Wednesday, March 4, 2015

10 Most Anticipated Films March - June

As the weather begins to warm up, so does the season of cinema. While the second half of the year always features a far more interesting slate of films overall, that doesn't mean some truly special gems aren't released before July.

Here are the 10 movies I am most excited about that will hit theaters between now and the end of June.

Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter

Directed by Nathan Zellner
Starring Rinko Kikuchi
U.S. Release Date: March 18th

A film based on an urban legend surrounding the real life and death of Takako Konishi, as the media falsely reported that she died while on a quest to find the missing money buried near the end of the film Fargo. In actuality Konishi killed herself, but the fictionalized version of events is far more interesting and cinematic than reality. Reviews are pretty outstanding for this one, and I can't wait to see it.

Clouds of Sils Maria

Directed by Olivier Assayas
Starring Kristen Stewart, Juliette Binoche, Chloe Grace Moretz
U.S. Release Date: April 10th

Unfortunately, a common reaction when many people see the cast listing will be to write this film off because of the presence of Kristen Stewart. Insert Twilight jokes, comments about her personal life, whatever. The truth is, with the right material she can certainly act and apparently that is the case here. Why do I say that? Well, she recently won the Cesar Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance here in France. Not only is this a prestigious award, it's especially significant because Stewart is the FIRST American actress to ever win one. So yeah, safe to say I am excited to see this film.

Lost River

Directed by Ryan Gosling
Starring Christina Hendricks, Matt Smith, Eva Mendes, Saorise Ronan
U.S. Release Date: April 10th

Reviews for Lost River have been almost universally terrible and it was booed viciously at the Cannes Film Festival last year. So why do I have it on my most anticipated list? Because I don't care, I want to see it for myself and make up my own mind. The directorial debut by Ryan Gosling, word is this film was heavily and noticeably influenced by David Lynch and Nicolas Winding Refn, which makes me intrigued to say the least. 

A couple of years ago, people kept talking about how terrible Only God Forgives by Refn was. It was angrily booed at Cannes and the negative reviews came pouring in. In my opinion, it was one of the finest films of the year. So yeah, Lost River may be terrible, but I need to make up my own mind.

Ex Machina

Directed by Alex Garland
Starring Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac
U.S. Release Date: April 10th

Oh man do I love some good science fiction. I literally don't need to know anything from a project, just tell me it is well reviewed and science fiction and I will be there, and that is exactly the case here with Ex Machina. Critical reception has been fantastic, my boy Oscar Isaac is in it, and the writer/director Alex Garland previously wrote 28 Days Later, Sunshine and Never Let Me Go. Count me in.

Avengers: Age of Ultron

Directed by Joss Whedon
Starring Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Elizabeth Olsen, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, James Spader, Paul Bettany
U.S. Release Date: May 1st

What really needs to be said? The first Avengers film was, in my opinion, the first truly excellent thing to come from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, until 2014 rolled around and both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy exceeded it. Those are the last two films to be released before Age of Ultron, so yeah, expectations are through the roof.

Far From the Madding Crowd

Directed by Thomas Vinterberg
Starring Carrie Mulligan, Michael Sheen, Juno Temple, Matthias Schoenaerts, Tom Sturridge
U.S. Release Date: May 1st

Talk about jumping in the complete opposite direction of Age of Ultron, and with the same release date no less. I read Thomas Hardy's novel of the same name, which was published roughly 140 years ago, and I liked it but was underwhelmed. Despite this, I am very excited to see this film adaptation. Why? Director Thomas Vinterberg's last work was The Hunt from 2013, which was without a doubt one of the greatest films from that year, so I was going to be excited about whatever he did next. Plus, I'm a fan of Carrie Mulligan, a pretty extraordinary actress. So while I will be seeing Avengers on the biggest screen possible that weekend, Far From the Madding Crowd won't be far behind.

Mad Max: Fury Road

Directed by George Miller
Starring Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult
U.S. Release Date: May 15th

While on my list because of the outstanding trailer, Mad Max: Fury Road is the first film on this list I am truly skeptical about. I can't shake that amazing trailer, disappointing film overall feeling, but I am hoping for the best. Regardless, I'm sure this will be a pretty spectacular sight on the big screen, and I hope it lives up to the footage we have seen thus far.


