  The talent involved, specifically Monsters Inc. director Pete Docter and composer Michael Giacchino, is already a formula for success in my book, and early impressions (and here) are already glowing positive.

Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince - With the delay back from November of 2008 to July of this year, more than ever am I anxious to see the latest Potter movie adaptation.  I still hold to the comments I made last year, that I believe the film should be in reasonable hands with director David Yates, and that I hope Nicholas Hooper turns in a better score than Order of The Phoenix.  The released trailers are looking very good so far.

Terminator Salvation - My review of Terminator 3 made it clear that I wasn't exactly its biggest fan, and honestly, the first teaser trailer of the new movie did nothing to impress me.  However, the most recent theatrical trailer did manage to percolate my interest.  I'm one of the staunch believers that feel they should have never continued on after Cameron's titles, but like T3, I'm willing to give this a shot under the pretense that this more of a 'What If' entry.  The story itself might turn out decent, seeing as how the screenplay was helped along by Paul Haggis (Casino Royale) and Jonathan Nolan (The Dark Knight).  No doubt Salvation will be the one to officially fire off the summer popcorn season.

Sherlock Holmes - This one isn't due until November, but it's by far the most intriguing project of 2009 for me.  For those who haven't heard, this will be one of two planned adaptations planned for release within the span of 2009-2011.  The one coming this year is being directed by Guy Ritchie, produced by Joel Silver (V For Vendetta, Speed Racer), and starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as Holmes and Watson respectively.  Ritchie's version is described as portraying the harder, more action-packed side of Holmes.  Says FilmSchoolRejects: "Fans of literature will remember that, in addition to tales of his boxing and martial artistry, Holmes was not opposed to striking criminals with his cane, discharging firearms, breaking the law in search of justice, and dabbling in tobacco, morphine, and cocaine. Holmes has been watered down over the years, but the sleuth from the books was a bit of a bastard and it is this version of Sherlock Downey and Ritchie aim to bring to the screen."  I really can't wait to see how this one turns out.

Other films of mild interest include Dreamworks' latest animation Monsters vs. Aliens, the Hugh Jackman driven X-Men Origins: Wolverine, J.J. Abrams' Star Trek (the trailer looks really dynamic), Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen, and Pete Jackson's The Lovely Bones.  It's been a REALLY long time since we've seen a James Cameron directed film (his last one was Solaris back in 2002, wasn't it?), so Avatar might be worth checking out.  Dragonball?  It reeks of disaster, but Stephen Chow's in the producing chair, so who knows.

Qui-Gon Joe Jan 4, 2009

Angela wrote:

It's been a REALLY long time since we've seen a James Cameron directed film (his last one was Solaris back in 2002, wasn't it?), so Avatar

Actually, Solaris was Steven Soderbergh.  Cameron hasn't done a feature film since Titanic in 1997.  I'm really looking forward to Avatar just because I love all of the Cameron films I've seen and it's been OVER A DECADE since I've gotten to see something new from him.  Crossing my fingers that it will be worth the wait...

XLord007 Jan 4, 2009

Without looking at any release lists, the only 2009 movies I can think of that I want to see are HP6 and Sherlock Holmes, but I'm sure I will see more than just those since I always end up seeing more movies than I intend to at the start of a given year.

Jodo Kast Jan 4, 2009 (edited Jan 11, 2009)

I'll have to see these:

1. Unborn (Not a remake.)
2. The Uninvited (Remake of a Korean film - A Tale of Two Sisters.)
3. Terminator 4
4. Transformers 2
5. 2012
6. G.I. Joe (Ray Park is in this. Good enough for me. He played Darth Maul and he's Snake Eyes in G.I. Joe)
7. The Crazies (I've seen the original. It was terrible. Believe me, this can only be better.)
8. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
9. Last House on the Left (The original version is the 2nd most disturbing film I've ever seen, right behind Salo.)

Adam Corn Jan 6, 2009

Waiting in line on opening weekend:

X-Men Origins: Wolverine - High hopes for an X-men film of the first two's caliber.
Star Trek - Not a trekkie but in J.J. Abrams I trust.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen - Yeah, Michael Bay but I just can't help myself.

