Often, the best science fiction and fantasy movies are not the ones with enormous budgets. They’re the mid-budgeted movies. For example, Dredd choked in theaters but it turned up on a surprising number of critic’s top-ten lists. The smaller movies are often the ones that take risks, that do something different… and here are five coming up we’re looking forward to.
Dark Skies, February 22nd
Legion and Priest are both heavily underrated movies. Legion in particular is a surprisingly good siege story with some memorable (and hilarious) moments. Scott Stewart’s next movie seems to be a mix of Poltergeist and Signs, and it also seems to be, you know, scary. And if nothing else, it’s got Keri Russell headbutting a window. That’ll make an awesome GIF.
The Purge, May 31st
Ethan Hawke and Lena Headey star in a movie where overpopulation has a novel solution: There’s a twelve hour period, every year, where absolutely nothing is illegal, including murder. That’s got a nice 1960s SF vibe, similar to a few stories Harry Harrison wrote. OK, so putting kids at risk is a cheap ploy, but this has the potential to be a lot of fun, and possibly even thoughtful.
Riddick, September 6th
Pitch Black was a solid Aliens ripoff, different enough to stand out from the legions of movies cribbing from that classic. The Chronicles of Riddick, on the other hand, is a gloriously crazy pulp SF classic that’s basically “Conan In Space”, especially when you check out the Director’s Cut. This is really the most likely to be great: For Vin Diesel and David Twohy, the writer and director, it’s a labor of love they struggled to finish.
Seventh Son, October
Jeff Bridges plays a witch-hunter.
Admit it, there is nothing in that sentence you don’t want to see. The fact that Julianne Moore plays the evil witch is really just icing on the cake.
Gravity, no release date set
Alfonso Cuaron, director of the only truly great Harry Potter movie and Children Of Men, directed this. It stars Sandra Bullock as an astronaut drifting in space, trying to get back to the International Space Station.
It might be boring, but that’s one hell of a set-up, right there.
Any we missed? Let us know in the comments!