Monday, February 28, 2022

Top 20 Movies to Look Out For In March (2022)

 According to Cat


20 - Monstrous (3/12)

 
Production/Distribution: Burning Sky Films, Snakebyte Productions and Entertainment Group, Willow Pictures, Tip-Top Productions, Lucky 13 Productions, Red Coral Productions, Scarlett Pictures, Skipstone Pictures, Umbrelic Entertainment, Film Mode Entertainment, Screen Media Films
Director: Chris Sivertson
Writer: Carol Chrest
Actors: Christina Ricci, Santino Barnard, Don Baldaramos, Colleen Camp, Lew Temple, Carol Anne Watts, Sally Elbert, Rachael Edlow, Anna Tenney, Chris Mullinax, Nancy O'Fallon, Matt Lovell, Lola Grace Combs
Genre: Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Rated: Unrated
Length: 89 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: Story centers on a traumatized woman fleeing from her abusive ex-husband with her 7-year-old son. In their new, remote sanctuary they find they have a bigger, more terrifying monster to deal with.
 
Kicking off this month’s list, I couldn’t help but go with Monstrous. The trailer gave me a few vibes that told me it might not be the strongest movie hitting screens in March 2022, but it’s at least going to be interesting.
 
Of course, Christina Ricci (The Lizzie Borden Chronicles, The Matrix Resurrections, Yellowjackets) in the lead role of a legit monster movie is always a huge draw for me. She tends to excel with the macabre and off-the-wall projects, after all.
 
Examining the trailer further, I am wondering if there are layers to this plot. Was the young mother and her son lured to this house on a monster-infested lake on purpose? Was the stink-eye look from the woman in the vehicle merely because Ricci’s character was a single mother in an era that was still pushing the “nuclear family” ideal where women should be in the home instead of the workforce, etc – or was there something more sinister to it?
 
Things that make you go ‘hmm,’ indeed.
 
I appreciated that the trailer didn’t give a full-blown look at the lake monster.  The production quality on what we did get to see, however, looked pretty cool.

Monstrous will be available to stream on Shudder. 
 
19 - Against the Ice (3/2)

 
Production/Distribution: Ill Kippers Productions, RVK Studios, Netflix
Director: Peter Flinth
Writers: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Joe Derrick, Ejnar Mikkelsen
Actors: Nikolaj Coster Waldau, Joe Cole, Charles Dance, Diarmaid Murtagh, Ed Speleers, Frankie Wilson, Gísli Örn Garðarsson, Heida Reed,  Nick Jameson, Sam Redford
Genre: Adventure, Drama, History
Rated: Unrated
Length: 102 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: In 1909, two explorers fight to survive after they're left behind while on a Denmark expedition in ice-covered Greenland.

Against the Ice gives us an on-screen reunion, of sorts, of the father and son pairing from fictional Westeros, played by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones, Oblivion, Exit Plan) and Charles Dance (Godzilla: King of the Monsters, The Crown, The King's Man). Coster-Waldau and Dance will likely only share limited scenes here, however, since Against the Ice is primarily about the survival adventure expedition, itself, rather than the behind-the-scenes boardroom politics.
 
If you are a fan of survival adventures pitting man against the elements, then Against the Ice looks like it’s going to be right up your alley. The trailer seemed to promise quite the intense experience as a duo undertakes a perilous journey to discover what happened to an earlier expedition. They face challenges with terrain, supplies, wildlife, and both mental and physical health.
 
When movies like this are based on true stories, it just makes them that much more intense. My curiosity is piqued. While Against the Ice looks like it will be a brutal ride, I’m on board this mission for better or worse.

Against the Ice will release to Netflix. 

18 - Windfall (3/18)

 
Production/Distribution: High Frequency Entertainment, Mutressa Movies, Netflix
Director: Charlie McDowell
Writers: Justin Lader, Charlie McDowell, Jason Segel, Andrew Kevin Walker
Actors: Jason Segel, Jesse Plemons, Lily Collins, Omar Leyva
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 92 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A man breaks into a tech billionaire's empty vacation home, but things go sideways when the arrogant mogul and his wife arrive for a last-minute getaway.
 
The trailer for Windfall captured my attention. When you’re looking at a home invasion scenario, one generally doesn’t sympathize with the intruder. In the case of Windfall, I found myself leaning in that direction because Jesse Plemons’ (Black Mirror, The Irishman, The Power of the Dog) tech mogul character was just that off-puttingly revolting.

Truth be told, I find most of his characters fall into that category. He really excels in those roles. He’s one of those actors whose characters I love to hate.
 
