Pac’s 10 Most Anticipated Films of 2011

6 Jan

It is finally 2011, and now that we’ve looked back on the films that made up 2010 it is time to look forward to those that will be hitting theaters in 2011.  Earlier today, Chris outlined his most anticipated films of 2011 and I planned on bringing mine to the site tomorrow.  However, because of the diversity between our lists, I have decided to drop the curtain on my rankings today.  So without further ado, here are my 10 most anticipated films of 2011 (with a few honorable mentions).

10. Your Highness

Release Date: April 8, 2011

Starring: Natalie Portman, Danny McBride, James Franco, Zooey Deschanel

Synopsis from IMDBWhen Prince Fabious’s bride is kidnapped, he goes on a quest to rescue her… accompanied by his lazy useless brother Thadeous.


Pac’s Take:  The last two directorial works from David Gordon Green have been pretty damn funny (East Bound and Down, Pineapple Express) so I think there is a pretty good shot at least one of his films in 2011 is a hit.  Considering the other film on his slate is The Sitter (“homage” to Adventures in Babysitting), I’ll put my money on this one.  James Franco and Danny McBride have proven their comedic worth and Natalie Portman is at the peak of her popularity, if nothing else we’ll get a few good laughs and some on-screen eye candy.

9.  The Rite

Release Date: 28 January, 2011

Starring: Anthony Hopkins

Director: Mikael Hafstrom

Synopsis from IMDB: An American priest travels to Italy to study at an exorcism school.


Pac’s Take:  I think that Anthony Hopkins making The Wolfman may be beneficial to this film because it could lower the expectations a little bit.  This is the last we’ll see of Hopkins before Thor this summer so hopefully he can help his box office draw a little for that film as well.  I’m a sucker for religious horror and even though the exorcism theme has become a little trite, hopefully The Rite can bring it a fresh perspective.

8. The Hangover Part II

Release Date: May 26, 2011

Starring: Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis and Ed Helms

Director: Todd Phillips

Synopsis from IMDB: N/A

Trailer: No Trailer Available

Pac’s Take: Arguably the funniest movie from 2009 returns for a sequel; and while the details have been behind the project have been very hush-hush, I think this is a good thing.  A good portion of the humor behind this film is the shock-value it produces and, unless the trailer reveals too much, there should be plenty of it in the sequel.  I am also a strong supporter of the replacement of Mel Gibson with Liam Neeson and the rumored presidential cameo should also be quite hilarious.

7. Fright Night

Release Date: August 19, 2011

Starrring: Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell and David Tennant

Director: Craig Gillespie

Synopsis from IMDB:  A remake of the comedy-horror picture about a teenager who discovers his new next-door neighbor is a vampire.

Trailer: Trailer from 1985 original

Pac’s Take:  This will probably be the worst film to come out on this list, but sometimes I can be a sucker for remakes from my childhood.  Fright Night was a fantastic movie in the eighties and they have a pretty solid cast in place, though I’m not the biggest fan of Ferrell I think he can do well in this role.  The original was rated R and had some pretty mature themes so I hope they don’t water it down to draw in a larger demographic, I won’t get my hopes up though.

6. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2

Release Date: 15 July, 2011

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Ralph Fiennes

Director: David Yates

Synopsis from IMDB: The end begins as Harry, Ron, and Hermione go back to Hogwarts to find and destroy Voldemorts final horcruxes, but when Voldemort finds out about their mission, the biggest battle begins and life as they know it will never be the same again.


Pac’s Take:  The 2nd of two films that Chris and I both have on our lists, and I don’t have it as highly ranked as he does.  Though I am very excited to see this, I just recently got into the Harry Potter series and saw it for more than just a film adaptation of a popular children’s saga.  I’m sure this film will deliver and be one of the highest grossing efforts this year, the others on this list just appeal to me a bit more.

5.  The Thing

Release Date: October 14, 2011

Starring: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Eric Christian Olsen and Joel Edgerton

Director: Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.

Synopsis from IMDB: At an Antarctica research site, the discovery of an alien craft leads to a confrontation between graduate student Kate Lloyd and scientist Dr. Sander Halvorson. While Dr. Halvorson keeps to his research, Kate partners with Sam Carter, a helicopter pilot, to pursue the alien life form.

Trailer: 1982 Trailer

Pac’s Take:  This film falls into the same realm as Fright Night, a new take on an old classic that is very much up in the air in terms of its quality.  While Fright Night is a direct remake of the original, The Thing is a prequel to the 1982 horror thriller from John Carpenter (Halloween),  and in a lot of circles is considered the greatest horror movie ever made.  The Thing (2011) doesn’t boast the cast that Fright Night does, nor does it have a director with any recognizable films under his belt so my expectations are a little low.  But hey, John Carpenter’s The Thing was a remake of a ’50s film so why can’t this prequel follow in its success?