Curious to see:

Revolutionary Road - Sam Mendes?  I'm there.
Watchmen
Monsters vs. Aliens
Up
Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince
Amelia - If anyone's story deserves a good biopic it's Amelia Earhart.  Hilary Swank and Ewan McGregor in tow.
Astro Boy - After reading the manga remake "Pluto", color me a fan.  Hopefully they can do the property right.
Avatar - Probably over-hyped but yeah, I'm game.
The Road - Just read this book and Viggo Mortensen is perfect for the part.

Keep me far, far away from Dragon Ball, 2012, and G.I. Joe, and don't be surprised if SF: The Legend of Chun Li kills the series' theatrical hopes for another ten years.

No idea what they're about but it's interesting to see at least three Japan-related titles on the release list: Tokyo, Big Man Japan and Tokyo Sonata.

Shoe Jan 12, 2009

Nobody cares about the FRIDAY THE 13TH remake??

Oh well.

NOTORIOUS should be decent too, but i guess unless you grew up listening to his music it's not going to be of interest.
The content description of the movie has no mention of gun violence though, which is kind of strange. I'm guessing they didn't want to glorify it at all since he died that way?

I dunno, but these and Revolutionary Road (can't believe it's still not out yet) are the most interesting ones i see so far. Mendes has another movie called FARLANDERS in the werks too but of course it's a ways off.


..Does anyone else think that GRAN TORINO is overrated? Great concept but to me it seemed underdeveloped and shallow, needed more characters and conflicts, and moved pretty slowly.
Anyone else think it needed a little more to it?

Oh yeah i almost fergot, the new Sacha Baron Cohen movie BRUNO should be out sometime this year and is gonna make a mint, can't wait for that one either.

Jay Jan 12, 2009

Shoe wrote:

Does anyone else think that GRAN TORINO is overrated? Great concept but to me it seemed underdeveloped and shallow, needed more characters and conflicts, and moved pretty slowly.

I haven't seen it but there was a story that the guy sold his first draft and no changes were made whatsoever from there. I've read probably hundreds of first draft screenplays and the common factors in every one of them, with not even one measly exception, are the things you describe. So, while I'm still very curious about it myself, I'm not hugely surprised by what you say.

As for me and films, I'm really out of touch right now. No, I won't be seeing the Friday the 13th remake. I'm sure at some point I'll be seeing Saw VI, that I'm sure is an inevitability around Halloween time. I'll end up nervously going to the new Terminator movie. I mean, it couldn't be worse than the made-for-tv version that was 3, could it? Could it?!

I'm mostly curious (yet still very nervous) about the Astro Boy film. I don't like what they did to the designs but I still think there's a chance it could be really good.

Aside from those, I have no idea what's coming out. Does Christopher Guest have no movie coming out this year? Haven't heard anything since that For Your Consideration one.

Shoe Jan 14, 2009

Jay wrote:

As for me and films, I'm really out of touch right now. No, I won't be seeing the Friday the 13th remake..

Why aren't you interested in it? Didn't like The Texas Chainsaw movie or just not a Crystal Lake fan in general?

silentdrifter5 Jan 19, 2009

I'll probably check out the Friday the 13th Remake, merely because I was always a big fan of the slasher series to begin with. Despite the well-worn plot, it'll still be interesting to see what innovations are added and what they do with the story which has existed for almost 30 years now.

Shoe Jan 20, 2009

I saw The Blood Valentine today, it was decent. Somewhat forgettable, but decent.
I give it credit for its dark ambience and quaint little mining-town setting, but then again i said almost the same thing about 'The Strangers' last year. Squeamish will probably want to skip this one, it's pretty graphic..

Jay Jan 27, 2009

Looks like some of us may be striking Astro Boy off our lists if the internet rumourmongers turns out to be right  - http://www.cartoonbrew.com/feature-film … o-boy.html

On Friday the 13th, which I didn't answer Shoe on, I'm all remaked out and only one I saw in about the last ten years I enjoyed and that, Dawn of the Dead, bore no resemblance to the original being a remake in name and setting only.

