' Cinema Romantico: Looking Ahead

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Looking Ahead

As I hoped, the fall movie season has more than made up for the as-usual dreary spring/summer film offerings. But as solid as fall has been one can only pray winter kicks it up even another notch. And as winter settles in over lovely Chicago, these are the 5 films which I am anticipating most in the coming month.

“Match Point” - This is the new Woody Allen film and the buzz it garnered at the Cannes Film Festival was supposedly spectacular. Contrary to many opinions, I thought Woody still had the magic touch in the ‘90’s (“Bullets Over Broadway”, “Everyone Says I Love You”, and “Small Time Crooks” were all excellent) but I definitely agree he has slipped in our current decade. But for his latest he spurned his normal stomping grounds of New York for dreary London and wrote a serious script concerning tennis and Scarlett Johanssen (amongst other things) rather than another comedy. Needless to say, I will be there the day it opens. Let’s cross our fingers and hope the “Woodman’s” back.

“The Family Stone” - I include this one solely based upon the fact Rachel McAdams is a co-star and I’m eager to see if she maintains her ascent to the lofty plateau of best working actress not named Kate Winslet.

“Syriana” - Here we get the latest film from the pen of Stephen Gaghan, the writer of the Academy Award winning screenplay “Traffic”. But here Gaghan is also the director. Much like “Traffic” this appears to be an episodic tale, only with the oil industry as the backdrop this time rather than the drug trade. I finally saw a preview for this and was absolutely blown away. It looks a few levels beyond promising. I’m sure all we’ll hear in the coming weeks is about how George Clooney gained 40 pounds or something to play this role, but I could care less about Mr. Clooney’s diet. The potential for another “Traffic” will get me to the theater.

"The New World" - Once every locust plague the legendary director Terrence Malick decides to emerge from no-one-knows-where and make another movie. Whether or not it looks any good is of no consequence when a supremely gifted filmmaker creates only his 4th film in the last 30 years. I'm not sure what to expect, but if his last film - "The Thin Red Line" - is any indication we can expect numerous shots of parrots.

“King Kong” - This goes without saying but I’m saying it anyway.

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