Thursday, 24 January 2013

Film Preview 2013 (ROYA #3)


From a ROYA Perspective


Last year I was spoilt for choice when it came to cinematic releases. It was as though every month there was something on that was worth going to see. It seems that although there is slightly less on offer, 2013 is set to release more of what's in demand: adaptations of Young Adult books, twists on classic fairy tales with only a smattering of sci-fi, and a few graphic novel novelties. Here's my pick of what's on offer.
Kicking off the year is tongue-in-cheek fight-fest Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, with Jeremy Renner (The Bourne Legacy) and Gemma Arterton (Clash of the Titans). This twist on the classic fairytale sees brother and sister as merciless witch slayers for hire. The ever-sexy Famke Jansen (X-Men) uglies up to play their evil adversary in what promises to be a ridiculous, blood-spattered nonsense.
 
February sees the release of Beautiful Creatures: a paranormal boy-meets-girl-with-a-dark-secret.  First of popular YA series The Caster Chronicles, this movie adaptation looks set to be either a hit or a miss. Relatively unknown actors Alden Eherenreich and Alice Englert play the star-crossed lovers and head up an impressive cast, which includes movie big-wigs Jeremy Irons and Emma Thompson. Granted, the set-design and the effects will be wonderful on the big screen. Sadly, there's an unavoidable whiff of cheese, chiefly provided by Emmy Rossum (Phantom of the Opera), who plays devilish Ridley Duchannes with pantomime flair. The proof, as they say, will be in the paranormal pudding.


March has three - that's right three - movies that I'll be making sure I go to see.  First is Jack the Giant Slayer, for more fairy tale spinnery. Cheeky (and rather hot) Brit actor Nicholas Hoult (About a Boy) plays hapless Jack. He plants magic  beans which grow into a giant beanstalk leading to a magical kingdom, as you probably know. There's an all-star cast, featuring Warwick Davies, Stanley Tucci, Ewan McGregor, Ian McShane and Bill Nighy. From what I've seen there's some spectacular special effects. It's a fine combination, so unless the screenplay's written by E.L. James (it's not), I'm confident this film will entertain. Next on my hit-list is Oz the Great and Powerful, from one of my favourite directors, Sam Raimi. Set before Dorothy Gale landed in Munchkin Land, the story centres on Kansas con man James Franco (127 Hours). He's surrounded by a bevvy of beauties too, with Rachel Weiz,  Mila Kunis and Michelle Williams playing the witches.  I have to say, this film looks The Business! It even starts off in black and white, which makes it all the more true to the original (IMO). After that, I suppose I'll have to check out the adaptation of Twilight author Stephanie Meyer's The Host. I found the book quite hard to get into, and frankly didn't force myself past chapter one. BUT, seeing as Saoirse Noran (The Lovely Bones/Hanna) is playing lead, I suppose I ought to give it a shot. Okay, so it's a "sci-fi" (we'll see) about a girl who's had her body taken over by a parasitic alien. However, the human part of the girl refuses to give up, forming a bond with the alien. It sounds interesting... my fear is it will turn out to be just another over-dramatic teen romance. Hopefully I'm wrong.
 
Oblivion hits the big screen in April, starring the legend that is Morgan Freeman (Yay!) and half-pint soap-box scientologist Tom Cruise (Meh). It's your typical dystopian  scenario: Earth is a wasteland after years of war with an alien race. An engineer discovers a spacecraft, the contents of which make him question everything he believes about the war. In all honesty, this is only making my list because it is a sci-fi, and it has Morgan Freeman in it. I have to say, when reading about this film I am put in mind of Rich Hall's description of every Cruise movie ever made. All the same, the effects look immense, definitely one for the big screen.
 Two films worth checking out in May are the long awaited sequel Star Trek Into Darkness and animated adventure Epic. With a star-studded cast, Epic is a story about a teenage girl, lost in a strange forest, who finds help from a group of odd-balls. It's then a battle of good against evil, all in amazing 3D. Yeah, it's probably aimed more at kids, but so what? Doesn't stop it from being good. If you're in need of something more adult, then the new Star Trek movie will get you back on track. The cast of the first film are back in this slick production from J.J. Abrhams. Let's face it, there's bound to be a good plot, but what it'll essentially boil down to is the Enterprise crew going after the bad guys. Fine by me. Expect more action, more effects, more Kirk kissing cute chicks, and even though it's considered only a "rumour" I've seen pictures of Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) as the wrathful Khan. I'll be happy so long as I get to ogle John Cho (Sulu).

