It's fun to think about what's coming out and which movies I'm most interested in, then compare that at the end of the year to what I actually enjoyed. Of my 20 Most Anticipated last year, 12 of them turned out to be Top 20 movies for me, so that's pretty cool. One of them (Hostiles) was pushed back to this year and another (Jumanji 2) I just haven't been able to schedule yet, so that leaves 6 that were disappointing in some way.
Of those, I've seen and was underwhelmed by three (The Beguiled, The Mummy, and Justice League) and thanks to trailers and reviews, completely lost interest in three others (Dark Tower, Ferdinand, and Pitch Perfect 3) before they hit theaters.
So here's what I'm most eager to see this year. As always, these aren't the movies that I'm predicting will be the best; just the ones that I most want to see. Tell me what you're looking forward to in the comments!
20. Tomb Raider
I'm a mark for treasure-hunter movies and have enjoyed even the Angelina Jolie movies on some level. The trailer for this one is visually impressive and Vikander is a talented actor, so I'm just hoping that the story is up to snuff.
19. Mary Magdalene
One of the most fascinating characters in the New Testament, even without the Dan Brown nonsense. It's about time someone made a movie about her.
18. Mary Poppins Returns
I enjoy the classic adaptation, but it's not holy ground and I'm glad to see that the rest of the book series will get some attention, too. Not that I've read the books. And these movies will see that I don't have to.
I don't really need a new Jungle Book adaptation, but I'm interested in almost anything Andy Serkis does. And it'll be interesting to see what he does to avoid comparisons with the Jon Favreau Disney remake.
16. Incredibles 2
I've cooled off on Brad Bird after Tomorrowland, but I've still loved 80% of his movies and am interested in what he's able to do with this. I'm especially curious how a new Incredibles movie compares to the modern landscape of superhero movies. The first one was released the same year as Spider-Man 2, when we were just starting to figure out that great superhero movies were possible. The bar has been raised a lot higher since then and I'm not 100% confident that Incredibles 2 can clear it.
15. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
That first trailer was underwhelming, so my excitement's down some, but I'm not counting out Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and dinosaurs just yet. Wow, though. I hope Jeff Goldblum's character has something more fun to do than sit in a courtroom. And that screeching, partial version of the musical theme is chalkboard-scratch annoying. Hoping it's just a bad trailer.
14. A Quiet Place
Just do what I did. Watch the trailer without knowing anything about it first, and then see if you fall in love with it, too.
13. Game Night
Another one where the trailer grabbed me. As someone who loves getting together with friends to play games, I'm ready to laugh about that activity and this reminds me some of The Man Who Knew Too Little, which is a good thing.
12. Pacific Rim: Uprising
I wasn't crazy about the first one, but I loved a lot of things about it almost as much as I love John Boyega.
Another awesome trailer. Start with The Rock, add a giant gorilla, then add a giant wolf, and finish with, "I was just thinking the only that’s missing right now is a giant crocodile." It may have helped that I'm not at all familiar with the video game it's based on.
10. The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
Keira Knightley as the Sugar Plum Fairy was all I needed to know, but the trailer makes it look like a pretty great fantasy film with some of my favorite classical music as a soundtrack.
9. M:I 6 - Mission Impossible
Except for the second entry, this series hasn't done me wrong yet. And Rebecca Ferguson's back!
8. We Have Always Lived in the Castle
I just read the novel last year and liked it a lot.
Alexandra Daddario is a strange choice to play Constance, but I'm hoping that there's more to her than I've seen in other movies. I'm all in for Taissa Farmiga as Merricat, though, as well as Crispin Glover as Uncle Julian and Sebastian Stan as slimy Cousin Charles.
As much as I like Jason Momoa, Justice League made me less excited for an Aquaman solo movie. Aquaman is cool in JL, but there's not much more to him than that. I'm hoping that the solo movie will correct that, because Aquaman's one of my favorite superheroes.
6. Ant-Man and the Wasp
It was a nice surprise to see the first one hold together so well after all the behind-the-scenes drama. It was a great superhero movie and I'm ready for more.
5. Scorched Earth
This was on my Movies I Missed List from last year, but that's because it's being released this year, as it turns out. Gina Carano playing a bounty hunter in a post-apocalyptic Western. It can't be as awesome as it sounds, but I intend to find out.
4. Black Panther
The enormous cast is intimidating, but I like this character a lot in the comic as well as in Captain America: Civil War. And Wakanda is just an awesome setting for a great adventure.
3. Avengers: Infinity War
I can't image how this movie will be able juggle all the characters in it, but I wondered the same thing about the first Avengers movie and Civil War. Not betting against Marvel.
2. Ocean's 8
Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you.
I'm trying hard not to be excited for this. The director drama is worrisome and it's not even a story I ever really wanted to see. The AC Crispin books that cover all of this were just fine for me. But the closer we get, the more eager I am, especially to see Donald Glover as Lando. Nervously eager.