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2010 Film Preview

Posted by: Matthew Turner 29/01/2010 @ 12:09
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 31
Films seen this week: Bitch Slap, The Princess and the Frog, Edge of Darkness, The Infidel, Breathless, Horses, Ondine, I Am Love, Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

2010 Film Preview: Ten Films I've Seen and Ten Films I Haven't
Hurrah! More lists! Let joy be unconfined and so on. Yes, it's 2010 film preview time. If the ten films below that I've already seen are anything to go by (some of which featured in my provisional Best of 2010 list a couple of weeks ago), then 2010 is already shaping up to be an excellent year. However, the next ten films are the films I haven't seen yet that I'm most looking forward to and hopefully they'll live up to my expectations. I've already discussed the trailers for most of them (see previous blogs) but I'm excited to eventually see trailers for the ones I haven't, such as Scott Pilgrim vs the World and The Girl Who Played with Fire. I've listed the films in release order below, with release dates and mini synopsis.

Top Ten Recommendations
1. Youth in Revolt – out 5th February. Regular readers of the blog will know I'm a huge fan of C.D. Payne's book and the film lived up to my expectations. Michael Cera stars as lovestruck teen Nick Twisp, who gets himself into all sorts of trouble when he falls for Portia Doubleday's Sheeni Saunders.
2. Ponyo – out 12th February. Miyazaki's latest animated feature is a delightful gem about a boy who befriends a girl who seems to have come from the sea.
3. Crazy Heart – out 19th February. Like The Wrestler but with country music. If Jeff Bridges doesn't win an Oscar for this, there is officially no justice.
4. MicMacs – out 26th February. Jean-Pierre Jeunet returns with a quirky new comedy about a group of junk-collecting misfits.
5. Ondine – out 5th March. A lovely is-she-isn't-she mermaid story, directed by Neil Jordan and featuring a wonderful performance from Colin Farrell.
6. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – out 12th March. Terrific adaptation of the best-selling Swedish thriller you've seen everyone reading on the tube.
7. Lourdes – Out 26th March. Strange, unsettling French drama about a disabled woman who's suddenly cured during a visit to Lourdes.
8. Whip It – out 9th April. Wonderful comedy directed by Drew Barrymore, starring Ellen Page as a young woman who secretly joins a female roller derby team.
9. Dogtooth – out 23rd April. Disturbing, chilling but also blackly funny Greek drama about a man who keeps his family prisoner by raising them to believe them the world outside is deadly.
10. The Disappearance of Alice Creed – out 30th April. Enjoyably twisty British kidnap drama starring Gemma Arterton, Martin Compston and Eddie Marsan.

Top Ten Films I Haven't Seen Yet
1. Alice in Wonderland – out 5th March. Tim Burton's long-awaited adaptation of Lewis Carroll's classic tale.
2. Shutter Island – out 12th March. Scorsese and DiCaprio team up again for this ‘50s-set thriller about an escaped murderer.
3. The Ghost – out 19th March. Polanski's latest thriller about a ghost writer who finds his life in danger after he's hired to write the memoirs of a British Prime Minister. Starring Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor. This is already getting interesting-sounding buzz.
4. How to Train Your Dragon – out 31st March. Animated comedy about a weedy Viking who befriends a dragon.
5. Kick-Ass – out 2nd April. Eagerly awaited adaptation of Mark Millar's comic, about a boy who decides to become a superhero, despite not having any powers.
6. Iron Man 2 – out 30th April. They had me at “Scarlett Johansson plays The Black Widow...”
7. Gentlemen Broncos – out 7th May. Wonderfully bizarre-looking comedy from the creator of Napoleon Dynamite, starring Michael Angarano as a teenager who has his idea stolen by L. Ron Hubbard-esque novelist Jemaine Clement.
8. Toy Story 3 3D – out 23rd July. 3D adventure for Buzz, Woody and the gang.
9. Scott Pilgrim vs the World – out 6th August. Really can't wait for this. Michael Cera stars in Edgar Wright's adaptation of Bryan Lee O'Malley's cult comic book series).
10. The Girl Who Played With Fire – out 10th September. Sequel to The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Different director, but same actors. The third film in the trilogy (The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest) is out in November.

Trailerwatch: Cyrus
This is yet another example of a film that I didn't know existed until I went trawling for trailers for the blog. Cyrus stars John C. Reilly as a soon-to-be-divorced (from Catherine Keener) loser who falls in love with a woman he meets at a party (Marisa Tomei) only to discover she has a grown-up son (Jonah Hill) who's a little... unusual. The cast alone would be enough to make me want to see it, but it's also written and directed by Mark and Jay Duplass, who made the excellent The Puffy Chair in 2005 and whose 2008 feature Baghead is still criminally unreleased over here. Cyrus (not to be confused with Miley Cyrus, although try telling Google that) looks like it could be pretty good – it's always fun to see John C. Reilly play a loveable loser, while Jonah Hill seems to have a much darker edge to his character than usual (note the lack of his usual curly 'fro), which could be interesting. Three things I already love about the trailer: Reilly singing “Don't You Want Me”, his delivery of the line “I'm going to have some conversations too here, eventually” and the familiar-but-still-funny gag at the end. There's currently no sign of a UK release date for this (it's just been warmly received at Sundance) but it's a Fox Searchlight film, so no doubt we'll get to see it eventually.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):
Only two new entries this week, with The Princess and the Frog marking Disney's glorious return to traditional, hand-drawn animation and Oscar contender Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire both making it into the top ten. I'll also put in a good word for Atom Egoyan's Adoration and racehorse documentary Horses, though I didn't like either of them enough to push OSS 117: Lost in Rio out of the top ten. No new interviews this week, but check back next week as there are several in the pipeline. Meanwhile, if you still haven't read our interviews with Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick and Jason Reitman for Up in the Air, they can be found here, here and here.

1. A Prophet
2. Where the Wild Things Are
3. The Road
4. Up in the Air
5. Toy Story 2 (3D)
6. The Princess and the Frog
7. A Serious Man
8. Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
9. Avatar
10. OSS 117: Lost in Rio

DVD of the Week: Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs (out now, RRP £19.99)
This week's DVD of the Week is Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, an animated family comedy, based on the best-selling children's book. Bill Hader voices geeky inventor Flint, whose history of disastrous creations (flying rat-birds, monkey-thought-translators) comes to a sudden and dramatic end when he invents a machine that turns water into food, only for things to spiral quickly out of control when the machine ends up in the sky and it starts raining food. If you missed it at the cinema, this is a hugely entertaining, beautifully animated and genuinely hilarious comedy with an inventive, brilliantly written script, wonderful characters and a terrific voice cast. Extras include:  Flint's Food Fight Game, 'Raining Sunshine' Music Video and Sing-A-Long, a Director's Commentary with Bill Hader, featurettes on the video and the voice cast, extended scenes and a Making Of. Highly recommended and one of the funniest – if not THE funniest – films of last year.


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