10. 300: Rise of an Empire—Here we are again in sequel-land, however, what does make me take notice are the women: Eva Green and Lena Heady (back as Queen Gorgo). I am a big fan of Eva Green from Kingdom of Heaven to Casino Royale to Franklyn to Dark Shadows—there’s something both gothic and elegant about her. I want to see how she as Artemesia convinces Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro) to carry out a war of vengeance against the Greeks. Maybe I’ll learn something.
9. How To Catch A Monster—Some ladies may be interested because this one is written and directed by Ryan Gosling and starring Doctor Who #11, Matt Smith. What attracts me is the story: a dark fantasy about a single mother and her son who “discovers a road to another world.” At best there could be something very “Pan’s Labyrinth” about it. I’m curious.
8. Big Eyes—Tim Burton directs this story about a woman in the 1950’s famous for paintings of girls with big eyes (and you thought this was a new thing), starring one of my favorite actors Christoph Waltz (Inglorious Bastards). No Johnny and no Helena for Tim, and no Tarantino for Christoph. Being a fan of both men, I want to see what they come up with.
7. The Hobbit: There and Back Again—Technically and artistically superb, but I’m still having a few problems with the stretched story. Nevertheless, I will be there for the big finale.
6. X-Men Days of Future Past—I have only read one X-Men comic. But do I really have to be a big comic book fan to appreciate Michael Fassbender and Ian McKellen playing the same badass character together in the same film? With Patrick Stewart and James MacAvoy?
5. Interstellar—In 2010, I felt Christopher Nolan’s Inception was the freshest story I had seen in a long time in terms of big Hollywood films. Will he do it again with Interstellar? It stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain—about space travelers going through a wormhole.
4. The Monuments Men—I am expecting this one to be intelligent. It’s George Clooney’s fifth time out as director. Set in World War II, this one’s supposed to be about an American platoon on a mission to steal back some art masterpieces from Nazi hands. The cast is full o f heavy hitters: Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman and Matt Damon.
3. 12 Years a Slave—Already released in the US, and hopefully to be shown here, this is the story of Solomon Northup—a free black man who gets abducted and sold into slavery. Features Chiwetel Eijofor as Northup, Michael Fassbender as his “owner” and Brad Pitt as a Canadian abolitionist. I expect this one to be heavy but good.
2. Grand Budapest Hotel—I absolutely enjoy the work of Wes Anderson and his suking mga artista (regular actors). Grand Budapest Hotel chronicles the adventures of concierge Gustave H (Ralph Fiennes) at the hotel in the years between the wars. Cast includes Jude Law, Ed Norton, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody, Jeff Goldblum, Willem Dafoe and many more.
1. Godzilla—Director Gareth Edwards was checked by Canadian immigration when he flew there to shoot, after asking him questions and running a check, they found out the project he was shooting was Godzilla. They told him, “You better not f— it up.” He better not. My 12 year old and I are totally watching this when it opens. Godzilla and Bryan Cranston? Oh yes.