We’ve picked 10 films we can’t wait for this year…
Sherlock Holmes: Ordinarily, we like anything with Robert Downey Jr in, so we’re hoping that this Guy Ritchie remake won’t disappoint. Downey Jr is a much-tougher Holmes while Brit lovey Jude Law plays no-nonsense Watson. Based on Lionel Wigram’s comic book about the consulting detective rather than directly upon Conan Doyle’s books, the film also features Hollywood beauty Rachel McAdams as Irene Adler, the captivating femme fatale introduced in an 1891 Holmes story A Scandal in Bohemia. It looks set to be a goody and should hit our screens around November.
Gran Torino: It’s the film that could see Clint Eastwood picking up a Best Actor gong at The Oscars. Walt Kowalski (Eastwood) is a widower who holds onto his prejudices despite the changes in his Michigan neighborhood and the world around him. Kowalski is a grumpy, tough-minded, unhappy an old man, who can't get along with either his kids or his neighbours but cherishes his 1972 Gran Torino car, which he keeps in mint condition. When his neighbour Thao, a teenager under pressure from his gang member cousin, tries to steal the car, Kowalski sets out to reform him.
Star Trek: Mission: Impossible III director and Alias creator J.J. Abrams resurrects the classic science fiction franchise created by Gene Roddenberry with this feature film that embraces the rich history of the influential television and film series while also exploring some uncharted territory. Heroes star Zachary Quinto assumes the role of the Federation Starfleet lieutenant Spock, while Anton Yelchin steps into the role of USS Enterprise navigator Pavel Chekov. Zoe Saldana takes on the role of communications officer Uhura, Simon Pegg keeps the ship in top shape as chief engineer Montgomery Scott (aka "Scotty"), while Eric Bana is said to turn in a pretty fine performance as the villainous Nero.
Kites: Unusually, this Bollywood number is actually a bilingual film with actors speaking in both English and Hindi. Imagine a romantic thriller, with a bit of dancing thrown in for good measure. Hrithik Roshan takes the lead role of Jay, a boy from Las Vegas who is able to defraud anyone. He falls in love with a dancing girl called Gina and their romance forms the centre of the film. All in all, it doesn’t make much sense, but it’s an entertaining one all the same.
The Lovely Bones: Saoirse Ronan narrates from beyond the grave in this adaptation of Alice Sebold’s practically unfilmable novel. A fine cast (not only Rachel Weisz and Susan Sarandon but also Stanley Tucci, former Soprano and now Life on Mars star Michael Imperioli and Mark Wahlberg) added to Lord of the Rings (and more importantly Heavenly Creatures) director Peter Jackson’s formidable talent promise a thoughtful, thought-provoking gem. It’s not one of the big budget productions of the year but it’s certainly one of the most interesting.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen: The inevitable sequel to last year’s surprise hit features more action, more laughs, and more shape-shifting robots. Michael Bay and Shia LeBoef return as director and star respectively while the ever-attractive Megan Fox as Shia’s love interest, a more international battleground and the eagerly anticipated introduction of fan favourite Soundwave.
Angels & Demons: In the wake of the Da Vinci Code, another recklessly improbable Dan Brown adventure gets the Tom Hanks treatment. Ewan McGregor comes on board this time for a breakneck chase around Vatican City in search of some antimatter, the Illuminati and a decent haircut. The critics will snigger, and Dan Brown fans (of whom there are many) will ignore them and make May one of the busiest months at the box office.
Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince: Oh yes, it’s that time again, this year sees the release of the new Harry Potter film. Harry Potter's sixth year at Hogwarts turns out to be quite the exciting year. First off is the arrival of a new teacher at Hogwarts, Horace Slughorn, who is a bit more useful to Harry than he realises. Next, Harry obtains a Potions book which used to be belong to the very mysterious Half-Blood Prince. Harry finds that the Half-Blood Prince's ancient scribbles are written along the margins of almost every page, giving Harry advice. Throughout all the school drama, however, the obvious darkness of Voldemort's impending rise to power is always apparent.
London Dreams: Two childhood friends from Mumbai struggle to become rock stars in London. Throw in the usual Bollywood-style song and dance, and we have ourselves one of the top Bollywood crossover films of 2009 to look forward to.
Prince Of Persia: The Sands of Time: Set in medieval Persia, this is the story of an adventurous prince who teams up with a rival princess to stop an angry ruler from unleashing a sandstorm that could destroy the world. In his effort to save his own kingdom, it's up to the prince and the princess to return the sands to the hourglass by using the Dagger of Time. Great stuff, we can’t wait for this slice of adventure, and a peek and the muscle-bound Jake Gyllenhall in the lead role.