Ten movies to look forward to in 2017
As we complete the transition from one terrible year into what might be another, it’s important to remember that there are some fantastic films on the horizon. A year of festival previews has highlighted a whole raft of exciting future classics, whereas Hollywood has thrown out some promising projects of its own. While 2017 might surprise us yet – with a new Sophia Coppola, a Paul Thomas Anderson/Daniel Day Lewis collaboration, or the Trainspotting sequel actually being good – here are some of the most eagerly anticipated movies of the coming year.
Manchester by the Sea
After the terrible production problems that plagued his last, Margaret, it’s astonishing that Kenneth Lonergan was able to make another movie on his own terms. But this is the real deal: an alternatively devastating and uplifting film about grief and its awkward truths, replete with a trio of Oscar-worthy performances.
Manchester by the Sea is released nationwide on 13th January 2017.
This shaggy, long German comedy recently topped Sight and Sound’s poll of the best films of 2016, and for good reason. It’s one of the most original features of the past five years: a side-splitting, heartbreaking epic about fractured family relationships and the healing power of laughter.
Tony Erdmann is released nationwide on 3rd February 2017
Isabelle Huppert had a fantastic 2016, and many thought her finest work – perhaps of her career – was done in this, Paul Verhoven’s provocative drama about a CEO (Huppert) who responds proactively to a rape. It barrels along with incendiary grace, at once gripping, compassionate, and completely disturbing.
Elle is released nationwide on 10th March 2017.
In a serious case of “March Madness”, another bonkers offering arrives in Olivier Assayas’s latest: a supernatural story about grief, told as a technological thriller. Kristen Stewart delivers an unforgettable performance as a medium searching for the ghost of her brother in Paris. The texting sequence is an all-time classic.
Personal Shopper is released nationwide on 17th March 2017.
Clara (Sonia Braga) is the last resident of her apartment block, which a company has targeted for corporate plans of their own. She refuses to sell, and what follows is both an electrifying battle of wills and an aching, sad reflection on objects and memory, with empowering and beautifully sexy digressions.
Aquarius is released nationwide on 24th March 2017.
A Quiet Passion
Britain’s greatest living filmmaker, Terence Davies, returns with a spellbinding period biopic of Emily Dickinson, played by Cynthia Nixon. It begins with laughter and Love & Friendship-style zingers aplenty, before settling in to a melancholy portrait on life’s disappointments. Davies’s restraint makes every frame glow with tender beauty.
A Quiet Passion is released nationwide on 31st March 2017.
My Life as a Courgette
It might be stop-motion, but don’t underestimate Claude Barras’s animation about a nine-year-old boy’s time at an orphanage. Daring to make explicit the kind of material that Disney wouldn’t, the film is absolutely convincing in its take on childhood trauma – as well as being a charming, funny coming-of-age story.
My Life as a Courgette is released nationwide on 5th May 2017.
Christopher Nolan’s serio-blockbuster sensibilities seem to be the perfect fit for this Second World War drama about the Allied evacuation of troops from Dunkirk. A good cast – including Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance and, um, Harry Styles – could well elevate this to greatness.
Dunkirk is released nationwide on 21st July 2017.
Blade Runner 2049
While a cash-in sequel to an old classic should, theoretically, raise eyebrows, the signs look good for this one. Denis Villeneuve, fresh from his recent masterpiece Arrival, is directing; Ryan Gosling is the lead, Harrison Ford the returning support; and the first teaser looked madly atmospheric. Fingers are firmly crossed.
Blade Runner 2049 is released nationwide on 6th October 2017.
Come on, you know you’re looking forward to this. The first Paddington was not only funny and visually splendid, it had a socially conscious message that bravely spoke against the rise of UKIP. But with Brexit now firmly on the horizon, you just know Paddington’s gonna be fur-ious. He’s the hero we need.
Paddington 2 is released nationwide on 10th November 2017.