Coming soon: 40 unmissable movies

The best new films of 2013 and beyond

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True stories

It’s a good year for tales torn from the headlines, as the likes of Tom Hanks, Alan Rickman and Reese Witherspoon don funny wigs and wacky accents to portray ordinary members of the public caught up in world-shattering events.

  • CBGB

    It’s punk rock and poodle perms as Alan Rickman takes on the role of Hilly Kristal, the founder of New York’s legendary underground music establishment CBGB (it originally stood for Country, Blue Grass, Blues, but tastes changed). From 1975 onwards, the club played host to the likes of The Ramones, Blondie, Talking Heads and Patti Smith, becoming the flashpoint for the city’s musical golden age.

    Unsurprisingly, this leaves the door open for a huge variety of unexpected celebrity cameos: Malin Akerman plays Debbie Harry (dubious), Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins plays Iggy Pop (reasonable), ‘Shark Night’ nerd Joel David Moore plays Joey Ramone (perfect) and Rupert Grint plays Rocket From the Tombs guitarist Cheetah Chrome (hilarious).

    CBGB’ is out in 2013.

    CBGB
  • Captain Phillips

    Now this is what we call awards pedigree: director Paul Greengrass, whose ‘United 93’ and ‘The Bourne Ultimatum’ showcase a filmmaker skilfully treading the fine line between quality and commerce (and a man obsessed with shaky cam); star Tom Hanks, who’s probably due a return to Oscar glory right about now; and a topic ripped straight from the headlines, the case of the MV Maersk Alabama, the first American vessel to be hijacked by pirates since the nineteenth century.

    The boat was taken by four armed Somali mercenaries in the Gulf of Aden in 2009, and the experiences of the eponymous skipper (already collected in a successful memoir) will form the basis for the screenplay. The boat was ultimately raided by Navy Seals, and the hostages rescued. We can already feel the tension building.

    Captain Philips’ is out on Oct 11 2013.

    Captain Phillips
  • The Bling Ring

    Despite its questionable Venice Film Festival win, Sofia Coppola’s last film ‘Somewhere’ seemed to show a filmmaker moving in steadily decreasing circles, finding less and less to say about Hollywood’s privileged citizens and their empty, valueless lives. Well, maybe ‘The Bling Ring’ can turn it around: staying firmly within her thematic comfort zone (celeb culture, snotty teens, Los Angeles angst) she’s taken on the true tale of a group of bratty teens who used the internet to locate the homes of famous celebrities, and work out when the residents would be otherwise engaged so they could go in and fill their pockets.

    Emma Watson continues her post-Potter career following the successful ‘Perks of Being a Wallflower’, and she’ll be joined by the likes of Leslie Mann, Coppola regular Kirsten Dunst and – gulp – Paris Hilton. If Coppola can return to the more emotive tone of ‘Lost in Translation’ and resist making yet another film about how awful it is being rich, this should be a treat.

    The Bling Ring’ is out in 2013.

    The Bling Ring
  • Dallas Buyers Club

    Stars Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling, plus directors Marc Forster and Craig Gillespie, have come and gone, and it was finally down to Matthew McConaughey and ‘Café de Flore’ director Jean-Marc Vallee to bring this bizarre real-life tale to the screen.

    McConaughey – moustachioed and, in the production shots, painfully thin – plays Ron Woodroof, an early Aids sufferer (he was diagnosed back in 1986) who made a living trafficking in HIV medications smuggled in from countries whose pharmaceutical laws were not so divisively stringent as the US. Before his death in 1992, Woodroof was extensively targeted by American drug companies who claimed he was skimming their profits.

    An impressive supporting cast includes Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto (who has allegedly lost a similar amount of weight for the role) and Steve Zahn. The story may not scream ‘barrel of laughs’, but there’s no arguing with that pedigree.

    Dallas Buyers Club’ is out in 2013.

    Dallas Buyers Club
  • Devil’s Knot

    After three critically acclaimed documentaries on the subject (the last one, ‘West of Memphis’, produced by Peter Jackson), it was perhaps inevitable that the story of the West Memphis Three – a trio of teenagers convicted for the so-called ‘Satanic’ murder of three eight-year-old boys in Arkansas in 1993 – would become a feature film. What is surprising is the team behind ‘Devil’s Knot’: acclaimed but highly uneven Canadian director Atom Egoyan has been somewhat off the boil since 1997’s ‘The Sweet Hereafter’, with his last major production, 2009’s ‘Chloe’, receiving decidedly mixed reviews.

    But the cast of ‘Devil’s Knot’ is impressive, bringing together Hollywood royalty like Reese Witherspoon and Colin Firth, Egoyan regulars like Bruce Greenwood and Elias Koteas and young newcomers playing the accused. The tale of the West Memphis Three is an important one, and if Egoyan rediscovers his form there’s no reason this shouldn’t be a serious awards contender.

    Devil’s Knot’ is out in 2013.

    Devil’s Knot
  • The Grandmaster

    Wong Kar Wai is the man responsible for some of the most beautiful images of love and longing seen on screen in recent years: Tony Leung whispering his secret into the ruins of a wall at the end of ‘In the Mood for Love’; entwined limbs tangoing softly in ‘Happy Together’. So you might be surprised to learn that his next film is a martial arts biopic. This is the story of Ip Man, the master who mentored Bruce Lee. Wong regular Tony Leung stars, while Zhang Ziyi (a woman who knows a thing or two about a scissor kick after ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’ and ‘Hero’) also appears.

    It’s been five years since Wong’s last movie. That was his first English language venture, ‘Blueberry Nights’ (kindest to keep silent on that score). And in typically relaxed Wong fashion ‘The Grandmaster’ took two years to shoot: rumours abounded that it was a dead cert for Cannes 2013 but it never appeared. A year has passed, and we learn that it will be opening the Berlin Film Festival in February.

    The Grandmaster’ is out in 2013.

    The Grandmaster

CBGB

It’s punk rock and poodle perms as Alan Rickman takes on the role of Hilly Kristal, the founder of New York’s legendary underground music establishment CBGB (it originally stood for Country, Blue Grass, Blues, but tastes changed). From 1975 onwards, the club played host to the likes of The Ramones, Blondie, Talking Heads and Patti Smith, becoming the flashpoint for the city’s musical golden age.

Unsurprisingly, this leaves the door open for a huge variety of unexpected celebrity cameos: Malin Akerman plays Debbie Harry (dubious), Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins plays Iggy Pop (reasonable), ‘Shark Night’ nerd Joel David Moore plays Joey Ramone (perfect) and Rupert Grint plays Rocket From the Tombs guitarist Cheetah Chrome (hilarious).

CBGB’ is out in 2013.


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