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The 2015 Film Release Calendar: April

Every January, I preview all the films that are scheduled to come out for that year. Typically, I end up around 80%, since there are always a few that I don’t track, for whatever reason. The point of why I do this has been lost, and now I do it because that’s just what I do. It’s fun, and I enjoy it.

Mainly the idea is to see how accurately I can guess my reaction to movies up to a year in advance. And it gives me a gauge to see which films ended up surprising me for better and for worse.

Originally, I just went through the release calendar and listed about 30 other movies that didn’t have dates. Last year, I had about 200 without dates that I tracked. Now, we’re looking at around 250, on top of the articles currently set for specific months.

How I do this is, I start by going over the films currently scheduled for January through June, then take a ten day break in between to go over the Oscar nominations and Golden Globes, and then finish with July through December. After that, I go over the films currently without release dates, and finish with the holdovers from last year that I’m continuing to track. We have it down to a science here.

April

Furious 7

So clearly there’s a story behind this one. I won’t get into that. We know the deal.

Story-wise, this is continuing where Fast Six ended. We’re still pre-Tokyo Drift, apparently.

They added Ronda Rousey, Kurt Russell, Djimon Hounsou, Tony Jaa, and apparently Iggy Azalea (really?).

At this point, I know what I’m getting with these franchises.

I feel like I wanna go 3 stars and let it be 3.5. I get worried it’s gonna go too far into the…well, let’s call it Night at the Museum territory. Sentimental is not the way to go with this, and I’m gonna be worried about it until they manage to not do that.

Plus, without Walker… it’s just not the same. I know Diesel was always the one, but at this point, it’s gonna get real old real fast (and furious). Hopefully they can let this franchise end gracefully.

Woman in Gold

Maria Altmann, an octogenarian Jewish refugee, takes on the government to recover artwork she believes rightfully belongs to her family.

I was excited for this. Only, I saw a trailer. It looked like overly sentimental garbage.

But, Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds, Katie Holmes (ehh…), Daniel Bruhl, Elizabeth McGovern and Jonathan Pryce are in this. And, the real reason I’m holding out hope this can be good, Tatiana Maslany (of Orphan Black) is playing young Maria. So on that alone, I’ll remain positive.

3 stars. But I’m worried, because the trailer looked like a failed Oscar bait mess.

The Longest Ride

I saw the poster for this and immediately went, “Nicholas Sparks.”

You can spot them from a mile away.

The lives of a young couple intertwine with a much older man as he reflects back on a lost love while he’s trapped in an automobile crash.

Way to give away the entire plot in the synopsis. Then again, it’s Sparks, so there’s no complexity there whatsoever.

2 stars.

These are all awful.

Though it is nice to see Alan Alda in something. He’s not in nearly enough movies.

Ex Machina

A young programmer is selected to participate in a breakthrough experiment in artificial intelligence by evaluating the human qualities of a breathtaking female A.I.

I feel like I tracked this last year. Alex Garland wrote and is directing. He… is mostly good with stuff.

Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander.

Sure. 3 stars. Seems like a serviceable April thriller.

The Moon and the Sun

King Louis XIV’s quest for immortality leads him to capture and steal a mermaid’s life force, a move that is further complicated by his illegitimate daughter’s discovery of the creature.

Wait, what? And it’s not animated? Are you serious?

The people you recognize in the cast are Pierce Brosnan and William Hurt.

Brosnan is playing Louis XIV. That’s not a good thing.

2.5 stars. And I’m being nice.

Kill Me Three Times

This is a holdover. That Simon Pegg assassin movie. Or something like that.

2.5 stars. Pushed, VOD… can’t go 3.

True Story

The relationship between journalist Michael Finkel and Christian Longo, an FBI Most Wanted List murderer who for years lived outside the U.S. under Finkel’s name.

I feel like I tracked this last year. Either way. It’s James Franco and Jonah Hill. Felicity Jones is also in it, as is Ethan Suplee and Gretchen Mol.

I’m gonna say 3 stars. The April release date and the thriller-y aspect of it… I can’t feel good about going 3.5 stars. Let’s let the film decide what it is.

Child 44

Set in Stalin-era Soviet Union, a disgraced MGB agent is dispatched to investigate a series of child murders — a case that begins to connect with the very top of party leadership.

I was excited for this last year.

Tom Hardy, Noomi Rapace, Gary Oldman, Jason Clarke, Joel Jinnaman, Vincent Cassel, Dev Patel, Paddy Considine — cast is stacked.

3.5 stars. Sounds like my kind of movie. Nervous about going higher, just because of the director and the date. But this is one of the more promising sounding movies I’ve seen so far this calendar. So we’ll take a shot.

Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2

Security guard Paul Blart is headed to Las Vegas to attend a Security Guard Expo with his teenage daughter Maya before she departs for college. While at the convention, he inadvertently discovers a heist – and it’s up to Blart to apprehend the criminals.

Eleven billion stars.

What else can you say for such a blight upon humanity?

1.5 stars.

This is Unforgivable on sheer existence alone.

Run All Night

An aging hitman is forced to take on his brutal former boss to protect his estranged son and his family.

Liam Neeson action movie. You know the drill. 3 stars.

Unfriended

While video chatting one night, six high school friends receive a Skype message from a classmate who killed herself exactly one year ago. A first they think it’s a prank, but when the girl starts revealing the friends’ darkest secrets, they realize they are dealing with something out of this world, something that wants them dead.

Yeah…

It is told entirely from the desktop of a computer. So there’s that.

But there was that short from a few years back that did that, and wasn’t horror movie.

Not excited that this is a horror movie.

2.5 stars.

The Water Diviner

Russell Crowe’s movie that he directed.

You’d think for sure it would get an Oscar type release, but the Weinsteins are dumping it in April. Which isn’t promising. But then again, when an actor directs, and doesn’t seem like the directing type… these things don’t always turn out well.

3 stars. We’ll give Crowe the benefit of the doubt. Have to drop it a half star (since I think I went 3.5 last year) due to the circumstances of release.

The Age of Adaline

A young woman, born at the turn of 20th century, is rendered ageless after an accident. After years of a solitary life, she meets a man who might be worth losing her immortality.

How are you rendered ageless after an accident?

And how do you lose immortality?

These make me incredibly nervous.

But I’m gonna go, despite all my best instincts, with 3 stars. Why? Because I’m dumb.

Rock the Kasbah

A washed-up music producer finds one last shot at redemption with a golden-voiced young girl in Afghanistan. However, when jealousy gets the better of a disgruntled ex-boyfriend, he decides to oppose the young star with talent of his own.

This is interesting for a lot of reasons.

Barry Levinson is directing.

Mitch Glazer wrote the script. He co-wrote Scrooged.

The cast on this is Zooey Deschanel, Bruce Willis, Bill Murray, Kate Hudson, Danny McBride and Scott Caan.

A lot of this is intriguing.

But I have my concerns. I don’t know why, but I do.

So we’re going 3 stars. Because I feel like 3.5 is actually a maximum here and not the guess. Maybe I’m wrong. I’d like to be wrong. But I’m gonna play safe and say 3.

– – – – – – – – – –

Tomorrow is May.

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One response

  1. I’m going to call it right now that PBMC2 will break Mike’s no sequel rule for the Unforgivables list at the end of the year, just like Grown Ups 2 (which I remember got a zero star rating) did in 2013.

    February 20, 2015 at 7:09 pm

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