No, that headline doesn't mean we're counting down the best 2,000-plus flicks set to arrive in the indefinite future of cinema. Although if we did, here's hoping that the list would include "Young Guns III" and a racy biopic about the God Warrior
In actuality, we've turned to the tapped-in Los Angeles–based film critic known as Carson Reeves to give us a glimpse into Hollywood's crystal ball. Under his nom-de-plume, the mysterious Reeves (who will provide only an age range between 25 and 35 in the way of personal disclosure) founded the unconventional movie-preview outpost ScriptShadow
Based solely on the scripts, the influential Web site provides detailed but informal breakdowns of highly anticipated new features as well as soon-to-be-released, could-be gems. Much like the ones we've listed below.
According to Reeves, here are five films coming out this year that should have you salivating with antisocial giddiness.
"For the average moviegoer," says Reeves, "the Angelina Jolie action flick
'Salt,' about a CIA agent who learns that she's a Russian spy, should be awesome. Kurt Wimmer's scripts
are the fastest reads out there, and I dare anyone to read this and not be on the edge of their seat for 90 minutes. It's one of the best pure specs I've read in awhile." Based on the trailer, we agree.
"The Social Network" (October)
"This Sony film, starring Jesse Eisenberg
as Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (pictured at left) and directed by David Fincher
, is a big wild card," says Reeves. "The script is amazing, but it's not inherently cinematic. There are a lot of people in rooms talking, which doesn't exactly translate onscreen. However, the drama here is second to none, and they did a great job hiring Fincher, a visual genius, to compensate for the lack of cinematic prowess in the film."
"Happy Thank You More Please" (debuts at Sundance)
was written by, directed by and stars Josh Radnor
from [the TV show] 'How I Met Your Mother,' and it's one of the best scripts I've read all year," says Reeves. "It's about an eternal New York bachelor who inadvertently creates a trial family with a kid he finds on the street
and a one-night stand who moves in. The wild card is Radnor himself, as I don't know if he can pull off some of the more dramatic angles of his character without looking like he's setting up a joke for Barney."
"If you're a fan of movies like 'Seven' and 'Silence of the Lambs,' you're probably starving for something new in the genre," says Reeves. "One of the biggest spec sales for an unsold writer in the last few years, 'Prisoners' (starring Hugh Jackman
) is about a father who imprisons the man he believes kidnapped his daughter. As time goes on, it's unclear whether he has the right man. I thought the script was solid but could use a draft to take it to the next level."
"There's been only one script I couldn't get when I wanted it," says Reeves, "and that's Christopher Nolan's 'Inception
' (starring Leonardo DiCaprio
). I tried and tried and tried, but all of my sources either didn't have it or were too afraid to give it to me. The rumor is there was only a single copy all the way up until production, and that Christopher Nolan wouldn't let anyone read it unless he was in the room with them. Since I'm not allowed to say if I ever got the script, let's just say that if I did get it, I'd tell you to temper expectations. I'm predicting a heavily divided audience."
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