By the time June comes around, I'm usually not bothered with going to the cinema. But with the release of Kick Ass 2, I'll be there, bum on seat, popcorn at the ready. Sadly, as this film is still in production, I'm unable to show you any official pictures (Go look on Google images if you're interested). Aaron Taylor-Johnson returns to the role of Kick-Ass, along with a motley crew of costumed crime-fighters. There's quite a line up, including Jim Carrey, John Leguizamo and of course, scalp-collector Nicholas Cage. I've got high hopes for this one.

July, summer time! There's not much that will get me in a picture house at this time of year. Except maybe Johnny Depp. Funnily enough, this summer dons war paint as Tonto in Gore Verbinski's version of The Lone Ranger.  Starring alongside is Armie Hammer (Mirror Mirror) as the masked man of mystery. Made by the same folks as Pirates of the Caribbean, then big budget, big explosions,  family-friendly humour and ever-quirky Depp-ness is guaranteed. Predictably, Helena Bonahm Carter turns up as vixen lady Red, pale-skinned and wide-eyed as always. Ah well, I'll give it a go, 'tis Depp after all...

August, officially rainy season where I'm from. Cinema is a must for me at this time of year. I'll be checking out the new Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (rumoured release), as well as the eagerly awaited Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. Cassandra Clare's Young Adult fantasy about Shadowhunters;  demon slayers of angelic decent, who fight to save us mere mundanes (mortals) from the dark beings that threaten our world.  There's been much debate over the casting of  this film. Many fans do not approve of Jamie Campbell-Bower  as cock-sure hero Jace Wayland. Why is this? Probably because in the books he's described as unrealistically good-looking with a body sculpted by the gods. That's a tall order, for any actor. For me, the success of this film will come down to how well it's acted and how good the script is. I am a big fan of funny man Robert Sheehan (Ch4's Misfits), and I think he'll be wonderful as Simon, best friend to heroine Clary (Lily Collins [pictured] of Mirror Mirror). There's a lot of hype surrounding this film, which can often lead to disappointment. Even so, the trailer gives me goosebumps. Can't Wait!

In September there's rumoured release of a particularly strange offering called I, Frankenstein. In a bizarre turn of events, the  table-top lab-creation man of Mary Shelly's gothic horror, finds himself in a clan war between immortals. What? I shall keep my eyes peeled and let you know everything I hear. Aaron Eckhart (Dark Knight) and Bill Nighy (The Boat That Rocked) are reported to  be cast.



Sin City sequel A Dame To Kill For is set for release this October.  Bruce Willis and  hotties Jessica Alba and Rosario Dawson reprise their roles in this violent adaptation of the popular the graphic novel. Another film out this month which has caught my attention is the remake of Stephen King's Carrie. As a huge fan of the book, and the original movie, I've been let down by some of the productions that have come along since. Fingers crossed they don't muck it up this time. Still, there's also paranormal adventure The Seventh Son, which looks promising. Set in the 1700's, it's about young man, Tom (Ben Barnes of Dorian Grey and Prince Caspian)  who trains to fight evil spirits. Julianne Moore [pictured] also stars.

November sees the release of highly anticipated sequel The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Jennifer Lawrence returns as Katniss Everdeen, sent into an arena to fight other teens to the death. Once again, they're still shooting this, so I can't show you any pictures. I'm a little disappointed at the casting of red-haired District 4 champion Finnick Odair,  but hey! They're never as cute in real life as in your head, right? This is one film I cannot wait to see. The effects of the first movie were superb so my expectations are high. Catching Fire is when the political intrigue starts to thicken, and the full story starts to unfold. It also has one of the most romantic scenes I have ever read in a book, so EEP! Excited!

December rolls along, and with it The Hobbit returns with sequel The Desolation of Smaug. Opinion has been mixed over the first instalment. Some say it's brilliant, while others have commented on the obvious "padding". I think we can expect pretty much the same this time around; those who like it, will, and haters gon' be hatin'.

Well, that's my preview of what's due out this year. I may even review a few of them, should I take a notion. Remember, if you have something that you think would be of interest to ROYA, email me at merrybawz@hotmail.com with ROYA and your name as the subject. Toodle-pip!


 
 
 



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