2011 was a bad year for movies, but fortunately 2012 promises to be much better.  I’ve already got about 100 movies on my list of ones I want to see, and that’s just counting films with some sort of release date.  Here’s part four (the last part) of that list, broken into categories (some wittier than others).  Categories this time include: Lincoln, Luc Besson, Meh, but, Mumblecore goes big, Musical, Ridiculous action, RomCom, Taylor Kitsch-led, The State comedy, and finally ZomRomCom.

LINCOLN

Lincoln (Dec) – Steven Spielberg is directing this adaptation of Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals.  I’ve read the book, it is quite good.  Daniel Day-Lewis has become Abraham Lincoln, and the rest of the ridiculous cast includes three-named people Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tommy Lee Jones, and Jackie Earle Haley, along with Lee Pace, James Spader, Sally Field, David Straitharn, John Hawkes and Walton Goggins.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (Jun 22) – I’m fascinated to see how this one turns out.  The guy who wrote the novel and co-wrote the script, Simon Kinberg, also worked on the Mr. and Mrs. Smith script.  And the other co-writer worked on the Dark Shadows script and created the vastly underappreciated Hard Times of RJ Berger.  Benjamin Walker is the titual president/killer of vampires, but Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays Mary Todd, Alan Tudyk is Stephen Douglas, plus Dominic Cooper, Anthony Mackie, and Rufus Sewell show up.  Oh, and it is directed by the guy who did the stylish Night Watch and Wanted.

LUC BESSON

 Lock-Out (Apr 20) – Trailer here.  Seems like Luc Besson’s take on Escape from New York, starring Guy Pearce, Peter Stormare, and Maggie Grace.  I want to see this one so very very badly.

Taken 2 (Oct 2) – I know some people were pleasantly surprised by Taken, and I’m happy for them, but that was pure Luc Besson.  Apatow:comedy::Luc Besson:action.  No one does taut, streamlined, exhilarating action like he does.

MEH, BUT

The Grey (Jan 27) – Trailer here.  The trailer doesn’t look terrible exciting.  But it is Liam Neeson fighting wolves in Alaska, so…

Gone (Feb 24) – Trailer here.  A tired thriller premise (the main character can’t get anyone to believe him), uninspired trailer and lame title, from a screenwriter who has done almost a dozen things you haven’t heard of.  But it stars Amanda Seyfried.

MUMBLECORE GOES BIG

Jeff Who Lives at Home (Mar 2) – Written and directed by the Duplass brothers, this one stars Jason Segel, Judy Greer, Ed Helms, and Susan Sarandon.  If that group can’t get me to finally like something mumblecore, not sure anything will.

Your Sister’s Sister (Sep) – Written and directed by Lynn Shelton, stars Emily Blunt, Mark Duplass, and Rosemarie DeWitt.

MUSICAL

Les Miserables (Dec 7) – I’ve never seen the musical, for which I apologize profusely.  Directed by Tom Hooper, the helmer of The King’s Speech.  The big news is that he is going to have the actors actually sing while he is taping and use that, as opposed to the normal practice of recording elsewhere and lip syncing.  A heavyweight that includes Anne Hathaway, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Helena Bonham Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, Eddie Redmayne, and just today offers went out to Amanda Seyfried and Taylor Swift.  So everyone can sing, it would appear.  What, you didn’t forget Crowe’s 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, did you?

Rock of Ages (Jun 1) – Directed by Adam Shankman (Hairspray) and Justin Theroux (Iron Man) has a writing credit.  An ’80s jukebox musical starring Tom Cruise, Julianne Hough, Paul Giamatti, Alec Baldwin, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Malin Akerman, Bryan Cranston, and Russell Brand.  It appears to have been made solely for me.  So thanks, guys!

Sparkle (Aug 10) – The triumphant movie return of Whitney Houston, plus Jordin Sparks and Mike Epps are in it as well.  The plot description makes it seem like basically a Behind the Music for a girl group of three sisters.

Twylight Zones (Oct 19) – Written and directed by David Chase, and OK, not a true musical, but it is about friends in 1960s New Jersey forming a rock band.

RIDICULOUS ACTION

Bullet to the Head (Apr 13) – Sylvester Stallone and Jason Momoa begrudgingly team up to kill lots of people for very good reasons I’m sure.  Director Walter Hill kinda went away for awhile, but he did do The Warriors.  Also, Christian Slater is in it.

Safe (Apr 27) – Trailer here.  Jason Statham protects a little girl who MacGuffin’s the MacGuffin’s MacGuffin, only for MacGuffin to MacGuffin and then a lot of guys get beat up real good.

Parker (Oct 12) – I swear all of these facts are true.  The imdb plot description: “A crime/thriller centered on a thief who lives by a code of honor that includes never stealing money from people who need it.”.  The stars: Jason Statham, Nick Nolte, Jennifer Lopez, Michael Chiklis, Clifton Collins, Jr., Wendell Pierce.  The screenwriter has credits on: Man of the House and Black Swan.  The director was nominated for an Oscar for: Ray.  I think this movie will end up either in my top or bottom 10 of the year.

