2013 has been filled with films of caliber. Looking at the list below, most of them are Oscar contenders. While plot is important, I have a soft spot for strong performances, visionary directors and beautiful cinematography. Here’s my list of the film I am kind of aching to watch:
12 YEARS A SLAVE
Cast: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Lupita Nyong’o Director: Steve McQueen
Genre: Historical Drama
Why It’s Exciting: A picture can tell a thousand words and emotions; filmed with only one camera, McQueen paints various powerful scenes to tell a story of Solomon Northrup – a free black man from New York who was kidnapped into slavery. I have seen the movie, it is gut wrenching and harrowing AND it’s a movie worth watching.
Cast: George Clooney, Sandra Bullock, vast expanses of space
Director: Alfonso Cuaron
Genre: Sci-Fi Thriller
Why It’s Exciting: A super blockbuster film that makes you dizzy. The space cinematography is amazing. Cuaron makes use of the 3D experience and takes you on a rollercoaster ride. Watch as a sole astronaut survivor fights for her life to get back to Earth. Seriously, see it as an IMAX film.
Cast: Joaquin Pheonix, Rooney Mara, Amy Adams, Olivia Wilde, Scarlett Johansson
Genre: Comedy Romance
Director: Spike Jonze
Why I’m Excited: It’s like having a love story with a hot Siri and Scarlett Johansson does the voice. That’s hot! Joaquin Phoenix (and his so hot) plays Theodore, a lonely writer who falls in love with an operating system designed to meet the user’s every needs. I’m going to watch it because I love Jonze and Being John Malkovich.
THE ACT OF KILLING
Director: Christine Cynn, Joshua Oppeheimer
Why It’s Exciting: It’s been described as the most frightening and most surreal documentary of the decade. Raising the awareness of the Indonesian atrocities in the 1960s, it’s a disturbing portrait of a society that allowed the massacre of millions. Oppeheimer invites the aged Indonesian death squad to reenact and recreate the past killings.
BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR
Cast: Adèle Exarchopoulos, Léa Seydoux, Jérémie Laheurte, Catherine Salée
Director: Abdellatif Kechiche
Why I’m Excited: An epic and erotic love story, the Cannes winner takes an honest approach to sex and relationship. It runs for three-hour film and slowly unpackages the connections between the two lesbians. Wow, the spark between the two is electrifying. Steven Spielberg is said to be a massive fan, expect an outstanding film and performances by Exarchapolous and Seydoux.
Cast: Will Forte, Bruce Dern
Director: Alexander Payne
Why It’s Exciting: An American film about a father and son’s quest for riches. Being shot in black and white only emphasise the vast and sparse landscape and actors’ performances. Plus Bruce Dern is at top of his game in this roadside movie.
DALLAS COWBOY CLUB
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto, Steve Zahn
Director: Jean-Marc Vallee
Why I’m Excited: First, allow me to get this off my chest… did you see the dramatic and physical transformation of Leto and McConaughey? Also I never saw McConaughey as a true performer and I’m expected to break that misconception. He plays Ron Woodroof, a racist, bigot and homophobic Texan cowboy diagnosed as HIV positive and given 30 days to live.
Cast: Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lawrence
Director: David O. Russell
Genre: American crime comedy – drama
Why It’s Exciting: Russell directing an all-star cast in a crime movie? Line me up because this is going to be a movie showstopper. Set in 1970s a reckless FBI agent recruits a con artist duo into a scheme to trap corrupted politicians and gangster. I’m looking forward to watching a sexy sentries style Adam, a flawless performance by Bale, and what’s this hair thing I’ve been hearing about?
Cast: Michael B. Jordan, Octaia Spencer, Melonie Diaz, Chad Michael Murray
Director: Ryan Coogler
Genre: Biopic, Drama
Why It’s Exciting: Coogler’s debut film dramatises the last day of Oscar Grant’s life, the young African American was shot dead by a trigger-happy cop on New Years Day. Michael B. Jordan is simply brilliant in his performance of Grant, whom Coogler presents as a generally happy, if complex and somewhat troubled man. Winner of 2013 Sundance Film Festival.
INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS
Cast: Oscar Issac, Carey Mulligan, John Goodman, Garret Hedlund, Justin Timberlake
Director: The Coen Brothers
Why It’s Exciting: All I can say is, poor Llewyn Davis. The thing is there’s no point feeling sorry for him because he isn’t worth rooting for. Set in 1960s New York folk scene, we follow the artistic disappointment and failure of Llewyn David. A Cohen Brothers’ film with it’s usual trademark; dark, comic and heartfelt.
THE WIND RISES
Cast: Voiced by Hideaki Anno, Miori Takimoto, Hidetoshi Nishiima
Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Genre: Animation; historical fantasy
Why It’s Exciting: Mizayaki is my all time favourite animator-director, so it’s sad to hear that this film will be his last before retiring. Mixing dreams and realities, Miyazaki weaves a story about Jiro Hirokoshi and dreams of being a pilot. He grows up to be an inventor of a fighter plan with which Japan fought against the U.S. during WWII.
OTHER FILM RECOMMENDATIONS
The Wolf of Wall Street
All is Lost
Saving Mr Banks
La Grande Bellezza
Are there any other latest releases that you are excited to see? How about sharing them with me 🙂