What a year for movies 2019 is promising to be – the new (and final) John Wick instalment appears in May, and Gerard Butler’s Angel Has Fallen is out in August. That title makes it sound like a sequel to Constantine, but never mind – if it can top Mike Banning jogging away from a helicopter that’s just been downed by a stinger missile, then count me IN.
But that’s not all the films coming out this year. There’s some other stuff too.
What, you want me to go through them too? Sigh. Okay then, but be aware that they are simply FILLER until May 17th and August 23rd.
Listed here are 10 new movies I’m looking forward to this year (plus four more, as I’ve included two from last year’s list that still haven’t come out, and two more released in early January. What a bargain: 14 for the no-price of 10!)
| The Favourite | Stan & Ollie | The Vanishing | Replicas | The Kid Who Would Be King | Arctic | What Men Want | The Rhythm Section | Us | Captain Marvel | Avengers: Endgame | John Wick 3: Parabellum | Toy Story 4 | Angel Has Fallen | More… |
1 – The Favourite
I was lucky enough to see this at the London Film Festival (LFF). Released in the UK on 1st January 2019, it’s only squeezing in as I hoped to have this list live by the 31 December 2018.
The Favourite is a stunningly funny satire with a queen, a courtier and a servant jostling to become the ultimate woman on top.
Queen Anne (Olivia Colman), her friend and lover Sarah Duchess Of Devonshire (Rachel Weisz) and Sarah’s impoverished cousin Abigail (Emma Stone) spar and cajole while the men are reduced to figures of ridicule in their toddler-style make-up and elaborate wigs.
Director Yorgos Lanthimos’s previous films The Lobster and The Killing of A Sacred Deer are clever but left me rather cold; this is a frenetic, bouncy, rude and hilarious triumph. (It also introduces the word “cunt-struck” which will surely be the Oxford English Dictionary’s top word for 2019.)
Watch the trailer for The Favourite and read my review (4.5/5):
2 – Stan And Ollie
Another film I saw at LFF. The recreation of Laurel and Hardy’s on-stage act, as they tour Britain’s provincial theatres, is an absolute joy, but it also examines the tougher side of keeping a partnership going through the ups and downs of showbusiness.
And as impresario Bernard Delfont says, you get two double acts for the price of one, with Stan and Ollie’s current and final wives, Lucille (Shirley Henderson) and Ida (Nina Arianda), almost as entertaining as their husbands.
Stan and Ollie discuss their many marriages and subsequent lack of wealth to show for years working in film and on stage (“I’m just going to find a woman I hate and buy her a house” says Stan). But however bad their ex-wives really were, showbusiness is a crueller mistress, who still holds them in her thrall without ever taking any of the blame.
Director Jon S Baird’s film had a limited release in the US from 28 December 2018, and comes out in the UK on 11 January 2019.
Check out the trailer below and read my review here (4/5):
3 – The Vanishing
I’ve always liked the idea of living in an isolated lighthouse for some peace and quiet, plus I’m the only person I know who loves big lights.
Previously known as Keepers, but new year, new name, new puns – this was on last year’s list, and then, well, vanished.
I’m hoping for The Light Between Oceans with oatcakes, and some fights – as Gerard Butler, Peter Mullan and Connor Swindells star in this retelling of the real life mystery.
Taking place on the Flannan Isles in 1900, it tells the story of three lighthouse keepers who simply disappeared, leaving a table set for dinner (something that happens a lot in mysteries of the past – nowadays it would be phones left charging and a half-watched Breaking Bad box set on the TV).
The trailer, which came out in late 2018, is surprisingly gritty, and violent – it’s not just beards and chunky sweaters (though there are a lot of those too, Gerry fans).
It’s directed by Kristoffer Nyholm and is coming out on 5 January 2019 in selected cinemas and on demand in the US, with a March release date for the UK.
Check out the trailer for The Vanishing here and read my review (4/5):
4 – Replicas
Another one that we’ve been expecting for ages, and was on my 2018 Ones To Watch list.
We had so many teasers and trailers I’ll be amazed if there’s much film left to watch when it comes out in the UK.
Yes I did say the UK – we finally get Replicas on blu-ray, DVD and VOD in April.
Reeves is Will Foster, a synthetic biologist who attempts to bring his lovely children and their lovely mum back from the dead – without telling them!
Until he has to, when he explains that he cloned her because he loves her. Not a bad present, as long as it wasn’t really because he couldn’t work out how to use the dishwasher, or she was the only one who knew their Netflix password.