ROMCOM

This Means War (Feb 17) – Trailer here.  Starring Reese Witherspoon, Tom Hardy, and Chris Pine, and directed by McG.  I dunno, the film looks well-cast and like a whole lot of fun.  I’m guessing you’ll get out of this exactly what you expect.

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (Mar 9) – Trailer here.  Good lord that is a terrible name for a movie.  But it is Oscar-nominee Lasse Hallstrom (Cider House Rules, My Life as a Dog) directed from a script by Oscar-winner Simon Beaufay (127 Hours, Slumdog Millionaire, The Full Monty), and starring Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt.

Playing the Field (Mar 9) – Gerard Butler plays a former soccer player who coaches his son’s team and hits on all the soccer moms, who apparently include Jessica Biel, Judy Greer, Uma Thurman, and Catherine Zeta-Jones.  Written by the guy who wrote So I Married an Axe Murderer.

The Wedding (Oct 19) – What a delightfully generic title.  However, the film  is written and directed by the creator of the decent Lights Out and stars Diane Keaton and Roberto De Niro as a couple who have been divorced for years, but pretend to be married for the sake of a big wedding in the family.  The supporting cast includes Amanda Seyfried, Robin Williams, Katherine Heigl, Topher Grace, and Susan Sarandon.

Think Like a Man (Mar 9) – Trailer here.  Apologies, I need to copy the imdb plot description here: “Four friends conspire to turn the tables on their women when they discover the ladies have been using Steve Harvey’s relationship advice against them.”  I’m so in.  From the director of Barbershop and two of the writers of Friends with Benefits.  And the cast is kinda fantastic: Taraji P. Henson, Gabrielle Union, Meagan Good, Michael Ealy, Morris Chestnut, and, um, Kevin Hart and Jerry Ferrera.

TAYLOR-KITSCH LED

Battleship (May 18) – Trailer here.  Wisely, it looks like they made the board game tie-in irrelevant.  And you can’t go wrong with Liam Neeson as a crusty Admiral.  Plus Brooklyn Decker and Rihanna are…interesting choices.  I went back and forth on which category this one belongs in, and I think I made a mistake, because it is directed by Peter Berg and Jesse Plemons is in it, so it probably should have stayed in FNL.

John Carter (Mar 9) – Trailer here.  An iffy trailer, ridiculous budget (at least $250 million) and slightly bizarre premise (Civil War vet somehow ends up on Mars dealing with 12 foot tall aliens) may be worrisome.  But the film was directed and co-written (along with Michael Chabon) by WALL-E‘s Andrew Stanton.  And the supporting cast is Bryan Cranston, Mark Strong, Ciaran Hinds, Thomas Haden Church, Dominic West, and Willem Dafoe.  I hope they all play bad guys, because that would be the greatest crew of villains ever.

Savages (Sep 28) – Apparently the plot is that Kitsch and Aaron Johnson grow pot and share Blake Lively as a girlfriend (which, fair).  She gets kidnapped by a Mexican cartel and then things get real.  Directed by Oliver Stone, somehow, and co-starring John Travolta, Emile Hirsch, Salma Hayek, Uma Thurman, and Benicio Del Toro.

THE STATE COMEDY

Wanderlust (Feb 24) – Trailer here.  I maintain that when The State guys are constrained by something (time, money, egos), they make some of my most favoritest things.  David Wain directs this one and co-wrote with Ken Marino.  Paul Rudd stars, of course, along with much of the usual crew.  I’m not the biggest Jennifer Aniston fan, but I’m excited to see what they do with her and absolutely thrilled to see Alan Alda, Malin Akerman, Lauren Ambrose, Ray Liotta and Kathryn Hahn in this movie.

Donny’s Boy (Jun 15) – This movie appears to be the result of some mad scientist’s crazed comedy experiment.  The script was originally rewritten by the guy who created Happy Endings, was then rewritten by Marino and Wain, is directed by Sean Anders and John Morris (Sex Drive, She’s Out of My League, Hot Tub Time Machine), and stars Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, and Leighton Meester, with James Caan and Susan Sarandon.

ZOMROMCOM

Warm Bodies (Aug 10) – You had me at “when a zombie gets involved with the girlfriend of one of his victims.”  Written and directed by Jonathan Levine, who did the same on The Wackness and directed 50/50.  Stars Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, John Malkovich and Analeigh Tipton (the babysitter from Crazy, Stupid, Love).

April Apocalypse (TBD) – Doesn’t have an official release date, so I apologize for cheating, but I wanted this one on here.  So according to the imdb plot description, this guy (Reece Thompson) has a huge crush on his best friend (Rebekah Brandes) and when he finally gets the courage to admit it, he first finds out she’s moving away with her family.  A few years later, he decides to go find her, but on the way he crashes, and awakens to a zombie apocalypse.  Awesome!  Also, Reece Thompson is great, I just watched Bellflower and kind of have a crush on Brandes.  Sarah Hyland is in the film, but most importantly, so is George Lopez.

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