With 2010 being a great year for film with the likes of Toy Story 3, Inception and the first installment of the final Harry Potter film, 2011 looks set to top it with many anticipated sequels.
However, 2011 could also be a bad year for film with many unneeded additions to the barely successful films of previous years; films with the only purpose of being part of this new, and may I say overhyped, trend of 3D technology
So, let’s have a look at what to expect in terms of the highs and lows of film for the upcoming year.
Firstly, 2011 brings the end to two of the UK’s most popular franchises. June brings the final installment of Harry Potter with the second part of The Deathly Hallows. Based mainly on the battle of Hogwarts, it is time for Harry and Voldemort’s final battle to commence, bringing an end to the prophecy of “Neither can live while the other survives.” It will be a sad day to see the end of Harry Potter, but this is what 2011 is about.
November then sees the first installment to the final part of its arch-enemy, Twilight, with Breaking Dawn as Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) and Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner) continue their human/vampire/werewolf love triangle. With possibly the most love-struck and pathetic plot so far as Bella and Edward get married and have a half-human/half-vampire child, this could also be the best book adaptation from the Saga as war breaks out with the Volturi. I’m not overly excited about this film, but am very curious to see how the film will play out.
Other anticipated sequels include:
The fourth Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides as Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) finds himself on an adventure to find The Fountain of Youth with a woman from his past (Penelope Cruz) who forces him aboard the ship of the formidable pirate Blackbeard (Ian McShane). No Orlando Bloom or Kiera Knightley here (which kind of dazzles me), just a whole lot of Johnny Depp prancing around as a camp, drunken pirate. Still worth the watch? Hell yes.
The Hangover 2 returns with Stu (Ed Helms), Alan (Zach Galifianakis), Phil (Bradley Cooper) and Doug (Justin Bartha) as the group travel to Thailand for Stu’s wedding. After their bachelor party in Las Vegas, Stu has opted for a safe pre-wedding brunch, but things don’t go as planned. Of course they don’t. Expect more alcohol-fueled drama, drunken romps, Mike Tyson related scenarios and the amazing one-liners of Galifianakis as he partakes in another unforgettable journey alongside his wolf pack. Definitely one to look forward to.
2011 is also a year for Marvel superheroes:
The Green Lantern is released in June, played by Ryan Reynolds who must master his new powers and overcome his fears to defeat Parallax become the greatest Green Lantern of all. X Men: First Class, focuses on the teenage years of the first team of X-Men to come out of the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning. James McAvoy will be playing the young Professor Charles Xavier and Nicholas Hoult also has a role as “Beast”. Captain America: The First Avenger follows an ordinary man named Steve Rogers who takes part in a special experiment called Operation: Rebirth. Played by Chris Evans, Rogers emerges from the treatment as Captain America; armed with his indestructible shield and battle savvy, he continues his war as leader of the Avengers, which will be released in 2012. Non-Marvel related there is also the third Transformers: Dark of The Moon as Sam (Shia LaBeouf) takes his first steps into adulthood whilst remaining a reluctant human ally of Optimus Prime.
Less anticipated sequels include Final Destination 5, a franchise getting a little bit like Saw, only more repetitive. As much as I enjoy the Final Destination films, we all know the plot and know what to expect. The only question is, when will it end? Another is Paranormal Activity 3. I’ve not seen any of these films (because I will never be able to sleep again), but I think it’s safe to say that one was enough. However, I was told there was a genuine storyline behind the second, but a third is a bit too much. Even more disappointing is Piranha 3DD. Piranha 3D was a joke in itself; two hours of naked girls kissing each other and the odd appearance from a sharp-toothed fish. Piranha 3DD, as implied in its title, is another excuse to get a few hours of porn on a cinema screen. I watched the first out of curiosity, I’m pretty sure the second will not enter my mind again after writing this.
For the younger audience there is Alvin and The Chipmunks 3D, Happy Feet 2 in 3D and Cars 2…in 3D. No details needed. Cars 2 seems the only film with any purpose, and with the evolution of Pixar is the only one we could possibly expect something good from. The rest, as said before, unneeded additions to get involved with the 3D trend (and there is a couple more to be seen from the year too). More surprisingly there is the release of The Smurfs film where the evil wizard Gargamel chases the tiny blue Smurfs out of their magical world and into ours. Excited? Not really. For those who grew up watching The Smurfs, I think it’s a little too late in life for us to want to watch a 3D film about them. Those who will be interested in the film will most likely have no clue to what the Smurfs are. In contrast with this, I don’t think you can ever be too old for the Muppets in their 2011 film, The Greatest Muppet Movie Ever Made, especially with a cast of Jason Segel, Zach Galifianakis and Jack Black.
Finally, two films that have grabbed my attention are Tekken, a film based on the fighting game developed originally as an arcade game, and a remake of the 1984 Footloose, in which a rebellious teenager moves into a town where dancing has been banned. Nothing overly special, but something to watch out for.
For a list of film releases in 2011, visit Movie Insider.