When you throw Jason Segel (Despicable Me, This Is the End, Dispatches from Elsewhere) and Lily Collins (Mirror Mirror, Tolkien, Emily in Paris) into the mix, things get even more interesting. Windfall seems to be a bit of a departure from Segel’s usual fare, and I’m here for it. He was serving some serious intensity in the bit we see with the trailer. I could feel a storm of emotions under the surface, and I’m dying to know more of his story to tell me what led to this particular course of action.
 
Windfall will be releasing directly to Netflix.

17 – The Weekend Away (3/3)

 
Production/Distribution: 42, Netflix, Pakt Media
Director: Kim Farrant
Writer: Sarah Alderson
Actors: Amar Bukvic, Christina Ulfsparre, Leighton Meester, Luke Norris, Ziad Bakri
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Rated: TV-14
Length: minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A weekend getaway to Croatia that goes awry when a woman is accused of killing her best friend. As she attempts to clear her name and uncover the truth, her efforts unearth a painful secret.
 
I’ll be upfront and mention that I have not read the novel that The Weekend Away has adapted from. That being said, the author of said novel has also been a staff writer for at least 63 episodes or so of the TV Series S.W.A.T. (2017-). That series is still going strong. If she wasn’t doing a good job crafting story  there, then she wouldn’t have stuck around that long. I digress. My point was that I’m more inclined to have faith in the story. Crime drama is completely up her alley.
 
Aside from that, I like Leighton Meester (Country Strong, Semper Fi, How I Met Your Father). I find it easy to connect with her performances, and it was the same with The Weekend Away’s trailer.
 
It was all too easy to see myself in her shoes. My luck is generally bad enough that I could see something like this happening to me if I took a random weekend getaway trip halfway around the world from home.
 
My curiosity is burning to know what happened to the friend – and why? Something was clearly up and the girl got mixed up in something she shouldn’t have – but what?! How does the driver fit into it? I have so many questions I’m dying for the answers to.
 
Netflix is firing on all cylinders with its March lineup. This isn’t even the last of the movies the streaming giant is releasing this month that will appear on this list. 

16 - The Exorcism of God (3/11)

 
Production/Distribution: Epica Pictures, Mouth of the Devil, Terminal, Digicine, Saban Films, Première TV Distribution, XYZ Films
Director: Alejandro Hidalgo
Writers: Santiago Fernández Calvete, Alejandro Hidalgo             
Actors: Joseph Marcell, María Gabriela de Faría, Will Beinbrink, Raquel Rojas, Irán Castillo, Hector Kotsifakis, Alfredo Herrera, Juan Ignacio Aranda, Christian Rummel, Eloisa Maturen, Maria Antonieta Hidalgo, Johanna Winkel, Evelia Di Gennaro, Patricia Pacheco, Marcela Girón, Simona Chirinos
Genre: Drama, Horror
Rated: R
Length: 99 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: An American priest working in Mexico is possessed during an exorcism and ends up committing a terrible act. Eighteen years later, the consequences of his sin come back to haunt him, unleashing the greatest battle within.
 
All signs are pointing in the direction of The Exorcism of God being a deeply disturbing movie. The trailer really gave me the creeps. That’s phenomenal news for writer/director Alejandro Hidalgo (The House at the End of Time, House of the Disappeared, 40 Years of Fantasporto), if this production lives up to the teaser’s hype. Hidalgo doesn’t have many projects under his belt as yet, at least according to IMDb, so the jury is still out whether or not he can capture the essence of a story such as this without it feeling like a rinse and repeat of what has come before.
 
That being said, the snippets we were shown in the preview do toss out a few new bits right out of the gate. I have hope. Another chill-worthy moment was the scene that looked like it could have stepped straight out of a moment in The Exorcist (1973). Selina and I both noticed that during our trailer stream, and it spurred me to try and dig a bit to see if there was a connection between the movies. I couldn’t find anything specific aside from that one shot. The characters aren’t the same in any way, so it was likely a homage to the movie that started it all.
 
While I am not familiar with most of the cast, I was quite excited to see Joseph Marcell (Much Ado About Nothing, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, The Sandman) involved with this production. Of course, he played the butler Geoffrey on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990-1996). All the nostalgia feels just rushed right on in.
 
The Exorcism of God will have a limited theater release and will be available On Demand before releasing to DVD and Blu-Ray in April. 

15 – So Cold the River (3/25)

 
Production/Distribution: 1804 Productions, Pigasus Pictures, Saban Films, Blue Finch Films Releasing, Defiant Screen Entertainment
Director: Paul Shoulberg            
Writers: Paul Shoulberg, Michael Koryta
Actors: Bethany Joy Lenz, Alysia Reiner, Katie Sarife, Andrew J. West, Deanna Dunagan, Kevin Cahoon, Aaron Roman Weiner, Kingston Vernes, David Myers Gregory, Rupert Spraul, Ruth Kaufman, Daniel Burke
Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 95 minutes
 
IMDb BlurbA documentary filmmaker's research on a town's mysterious benefactor unearths an unexplained evil while staying at a local resort.
 
