By Chris Campo
We all are looking forward to Donald Glover and Beyoncé singing classic Lion King songs, Spider-Man taking on Mysterio, the closing chapter of the latest Star Wars Saga, a new Tarantino film, and watching Steve Rogers die a horrible, heartbreaking death. These are all things that should get any film fan excited, but every year, I find a lot fun in finding upcoming films that just aren't as talked about as the heavy hitters. The 10 films on this list, which aren't ranked in any particular order, are either films from smaller studios that won't open in every region, or they simply have yet to start a marketing campaign. These films just might be hidden gems among the behemoths coming out all year. 2019 is going to be one hell of a year for film fans.
From the director of Edge of Tomorrow and starring Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley, there’s almost no doubt in my mind this little talked about film won’t disappoint. Adapted from a novel of the same name, Chaos Walking follows Tom Holland’s Todd in a dystopian future where there are no women living. The film is apparently coming out in less than two months but I highly doubt that as we have not yet seen any footage, which is mildly concerning, but the talent involved is what is keeping my hope alive for this one.
The feature directorial debut from Seth Savoy, Echo Boomers, is an action film about five young adults who find a way to steal from the rich and give to the poor, which, in this case, means giving to themselves. The cast is killer with promising newcomers like Britt Robertson and Nick Robinson, as well as Michael Shannon rounding out the cast. It's pretty hard not to be excited for more Michael Shannon; he’s a national treasure.
One of the only straight-up comedies on this list, Flarsky boasts an impressive cast, which excites me more than the rather generic sounding plot. Charlize Theron, Seth Rogen, Alexander Skarsgard, Andy Serkis, Randall Park and O’Shea Jackson Jr. all star in the film, which involves a struggling journalist pursuing his childhood crush, who is one of the most powerful women in the world. An all-star ensemble like this is sure to guarantee laughs, and I cannot wait. 2018 was a mostly flat year for straight comedies so hopefully Flarsky will help 2019 fair better.
Another Seth Rogen film, but this one is quite different. Probably shooting for an Oscar nom, Rogen stars as Walter Cronkite, a CBS newsman who is given the task to report on the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963. Also starring Mark Ruffalo, Newsflash is sure to be gripping and possibly darkly funny and satirical. David Gordon Green is on fire lately and, Canada’s biggest sex icon Seth Rogen has legitimate acting chops. This is sure to be a hit.
Not much is known about this film quite yet, but what we do know is intriguing, and could serve as a thrilling time at the cinema. Jake Gyllenhaal and Ansel Elgort star as brothers who make a deal that pulls them into an organised crime syndicate in Boston. The film also stars Zendaya. Brian Helgeland is the man behind the great 42 and the fascinating, yet messy Legend. Maybe with Finest Kind he will be a name more people will start to take note of.
Untitled Danny Boyle/Richard Curtis Project
Probably the weirdest but also the most exciting film on this list, the untitled (rumoured to be titled All You Need is Love) film from Danny Boyle follows a musician who realises he is the only person on Earth who remembers the existence of the band The Beatles. A zany but fascinating concept, I hope this film is as weird as it sounds. Not to mention the film is directed by Danny Boyle. The film stars Ana De Armas, Lily James, Kate McKinnon and Game Nights’ Lamorne Morris.
One of my most pleasant surprises of 2017 was Sleight. A unique blend of Iron Man and Dope, it was a film that had me craving the work of all involved, most of which was the film’s writer/director J.D. Dillard. Premiering at Sundance later this month, the film centres around Jenn (Kiersey Clemons) who washes ashore a small tropical island and must survive the elements as well as the mysterious, evil force that arrives every night.
I know what you are thinking… why in the world would I, or anyone, anticipate a Michael Bay film? Truth is, Michael Bay has some solid films under his belt, most of which are original projects, like 6 Underground, streaming on Netflix later this year. Ryan Reynolds leads a crew of billionaires who fake their deaths and form a squad of vigilantes, which sounds badass, but the film’s secret weapon are the writers, Deadpool scribes Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick.
Making a Star Wars film is hard, and I am sure no one knows this more than Rian Johnson. His Star Wars film was much more divisive than his smaller film, Looper, so perhaps a return to an original film will fair better for fans and critics. The film stars Daniel Craig, Chris Evans and Ana De Armas, along with an impressive lineup of even more A-listers, and is rumoured to be a modern day whodunit. Not much else is known about the project, but you don’t need much else to sell me.
Probably my most anticipated film of the year outside of the obvious blockbusters, Guava Island is the first feature from the minds behind the outstanding Atlanta, Hiro Murai and Donald Glover (interestingly, the leaked trailer credits Glover as his stage name Childish Gambino). The film stars Glover as well as Rihanna and Letitia Wright and centres around a struggling musician (Glover) who attempts to rob his way to a better life but quickly finds himself in over his head.
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