Because David and I are apparently clones straight outta Project Leda, while I was feverishly culling a list of my top ten most anticipated sci-fi, fantasy and horror movies from io9’s massive genre calendar, David was doing the exact same thing. Like Rambo, he struck first blood, in a post you can find here. But apparently also like Rambo, I’m striking last blood with a list of my own. Compare, contrast and criticize in the comments. Or don’t.
Before I get to the good stuff, let’s get to my predictions for…
THE SIX WORST SCI-FI/FANTASY MOVIES OF 2015
Jupiter Ascending: It was delayed from last summer to the much ballyhooed February 6th weekend spot. It looks more nonsensical than Transformers, and will likely require hallucinogenic drugs to enjoy or “get.”
Seventh Son: Is there a weirder movie weekend than February 6th? Jeff Bridges was becoming Rooster Cogburn for good at my first San Diego Comic-Con in 2013 promoting THIS movie, which was supposed to come out sometime in 2014. Like Jupiter Ascending, it was plopped to February 6th, providing ample fodder for an acid fueled trip to the movies.
The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out of Water: This was also close to making the top 10 most anticipated.
Minions: FUCK THE MINIONS. I said it (if you never hear from me again, you know why). Despicable Me was great. Despicable Me 2 was less great, in main part because it relied too heavily on the Minions, a one-note kiddie terror. Kids will love it, and this will likely gross more money than any other movie not named Avengers or Star Wars, but to me, it’s just gross.
BEST GUILTY PLEASURE
San Andreas. The Rock in a disaster movie destroying my current home? Delicious.
The Ethan Hawke Two-fer: 1) Predestination, a time travel mindfuck based on a Heinlein short story and…2) Regression, a movie where Hawke may have molested Emma Watson, who is also his daughter. Ethan Hawke is fascinating, guys.
The Martian: Andy Weir’s highly praised sci-fi novel was one of the first purchases I made with the requisite Amazon gift cards this New Year, and I’m excited to read it. I hear phenomenal things. Unfortunately, the movie adaptation is directed by Ridley Scott, so it doesn’t deserve a place anywhere near the top 10. But the cast is RIDICULOUS: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kirsten Wiig, Sebastian Stan, Kate Mara, Chiwetal Ejiofor, Sean Bean, Mackenzie Davis, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena AND Donald Glover. Holy hell.
Kingsmen: I honestly think this movie looks crappy, but someone I respect mentioned it might do what the original Kick-Ass did for superhero movies, for spies, and that made me start to consider the possibility (it’s similarly adapted from a Mark Millar comic book). Plus, Samuel L. Jackson’s villainy looks hilarious, and I think it might be a lot of mindless fun.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2: I hate when movie titles make me have two semi colons in one line. Honestly, it could very well be the best of all four movies, and I still enjoyed Part 1 despite its obvious flaws…but like The Hobbit, I’ve reached fatigue on these movies. Which is probably sacrilegious since it stars my #1 grrl. I’ll totally see it, but it’s just not up there anticipated wise.
Spectre: This one is gonna get me the most flak (I correctly predicted that David would rank it #3). I like a return to Bond’s roots with Blofeld and whatnot…but I’m just more interested to see new movies, unless it’s Marvel or Star Wars, because I’m a hypocrite. Christoph Waltz will probably get a Supporting Actor nomination, and win, because THAT’S ALL HE DOES. With the massive exception of Big Eyes, where he’s spectacularly miscast.
What We Do In The Shadows: This killed at AFI Fest and I’m bummed I missed it, but a horror mockumentary following 3 vampires and starring the Flight of the Conchords folks sounds more than promising.
Spring: A horror romance defying genre classification directed by Ridley Scott’s interns? Perfect sleeper choice. Anything for some Ridley Scott comeuppance.
It Follows: Strange sexual encounters + insane buzz = intrigue. Indie horror movies were the realm of some of the very best movies of any genre in 2014 (The Babadook, Starry Eyes, Housebound, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, and…Mr. Turner), so I’m all in this year.
White God: Um. Look no further than this mindblowing premise…
A young girl is separated from her dog, who searches the city for his lost owner — but when that fails, the dog leads an army of other abandoned dogs, in a canine uprising to kill all the humans.
Yup. Have you ever wondered what Homeward Bound would’ve looked as a horror movie? It’s apparently Birds but with dogs. It’s Cujo times infinity.
