2016 Best Upcoming Films: With New Year’s just around the corner, film enthusiasts around the world are looking forward to the 2016 movie lineup! Next year’s going to be jam-packed with comic book movies, book adaptations, re-makes, sequels, sci-fi flicks, and original fare, with some Oscar-worthy vehicles for A-listers, and breakout roles for rising stars. We’ll have a new Pixar movie to look forward to, and the latest installments of Star Wars, Star Trek, a Harry Potter spin-off, and the usual glut of new Marvel movies. A new “Ghostbusters” remake is generating a lot of buzz, starring four comedic powerhouse women, and this year’s top-billing zombie movie looks to be a take-no-prisoners adaptation of the wildly popular “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” featuring Regency-era British women fighting off the undead with swords. The theme of 2016 might just be this type of genre-bending crossovers, where romance films are also sci-fi, and chick-flicks are also corporate espionage. Perhaps sensing growing viewer sophistication, studios and directors seem to finally be breaking down the traditional partitioning of “movies for women,” with very few explicitly female-marketed films, and plenty of movies pitched at everyone with a thirst for drama, adventure, and laughs. There’s a lot to get exited about! Grodworks top upcoming films.
Horror Movies: Aside from the genre-bending “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” good horror films are going to be thin on the ground next year. An “Amityville Horror” prequel is in the works, as well as a much-belated “Halloween” sequel, and a third in “The Ring” series. (Neither features original cast members.) One potential hit might be “The Forest,” starring Natalie Dormer, get in the real-life spook-fest of the Aokigahara Forest at the foot of Mt. Fuji. Ripe material for a gripping story. Another original horror film hews closely to standard tropes: “The Boy” features a possessed and/or haunted doll, spooky manor castles, and foggy woods. Not exactly groundbreaking, but it looks well-executed and will star fresh faces Lauren Cohan and Rupert Evans. Overall, there will be a few new releases in the traditional horror slots- January, mid-spring, and again near Halloween. Read more here.
Comedy Movies: Two potential comedic tentpoles rise above the rest for prospective 2016 comedies. “Zoolander 2” will catwalk its way into theaters in February, zanier and more meta-fantastic than ever. Starring a hilariously-aging Ben Stiller and the always-sharp Owen Wilson, with a huge supporting cast including Will Ferrell, and Justin Beiber (!), this madcap adventure promises to be a good time. And second, “Ghostbusters” will smash into theaters mid-July amid a torrent of backlash against the “feminist agenda”: the movie will now star four women as the eponymous hunters of spirits and poltergeists. Not to worry, Chris Hemsworth will show up for eye-candy, and the movie will most certainly feature a cameo from Bill Murray. And with Katie Dippold at the writer’s desk, we can rest assured it will be tightly-plotted, with perfect deadpan timing. Also scheduled to release are another Melissa McCarthy movie “The Boss”, and a well-cast send-up of 1920’s Hollywood, “Hail, Caesar!” Read more here.
Action Movies: And of course, a report on upcoming movies wouldn’t be complete without a comprehensive guide to the latest Marvel (and other comic book) movies! “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” is billing itself as the conflict-ridden Justice League origin story we’ve been waiting for, and audiences will go down the rabbit hole with “Suicide Squad,” featuring the villains of the Marvel universe. A new Captain America movie, a new X-Men movie, and the launching of a Dr. Strange franchise featuring Benedict Cumberbatch will all compete for audience interest and money. “Deadpool” has spawned dozens of fan sites, a grassroots viral marketing campaign, and looks to be one of the most genuinely hilarious and gripping additions to the Marvel universe. In addition, we’ve got Star Wars “Rogue Squadron,” the latest Star Trek, and the newest installment in YA-hit “The Divergent Series.” 2016 might just be the most action-heavy year of the decade, driven almost entirely on “safe-bet” movies with pre-established fan bases. Read more here.
Kids Movies: Kid’s films, too, will be largely sequels, adaptations, and blatant marketing schemes. “The Angry Birds Movie” mostly appears to be a bald grab for more iPhone game-purchases, “Kung Fu Panda 3” likewise uninspired, and “Jumanji” and “The Jungle Book,” both absolute classics in their day, might just be two remakes too many. However, we will be treated to a much-anticipated Pixar sequel, “Finding Dory,” starring Ellen Degeneres, as well as Disney’s “Moana,” which is sure to be compelling and gorgeously animated, a real draw for anyone tired of cookie-cutter princesses. Last but not least, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” will most certainly draw a crowd thirsty for more of the wizarding world of Harry Potter. Read more here.
RomanceMovies: 2016 won’t be a strong year for the romance genre. Aside from the aforementioned genre-bender “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,” which will most certainly feature a romantic subplot, it’s fairly slim pickings: a Big Fat Greek Wedding sequel is unlikely to make any improvements to it’s fresh, quirky predecessor, “Maggie’s Plan” is just another in a long list of Julianne Moore older-adult easy-watching rom-coms. “How to Be Single,” at least benefits from the sublime presence of Rebel Wilson, who is now a Box-office draw for the 13-25 female set. Most importantly, “Passenger,” starring the lovely Jennifer Lawrence and newly-minted action star Chris Pratt, is billing itself as a sci-fi drama/romance. Not your standard “chick-flick” fare, but maybe all the stronger for it. Director Morton Tyldum seems to have recognized something that a lot of directors and studios still don’t fully grasp- that everyone likes a good romantic story, and women love sci-fi and adventure, too. Read more here.