Soon they’re on the run from a shady government laboratory and the police.
The impression I get is that it’s more about grief and loss than cloning and mad science. Though as usual, movie cloning involves a naked woman covered in goo.
The film is out in the UK on VOD on 22 April and DVD/blu-ray on 29 April.
Read my review of Replicas (1.5/5!) and watch the trailer:
5 – The Kid Who Would Be King
“A land is only as good as its leaders!” which means we’re all screwed, sorry.
From Attack The Block director Joe Cornish comes a film my 9 year old is desperate to see, and after watching the trailer with him in the cinema, I can see why.
12 year old Alex (Louis Ashbourne Serkis), an initially rather unexceptional tween, finds Excalibur – and manages to release Arthur’s legendary sword from the stone. Aided and abetted by his best friends and his classmates, he is then forced to fight evil witch Morgana (Rebecca Ferguson), who has a terrible plan to take over the world in only four days’ time.
It boasts two Merlins – Patrick Stewart as old Merlin, and Angus Imrie as young Merlin (a form he has to take so he can blend in at Alex’s school). I have to say, it looks great fun. The Kid Who Would Be King opens in the US on 25 January 2019 and in the UK on 15 February.
It’s a bit annoying that a British film is coming out several weeks after its US opening, though I’m guessing it’s to coincide with UK half-term holidays.
Watch the trailer for The Kid Who Would Be King below and read my review (3.5/5):
6 – Arctic
Starring Mads Mikkelsen as Overgård, whose small plane has crashed leaving him stranded in this frozen wasteland, Arctic looks brutal, beautiful and riven with desperation.
It perfectly captures not just the isolation and physical hardships, but also Overgård’s personal duels between stoicism and defeat in the face of so many heart-sink moments (and that’s just the trailer!).
Written by Joe Penna and Ryan Morrison, and directed by Penna, Arctic is out in the US on 1 February, with no date as yet for a UK release. Maria Thelma Smáradóttir co-stars as a young woman he aims to save.
Read my 4/5 review of Arctic and watch the trailer below:
7 – What Men Want
Taraji P Henson is Ali, a sports agent who is being left behind in her career, and her male-dominated office, because she’s a woman – “you don’t connect well with men” her boss tells her. It takes a big promotion going to a male colleague when it should have been hers to make her realise she has to make some changes.
After a rather odd session with a mystic who creates strange potions, followed by a bump on the head, Ali finds she can read men’s thoughts, and realises it could help her in so many ways… “This is not a curse, it’s a gift”.
But increasingly it looks likely to put friendships and love under strain.
This is a remake of the Mel Gibson / Helen Hunt smash What Women Want from back in 2000. The trailer looks fun and I do love a frothy comedy – plus Henson is always good value.
Directed by Adam Shankman, What Men Want is out in the US on 8 February and the UK on 22 March.
Watch the trailer for What Men Want, below:
8 – The Rhythm Section
Director Reed Morano’s latest is apparently being released in the US and the UK on 22 February, although there’s no trailer as yet and not a huge amount of information available. Unless you’ve read Mark Burnell’s book I guess – he’s also written the screenplay.
Blake Lively is Stephanie Patrick, whose family die in a plane crash, a flight Stephanie should also have been on.
The downing of the plane turns out to have been deliberate – and taking on the identity of an assassin, she vows to track down the killers. The film also stars Jude Law and Sterling K Brown. Burnell has written a series of Stephanie Patrick novels, so if this film is a success we can presumably expect more.
UPDATE: it’s now January 2020 and the trailer is finally out! The film is released in the UK and US on 31 January.
9 – Us
Writer-director Jordan Peele’s upcoming horror film is billed as “a new nightmare”, and if you find nothing scarier than your own children, look away now.
The Wilson family are holidaying at the beach with friends; that night Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o), Gabe Wilson (Winston Duke), and their two children Zora and Jason are disturbed by a family of four standing on their driveway in the dark.
Attacking and breaking into the house, it turns out the new family are doppelgangers of the Wilsons themselves, and what follows is a terrifying battle of wits – where, says Adelaide, one of the families has to die.
It looks excellent, and raises so many questions – are *they* them? What happens if you kill a version of yourself? Us is released in the UK and the US on 15 March 2019.
My 4.5-star Us review. Watch the trailer for Us:
10 – Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel is set in the 1990s, and sees Carol Danvers caught between two warring alien factions while looking amazing, a bit like me when I’m hosting the playdate from hell.
