The Winonan

Most anticipated films in 2018

Blake Gasner, Film Reporter

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Every fall, movie studios unleash their most prestigious projects of the year right as voting for the Academy Awards takes flight, with hopes they can ignite buzz at the right time to bring home trophies. This fall is no different. Not only are there plenty of awards-caliber Oscar-bait films on the horizon, but we’ve got some exciting blockbusters building steam as well. Here’s a preview of some of the most exciting films coming to theaters near you during the next several months. Get your red pens out, read along and mark up that calendar with trips to the theater.

1. “A Star is Born” (Now Playing)

Are musicals back in style? The trend seems to be hinting at it. And who would’ve thought a vehicle delivered by first-time director Bradley Cooper and starring first-time movie actress Lady Gaga would be leading the charge, with critical buzz accompanying it. This remake of the classic film requires only one watch of its epic trailer to be entranced by Gaga’s vocals into the movie theater.

2. “First Man” (Oct. 12)

Being called one of the most heart-pounding and realistic depictions of space travel ever brought to the big screen, “First Man” looks to be one of the most intense experiences one can have at the movies this year. This biopic delves into the life of Neil Armstrong and the events surrounding the Apollo 11 Mission. Reuniting many of the collaborators from 2016’s “La La Land,” the film is strung together with sure-handed talent who will undoubtedly recreate one of America’s crowning historical achievements with absolute grace.

3. “Halloween” (Oct. 19)

A direct follow-up to the 1978 horror classic (ignoring the events of all seven subsequent sequels), 2018’s “Halloween” sees Jamie Lee Curtis reprise her role as Laurie Strode, now a grandmother, who must protect herself, her family and all who cross paths with the notoriously dangerous Michael Myers, who has recently escaped a maximum-security asylum. Two of horror cinema’s most iconic characters come face-to-face for a final showdown, 40 years later, on Halloween night. Garnering strong word of mouth during its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, this is the perfect movie for those looking to get in the Halloween spirit this October.

4. “Bohemian Rhapsody” (Nov. 2)

The story around Freddy Mercury and the legendary rock band Queen is ripe for a big-screen adaption. It’s perplexing that we are finally getting a film about Queen in the year 2018, 27 years after the highly-publicized death of Mercury. “Bohemian Rhapsody” underwent extensively long production finding the right pieces to breathe life into the film, but one look at the trailer gives the impression they nailed it. Rami Malek looks exceptional as Mercury, the visuals from Newton Thomas Sigel and Bryan Singer are beautiful and the remastered music sounds just as breathtaking as ever.

5. “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” (Nov. 16)

How can one not include another film from the wizarding world on a list of the most anticipated films? This franchise is iconic and, although the first installment in the spin-off series received mixed audience reception, its sequel looks to be ratcheting up the stakes. Johnny Depp as Gellert Grindelwald looks very promising and the story seems to be leaning into the relationship between Grindelwald and Dumbledore, which is an interesting turn for the mega-franchise.

6. “Widows” (Nov. 16)

The heist genre is populated by many great films like “Heat” and “The Town,” but few of these films touch on women’s roles in the grim worlds inhabited by gangsters, corrupt cops and bank robbers. “Widows” is the antidote to this. It is not blatant re-casting of women into the roles of men for the sake of representation, but a thrilling film about oppressed people who need to turn to crime to protect their families, who just so happen to be women as well. When melodramas populate movie theaters during the last quarter of the year, here is a perfect pace-changing-antidote.

7. “Ralph Breaks the Internet” (Nov. 21)

Thanksgiving weekend is stacked this year. There are a variety of films for a variety of audiences, but this is certainly a family-centric time of year. When facing the dilemma of what to see as a family, I have one (pretty obvious) piece of advice: when in doubt, go Disney. “Ralph Breaks the Internet” is the sequel to the 2012 film “Wreck-it Ralph,” and as the title suggests, explores a new frontier of technology as the titular character enters the world wide web for a series of fun adventures.

8. “Green Book” (Nov. 21)

When a movie wins the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto Film Festival, it typically foreshadows a long line of future awards and success for a film, and in 2018, “Green Book” charmed audiences’ pants off to take the prize home from Toronto. Peter Farrelly, one half of the Farrelly Brothers duo who are known for comedy classics “Dumb and Dumber” and “There’s Something about Mary,” departs from his roots to direct this inspirational film about the real-life tour of the black classical pianist Don Shirley and his white driver and security Tony Lip in the deep south.

Honorable Mentions:

“Bad Times at El Royale,” “The Hate U Give,” “Creed II,” “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” “Roma,” “Mary Poppins Returns,” Bumblebee” and “Vice.”

About the Writer
Blake Gasner, Film Reporter

Blake Gasner works as the current film critic for the Winonan. He is in the midst of his first year with the paper, but his love for cinema is years in the making. Upon discovering the Star Wars and Indiana Jones films on VHS at a young age, Gasner’s imagination became hooked with the storytelling medium. He decided to attend Winona State as a Film Studies and Creative Digital Media major after seeing “La La Land” as a senior in high school.

Movies have greatly effected the course of Gasner’s life for the better multiple times, and he hopes to repay the art form through his work with the paper and future work as a filmmaker. Alongside his position as a film critic for the Winonan, Gasner is also a Resident Assistant in Lourdes Hall and the Vice President of the WSU Film Club. When not involved in his campus activities, it should come as no surprise that Gasner enjoys watching movies, as well as journaling, exercising, and spending time with close friends.

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