Monday 2 January 2023

My Top 10 Most Anticipated Movies for 2023

Welcome to 2023. A new year means a fresh slate of movies to keep us entertained over the course of the next 365 days. Whether you plan on braving your nearest cinema or staying home with your streaming service of choice, there's plenty for you to choose from. But not all movies are created equally and chances are you will not have enough time to see every single movie that releases this year.

This is why I like to keep track of those movies I am looking forward to the most at the start of any given year. Those that read my list from last year might spot a few returning entries, owing to the fact that those movies had been delayed into 2023. Blame it on the lingering effects of cinemas shutting down for nearly a year. But without further ado, here are my Top 10 Most Anticipated Movies for 2023.

10. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

Disney kicks off Phase 5 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Ant-man and the Wasp: Quantumania on the 17th of February. But considering just how divisive some of the films and TV shows that made up the fourth phase had proven, a lot is riding upon this one to right the ship and start the new phase on a high note. The Ant-Man films aren't considered top-shelf MCU but I'm still hoping that this one manages to do justice with its introduction of Kang the Konqueror.

9. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Harrison Ford returns to one of his most iconic roles in Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny. The film is meant to serve as his final hurrah as the world-famous archaeologist. It is also the first in the series not to be directed by Steven Spielberg, with James Mangold stepping in instead. And through the magic of de-aging technology, this latest adventure promises to be more in line with the earlier films in the series (because the less said about Kingdom of the Crystal Skull the better).

8. The Flash

The Flash is a film that looks like it just can't catch a break. Originally slated to release all the way back in 2018, the movie has suffered numerous production delays. Add to that all the ongoing shakeups over at the newly-minted DC Studios, not to mention the controversy surrounding Ezra Miller, and you have to wonder if it is ever going to see the light of day. But word on the street is that the actual film was received very well by test audiences, so fingers crossed that it finally makes it out this year.

7. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

While there hasn't exactly been a shortage of Guardians of the Galaxy appearances since Vol. 2 (if I'm correct, they've been in both Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, I am Groot, Thor: Love and Thunder, and the recent Holiday Special since then), the ragtag team is back once again for their next full-fledged adventure. And James Gunn returns to direct after he was briefly fired back in 2018, so we can expect more of his signature humor and focus on fleshed-out characters.

6. Oppenheimer

Not many filmmakers are as ambitious as Christopher Nolan who is known for often pushing the boundaries of what can be accomplished with practical effects. For his latest film, he tackles the story of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the man responsible for creating the atomic bomb. So you can bet that I am interested in seeing what wizardry he works up to bring all that to life, short of detonating an actual atom bomb. He did after all crash a real plane for Tenet so we shouldn't put anything past him.

5. The Super Mario Bros. Movie

Video game movies have been faring a lot better than usual lately, with films like Detective Pikachu and the two Sonic movies serving as shining examples. Even more middling affairs like last year's Uncharted have managed to find some level of success at the box office. So the ground seems almost fertile for Hollywood to take another stab at what is arguably the most recognizable video game IP. The last Super Mario film might have been the stuff of nightmares but this new one looks very promising.

4. John Wick: Chapter 4

The Baba Yaga is back to dish out more of his wicked brand of justice in John Wick: Chapter 4. The last time we saw him at the end of Chapter 3, he'd been broken in body but not in spirit. And this time around, he has a fresh batch of goons that would need some knocking around. Donnie Yen and Scott Adkins join the ever-growing roster of assassins with a bone to pick, which means he's pretty much got his work cut out for him, and we are here for it.

3. Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning (Part One)

The first of two new Mission: Impossible sequels is out later this year. And if the trailers and promotional material are anything to go by, then it looks like Agent Ethan Hunt might be faced with his toughest mission yet. Tom Cruise has already defied death more times than we can count at this point, with the insane stunts featured in the last couple of movies. I still get goosebumps when I think about that HALO jump from the last one, so I am very excited to see what he has in store this time around.

2. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is another film that got bumped from 2022 into 2023. But between the time of the announcement of its delay and now, we've gotten two further looks (in the form of trailers) at just how the movies plan on upping the ante over the first one. The animation still looks about as breathtaking as it did in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse but it is the action that appears to be on a whole new level. June 2nd can't come soon enough.

1. Dune: Part Two

Denis Villeneuve is already getting ready to take audiences back to the deserts of Arrakis in Dune: Part Two, the second half of his adaptation of the seminal science fiction book by Frank Herbert. The first movie had felt incomplete due to the very nature of the adaptation but it was still able to introduce the members of House Atreides and House Harkonnen, as well as all the concepts that govern the world of Arrakis. So I am hoping that this new one builds off of all that while still managing to tell a coherent and satisfying story. And even though I've already read the book it is based upon, I would be lying if I said I wasn't anxious to see how well (if at all) the whole thing comes together.