So Cold the River is an adaptation of a horror novel penned by the same author behind Those Who Wish Me Dead (2021). While the screenplay writer and director of So Cold the River is relatively untested, with few credits on IMDb under his belt, the original author, Michael Koryta, is one of the executive producers in this production team, so we can assume that this project was executed to his satisfaction. I enjoyed the aforementioned forest fire movie, so I am holding out hope for So Cold the River to meet or exceed my expectations.
 
All that aside, I am generally down to support any of the alums from One Tree Hill (2003-2012). The fact that Bethany Joy Lenz (Colony, Extortion, Pearson) is the lead here instantly grabbed my attention. There is a small chance I might be slightly inherently biased in favor of this movie as a result, but at least I can be honest about it.
 
Delving deeper into So Cold the River based on the trailer, there’s plenty to like. There are some supernatural shenanigans and a malevolent mystery to uncover. I was happy to recognize Deanna Dunagan (The Visit, An Acceptable Loss, Stillwater) and Andrew J. West (The Walking Dead, The Nightmare Code, Once Upon a Time) among the cast, as well.

So Cold the River will release first to theaters and will follow up with a Digital and On Demand release on March 29th
 
14 - Rescued by Ruby (3/17)

 
Production/Distribution: Fezziwig Studios, Netflix 
Director: Katt Shea
Writer: Karen Janszen
Actors: Brad Mann, Camille Sullivan, Eileen Pedde, Giacomo Baessato, Grant Gustin, Jude Culham-Keays, Kaylah Zander, Scott Wolf, Sharon Taylor, Todd Mann, Tom McBeath
Genre: Biography, Drama, Family
Rated: Unrated
Length: 90 minutes
 
IMDb BlurbChasing his dream to join an elite K-9 unit, a state trooper partners with a fellow underdog: clever but naughty shelter pup Ruby.

My emotions are really raw right now. My best friend whom I consider a sister had to say goodbye to her Dane-mastiff just a few days ago. She’d had him since he was weaned from his litter and he was my “fur-nephew.” It was tragic and I am heartbroken. Everyone that knew Rex, the gentle giant, loved him. He was my friend’s world. There’s a long story involved, but this is the TL;DR so I don’t digress too far down that rabbit hole.
 
Needless to say, writing about a dog-centric movie right now – even watching the trailer – has me misty-eyed and on the verge of tears. That being said, please forgive me for not elaborating at length about my choice for Rescued by Ruby.
 
The cast looks solid. I’ve been a fan of Scott Wolf (Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters, The Night Shift, Nancy Drew) since Party of Five (1994-2000) and Grant Gustin (Affluenza, Krystal, The Flash) is awesome. I think Gustin is amazing for the lead here, opposite the titular dog.
 
It’s neat this is based on a true story and is an excellent reminder that shelter dogs can be just as great as dogs from anywhere else – and sometimes even better.

Rescued by Ruby isn’t the last movie on this list releasing to Netflix this month, either. 
 
13 – The Spine of Night (3/24)

 
Production/Distribution: Gorgonaut, Reno Productions, Koch Films, Velvet Spoon, Wild Duck Productions, Freaks On, RLJE Films, Shudder
Directors: Philip Gelatt, Morgan Galen King
Writers: Philip Gelatt, Morgan Galen King
Actors: Richard E. Grant, Lucy Lawless, Patton Oswalt, Betty Gabriel, Joe Manganiello, Patrick Breen, Larry Fessenden, Jason Gore, Maggie Lakis, Tom Lipinski, Nina Lisandrello, Rob McClure, Malcolm Mills, Abigail Savage, Jordan Douglas Smith
Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure
Rated: Unrated
Length: 93 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: Ultra-violent, epic fantasy set in a land of magic follows heroes from different eras and cultures battling against a malevolent force.
 
I have a complicated relationship with anthologies. Some of them turn out amazing, while others fall far short of expectations. Sadly, my experiences have been more towards the latter than not. Be that as it may, The Spine of Night gives me hope.
 
Animated movies for adults are awesome. I can’t say that enough, and there aren’t that many out there. When most people see an animation, they tend to immediately chalk the production up as a kiddie cartoon. Let me tell you that this movie absolutely is not for children whatsoever. Older teens might be able to handle it with parental oversight; but if the violence in the trailer was any indication, this is far too much for the young.
 
That being said, I am not generally a fan of the animation style used with The Spine of Night. This is one of the few exceptions where I might tolerate it better. This strongly reminds me of another adult-oriented animated anthology from yester-year - Heavy Metal (1981). It is one of the few anthologies I really enjoyed. The nostalgia feels add to my desire to give this one a chance.
 
