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The 52 Most Anticipated Movies of 2020

We’re not here to tell you how to live your life in 2020, but if you’d like to see more good movies, we think we can help.
Most Anticipated
By  · Published on January 15th, 2020

Prisoners of the Ghostland (TBA)

Nicolas Cage is at his best when he works with interesting filmmakers who give him material that he can sink his teeth into. In theory, Sion Sono should be one of those filmmakers. The Japanese director has a large, eclectic filmography that boasts everything from musicals to horror fare, and regardless of their quality, his movies always tend to be original. For his English-language debut, he’s cast Cage as a criminal who must break a curse to rescue a girl who has disappeared. Cage has already described it as the “wildest movie [he’s] ever made,” and that’s saying a lot from the man who made Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and Mandy. (Kieran Fisher)

Rebecca (TBA)

No one needs to remake an Alfred Hitchcock movie, but if someone is going to, I’m glad it’s Ben Wheatley. He’s an ardent cinephile and lover of cinema who respects the iconic director tremendously, but he’s also a filmmaker who likes to bring some fresh ideas to the table. If anyone can remake Rebecca and make the movie interesting in its own right, it’s Wheatley. In the movie, Lily James will play a newlywed wife who struggles to deal with her husband’s previous spouse. Armie Hammer plays said husband, while Keeley Hawes will star as the ex-wife. Wheatley can mine the inherent horror of this premise to great effect as he’s a master at creating dread and tension, as well as delivering some punchy dark comedy. If he brings these sensibilities to Rebecca, the movie will be a treat. (Kieran Fisher)

Run Hide Fight (TBA)

Cinestate has established itself as a controversial studio having produced movies like Dragged Across Concrete (where Mel Gibson plays a racist cop) and The Standoff At Sparrow Creek (which revolves around a militia). Some critics have accused their films of courting an audience of deplorables as well. However, their work is more nuanced than that and has been praised and argued about by outlets and fans from all across the political spectrum. Run Hide Fight, however, is bound to divide audiences even more as it’s a Die Hard riff that deals with the subject matter of school shootings. The story follows a 17-year-old girl who wrestles a gun from a would-be assailant and uses it to defend her classmates from a gang of shooters who are live-streaming their massacre. On paper, that’s a premise that will be off-putting to many potential viewers and understandably so, but don’t expect the movie to be some kind of pro-gun exploitation movie, either. The film is bound to cause an uproar, but it’s also possible that some thoughtful debates will emerge from it. (Kieran Fisher)

The Blind of the Ghost Cave: Angel’s Eyes (TBA)

The words “Timo Tjahjanto action movie” tickle the fancy of several staff members here at Rejects HQ, so naturally The Blind of the Ghost Cave: Angel’s Eyes is on our radar. The director behind the masterpiece that is The Night Comes for Us has a knack for making entertaining flicks that boast bone-crunching, bloody action, and this adaptation of Ganesh TH’s popular Indonesian silat adventure comics will allow him to lean into those sensibilities. The comics follow a blind, wandering hero who roams the lands, defeating bad guys with his swashbuckling and martial arts skills. This move seems like some pulpy fun, and fans of serialized adventure stories in the vein of Conan the Barbarian and Solomon Kane should add it to their radars. (Kieran Fisher)

We Can Be Heroes (TBA)

With the exception of Machete Kills and The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lava Girl, Robert Rodriguez’s output throughout his career has been consistently entertaining. For his next movie, he’ll be tackling the superhero genre, as the story follows a group of children whose crusader parents get kidnapped by aliens, and it’s up to them to save the day. It’s basically a retread of Spy Kids, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as the director is good at telling stories about the adventures of heroic youngsters. Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Christian Slater, Boyd Holbrook, and Pedro Pascal will also star, and that’s a super fun cast right there. (Kieran Fisher)

After Yang (TBA)