Directed by Brad Bird
Starring Britt Robertson, George Clooney, Hugh Laurie
U.S. Release Date: May 22nd

An intriguing trailer, a summer slice of science fiction that I can see with my very excited daughter, and Brad Bird. Enough said, I will be there.

Jurassic World

Directed by Colin Trevorrow
Starring Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard
U.S. Release Date: June 12th

Much like Mad Max: Fury Road, I approach Jurassic World with what can best be described as highly excited pessimism. I am going to see it, I really want to see it, and I hope it is great, but I just can't shake the bad feeling it will be a dud. Excited that Colin Trevorrow is at the helm here as I loved his previous feature film Safety Not Guaranteed, and much like most of the planet right now, I'm a big fan of Chris Pratt, so I am hoping for the best. 

Inside Out

Directed by Pete Docter
Starring Amy Poehler, Mindy Kaling, Bill Hader, Phyllis Smith, Lewis Black, Kyle Maclachlan, Diane Lane
U.S. Release Date: June 19th

The world needs a truly great Pixar film. I have not hated anything they have done, including the Cars films which do what they intend to for their target audience, but it has been years since the glory days of a studio that released animated masterpieces annually. I have big expectations for Inside Out and will be severely disappointed if it ends up merely being "good. This one needs to be something special, and the first couple of trailers indicate it has the potential to be just that.

I'm sure a few of these ten films will be disappointing, but obviously I will hope for the best across the board. Here's to an exciting and highly anticipated next few months of cinema!


  1. I saw Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter last year at MiFF its a charming little fish out of water type film

  2. Re Avengers AOU are you planning on watching all the Marvel films again as a rfefresher or just Avengers Cap TWS and GotG or not i dont have GotG yet on blu so unsure im sure i could just rewatch Avengers and Cap TWS as a refresher

    1. yeah, I'm sure I will watch a bunch of them during April anyways, but I bet just Avengers and Winter Soldier would be plenty to really feel good going into Age of Ultron.

    2. AMC is doing a Marvel movie marathon the day before AOU comes out. If you want to go gangbusters and watch about 23 hours straight of movies in a row, it will be a great way to catch up :)

      I saw the trailer for Lost River and I already have it on my list of things to see. The Kumiko trailer looked pretty good too.

    3. Oh my goodness, I have always kinda wanted to do a marathon like that, but then I think it would probably be awful when I could just watch them all at home for a month leading up to it, haha.

      Yep, trailer for Lost River looks great and I don't care what reviews of Cannes festival attendees say. I forgot to mention in my little blurb, The Tree of Life was booed at Cannes. Not that I expect that from Lost River, but when my favorite movie of all time was booed at a festival, it kinda desensitizes my reaction to such booing going forward.

  3. That first sentence you wrote about Clouds of Sils Maria? Yes, guilty as charged.

    I'd be willing to pay to see anything with Oscar Isaac--that man is amazing! First saw him in Pu-239, which I stumbled upon by accident and before ever hearing of him. Btw, is director Alex Garland the same as author of The Beach Alex Garland?

    As for me--sociology student and dog lover--I'm excited about Feher Isten (White God). From what I can find, it's being released in the U.S. this month, though it may be difficult to find in theatre, as it's a foreign film. -Donna

    1. We are in the same boat with Oscar Isaac, truly one of my favorite actors working today.

      Yes, he is the author of The Beach, the same Alex Garland indeed.

      Funny you mention that, I made an initial list with 12 or 13 films on it and White God was on it. Fell just short of the top ten.

    2. Yes, Isaac was the only reason I didn't consider W/E a waste of my time--hard to forget him wearing a kilt (commando, of course)!

      Guess I'm behind the times--didn't know Garland's directing. I read the novel 'Never Let Me Go' and it was excellent. I suppose that's why I haven't watched the film yet--it's an amazing story but if it's remotely like the book (which was gut-wrenching for me) I'll have to be in a particular sort of mood to digest it.

      Very much looking forward to reading what you thought of White God, if (when) you catch it.

      Hope spring has arrived where you are! Best, -Donna

    3. I absolutely will see White God, without a doubt. You can count a review once I do.

      Funny you mention spring, it had arrived, last week was wonderful, and then today we got a small amount of snow. It never ends, haha

      Hope things are well for you, take care and thanks for the thoughts!