Deadly Movies previews the best upcoming horror, sci-fi, creature, and monster movies of 2011.
2010 was a fairly strong year for horror; Indie film-makers and new ideas provided us with the most memorable moments. ‘Splice’, ‘Frozen’, ‘Monsters’, and ‘Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale’ provided huge high’s for genre fans. Once again the studio remake system let us all down with tedious repetition. Movies like ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’, ‘SAW 3D’, and ‘Resident Evil: Afterlife’ continue to be the face of mainstream horror and do a good job in hiding the quality that lurks beneath. However, at least the horror remake cycle shows signs of slowing in 2011, if not ending. So join Deadly Movies for a preview of the best gory, beasty, growly, grimy, dirty, and (this year) alieny movies of 2011.
The Troll Hunter (Date TBC): Scandinavian horror and monsters are hot hot hot. ‘Let The Right One In’, ‘Dead Snow’, ‘Cold Prey’, ‘Harpoon’, and ‘Rare Exports’ have all blazed a trail on the international scene over the past few years, and Hollywood is watching. Look north for the future of horror over the coming decade. This Norwegian offering looks like a brilliant monster fantasy. Yet again it’s a simple, but fascinating concept: Trolls are real (and huge) and live in the Norwegian snow covered wilderness. A group of film students find out about this government coverup and set out to capture the creatures on film. Think ‘The BFG’ for the ‘Cloverfield’ generation.
Cabin In The Woods (Date TBC): Josh Whedon, of Buffy fame, does exploitation horror? Yes please. The title may be uninspiring, harking back to the hight of 70s and 80s exploitation flicks, but with Whedon scripting it has a great chance of revitalising the ’teens get lost in the woods‘ convention. Remember, Whedon is highly sought after. He’s recently been charged with Marvel’s HUGE project ‘The Avengers’.
Area 51 (Date TBC) and 51 (January 28): Two Area 51 movies for you (Not connected in any way). Remember how much Hollywood likes popular trends? ‘Armageddon’ and ‘Deep Impact’ in 1998, ‘Volcano’ and ‘Dante’s Peak’ in 1997. This year it’s aliens. And loads of them. As well as a few inasion movies (ala ‘Independence Day’). There’ll be two visits to America’s most secret of secret secrets; Area 51. ‘51′ sees journalists gaining access to the facility for the first time, during which an alien resident runs amok. A killer amok at that. ‘Area 51′ is director Oren Peli’s second feature following his hugely successful ‘Paranormal Activity’. Peli will stick to the hand held camera routine as teens and their mischievous recording devices slip undetected into the world’s most protected military base. ‘Area 51′ sounds more interesting, but you just can’t bet against Peli winning this one.
Apollo 18 (March 4): More aliens. This time on the Moon. This intriguing concept is rushing through production at an alarming rate. Green-lit only months ago, posters and viral videos arrived online before a script had even been written, and with a release date set for March, there’s only 2 months for production. However, the story of the apparent covered up Apollo 18 mission which ran into aliens on the surface of the Moon is a highly romantic notion for sci-fi and creature fans. Fingers crossed.
Scream 4 (or SCRE4M as the marketing department wants you say – April 15): I know it’s a bit of an eyeroller; why dig up a franchise that ended 11 years ago, and is very much a product of the 90s? The short answer is, who knows. But with all three major original cast returning (Campell, Cox, and Arquette) and Wes Craven back to direct, hopes in the horror community are high (if slightly tentative) that Craven can add something fresh to the genre, as he did back in 1996, when ‘Scream’ kick started the dead slasher sub-genre. This is high risk for cast, director, and fans.
Rise Of The Apes (June 24): The Piranha and Predator franchises recieved decent studio reboots last year, and Fox is determined to have at least one more monkey-stab at ‘The Planet of the Apes’. One things shtands out in this fairly secretive project; James Franco. Franco is super hot property right now(and rightfully so), expect Oscar whispers for his performance in Danny Boyle’s ‘127 Hours’. The film is a rumoured origin story, based loosely on 1972’s ‘Conquest of The Planet of the Apes’.
The Thing (aka The Thing Prequel – October 14): Another reboot, another prequel. This long talked about origin story will look at the events which lead to the murderous rampage by an alien shapeshifter in John Carpenter’s 1982 horror classic ‘The Thing’. ‘The Thing’ is a treasured icon of the genre, so revisiting it for financial gain is sacrilege to the community. But there are signs that this may be worth a punt, and hopefully more. The story, for one, is worth a look at. Carpenter’s original does set up the events that happened previously at a Norwegian arctic research centre. With Scandinavian horror as hot as it is, there’s something appealing to revisiting cinema’s favourite alien shapeshifter with a largely Norwegian cast.
So that’s it. Expect aliens to be high on the menu this year as horror goes through another space invaders cycle. If that’s not your cup of tea, here’s Deadly Movies best of the rest: ‘Husk’ (January 28 – killer scarecrows), ‘Mothers Day’ (April 1 – killer mother and her hillbilly boys), ‘Insidious’ (April 1 – killer spirits inhabiting a comatose child), ‘Piranha 3DD’ (August – killer fish and killer boobies).