The hottest upcoming movies and when they hit our big screens
Time Out Dubai staff
Prometheus Thirty years after Alien, director Ridley Scott is returning to the material of his first major hit. Billed as the prequel to the sci-fi smash, Prometheus focuses on explorers looking for the origins of life on Earth, and who end up in a terrifying fight against the unknown. We’re expecting great things from the mastermind behind epics Blade Runner, Gladiator and Black Hawk Down. Tentative release Thursday June 7.
The Amazing Spider-Man Hot on the heels of well-received commercial smash The Avengers comes this season’s second big superhero movie. While it features the same team behind the previous Spider-Man hits, this fourth instalment reboots the storyline and starts afresh, with The Social Network star Andrew Garfield taking over the spider suit from former Spidey Tobey Maguire. Tentative release Thursday July 5.
The Dark Knight Rises Billed as the caped crusader’s third and final outing with Christopher Nolan at the helm, this final instalment in the director’s trilogy takes off where 2008’s The Dark Knight left off, reviving all the major players – Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman – to complete the story arc that started in Batman Begins. Tentative release Thursday August 16.
The Bourne Legacy Matt Damon’s absence hasn’t stopped the juggernaut that is the Bourne saga – this new instalment declares ‘There was never just one’ in loud letters, and focuses its lens on another disconnected, artificially-enhanced special agent. We’re expecting big things from new boy Jeremy Renner as Agent Aaron Cross. Tentative release Thursday August 23.
Total Recall The original Total Recall from 1990 was a box-office smash, grossing Dhs950 million, and a cult classic quoted in popular culture to this day. With Colin Farrell stepping into Arnold Schwarzenegger’s shoes and Kate Beckinsale slipping into Sharon Stone’s dress, hopes are high for this remake, which is said to more closely follow Philip K Dick’s original story, as well as adding a fresh political spin. Tentative release Thursday August 30.
Snow White and the Huntsman As it sounds, this Snow White tale focuses on her relationship with the Huntsman who is ordered to take her into the woods to be killed. Opting to protect her from the Evil Queen instead of doing the deed, the Huntsman and his milk-skinned sidekick take on the powers of the Queen. The casting for this has been the subject of fierce rumours: with Kristen Stewart announced in the central role, The Huntsman part was linked to Viggo Mortensen and Hugh Jackman before Thor star Chris Hemsworth accepted. Charlize Theron will play the Evil Queen. May 31.
It’s a safe bet that The Dictator will be 2012’s only feature presented ‘in loving memory of Kim Jong Il’. This latest outrage from Sacha Baron Cohen and director Larry Charles continues the template set down in Borat and Brüno, offering the spectacle of an outlandishly foreign, preposterously unreconstructed ego monster set loose on American soil. Despite its timeliness – North African despots are so hot right now – The Dictator has far less satirical bite than its predecessors and is flimsier as filmmaking. But it’s funny as hell.
Tentative release Thursday June 7.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3D While this is the seventh film in the Chainsaw franchise, it’s actually an alternate sequel picking up where the first 1974 film left off. Alexandra Daddario (Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief) plays Heather Miller, the young woman who innocently travels to Texas to collect an inheritance that turns out to involve a killer with a chainsaw. Clint Eastwood’s son Scott plays the local law enforcer who’s both hunting Leatherface and fancying Heather, just one snag being Trey Songz as Heather’s boyfriend. Tentative release Thursday June 7.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Here’s an imaginitive if outlandish spin on the President Lincoln story… Adapted from Seth Grahame-Smith’s 2010 novel, Timur Bekmambetov’s supernatural thriller traces Lincoln’s fictional fixation with vampires while seemingly sticking largely to historical fact. Hence, everything that happened during his term in office was the result of vampires. Emancipation of slavery? It was vampires who owned the slaves. The Civil War? Started by vampires. Even his assassin, John Wilkes Booth, was… a vampire. The current trailer – in sepia tone with only the colour of blood highlighted – frankly looks ridiculous and features a fight scene so dodgily staged it’s laughable. We imagine the rest of the film will be too. Tentative release Thursday June 21.
Ice Age: Continental Drift Blue Sky Studios’s series of family-friendly cartoons about the adventures of three prehistoric chums – Manny the mammoth, Sid the sloth and Diego the sabretooth tiger – plus assorted hangers-on and family members, gears up for a fourth instalment. The series may not be quite scientifically accurate – part three had them encountering a lost valley of the dinosaurs – but it is certainly popular: ‘Dawn of the Dinosuars is currently the fourth highest grossing animated film of all time, making this follow-up wholly inevitable. This time, they’re setting out to sea, as the continents begin to shift and our heroes are set adrift on a floating iceberg, where they encounter pirates, sea monsters and discover a new country. Tentative release Thursday June 28.
Brave Brave isn’t a homage to the Native American Indian as the title might suggest. Rather, it’s Pixar’s Mulan meets Braveheart animated fantasy quest adventure about a young, fiesty, red-headed hot-shot princess (voiced by Kelly Macdonald) who upsets the elders of her Scottish clan by insisting she carve her own path through life. The fantasy element comes to the fore when she is granted a witch’s wish and charged with defeating a giant bear-like creature. The trailer looks a hoot so here’s hoping Pixar can redeem itself after the minor farrago that was Cars 2. Tentative release Thursday August 16.
Ted Fans of American animation rejoice, as Family Guy and American Dad creator Seth McFarlane makes his feature directing debut with this live-action tale of a Boston everyman (Mark Wahlberg) whose teddy bear comes to life. However, this childhood dream turns sour when Ted turns out to be a foulmouthed slacker who turns his owner’s life upside down. Ted himself will be voiced by the director, with other roles filled out by the likes of Giovanni Ribisi and current light-comedy darling Mila Kunis. Fans of McFarlane’s signature comic style will doubtless find much to enjoy, while those who find his work unfunny, tedious, desperate, crass, derivative and puerile will probably want to give this one a miss. Tentative release Thursday August 30.
ParaNorman When creepy little Haley Joel Osment whispered ‘I see dead people’ in The Sixth Sense, it was generally assumed to be a bad thing. Thirteen years later, and we have ParaNorman, a knockabout black comedy for kids in which our hero communes with the dead – with hilarious consequences! The setup of ParaNorman sounds oddly akin to Peter Jackson’s brilliant but ill-fated Hollywood breakthrough The Frighteners: a young man who can chat to the deceased must take up arms to defend his town against rampaging ghosts and killer zombies. Directors Chris Butler and Sam Fell have worked on memorable animated fare such as Coraline and The Tale of Despereaux and the cast features stalwarts like Bernard Hill, John Goodman, Jeff Garlin and Casey Affleck, so expect this to be a cut above the usual family fare. Tentative release Thursday September 13.