A few years back, did you bother to see Columbus? If the answer is yes, then you know why we’re excited about After Yang. If the answer is no, then you really need to watch Columbus. Kogonada’s debut feature starring John Cho and Haley Lu Richardson is a sweet, thoughtful, and intimate consideration of the self-doubt that plagues us all, set against an architectural stroll through the Indiana community. Richardson returns for the director’s follow-up feature, but this one sounds quite different from Columbus. In the near future, we follow a father (Colin Farrell) and daughter (Richardson) as they attempt to save the life of their robotic caregiver. As he used architecture, Kogonada will surely use the run-of-the-mill A.I. sci-fi tropes to mine very human concerns. More Kubrick than Cameron. We’re ready. (Brad Gullickson)

Army of the Dead (TBA)

Zack Snyder is a polarizing filmmaker who hasn’t made a good movie since 2009’s Watchmen. But I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt as he’s primarily been involved in helming DCEU movies, and that entire franchise was bad until Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Shazam! came along and saved the day. Army of the Dead, however, is a different story. A Netflix-produced movie about a group of mercenaries plotting a heist during a zombie apocalypse? That’s a neat premise. Dave Bautista in the leading role? That’s solid casting. The streamer will allow Snyder to have more creative control, which could be a terrible idea given that this is the filmmaker who made Sucker Punch. Of course, he also directed entertaining action-horror fare with Dawn of the Dead and 300, so I’m cautiously optimistic about Army of the Dead. (Kieran Fisher)

I’m Thinking of Ending Things (TBA)

It’s been five years since we were graced with a Charlie Kaufman film (Anomalisa), which isn’t an unheard of gap between an auteur director’s projects. But it’s pretty inane when you realize it’s not by choice. In 2016, while receiving an award in Karlovy Vary, Kaufman told film critic David Ehrlich that he felt like he “fucking blew it,” the “it” being his career as a director. “[P]eople tell me that they’ve been influenced by me. But I’ve also seen critics say ‘This is a Charlie Kaufman-type movie, and so-and-so made it.’ And it’s like…why do they get to make Charlie Kaufman movies and I don’t?” In other words, Synecdoche, New York (the only other screenplay he’s written that he’s been able to direct) was too much for the masses, and Kaufman has more or less been professionally quarantined due to the complex and depressing nature of his films.

If the return of Kaufman alone doesn’t thrill you to your core, consider the rest of the film’s personnel: Jessie Buckley, Jesse Plemons, Toni Collette, previous collaborator David Thewlis, and Cold War cinematographer Łukasz Żal. That combined with the content of the film — a cerebral thriller/horror story adapted from a 2016 Iain Reid novel of the same name — make for a promising outlook. It wouldn’t be a Kaufman film if it wasn’t poised to whack us with a devastating mindfuck. I never thought we’d be thanking Netflix for their financial backing of all-time great directors that can’t find financing (Scorsese et al), but here we are. And I couldn’t be more grateful. (Luke Hicks)

Macbeth (TBA)

Joel Coen minus Ethan Coen? Wut? That can’t be. Perish the thought, but all signs point to “yes, indeed.” The director is taking on an adaptation of Shakespeare’s play without his brother, and we have no idea what, if any, spin he’s going to bring to it. Modern-day? Maybe. Another samurai stab? I dunno. How ’bout a Western? Sure! It doesn’t matter. We will follow any Coen into whatever project, and the casting of Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand as the ambitious Scots who slay their way to the top due to the prophecy of three witches should kick any cinema lover out of bed. Give us a Macbeth every year as long as it’s backed by as bold a vision as Joel Coen. (Brad Gullickson)

Mank (TBA)

Nearly five years since his last theatrical endeavor, David Fincher is back, but he’s slinging cinema for Netflix. Why should Scorsese have all the fun? Mank is the saga of the greatest movie ever made – Citizen Kane– as it was experienced through the eyes of its screenwriter, Herman J. Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman). Based on a script by Jack Fincher (David’s father), and completed just before his passing in 2003, Mank depicts the early days of Kane‘s gestation, when the car-crippled writer was locked inside Kemper Campbell Ranch as Orson Welles (Tom Burke) barked his genius from above. Their collaboration would lead to much controversy regarding the brilliance of Kane itself, and who exactly wrote just what. Did Welles screw over Mank, or was Mank merely another instrument in the director’s toolbox? Fincher is bringing fire to singe the legend. (Brad Gullickson)

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