My top five most anticipated movies for 2017

rs-guardians-of-the-galaxy-vol-2-10e673f6-3a1a-4983-826a-e5235aa79986Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe 2016 is already behind us and it’s time to start looking ahead to 2017. It’s always fun to put together a list of “most anticipated” films for the coming year and then to look back and see how many of my most anticipated actually end up on my annual “best of the year” post. Four out of the five movies I said I was most looking forward to in 2016 ended up on my best of the year list, although only one movie from 2015’s most anticipated ranked in my top 5 for the year, so my average isn’t that great. 😉

It was tough to nail down my list for 2017 to just five films, but here goes!

5. Dunkirk (July 21)

Christopher Nolan has a distinctive and unique filmography, covering magicians bent on revenge, secret agents who control peoples’ dreams, astronauts who venture to the stars to save humanity, and, of course, a certain famous caped crusader. The announcement of Nolan’s newest film, a World War II action thriller called “Dunkirk,” surprised me a little because it didn’t seem like a topic he’d normally select. However, as a director I think Nolan is drawn to projects that challenge him and push him in a new direction, and I’m excited to see how he adapts this true story of a daring rescue of Allied troops trapped during a World War II battle.

4. Beauty and the Beast (March 17)

I loved Disney’s 2015 live action adaptation of “Cinderella” and I’m looking forward to watching them bring a live-action version of “Beauty and the Beast” to the big screen. “Beauty and the Beast” is one of my favorite animated Disney films and it will be interesting to see how they handle the story’s magical elements, like talking (and singing!) household objects. Plus, this film has a great cast, including Emma Watson, Ewan McGregor, Emma Thompson, and Ian McKellen.

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3. Wonder Woman (June 2)

Wonder Woman stole the show in last year’s “Batman v. Superman,” so it’s fitting that she (finally!) gets a solo film this summer. DC has struggled a bit with their new cinematic universe, trying to capture the feel of the Dark Knight trilogy while also borrowing a bit from Marvel’s playbook. That vision hasn’t fully coalesced, and it may be too late to fully save “Justice League” (Nov. 17). However, I have really, really high hopes for “Wonder Woman,” and the trailer shows a lot of promise.

2. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (May 5)

The original “Guardians of the Galaxy” was a delightful late summer surprise in 2014, with its band of dysfunctional heroes, colorful visuals, and awesome soundtrack. While there may have been plenty of funny moments to laugh at, at the film’s heart was a surprisingly touching message about family and “losers” (i.e. people who have lost stuff) banding together when the rest of the galaxy rejected them. Even though sometimes it’s difficult to capture the same magic in a sequel, Marvel has had very few missteps in its cinematic universe and the trailers so far for “Vol. 2” have made me smile as much as the original movie did. I’m also looking forward to the other Marvel films in 2017: “Thor: Ragnarok” (Nov. 3), “Spider-Man: Homecoming” (July 7), and “Logan” (March 3).

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1. Star Wars: Episode VIII (Dec. 15)

“Episode VII: The Force Awakens” hit all the right buttons for me. It felt like a return to classic Star Wars and brought back some beloved characters — Han, Leia, Luke, and Chewy — while also introducing some new ones. I loved it (as I’m sure you know from my way-too-many posts about it last year). 😉 Although “The Force Awakens” didn’t feel like a mere rehash of “A New Hope” to me, I do agree it was a fairly safe movie. With Episode VIII, I think the film makers will be able to veer in a new direction and take more chances with the story.

Who is Rey and where did she come from? I’m feeling less confident in my original theory that she’s Luke’s daughter. Is Kylo Ren going to be the series’ main bad guy after all? I’d love to see him as a complicated character who continues to be torn between the dark and the light. It would be even more fascinating if he turned to the light and Rey went dark (read some excellent pieces on this topic from blogger J.Q. Ronan). Who is Benicio Del Toro playing, and now apparently Tom Hardy is in the movie too? (I just noticed this on IMDB.) And I’m also curious to see what post-“Return of the Jedi” Luke has been up to and how he will train Rey. Regardless of what happens, Episode VIII will be bittersweet due to the recent loss of Carrie Fisher. I am glad we’ll get to see her one last time, but I’m saddened that she won’t be involved in the franchise going forward. 😦

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So, what do you think? What movies are you most excited for in 2017?

