1. The Social Network (October 1)
Director: David Fincher
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Rashida Jones
The trailer for this extremely topical film is perhaps the most beloved trailer since Where the Wild Things Are, and that has only helped to build my excitement for David Fincher’s latest project. I’m in love with The Social Network‘s cast, and it looks like a far weightier project than most people had initially thought. The subject matter is fascinating, and it’s refreshing to see a film tackle a current phenomenon seemingly without self-congratulation or premature nostalgia.
2. Somewhere (December 22)
Director: Sofia Coppola
Cast: Stephen Dorff, Elle Fanning
Somewhere looks to have a lot of similarities to Coppola’s directorial debut, Lost in Translation, but as far as I’m concerned, that’s hardly a negative. Also offering a wonderful trailer, Somewhere looks woozy and gorgeously shot. I’m already in love with the father/daughter pairing of Elle Fanning and Stephen Dorff.
3. Blue Valentine (December 31)
Director: Derek Cianfrance
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, Mike Vogel
It’s gotten raves out of Sundance and Cannes, and this drama starring two of today’s best young actors sounds harrowing. I’m excited for Ryan Gosling’s return to the big screen, and Michelle Williams is an actress that impresses me more with each project. Second Oscar nominations for the both of them?
4. Black Swan (December 1)
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Cast: Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis, Winona Ryder, Vincent Cassel, Barbara Hershey
The freaky trailer (have fun getting that final image out of your mind) for this movie has helped to build interest in director Darren Aronofsky’s latest project. It’s great to see Portman getting a meaty leading role, and the film looks wholly original. I think that any concerns about Aronofsky going soft can safely be put to rest.
5. The King’s Speech (December 24)
Director: Tom Hooper
Cast: Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter, Geoffrey Rush, Guy Pearce, Michael Gambon, Timothy Spall
Colin Firth earned heaps of goodwill with A Single Man, and it doesn’t look like he’s putting it to waste at all. Details about this royal biopic are sparse, but with Firth in the lead and a great supporting cast to boot, I can’t help but be very excited.
6. It’s Kind of a Funny Story (September 24)
Director: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Cast: Kier Gilchrist, Emma Roberts, Zach Galifianakis
I loved the book, and the trailer for the film adaptation seemed surprisingly similar to how I imagined it would look. Directors Boden and Fleck (Half Nelson, Sugar) are clearly taking a large step forward in terms of accessibility (though hopefully they’re not too far the other way), and I’m excited to see what they’ll do with this darkly comedic tale. Galifianakis’ performance also looks surprisingly nuanced and touching.
7. Never Let Me Go (September 15)
Director: Mark Romanek
Cast: Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield, Keira Knightley, Sally Hawkins
Never Let Me Go seems to be wavering on the edge of Oscar-bait-prestige-project, but it looks beautiful. Once again, it offers a fantastic cast (you go, Andrew Garfield!). I’m in the middle of the book currently, and I’m intrigued to see how it will all play out on screen.
8. The Town (September 17)
Director: Ben Affleck
Cast: Ben Affleck, Rebecca Hall, Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, Blake Lively
The formulaic trailer made me doubt my optimism, but then I remembered how the trailer for Gone Baby Gone did that film a complete disservice. Affleck has proven to be a very capable director, and the premise of this film seems strong. I’m also really excited to see Rebecca Hall and Jon Hamm work their magic.
9. 127 Hours (November 5)
Director: Danny Boyle
Cast: James Franco, Lizzy Caplan, Amber Tamblyn, Kate Mara
The concept for a movie about a trapped mountain climber didn’t seem especially interesting or fresh to me, but early buzz about this Boyle-directed project has apparently been very strong. James Franco is proving to be quite the renaissance man, and this could be just the meaty role that he needs to elevate his acting even further.
10. Howl (September 24)
Director: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman
Cast: James Franco, Mary-Louise Parker, Jon Hamm, Jeff Daniels, David Strathairn, Aaron Tveit
The cast is to die for, and even though this Allen Ginsberg biopic received somewhat mixed reviews out of Sundance, its crisp trailer caught my eye. It has a great visual style, and seems to strive to truly capture the beat poetry movement. Between this and 127 Hours, it could be a huge breakout year for Franco.
Other Upcoming Releases of Interest:
Brighton Rock, Rabbit Hole, Love and Other Drugs, Buried, Nowhere Boy, The Fighter, What’s Wrong With Virginia?, The American