I've had the pleasure to be involved in WE CAN'T WAIT 2008 (hey, that rhymes!) over at The Film Experience. Over the next few days you will see what movies myself, Nathaniel, Gabriel, Joe and MaryAnn chose as our 15 most anticipated titles. Only three movies made it onto each list - and not the ones you may think.
Everyone had to supply a list of our top 25 and they were all combined and tallied into the final combined list being counted down. There were many titles, however, that I had on my list that were not included on the final top 15 and I'm just going to say a few words on their behalf (They're my orphans. If I don't await for them THEN WHO WILL?!)
The Reader - Stephen Daldry hasn't failed me after two movies - 2000's Billy Elliot and 2002's The Hours - so I have very high hope for this WWII drama starring Kate Winslet as the "older woman" who holds the affections of a young man who later discovers she is/was a Nazi sympathiser. Heavy stuff, but I have faith in Daldry. Plus, I owe him a lot considering he intruced me to my husband and all.
Where the Wild Things Are - I put Spike Jonze's adaptation of the beloved children's book onto my list, but it turns out it is a 2009 film. Ugh. I thought it was 2008!
Paranoid Park - 2008 will see two Gus Van Sant movies! It's like 2003 all over again. This time we have the iconic auteur giving us two completely different films. Paranoid Park, already an Independent Spirit nominee for best film and director, is about a young skater boy (who did not say "see ya later boi" although I may be wrong on that account) who encounters some sort of mystery... or something. I dunno. I'm not that clear on it, but anything to see Van Sant strut is serious arthouse stuff again is a-okay by me. We then have Milk, but you'll have to wait for the words on that one *nudgewink*
Thankfully though, I don't have to wait very long for Paranoid Park to be released, so that's a bonus.
9 - I'm a big fan of Shane Acker's Oscar-nominated animated short of the same name so I'm incredibly intrigued to see what he's done with this feature-length adaptation.
My Blueberry Nights - To hell with the negative words this film received after it's premier at Cannes last year. I still think Wong Kar-Wai's english language debut looks like a dreamy beauty of a film. And if it is shite then at least it'll look pretty, right? And with a cast including Norah Jones, Jude Law, Natalie Portman and Rachel Weisz with cinematography by Darius Khondji I'm sure that won't be hard.
Speed Racer - Purely because it looks like a candy-coloured kaleidoscope of images and, finally, my beloved Christina Ricci finally gets another chance at the big stage of super-stardom. Plus, in a time where the big summer movies are all becoming dark and disturbing I think I'll rejoice in Speed Racer's excess and colour. I won't be seeing The Incredible Hulk or Iron Man, but I'll definitely be seeing this!
The List - Hugh Jackman and Ewan McGregor in a movie that sounds like a twist on Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut (of which I am a big fan). Sounds like it could be fascinating.
...or a fascinating failure.
Winged Creatures - Rowan Woods is an Australian director (Little Fish, The Boys) who has gone to America to make this ensemble thriller about a gunman in a restaurant or something. It has Forest Whitaker, Jennifer Hudson, Guy Pierce, Kate Beckinsale and Dakota Fanning amongst others. It will most definitely be bleak and feature great performances if Woods' past films are anything to go by (and I like to think that they are).
The Happening - I'm nowhere near a detractor of M Night Shayamalan. Sure, The Village had an utterly ridiculous third act, and The Lady in the Water was little more than a collection of well-directed individual scenes that didn't connect at all and the less said about Unbreakable the better (wow, that sounds like I am a detractor), but I continue to give him the benefit of the doubt. And considering this Mark Wahlberg starrer sounds more in line with my favourite Shyamalan film, Signs, I felt justified in placing it. The teaser sure is intriguing, isn't it?
Mamma Mia! - Because it's, as far as I can tell, the only major musical on the horizon for 2008. How strange. After 2007 I thought there'd be at least a couple more.
Harold & Kumar Escape Guantanamo Bay - <<< Because Neil Patrick Harris rides a unicorn, and the original is hilarious.
For the collective top 15 you will have to head over to The Film Experience and see whether you agree.