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15 thoughts on “My top five most anticipated movies for 2017

  1. I think I’m most excited about Dunkirk and Star Wars, but you have a great list here. I only hope that Wonder Woman can finally redeem the DC universe that the latest films have created.

      • It’s true–I honestly don’t have high hopes for Justice League at this point. If Wonder Woman fails, too, I’m not sure how much longer they can keep pushing these films.

  2. Ooh you hit the nail on the head for 2016 then! I’m curious, what was on your 2016 anticipated list that didn’t end up in your best of list?
    I’d say you’re on for a definite 4/5 again this year, but Wonder Woman might turn out to be a winner and give you the full 5! 🙂

    • Thanks! 🙂 The movie on my 2016 list that didn’t make my best of the year list was actually X-Men: Apocalypse. I enjoyed it when I saw it, but I actually kind of forgot about it by the end of the year. 😦 Kubo and the Two Strings was the surprise hit of 2016 for me. Right now I would say the biggest question mark on the 2017 list is definitely Wonder Woman; hopefully it will end DC and Warner Bros. box office blues!

  3. Interesting list!
    Of course, 1 & 2 r th movies that stir me th most – and anticipating Thor: Ragnarok (altho that is still a long way off yet)
    I really can’t work up any enthusiasm for WW – BS made for such turgid viewing; I can’t see this material reviving DC’s cinematic universe
    Cheers!

  4. Dunkirk looks a little too intense for me. Nolan is really good at immersion and that looks frightening.

    Beauty and The Beast has a great cast but is it a musical? I don’t know much. Loved the original animated version. That was the first time a cartoon was genuinely as good as any live-action film that year.

    Wonder Woman… I really don’t know. After all this time it could suffer from the “old boys” putting in some heavy-handed hap-hazard feminist message that falls flat. Trying to combine the atmospheres of Zach Snyder Superman with the Christopher Nolan Batman hasn’t done DC any favors. I hope they go in a third direction.

    Guardians of The Galaxy can’t possibly be as good as the first. I hope the suits leave it alone. They didn’t mess with the first one because they didn’t know it would be a cash cow. But now that it’s a money-maker. The tie-ins and the constant tinkering from execs with dollar signs in their eyes is expected.

    But seriously, Star Wars Episode VIII is going to be great. I honestly can’t imagine it being anything but spectacular. If it pulls away from Rogue One toward a more fun and crowd-pleasing feel that would be amazing. If it follows Rogue One and becomes more serious and intense that would be amazing too. They literally can’t screw it up.

    • Sometimes true-story war movies do bother me a little, because I can’t tell myself it’s just fantasy. The tragic things I see onscreen actually happened. I’m sure Nolan will make viewers feel like they’re really a part of that battle.

      I think the Beauty and the Beast will be the musical version; I’m interested to see how that’s adapted to live action. I’ve seen the stage show version and really enjoyed that.

      My hopes are really high for Wonder Woman but in the back of my mind I still have that little whisper of doubt based on DC’s past attempts to launch their cinematic universe. They really, really need it to be good. I’m wondering how well Justice League will go over next fall – will be interesting to see!

      The first Guardians film will definitely be hard to top. That movie came out of nowhere to be such a huge hit.

      I am so excited to see the first trailer (and learn the title!) for Episode VIII. It’s so exciting to see Star Wars back on the right track. I loved both Rogue One and Force Awakens for different reasons and am really looking forward to seeing what comes in the future.

  5. I’ve read the theory, but if an inspiring character like Rey ends up being the villain of the new trilogy, then that’ll be the end of this new Star Wars era for me. I loved The Force Awakens, so I hope that doesn’t happen.

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