10 December 2020

At One Moment We Looked Forward to 2020

Listen, folks....

This is going to be fun as hell.

Such auspicious predictions for 2020. This will go fast. Most of these films never came out or if they did, were in such limited release I didn't see them, or even if they were in my area, let's face it, I wasn't going to the theater. There are a lot of potentious predictions wider than the scope of this post - the death of blockbusters, the death of theaters, the move to streaming, and you know, whatever else. But let's look back on what we were looking forward to this year and salvage what we can with how things turned out:

2020's deepest revelation: Slavery is bad!

Wonder Woman 1984

It's fun how many Warner Bros films are on this list - who of course made the announcement that their entire 2021 slate would be released on HBOMax and in theaters simultaneously. WW84 is scheduled to drop Christmas Day, so I'll be watching it then - stay tuned for that reaction when it drops!

UPDATE: I watched this, it was definitely enjoyable and I liked most of the last half. It started ridiculously slow, though, and needed a good editor to trim it up. I still enjoyed it quite a bit as a nice Christmas diversion and quite frankly, the big silly blockbuster we needed to end this insane year.


TENET

This was delayed, and then debuted in theaters to more middling acclaim than a Chris Nolan film deserves, but it was also just really caught up in its times. It became a focal point for corona at the movies and a posterchild for blockbusters' inability to function with both limited theaters showing films and a public that didn't want to go out. I was summing up the courage to see it right as theaters locked down. So...TBA.

Deerskin

This is on HBO Max and I'm jonesing for it. I will update soon with thoughts.

UPDATE: Watched it, it was bizarre and fantastic and wonderful. It is by far not for everyone and it can border on incomprehensible if you let it. It's had next to no critical or cultural appreciation associated with its release, so not much of a splash, but if you're feeling frisky, I do recommend it.

Bad Trip

For some reason I'm only now hearing that this film was accidentally released on Amazon Prime for a brief time in April. How was I not on top of that?! Supposedly Netflix bought it for some later release, at which point I will watch it and report my findings. This is fun, guys.

The Personal History of David Copperfield

This got a release in late August and swelled to a massive 1550 theaters over Labour Day. I did not see it. Reviews are a little lackluster than I would have hoped for and despite being a big Iannucci fan, I've been dismayed at Avenue 5 and a re-watch of Death of Stalin (2018) that lacked a little luster. He might be showing some cracks.

Untitled Judd Apatow / Pete Davidson Comedy

This turned out to be King of Staten Island and as it came together I was turned off. I have grown quite weary of Apatow making overlong stealth biopics of quasi-interesting comedians. Funny People (2009) is still solid, but still an absolutely brutal 146 minutes. This is an equally unnecessary 136 minutes. I know this not because I've seen the film, but because Pete Davidson really shouldn't be counted on to carry 136 minutes. I wish this would lean more into slapstick than the comedy / dramedy folks seem to like these days. Anyway, reviews were decent, and it did pretty well on VOD.

Godzilla vs. Kong

Delayed until May 2021, but will be on HBOMax, unless of course, the entire industry implodes on itself thanks to Warner Brothers or we have a vaccine by then. Either way I would love for Godzilla vs. Kong to emerge from the ashes as the last great blockbuster to ever exist. It will be high on our 2021 list.

Dune

Delayed until October 2021. Same deal as G v. Kong, still has a lot of potential, but a delay until October seems insane. I suppose it's good to have some kind of plan, even if that plan may change.

The Tomorrow War

Delayed until July 2021. It's weird that we should have been getting hyped for this around now, but instead we're almost in the exact same position we were a year ago. It was too far out to get rolled in the hype machine. It still might be good!

Other Crap:

We had a lot more we gave a skeptical eye towards. Let's do a quick rundown of delays:

New Bond: No Time to Die, delayed to April 2021. By the way, the six year gap ties the longest span of time we've had between Bond Films since 1989's License to Kill and GoldenEye (1995). That was due to a lot of behind the scenes shuffling and resting and this gap still has the same actor who was playing a weary Bond eight years ago. FOOD FOR THOUGHT.
New Top Gun: Top Gun: Maverick, delayed to July 2021. I think Top Gun (1986) is stupid. I said it.
New Ghostbusters: Ghostbusters: Afterlife, delayed to June 2021. 
New Bill & Ted: Bill & Ted Face the Music, this came out, it was okay.
New Coming to America: Coming 2 America, most cliched sequel title possible. Delayed to March 2021
Black Widow: Delayed to May 2021
Free Guy: Release date TBA
Last Night in Soho: Delayed to April 2021
Trial of the Chicago 7: Came out on Netflix, pretty good!
Antebellum: This came out, I've heard good things and bad things but have not seen it.
Mank: Just came out on Netflix, I need to watch. UPDATE: It was solid, not totally revolutionary, but I enjoyed it.
I'm Thinking of Ending Things: Came out on Netflix, pretty good!

This year was obviously rough, but I usually do watch more films than this! I can catch up on a few but 11 / 21 films I was anticipating were delayed until 2021. Should we just copy and paste for next year? Stay tuned, this will be a living Internet document because why not, I will update as I watch!

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