Ex Machina: Alex Garland wrote Dredd, which rocked, and I love Domnhall Gleeson.
The Moon and the Sun: a sci-fi/historical romance movie starring Pierce Brosnan and William Hurt? Hott.
Krampus: FUCK YEAH. Michael Dougherty is the writer/director, and Trick ‘r Treat was one of the most fun horror movies I’ve ever seen. This has instant classic written all over it.
Kitchen Sink: A comedy about monsters that likely skewers Hollywood’s obsession with them, that stars Bob Odenkirk, Patton Oswalt and Keegan-Michael Key. Yee.
After writing this section, I’m probably more excited for these than 80% of my top 10 because I have no idea what to expect from them. Honestly, after the top 2 of 2015, you could rank ANY of these other movies after it and that would receive little argument from me, the gap is so large.
THE WILD CARDS
Victor Frankenstein: James McAvoy as Victor and Daniel Radcliffe as Hugo. I’m in, even if it could be Dracula Untold for Frank. I just love post-HP Daniel Radcliffe and the decisions he’s made with his career.
Fantastic Four: This is another one destined for the Worst List, a likely Green Lantern style disaster, especially if one iota of what we’ve heard is true. But…I want to believe otherwise, somehow. Because FF SHOULD BE SO GOOD GODDAMMIT.
THE TOP TEN
10. Pixels: This could also be on the worst list by years end, but I love the concept of aliens using 80’s video games to declare war on Earth. I’ve avoided Adam Sandler for years, but this seems right, and Peter Dinklage’s mullet also stars. Kevin James as the President might actually work for this movie. It sounds like a live action Lego Movie/Wreck-It Ralph in terms of its concept, and I love that, even if it makes no sense.
9. The Good Dinosaur: I originally cheated and had combined Pixar’s two films this year. This is going to be the year of the dinosaur and I can’t wait. This will be Land Before Time for a new generation.
8. Ant-Man: Everyone’s worries about Ant-Man are valid. I’m not as insulted about the silly/massive/maybe awful changes to the character, so long as it works for the movie/MCU. I’m mostly worried about the downgrade from Edgar Wright to Peyton Reed. But Marvel hasn’t severely fucked up yet…and while this certainly could be its worst (saving Iron Man 2 from that unfortunate title), it’s going to take a lot for me to dislike Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly. Plus, I have to admit, I have an awful fascination with this movie, even if the first half of the trailer seemed as if Scott Lang was…Sandman.
7. Inside Out: This will win the Best Animated Oscar, completing the Pixar bounce back. I look forward to crying during both this and The Good Dinosaur.
6. Crimson Peak: I’m psyched to see del Toro return to his horror/supernatural roots, and think this has Pan’s Labyrinth like upside. Plus: Charlie Hunnam, Jessica Chastain and Tom Hiddleston is an acting trifecta that rivals any other movie cast’s this year.
5. Jurassic World: When David first saw the trailer, he commented on how Chris Pratt seemed so…non-Chris Pratty. Meaning: humorless, stoic, and not anywhere close to the above mash-up (which if it were real, would be #3 on this list). At first I thought nothing of it, but the more times I’ve seen the trailer, I actually kind of am leaning toward the assessment that maybe Chris Pratt will be neutered in the film. But that just seems so stupid for the studios to do, after what Pratt proved in 2014. He’ll likely be veering more on the action side than comedy, but I’m of the opinion that Chris Pratt can do no wrong until I see otherwise, and he’s clearly built like an action star. Plus, it stars Jake Johnson in the Jeff Goldblum role (I made that up). Also, Judy Greer has never been in a bad movie (surely not true, but it can’t be disproved).
4. Tomorrowland: You know, I really liked the teaser, and have been crushing on Britt Robertson since The First Time. Yes, it’s based on a ride and is another glaring example of Disney synergy trumping new ideas, BUT it’s directed by Brad Bird, and is written by Damon Lindelof, Bird and Jeff Jensen, one of my favorite EW writers/nerds. George doesn’t hurt. Hey, it’s Judy Greer!
3. Mad Max: Fury Road: It looks so bat-shit and SO SO gorgeous. I’m not a massive fan of the originals, but I have seen them all, and this could be the Interstellar of this year, whatever that means (okay, The Martian looks like this year’s Interstellar). For some reason that has me excited.
I don’t think any commentary needs to be made for these two. They top the list in a landslide:
2. Avengers: The Age of Ultron
1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens