This year’s Oscars served as a good overview of last year’s movies.
A few standouts excepted, forgettable.
With the occasional massive clunker to liven things up.
Good news: 2017 is already better for film (thanks, Get Out) and the next two months have at least one must-see film arriving every week.
So herein, we compile the 18 spring flicks we’re looking forward to, from the big-bucks blockbusters to their moodier, edgier indie alternatives.
OUT NOW: Logan
If you haven’t seen yet... It’s based loosely on the excellent “Old Man Logan” comics (sans the batshit crazy ideas like the Red Skull and Hulk controlling most of America through parceled-up territories), and it’s the final mutant appearance by Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart. A meditative game-changer for superhero films. (Also, we’ll be discussing it tonight on Facebook Live).
Alternative: Donald Cried
A cringe-worthy indie comedy about a Wall Street success forced to hang with his oddball childhood neighbor.
MARCH 10: Kong: Skull Island
Not sure we needed another take on the giant gorilla (crossed with a heavy dose of Apocalypse Now imagery), but damn, this cast: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Hiddleston, John C. Reilly. If this is formulaic blockbuster filmmaking, we’re for it.
Alternative: My Scientology Movie
BBC documentary filmmaker Louis Theroux goes undercover to investigate the world of Scientology … and things don’t go well.
MARCH 17: The Belko Experiment
You think your office is bad? Imagine 80 white collar workers getting locked in their corporate high rise and told, via a mysterious intercom, that they must kill each other to survive. It’s Battle Royale, The Raid, Saw and Office Space rolled into one, via writer James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy) and director Greg McLean (Wolf Creek).
Alternative: T2 Trainspotting
The dark, melancholic (and apparently great) reunion of Renton, Sick Boy, Spud and Begbie.
MARCH 24: CHiPs
The reimagined version of the cheesy ‘70s show about two California Highway Patrol officers, featuring Dax Shepard and Michael Pena. Maybe not “quality,” but unlike the show, intentionally funny.
Woody Harrelson gets awkward and middle-aged, channels the classic Daniel Clowes character.
MARCH 31: Ghost in the Shell
The unforgivable whitewashing of a classic manga series notwithstanding, having Scarlett Johansson kick butt in a dreamy, futuristic Japan for two hours isn’t a bad way to spend your night.
Alternative: The Discovery
Robert Redford proves the existence of an afterlife, to extremely detrimental effect. Bonus: This is debuting on Netflix, giving you an instant front-row seat.
APRIL 7: Going in Style
Zach Braff’s remake of the 1979 old-man caper. This go-round features senior citizens Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin trying to rob a bank. Ocean’s 81, perhaps?
Anne Hathaway as an alcoholic who realizes she somehow controls a giant kaiju on the other side of the world. An indie drama with shades of Godzilla? Sure.
APRIL 14: The Lost City of Z
Yes, Fast and Furious 26 or whatever is out this week — go, enjoy. OR … tackle this adaptation of the 2009 non-fiction opus, about an explorer obsessed with a lost city in the Amazon. Expect a beautifully dark update on Aguirre, the Wrath of God.
Alternative: My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea
Think a coming-of-age Poseidon Adventure, as an unpopular trio of high school newspaper writers (Jason Schwartzman, Reggie Watts, Maya Rudolph) get caught up in a school emergency, as their building literally sinks into the waters. Animated, of course.
APRIL 21: Free Fire
A British Reservoir Dogs? Two groups of UK criminals exchange ridiculous amounts of gunfire during a weapons exchange gone wrong. Directed and written by Ben Wheatley, who’s already wowed in recent years with Kill List and High-Rise.
APRIL 28: The Circle
Based on the Dave Eggers novel of the same name. A meditation on Internet privacy and out-of-control tech startups starring Tom Hanks and Emma Watson and. The future is now.
Alternative: How to Be A Latin Lover
Ehhhhhhh ... the supporting cast (Rob Lowe, Salma Hayek, Raquel Welch) looks solid? Eh, only one week until the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and the unofficial start of summer.