4. The Rum Diary

Release Date: 2011 (exact date unknown)

Starring: Johnny Depp, Amber Heard and Giovanni Ribisi

Director: Bruce Robinson

Plot Synopsis from IMDB: Paul Kemp is a freelance journalist who finds himself at a critical turning point in his life while writing for a run-down newspaper in the Caribbean. Paul is challenged on many levels as he tries to carve out a more secure niche for himself amidst a group of lost souls all bent on self-destruction.

Trailer: No Trailer Available

Pac’s Take:  Remember the last movie adapted from a Hunter S. Thompson book that starred Johnny Depp?  I’m still not convinced that this film will actually come out in 2011 since I’ve been hearing rumors about this film’s release about as long as I’ve heard about Sin City 2.  However, the film is now in post-production and another film long in limbo (The Tree of Life) is hitting theaters in 2011, so here’s to hoping that this film appears in cinemas as well.

3.  Scream 4

Release Date: April 15, 2011

Starring: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette

Director: Wes Craven

Plot Synopsis from IMDB: Ten years have passed, and Sidney Prescott, who has put herself back together thanks in part to her writing, is visited by the Ghostface Killer.


Pac’s Take: After sitting through My Soul to Take last year I became a little wary about how Scream 4 will turn out, but I am confident that Wes Craven will treat his crown jewel with a little more respect than he did that film.  Not to mention he has Kevin Williamson returning to write and a pretty stellar cast to work with.  In my first post on this site I named the original Scream number 3 on my top ten horror movies of all time so I hold this franchise pretty close to my heart.  I hope the fourth installment can jump-start a new trilogy as good as its predecessor.

2.  Captain America: The First Avenger

Release Date: July 22, 2011

Starring: Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving and Samuel L. Jackson

Director: Joe Johnston

Plot Synopsis from IMDB: After being deemed unfit for military service, Steve Rogers volunteers for a top secret research project that turns him into Captain America, a superhero dedicated to defending America’s ideals.

Trailer: Trailer Not Available

Pac’s Take: It may be hard for studios to find a weekend in 2011 or 2012 to fit in the release of their superhero movie without having to compete with another.  After a slow year for these films in 2010, the next two years will be delivering the masked men in droves (The Green Hornet, Green Lantern, Thor, X-Men: First Class, The Dark Knight Rises, Man of Steel, The Avengers).  While the two DC films coming out in 2012 definitely top my list, the hero I’m most excited about on-screen for 2011 is Captain America.  This film’s noirish look is exactly what I was hoping to see when news of this film was first released, and they even cast the perfect villain (Hugo Weaving as Red Skull).  While Thor looks more like a bridge to The Avengers, I think Captain America will stand strongly on its own.

1. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Release Date: December 21, 2011

Starring: Daniel Craig, Rooney Mara and Stellan Skarsgård

Director: David Fincher

Plot Synopsis from IMDB: A journalist is aided in his search for a woman who has been missing — or dead — for forty years by a young female hacker.

Trailer: No Trailer Available

Pac’s Take: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first of a trilogy of films to be made in Denmark based of the books of Stieg Larsson.  In 2011 they will be brought to America in the form of an adaptation of the first installment by none other than David Fincher.  So far in his career, David Fincher can do no wrong;  my least favorite Fincher film is Panic Room and I even catch myself watching that every time I see it on cable.  Last year’s The Social Network is an Academy Award nominee shoe-in for Best Picture and with the success this film had overseas it is sure to be a hit here.  Also, after Niels Arden Oplev, director of the foreign version, heavily criticised the remake (see my reaction here), I can’t wait to see this film gross substantially higher numbers and critical acclaim.  My only reservation is the titular character will be played by Rooney Mara, we saw her in A Nightmare on Elm Street and The Social Network this past year and she has yet to impress me; hopefully she can wow me in December.

Honorable Mentions:  The Green Hornet, Sucker Punch, X-Men: First Class, Green Lantern, Cowboys and Aliens


10 Responses to “Pac’s 10 Most Anticipated Films of 2011”

  1. Chris Petersen January 6, 2011 at 3:16 pm #

    I couldn’t put Scream 4 on there after My Soul to Take. I just couldn’t put as much trust in Wes Craven after that. Everything else on here, minus The Rum Diaries was on a larger list that I had to narrow down. Good stuff, bro.

  2. danieljamesaraujo January 6, 2011 at 9:24 pm #

    I hadn’t heard of “Your Highness” but it looks good. And watching the Captain on the big screen will be awesome.

  3. Bubber April 8, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

    QXTSEC Wish I could come up with posts that cool.


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