Angela Jan 30, 2009

Angela wrote:

Ooh, I'm gonna add Coraline to the pile.  A stop-motion (and in 3D!) adaptation of Neil Gaiman's novella that's being directed by Henry Selick of Nightmare Before Christmas and James And The Giant Peach fame.  Trailer looks great:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LO3n67BQvh0

New Coraline trailer.  Good stuff:

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/39923

And high-def versions of the first trailer. (There's a Trailer and Trailer 2, but they both appear to be the same):

http://www.hd-trailers.net/movie/coraline/

Angela Feb 7, 2009

Saw Coraline today, and it was absolutely terrific.   The film drips with artistic imagination, and comparatively, it shares a lot more in common with The Nightmare Before Christmas than Corpse Bride.  Coraline definitely has that Selick touch: the same sort of fantastical, off-kilted enchantment and expert direction that he graced Nightmare with.  The set pieces and characters all have their place in the film, so they're not there just for shock value. (Though there's plenty of that to go around.)  The movie's a lot of fun, simply because the stark contrast between Coraline's reality and "other reality" is so enjoyable to watch come alive.  The parents are the kind of "I just don't have time for you right now" douche-bags that any kid would love to substitute in a pinch, and seeing the rest of the supporting cast's colorfully alternate sides is a joy.  There is some strong imagery, as well as an underlying tone of creepiness - things I wouldn't deem suitable for a younger audience, but for the adults, it's all pretty thrilling.  By the time Coraline participates in "the game", the film had me completely under its spell.  A film for brave boys and girls, indeed. 

Character voices are mostly spot-on, with Fanning providing just the right amount of precociousness, sass, and innocence for Coraline.  I was a bit lukewarm on Teri Hatcher as the mother, but she begins to shine as soon as that veneer of affectionate sensitivity begins to crumble.  John Hodgman and Keith David as the father and the black cat impresses the most.  The 3D, like in the Disney Digital presentation of Nightmare, adds a wonderful, tangible feeling of depth to the whole movie; it never panders to obvious, in-your-face effects, so it all looks perfectly natural.  If you can see it in 3D, do - it's a real treat.

There's now a new contender for best stop-motion animated film, aside from Nightmare and W&G: Curse of The Were Rabbit.  I can't wait to see it again..... but not before reading the book, which I just picked up from my local Borders.

Carl Feb 16, 2009 (edited Feb 16, 2009)

Big thumbs up for The Wrestler, not because I like wrestling but because of the very real characters and their situation.

Getting stuck in life and how difficult it is to get "unstuck" is something that resonates with me even at 30, and I assume that feeling is real for a lot of people.

Great capture of what it's like to be the one-trick pony, and how hard it is to make big changes in your life.

Ashley Winchester Feb 16, 2009

The thing that stood out for me about the TV spots for Coraline is why do they always say "from the director of..." instead of the actual director. I know they do this for every movie, but it strikes me as odd when they have to reflect on a 10+ year old movie to boost people's confidence.

Smeg Feb 17, 2009

Ashley Winchester wrote:

The thing that stood out for me about the TV spots for Coraline is why do they always say "from the director of..." instead of the actual director. I know they do this for every movie, but it strikes me as odd when they have to reflect on a 10+ year old movie to boost people's confidence.

They do it because most folks think Tim Burton directed The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Angela Feb 17, 2009

Carl wrote:

Big thumbs up for The Wrestler, not because I like wrestling but because of the very real characters and their situation.

Getting stuck in life and how difficult it is to get "unstuck" is something that resonates with me even at 30, and I assume that feeling is real for a lot of people.

Great capture of what it's like to be the one-trick pony, and how hard it is to make big changes in your life.

The movie's definitely got a Rocky Balboa vibe to it.  Both feature fighters past their primes, looking for redemption and glory rekindled.  Rourke is pretty excellent here. 

Love the credit roll theme that Springsteen contributed to; the lyrics really capture the essence of the movie perfectly.  Oh, and big props for the use of Sweet Child o' Mine before the big fight at the end. :)

Carl Feb 18, 2009 (edited Feb 18, 2009)

While the themes of Redemption and Past Glories Rekindled are certainly there, thankfully it doesn't just stay on the simple surface aspects of those. (they are at opposite ends, he opts for past rather than redemption)

He knows he needs to change (and does make a few attempts to, to the best his limited abilities can muster) but the changes are more painful than to continue on his path to ruin.

