My top five films of 2016 were The Nice Guys, La La Land, Arrival, Nocturnal Animals and Captain America: Civil War. My five least favourites were Suicide Squad, Batman v Superman, Independence Day: Resurgence, Warcraft and Suicide Squad: The Extended Cut.
Some hits and some misses there. Now let’s look forward to 2017 and get excited for what’s to come. Here are my top 5 most anticipated films of next year (so far)...
1. La La Land
But Jack, you listed La La Land as one of your favourite films of this year! Yeah, I did. But it doesn’t officially come out in UK cinemas until 12th January 2017. So I’m cheating and sticking it on the list because it’s a truly special film. I want everyone to see this movie. I’m really routing for it to do well. It’s unashamed in being old fashioned but it manages to thrust a classic story into the 21st century. The songs, music, characters and style already feels iconic and it’s not even been released everywhere yet. Look forward to this one.
2. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Matthew Vaughn is my favourite director. There’s something about the way he makes films, I can really feel the passion and care behind each one. In 2010, he made Kick-Ass, which is one of my favourite films. If you haven’t seen it, rectify that immediately. Stop reading this and go watch Kick-Ass. Seriously.
But don’t watch the sequel. Pretend that doesn’t exist. But the first movie was ahead of it’s time. And while Deadpool hit the sweet spot this year by parodying superhero movies whilst being a superhero movie itself, Kick-Ass did it first and, in my opinion, did it better.
In 2015, Vaughn and his screenwriting partner Jane Goldman brought us Kingsman: The Secret Service. They basically gave the spy genre the Kick-Ass treatment. Parodying some tropes and embracing others. It was funny, smart, with some of the most jaw-dropping action sequence I’ve ever seen. For those who have seen it… that church fight, right? I am totally on board for more of all that next year.
3. Spider-Man: Homecoming
This is the third time Hollywood has tried their hand at Spidey. The cynic in me is groaning but the fan in me is jumping for joy. I’ve talked about my giddiness for this in an earlier blog. But since then, we’ve had a trailer and I’ve watched it more times than I’d care to admit. So far, it looks like everything we’ve been promised. A proper high school film with a John Hughes inspired tone. I also love that we live in a time where Spider-Man can swing past us with Iron Man flying beside him. But you won’t fool me with all your cool visuals – get the characters right and we’ll talk.
4. Star Wars: Episode 8
I didn’t 'get' Star Wars until The Force Awakens. When I was a kid, the originals never grabbed me and the prequels certainly didn’t do any better. It’s no secret that Episode VII was a soft reboot of the franchise, in fact some people have complained that it’s basically a remake of A New Hope.
I’m not denying that, but by doing so, Disney have converted people (like myself) and have undoubtedly opened up the franchise to a whole new generation. Smart move. Now every year, until we all die, we can expect a new Star Wars film. It’s probably not going to be exciting forever, but it is for now.
5. Baby Driver
After his departure from Marvel's Ant-Man, it feels like Edgar Wright burrowed himself away for a couple of years. But next year, he’s reemerging with a new film which is apparently based on a music video he directed in 2003 for Mint Royale.
I know next to nothing about it apart from that. But a crime-thriller written and directed by Edgar Wright, starring Ansel Elgort, Lily James, Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm and Kevin Spacey sounds like a good time to me.
Jack Howard is a writer, director and actor. He regularly makes content for YouTube, is developing a movie and his sitcom series - 'Jack and Dean Of All Trades' is currently available on the Fullscreen platform.
Cineworlders! What are your most anticipated movies of 2017? Send in your choices @Cineworld.