My Most Anticipated Films of 2014

Muppets Most WantedFor the first time in a while we have a year without a Pixar film.  I tend to put all Pixar films on my anticipated film list every year, but The Good Dinosaur was delayed until 2015.  That will mean two Pixar films will be on my list for 2015, however, and I’m very excited about that.  I’m pretty excited about this year’s movies, however, with the end of The Hobbit capping the a year filled with Muppets, superheroes, robots and biblical epics.

15. Big Hero 6
Disney Animation’s entry for this year.  Following the trio of Tangled, Wreck-It Ralph and Frozen, this film is about a team of superheroes.  It’s directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams, and is a very very loose adaptation of a Marvel comic.

14. Bears
Disneynature’s latest entry, Bears, has been a long time coming.  Looking forward to this one.

13. Exodus
Only on my list right now out of curiosity.  Could be interesting, covering the same story as The Ten Commandments and The Prince of Egypt.  Ridley Scott directs.

12. Noah
I have seen the Ark… in person.  Got to visit the set, and meet Russell Crowe.  Looking forward to seeing how this film came together since then.  That was over a year ago.

11. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
The second Hunger Games film surprised me.  I didn’t know what the story was about until the near the end of it, but looking back at the movie after learning that, it all made sense.  It seemed very carefully crafted and had a surprising ending that made me want to know what was next right away.  Luckily it’s not as long a wait as last time.

10. Guardians of the Galaxy
I didn’t know who they were a few years ago.  I still don’t really know much about them.  Did get to see some scenes from the movie back in August, though, and it looks funny.  It also looks unlike any of the Marvel movies that have been released so far.  I can see this one being the first TRULY divisive of the Marvel films.  But what I did see of it was fun, and I hope that it is at least as good as, if not better than, what I have seen so far.

9. Interstellar
Christopher Nolan directed it.  That’s all that I know.  Haven’t seen anything about it yet.

8. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Really enjoyed the first film of the reboot.  Looks like more of the same from this, with a lead-in to the third film.  Plus, with future plans for a Venom film as well as a Sinister Six film, it sounds like Sony is confident that they have another solid Spider-Man film on their hands.

7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Been a fan of the Turtles since the original animated series.  I’ve also enjoyed all of the movies so far, to some extent.  I’ll pop them in from time to time to this day.  Hoping for a successful return to the big screen.  And just so we’re clear… Michael Bay did not direct this movie.  He directed Transformers 4 at the same time that this was in production, and couldn’t possibly film both of these films at once.  Yes, Megan Fox is playing April O’Neil in it, but I’m willing to wait and see the movie before I judge whether that was a good choice or not.

6. How to Train Your Dragon 2
The first film was a rare treat from Dreamworks.  This looks to expand that world and is clearly set at least a year later.

5. X-Men: Days of Future Past
X-Men: First Class was excellent, and now they’ve combined the casts from both First Class and the first few X-Men films.  This has the potential to be one of the best X-Men movies ever made, and it’s already going to be followed up a couple of years later with X-Men: Apocalypse.

4. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
One of the best parts of The Avengers, his first film was fantastic as well.  Looking forward to more from the Cap this year.  And The Winter Solder is likely to become a household name after this film.

3. Transformers: Age of Extinction

2. Muppets Most Wanted
As a big fan of the Muppets franchise, and a huge fan of The Muppets, the mere thought of another film from some of the same creative team is very exciting.  I thought they brought the Jim Henson magic back to the characters in a big way, and I look forward to seeing that continued on the big screen.  I’ve seen some footage from the movie that hasn’t been released yet, including one of the songs.  I am a bit worried because I didn’t like the song as much as any of the songs from The Muppets, but it was only one, and it was out of context when I saw it.  Here’s hoping for more magic on the big screen.

1. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
I’ve seen Desolation of Smaug two times (so far).  Last year I correctly predicted that the general audience would find the second film to be more of what they were looking for than the first.  The audience has responded in kind.  And boy are we all in for a treat with the third and final part of the Hobbit trilogy.  The last third of the story, where it all comes together.  This is when all of the waiting pays off.  I was, for a time, a bit worried about how Peter Jackson was going to make a full film out of the third part of the book, post Smaug.  Now, I have no doubt that he’s done it, and done it well.  The end of the second film allowed me to be more excited for the third part than I would have been, had it ended just ten or twenty minutes later.  CANNOT wait for this.  It’s going to be a difficult film to watch, as it’s the most emotional part of the story.

Honorable Mentions:

Night at the Museum 3 – Really enjoyed the first two films, and am looking forward to another adventure.
Godzilla – Looks like it’ll be fun.  Definitely looks better than the 1998 version.
Into the Woods – Not sure about this one, but the cast is amazing.
Maleficent – From the scenes that I’ve seen, on top of the trailers, looks like it could be another classic live-action from Disney.
The Giver – Based on the book, I’ve been hoping to see this for about 10 years. It finally went into production last year.
The Wind Rises – The final film from Hayao Miyazaki.  If you know who he is, well done.
The LEGO Movie – Looks hilarious.

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