Brie Larson Is Captain Marvel, waking up with no memory of who she is or where she’s from. She’s taken in by the Kree, who turn her into their kind of superhero.
She knows she’s got a past though, as she keeps getting flashes of memories of her old life.
“Would you like to know what you really are?” she’s tantalisingly asked by Talos, a Skrull (Ben Mendelsohn, surely officially the Hardest Working Actor on this or any other planet right now).
The first trailer had her bashing a sweet little old lady on the tram, though it turns out in trailer 2 that sweet little old lady was not all she seemed.
Jude Law is Mar-Vell, and Samuel L Jackson a de-aged Nick Fury. Captain Marvel opens on 8 March 2019 in the US and UK. The film is directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck.
11 – Avengers: Endgame
After Thanos’s snap, turning half the universe to dust, several of the Avengers are now Hooverable.
Some survivors (Black Widow, Hulk, Captain America and Thor) are gathering in shock to work out what to do next.
If they can, that is. “Part of the journey is the end” says Tony Stark, recording a message for Pepper Potts as his spacecraft drifts helplessly onward through space, with no food or water and his air about to run out.
It’s directed by the Russo Brothers and is released in the US and UK on 26 April 2019.
My 4-star Avengers: Endgame review. Check out the first Avengers: Endgame trailer:
12 – John Wick 3: Parabellum
A title my spellcheck will be completely unfazed by, come May when it’s released. Last time we saw John he was battered, bleeding, and with only his dog for company as he attempted a slow, painful run for it across Central Park.
He’d just been given an hour’s head start against the world’s entire supply of assassins. So many in fact that the only people not trying to do him in appeared to be me, Oprah, and maybe the baby Jesus.
It’s the final instalment in the franchise. Well, until we get a prequel covering that one day when John killed three men with a pencil, then maybe had a fling with Miss Perkins; resulting in Miss Wick, who will hit our screens in 30 years’ time, to avenge both her parents, which will be quite hard as one tried to kill the other.
Chapter 3 also stars Halle Berry as Sofia, with Laurence Fishburne back as the pigeon-loving Bowery King – it’s helmed by Chad Stahelski, who directed Chapter 2 and co-directed the first film with David Leitch. It’s out in the US and UK on 17 May 2019.
My 4.5 star review is here. Watch the latest trailer for John Wick: Parabellum now:
13 – Toy Story 4
Woody and friends are back, including Keanu Reeves as Duke Caboom, Canada’s greatest stuntman, or he would be if you could do any stunts.
There’s also a new toy called Forky joins Woody and his friends, and they’re soon off on a road trip…
When the new trailer came out it made everybody cry, including me – I cried “KEANU!” as Caboom (I really think his name should come with an exclamation mark as standard) appeared on screen.
Josh Cooley is directing. Toy Story 4 is released in the US and the UK on 21 June 2019.
Read my 4.5 star review and watch the Toy Story 4 trailer:
14 – Angel Has Fallen
Honestly there are many, many reasons not to stand for public office, but having Mike “thirsty as fuck” Banning looking after you is probably up near the top of the list – he means well but trouble just follows him around.
This time he’s framed for the attempted assassination of the President and has to outwit his own operatives to prove his innocence.
There’s no one like Banning for fighting like crazy to rescue someone while at the same time making dubious and inflammatory pseudo-political statements though, so I imagine he won’t be keeping quiet as he tries to clear his name.
Angel Has Fallen is apparently much darker than the two previous movies in the franchise. It’s released in the UK and the US on 23 August 2019. The film is directed by Ric Roman Waugh.
Watch the trailer below and read my 4/5 review.
Other films coming out in 2019
If I had room – and time (it’s the school holidays!) – to add more, and if we weren’t so obsessed with lists in multiples of 10, these are some other movies I would have added that I’m particularly looking forward to. Look out for reviews of them later this year.
| Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (dirs. Mike Mitchell, Trisha Gum) | The Kitchen (dir. Andrea Berloff) | Dumbo (dir. Tim Burton) | All Is True (dir. Kenneth Branagh) | The Lion King (dir. Jon Favreau) | Glass (dir. M. Night Shyamalan) | Charlie’s Angels (dir. Elizabeth Banks) | Where’d You Go, Bernadette (dir. Richard Linklater) | Star Wars: Episode IX (dir. JJ Abrams) | Rocketman (dir. Dexter Fletcher) | How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (dir. Dean DeBlois) | IT: Chapter 2 (dir. Andy Muschietti) | Frozen 2 (dirs. Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee) | Gloria Bell (dir. Sebastián Lelio) |
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