His comment before the final match, when the window of opportunity does open and he's finally got the chance of accepting a new life with the woman: "Out there is where I get hurt" is his bare truth shot right to the core.

The real world of relationships pains him the most, and covering it up with superficial success as the coping mechanism was all he knew how to do. 

Sure, it would have made him a better man to struggle towards a new life than to die with is old life, but he fully accepted that he wasn't up to snuff and that he couldn't stand the pain necessary to become that better man.

Angela Mar 3, 2009

Just wanted to add the sequel to Night At The Museum, titled Battle of the Smithsonian, on my must-see list.  The first one was a pretty enjoyable flick -- and any excuse to see Dick Van Dyke kickin' more ass is fine by me.  ^_^  New Silvestri score, too!

Also, a new theatrical trailer for Terminator Salvation.  I'm really hoping the story is as excellent as these explosive sequences: 

http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/1810025211/trailer

I'm also delighted to hear that Elfman is looking to replicate more of Brad Fiedel's original mechanical, industrial sound for the score.

Ashley Winchester Mar 3, 2009

Angela wrote:

Also, a new theatrical trailer for Terminator Salvation.  I'm really hoping the story is as excellent as these explosive sequences:

I kinda wish they'd have left Terminator alone after the second movie. I liked some of the twists in T3 but I don't think these movies will live/live up to their pedigree.

Angela Mar 5, 2009 (edited Mar 5, 2009)

A new X-Men Origins: Wolverine trailer is up.  Not exactly in the most ideal quality, though - as AICN puts it, its size is akin to a damned postage stamp. (Yes, you can Full Screen, but at the cost of resolution.)  Mostly a variation of the first trailer.

Jackman looks to be in top form -- but let's see if he can produce a good film.

Jodo Kast Mar 8, 2009

I'm certainly no prophet as I'm incapable of predicting my own actions. The first film I watched this year is not one I was looking forward to, but two things got my attention. It's directed by the same guy that did 300 and it's rated R. I loved 300 and R rated movies lessen the chance of having to hear noisy teenagers. Watchmen was a total surprise, since I never saw the trailers for it and my knowledge was vague, having never read the comic (I've never read even one comic). Just be prepared for a long sit, although I doubt you will notice the passage of time. I didn't.

You will hear the word tachyon in this movie. It's a particle that moves faster than light, but not necessarily backwards in time. Light always moves at the same speed, regardless of the medium. It does not slow down in glass or water, as physics teachers incorrectly state. Both glass and water are denser than a vacuum, so the photons have more interactions, and so they take longer to travel between two points. But the photons always travel at the same speed. Anytime a particle transmits through a medium faster than light (has less interactions), then the particle is said to be tachyonic. The backwards in time stuff just sounds impressive (explains its prevalence in science fiction movies like Watchmen) and has never been observed. (There are indeed benefits to reading old lectures by Richard Feynman.)

Wanderer Mar 8, 2009

I saw "Watchmen" tonight and while I was mostly entertained, it left very little of an impression on me. I didn't care for the characters and without that bond, I found myself only looking forward to the gory action scenes (of which there were surprisingly few).

avatar! Mar 8, 2009

Jodo Kast wrote:

You will hear the word tachyon in this movie. It's a particle that moves faster than light, but not necessarily backwards in time. Light always moves at the same speed, regardless of the medium. It does not slow down in glass or water, as physics teachers incorrectly state. Both glass and water are denser than a vacuum, so the photons have more interactions, and so they take longer to travel between two points. But the photons always travel at the same speed.

Good post!
Light certainly propagates slower in any medium that's not a vacuum (which is really everything). Light propagates significantly slower in water and denser materials. In fact, there are particles that can travel faster than light propagates in those materials, and they produce Cerenkov radiation. It's fair to say that the group velocity does slow down, but yeah, in general that's the current notion that light is constantly absorbed and re-emitted. Honestly though, it's acceptable to think about light as being slowed down, since for the most part that is equivalent to what's happening at least from our point of view smile

And yeah, I do want to watch Watchmen, even though it didn't get good reviews. I don't expect anything groundbreaking or deep, just enjoyable.

cheers,

-avatar!

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