Posted by Mark Bridge On January - 9 - 2013 0 Comment

This article could have been a top 5 article.  But looking at the mass amounts of sci-fi films slated for this year made it quite difficult to place my anticipation for the films in any specific order.  So I decided to make this article listing some of the most anticipated sci-fi projects coming out this year in that noteworthy.  2013 just began, yet I can officially label it as the year for high concept sci-fi genre.  So here we go.

 

Gravity

Release Date: October TBA

Alfonso Cuarón gave us the brilliantly crafted Children of Men in 2006.  A film that is on many sci-fi fans top 10 lists for both that year and for all-time. That film is also noted for its long unbroken shots during some action sequences.   Cuarón follows that up with Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney playing astronauts attempting to return to earth after debris crashes into their space shuttle, leaving them drifting alone in space.  Not much else is known about the film other that it is rumored to feature a 25 minute long unbroken shot.  Now that sounds extremely ambitious for a sci-fi epic.  The film is slated for release sometime in October.

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Elysium

Release Date: August 9

Another filmmaker that created a sci-fi film that will stand the test of time is Neil Blomkamp, the South African-Canadian special FX artist turn director, who gave us the amazing District 9Elysium is his sophomore effort, and its sound no less amazing than his first outing.  The film takes place in the year 2159 where two classes of people exist.  The first are the very wealthy who live on Elysium, a pristine man-made space station.  The second live on an overpopulated, ruined Earth.  Jodie Foster plays a hard-nosed government official named Secretary Rhodes, who will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve the luxurious lifestyle of the citizens of Elysium.  Matt Damon plays Max, an ex-con who agrees to take on a daunting mission that if successful, will not only save his life, but could bring equality to these polarized worlds.  This film seems to continue the themes of class and government enforcements brought up in District 9.  Although fans were hoping to get a sequel to the 2009 hit, I guess this film will do just fine in the interim.

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Oblivion

Release Date: April 12

I’ve said it many times before and I will say it again.  Tom Cruise is one of my favorite actors working today.  His films always have a sense of urgency to them, and he exemplifies what a movie star is.  In fact, I would say that he and Will Smith may be the last “movie stars” left in Hollywood.  What I mean by that is, people still go to see their films because they’re in it and not because of the subject matter.  Cruise’s next outing will be in Oblivion from director Joseph Kosinski, who gave us the wonderful but flawed Tron Legacy.  Koninski brings his visual flair to this story of a post apocalyptic Earth, ravaged by a war with aliens.  Cruise plays Jack Harper, one of the last few drone repairmen stationed on Earth. Part of a massive operation to extract vital resources after decades of war with a terrifying threat known as the Scavs, Jack’s mission is nearly complete. Living in and patrolling the skies from thousands of feet above, his soaring existence is brought crashing down when he rescues an attractive female stranger (Olga Kurylenko) from a downed spacecraft. Her arrival triggers a chain of events that forces him to question everything.  Also featured in this film is Morgan Freeman playing Malcolm Beech, a resistance leader stationed on Earth.  The visuals, just like Tron Legacy look amazing.  And if that doesn’t sound cool enough, the music is being scored by M83.  You can check out one of their songs here.

 

After Earth

Release Date: June 7

M. Night Shayamalan has had a string of flops in the latter half of his career as he has had hits in the former.  Destroying The Last Airbender film franchise before it had a chance to go anywhere was the last straw for film goers.  Consider After Earth as his redemption, because if this film were to ever flop, I can’t see a world where he will be making anymore studio pictures again.  Shayamalan does come with a pair of arsenals to help him score another hit in the form of Will Smith and his son Jaden Smith.  The duo play a father and son who crash landed on earth, 1,000 years after a cataclysmic events that forced humanity to abandon the planet.  From the trailer it looks more like a Jaden Smith vehicle than a Will Smith one.  We see Jaden involved more in the action sequences while Will is relegated to the ship with an injured leg, offering directions to his son.  What I can say after seeing this trailer is that I’m willing to give Shayamalan another chance to hit it out of the park.

 

Pacific Rim

Release Date: July 11

This film has all sci-fi geeks in a frenzy, as it has one of the simplest but most loved concept of all film fans.  GIANT ROBOTS VS GIANT FREAKIN’ MONSTERS!!!!!  It doesn’t get any better than that folks.  Guillermo del Toro will once again usher us into a world of insane monsters called Kaiju, inspired by japanese monster flicks the likes of Godzilla.  To battle these monsters are giant robot mechs called Jaegers, which are controlled simultaneously by two pilots whose minds are locked in a neural bridge.  Along for the ride are actors Charlie Hunnam, Rinko Kikuchi, Idris Elba and frequent del Toro collaborator Ron Perlman.  The film also features the voice of GLaDOS from the Portal video games as the Jaeger AI, voiced by the same actress Ellen McLain.  The nerds will turn out in droves to see this one.  But will mainstream audience take a bite of it?

 

The Host

Release Date: March 29

This film one would assume is sci-fi for the Twilight fans.  The Host, based on the novel by Stephanie Myers sees parasitic aliens called Souls invading Earth and possessing the minds of humans.  One such human is Melanie Stryder played by Saoirse Ronan (Hanna), possessed by a Soul named Wanderer.  Wanderer starts to see Melanie’s memories, in which she sees her loved ones and eventually finds a connection with them, too.  Like Twilight, the film will feature another love triangle for Melanie with Ian (Jake Abel) and Jared (Max Irons).  What makes this film appealing to me is its director Andrew Niccol (The Truman Show, In Time).  He’s had some hit and misses but they all were high concept risky projects.  Let’s hope the tweens come out for this one.

 

Ender’s Game

Release date: November 1

Another film based on a book series, Enders Game tells the story of a hostile alien race in the near future attacking Earth.  In preparation for the next attack, Colonel Graff played by Harrison Ford and the International Military are training only the best young children to find the future Mazer.  One such candidate is Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy but strategically brilliant boy who is pulled out of his school to join the elite.  Lionsgate/Summit is hoping to have this film the start of a new franchise with Twilight having been completed last year.  They were popular books so here’s hoping it translates to high tickets sales.

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Star Trek Into Darkness

Release Date: May 17

Last but certainly not least is Star Trek into Darkness, the highly anticipated follow up to J.J. Abrams’ 2009 hit.  He and his writing team took time to develop the story to make it worthy of the first film.  I can say from the opening 9 minutes we have seen in the IMAX prologue, the film is off to an excellent start.  Selected scenes of this film was shot with the IMAX camera, thus making it a must see for me in the format.  The whole gang returns from their first outing, bringing with them new comers like the gorgeous Alice Eve who plays Dr. Carol Marcus, who may be a love interest for Kirk (Chris Pine), and Benedict Cumberbatch as John Harrison, who may turn out to be either Kahn or one of his soldiers.  As you can tell from my speculations, Abbrams is holding plot details close to the vest until the release date.  My prediction: This film will be the most fun movie goers will have at the cinemas this year, despite having “Darkness” in the title.

 

So there you have it.  My list of most anticipated sci-fi films of 2013.  I could put films like Iron Man 3 and Man of Steel on the list since technically they are in the sci-fi genre, but most consider it more super hero film than sci-fi.  So tell me, what do you think of the list and what other films would you put on there?  Soung off below.

 

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