What are the cultural events to look forward to in 2014?
With a new Star Wars movie, another Bond adventure, The Avengers 2 and Batman vs Superman all penciled in for 2015, the year after next is already being touted as one of the biggest ever in the world of film.
Until then, though, there is still plenty to get one’s teeth into – so long as the prospect of yet more remakes, reboots, sequels and comic book movies doesn’t put those teeth on edge. Case in point? Why, it’s our old friend Robocop, back in February with a new suit and a new star – The Killing’s Joel Kinnaman – but with the same zero tolerance approach to Detroit law enforcement.
He’ll be followed in March by another familiar crime-fighter: Marvel’s Captain America, back for a second helping of solo action in a film that sees Chris Evans’s shield-wielding hero share the screen with a certain Robert Redford. Marvel properties dominate the year’s schedule, with another outing for The Amazing Spider-Man in April, more mutant mayhem in May with X-Men: Days of Future Past, and a debut appearance for the Guardians of the Galaxy in August.
But the latter will face stiff competition from The Inbetweeners 2 – one of a raft of 2014 sequels that includes a fourth helping of Transformers, another visit to the Planet of the Apes, a third dose of The Expendables and the self-explanatory Muppets Most Wanted. Even non-sequels have to have a familiar element these days. Take Maleficent, which finds Angelina Jolie reviving Sleeping Beauty’s nemesis, or Noah, a Biblical epic starring Russell Crowe.
And then there is Paddington, the first big-screen outing for the marmalade-loving bear whose animated antics were such a beloved staple of so many childhoods and who returns in November with the voice of Colin Firth. Mercifully, however, there are a few new movies on the horizon that don’t feel the urge to use a pre-existing entity as a crutch. And one of them, Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, is shaping up to be one of the year’s highlights.
A futuristic yarn involving space travel and wormholes, this late-2014 release not only boasts an (inter)stellar cast but also something that is fast becoming an endangered species in Hollywood – an original script. Fast forward 12 months, though, and the likelihood is that what’s on at your local multiplex will look strikingly similar to what’s showing there at the moment.
There’ll be another installment of The Hunger Games, another helping of The Hobbit and even another incident of Paranormal Activity. At least the popcorn will be fresh.