Here is a quick list of the biggest movies yet-to-come this year:
Iron Man, Staring the ever talented Robert Downy Jr., promises to be the first big hit of the summer. Its hero, an inventor and industrialist, might make for a different kind of superhero movie.
Nobody quote knows what to think about Speed Racer; based on the Japanese cartoon. Though the Wachaski Brothers (The Matrix, V for Vendetta) deserve some trust in matters of style.
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian looks good in the previews, but so did the original, which turned out to be luke warm at best. The sequel looks less metaphorical then the original, a focus on story (and fleshing out the otherwise boring main cast) could save this film.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal skull brings back Harrison Ford to his crowning role. I don’t know weather this film will bring back the magic and the adventure of the original, or become a shallow remnant of its past glory; but I for one am exited.
Initial reports of Sex and the City suggest that it’s going to bomb; though how much those can be trusted can’t be said.
The summer’s animation tour starts of with DreamWorks’s Kung Fu Panda; which might be good, though DreamWorks has produced too much mediocre animation to be trusted.
You Don’t Mess with the Zohan is another Adam Sander vehicle that will likely offer the same kind of comedy we’ve seen before in a different place; though it might be good for a few laughs.
The Happening is M. Night Shaymalan’s newest film, which looks like another movie that tries to build a premise off surprise endings (though I will give Shaymalan kudos for some stylistic choices.) This one centers on a mysteries environmental catastrophe (which is undoubtedly the result of human action.)
Edward Norton becomes Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk. This sequel to the long-winded release several years ago is going to fix some of the flaws of the original, while still being true to the character. There is some good buzz around this film; though many are thinking what I am thinking, that The Hulk is just not that interesting of a character.
Get Smart is a comedy spy-film, a remake starring Steve Corel; though it is too early to tell if it will sink or swim.
Pixar’s 2008 release is Wall-E. This marks Pixar’s first tryst into satire; it stars a lovable robot Wall-E, as he tries to single-handedly clean up Earth after it is destroyed by consumerism and a short sited Wal-Mart like cooperation called Buy-In-Large. I don’t like Pixar’s anti-capitalist direction, though their focus on quality story-telling and characters might make me forgive them.
Wanted is an action film starring an amoral group of assassins cleaning up the world; there is nothing in this film that looks particularly original, is success seems tentative.
Will Smith is Hancock; a down-on-his-luck superhero who causes more damage then he's worth, advertisements have yet to reveal what kind of depth this movie might have.
Hellboy II: The Golden Army brings back the most lovable anti-Christ you’ll ever meet; this time with hosts of new characters and a much wider world. The first one wasn’t bad, though far from spectacular; the sequel might develop the world better then the original, and round out the characters.
Mamma Mia! is a comedy/musical in the same league as Hairspray; and will probably entertaining in the same way (which is not a bad thing.)
The real superhero treat of 2008 will likely be The Dark Knight; the sequel to Chris Nolan’s Batman Begins. These films bring the character of Batman of to where he was always supposed to be. This is the most buzzed movie of the year, and with one of the most brilliant viral campaigns ever conceived, it promises to be successful as well.
Capping off an unremarkable summer for animated movies (with the possible exception of Wall-E) comes Space Chimps; another sarcastic animated film about talking animals.
The X-Files: I want to believe is another sequel; and I want to believe it will be good, though it is far to early to tell.
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor reunites Brendan Frasier and the original Mummy cast, this time in Asia (with Jet Lee being the new Mummy.)
Tropic Thunder is a high-budget comedy about the making of a Vietnam action film; initial reports show promise, though again, it's too early to tell.
Taken promises to be an entertaining, though cliché’, action film; made better by the fact that it stars Liam Neeson.
Madagascar 2: Escape from Africa might generate a few laughs, but in the end I doubt it will be memorable.
In November, the next Bond film entitled Quantum of Solace brings back our favorite spy in his new-more realistic-style.
Also in November, the sixth Harry Potter film, directed by the same man who did the fifth. It’s a fair bet tat the series will keep up its high production values and strong characterization and story.
Disney will also release Bolt, an animated film centered on a dog that thinks he’s a superhero.
Punisher: War Zone is the sequel to the somewhat successful original, this time starring a new Frank Castle, and a more stylistic world.
No real information has come out on the remake on The Day the Earth Stood Still; weather it will be a high quality remake (like war of the worlds) or more like Nicole Kidman’s remake of the body snatchers, remains to be seen.