So, every year we try to forecast what's going to be cool, and the cool thing about 2021 is that we actually saw a lot of these! First, that means that we have full write-ups on nearly all of these films. But let's do a quick rundown on if these were cool or not.
Godzilla vs. Kong
My number one anticipated film. It was definitely good, maybe a little less than Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), but still delivered on its promise of being an outrageous, wacky affair. The fight(s) was thrilling, as was the special guest star. Like all of these Legendary movies, the human characters are proving to be somehow worse than the Toho films, but this was solid, appropriately hyped!
I liked DUNE a lot. I suppose I got out of it what I was excited for going into it. It was suitably epic, but ended up not being quite as big or awesome as I had hoped. That's probably just because I never been a huge DUNE fan. I'm not anti-DUNE or anything, but as a fan on the sidelines this was appropriate.
The Suicide Squad
Cautiously optimistic, and I'm going to say that this exceeded my expectations. It was really well-written, well-shot, and had lasting fun characters that assuredly eclipsed the original. Expectations exceeded.
The Tomorrow War
Is it Chris Pratt movies or original sci-fi movies, or just Amazon movies that are the problem? This was not that good, such a juicy premise that went nowhere and didn't make any sense. This could have been really cool but was instead really safe and uninteresting. Expectations deceeded.
Venom: Let There be Carnage
Why did I hype this? I guess it was about where you'd expect it to be. I'm not sure why I drank the comic book movie sequel Kool-Aid on this one. Ultimately I have to say it came up short of expectations, just because I thought they could really turn this around in a fun and darkly goofy way, but the end result instead looked cluttered, cheap, rushed, and incoherent. Maybe I should have expected as much because this film never tried to be anything different.
No Time to Die
What a great time at the cinema! The last Dan Craig Bond was fitting for the insanely protracted character arc and this was a pretty fulfilling movie that ranked high amongst the Craig Bonds as well as any Bond of the last fifty years. I might even go so far as to say it was better than the modest hype surrounding it.
Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar
Spectacular! Well, that's a little strong. It was funny and surprising, and delivered well for a movie I knew next to nothing about. Pray for Edgar, I'd say this blew my expectations away and exists as a positive unicorn in the current landscape of comedy films.
The Last Duel
This is the only film on this list I ended up not seeing. No, Ridley Scott, it wasn't because it didn't have men in capes fighting each other, or because of the pandemic, or anything with millennials. Well, maybe the last part was true, because it did just feel like a dinosaur of a film with archaic notions towards its women, plot, and premise. That may not be true, I don't know what this movie is about, but that was the vibe I got. My life could go on without it and it did just perfectly.
Army of the Dead
Saw this piece of shit! Again, such a cool premise and a dream cast that absolutely floundered. It just didn't use its premise in any creative way. It should be remembered for Tig Notaro and...well, that's probably about it. It probably falls the most short of expectations of any film here, Zach Snyder should just be a cooler director and this wasn't that cool.
The Green Knight
I'm very proud of myself or selecting The Green Knight. I would say this actually exceeded expectations and became a movie I really enjoyed unpacking, decoding, and thinking about in the weeks after I watched it. I need to find more movies like this but I feel like it's hard to get hyped on some of these far out indies without much more than titles, if even that right now. Who am I kidding, I listed The Suicide Squad in my Top 10 this year.
What does 2022 have in store?! We'll soon find out! Stay tuned when we countdown our cherriest of all hype movies after the New Year!