So which current features have release dates with big red circles around them on my calendar?
The Muppets dir. James Bobin
I want my Muppets back.
There have certainly been bright spots in the post-Henson world of the Muppets, but to be brutally honest things really haven't been the same since the master went away, and the "let's plug the Muppets into a classic story" formula has been paying diminishing returns until hitting rock bottom with Muppet Wizard of Oz which most people don't know exists.
Every once in a while a project will fall into exactly the right hands and judging by the exuberant trailer I have a hunch that might be the case with The Muppets. Self-described superfans Segal and Stoller have already brought the funny with their underrated Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Now they've been given the keys to the Henson kingdom. Here's hoping they are the ones to return the Kermit and company to their glory days.
Shame dir. Steve McQueen
Fassbender and McQueen reuniting after 2008's brilliant, hypnotic Hunger? Yeah. I'm there. Throw An Education's Carey Mulligan and a rapturous response from early festival screenings into the deal and my anticipation rises from must-see to must see NOW.
Martha Marcy May Marlene dir. Sean Durkin
With a title that bad it's got to be good, right?
I could say I'm excited about the positive early reviews or the Oscar buzz currently gathering around Elizabeth Olsen's lead performance, but honestly, my excitement for this title is 98% seeing John Hawkes in that role. The idea of him as a sinister, crazy-eyed, culte leader manipulating all the soft-headed sheep around him sounds too perfect to miss. I haven't gotten such an electric vibe off a performance since I got my first taste of Eisenberg in The Social Network around this time last year.