Also, can we talk about the cast? The Spine of Night is stacked with amazing talent. We’re talking Lucy Lawless (Spartacus, The Breaker Uppers, Ash vs Evil Dead), Betty Gabriel (Get Out, Upgrade, The Purge: Election Year), Richard E. Grant (Logan, Earwig and the Witch, Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard), Joe Manganiello (True Blood, Smurfs: The Lost Village, Archenemy), and Patton Oswalt (Please Stand By, The Secret Life of Pets 2, The Goldbergs) among others.
 
I am very excited that we are going to get a chance to screen The Spine of Night and provide a review for you before this movie releases on Shudder. 

12 - Cheaper by the Dozen (3/18)

 
Production/Distribution: 20th Century Studios, Fox Family Films, Khalabo Ink Society, Twentieth Century Fox, Walt Disney Pictures, Disney+
Director: Gail Lerner
Writers: Kenya Barris, Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, Frank B. Gilbreth Jr., Jenifer Rice-Genzuk, Craig Titley
Actors: Brittany Daniel, Carlos Santos, Cynthia Daniel, Cynthia Murell, Erika Christensen, Gabrielle Union, Kylie Rogers, Luke Prael, Mykal-Michelle Harris, Ron Funches, Zach Braff
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Family
Rated: PG
Length: Unknown
 
IMDb Blurb: The raucous exploits of a blended family of 12, the Bakers, as they navigate a hectic home life while simultaneously managing their family business.
 
When we first watched the trailer for Cheaper by the Dozen, my first thoughts were: “another one? Again?” Okay Disney, we get it. You like to re-spin ideas. I just couldn’t imagine why anyone would want to remake or reboot the 2003 movie by the same name. It was clear this decidedly isn’t a sequel within that same storyline.
 
Well, it turns out the movie I thought was the ‘original’ was a remake, itself. Cheaper by the Dozen is actually a loose book adaptation from a 1948 semi-autobiographical novel written by a pair of siblings who grew up in a household of 12 children. The original Cheaper by the Dozen movie was released back in 1950.
 
Sometimes it is appropriate to revisit a story. After watching the trailer for this newest Cheaper by the Dozen, I have found that I was likely a little hasty in my judgment of the Mouse House’s decision. This new version updates the family dynamic for a new generation. Current pop culture references, technology, trends, and diversity bring this iteration forward. The 2003 movie still felt a bit old fashioned in comparison, even though it came out just after the turn of the century.
 
I really enjoyed Gabrielle Union (Think Like a Man Too, Almost Christmas, Breaking In) and Zach Braff (Scrubs, Percy Vs Goliath, The Comeback Trail) in the trailer and I really think they’ll bring a lot to this production. I’m not discounting the child actors, but if I listed everyone, we’d be here all day.
 
Cheaper by the Dozen will release directly to Disney+ at no additional premium.

11 - Expired (3/18)

 
Production/Distribution: Bunya Productions, Grindstone Entertainment Group, TriCoast Worldwide
Director: Ivan Sen
Writer: Ivan Sen
Actors: Bianca Wallace, Brooke Nichole Lee, Hugo Weaving, Ivy Dupler, Jillian Nguyen, June Yoon, Keiichi Enomoto, Patrick Moroney, Ryan Kwanten, Shinji Ikefuji
Genre: Sci-Fi, Romance
Rated: R
Length: 102 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: In an uncharted future, two hardened souls meet and confront each other with the things they have done and what they have become.
 
This March is a surprisingly strong month for science fiction. Expired is the first of several within the sci-fi genre we’ll be exploring on this list. It might be labeled as a single genre romance on IMDb, but the trailer made it abundantly clear this story is set in a potentially dystopian future full of cybernetically enhanced humans. It’s not exactly clear just how far into the cyberpunk sub-genre Expired delves, but I’m down for it either way.
 
I’m not really familiar with writer/director Ivan Sem (Beneath Clouds, Dreamland, Mystery Road), but with Ryan Kwanten (Knights of Badassdom, The Hurricane Heist, Them) and Hugo Weaving (Cloud Atlas, Hacksaw Ridge, Mortal Engines) at the head of this cast, I want to give this movie a chance.
 
For those that enjoy a deeper and more intricate plot than a simple love story, Expired promises some action and thrills to go with the feelings.
 
Expired will be released to a limited theater run as well as On-Demand availability.

  
10 - Project Gemini (3/15)

 
Production/Distribution: KD Studios, BF Distribution, Blue Swan Entertainment, Condor, Crystalsky Multimedia, Eagle Entertainment, JL Vision Film, Mis. Label, Noori Pictures, Phoenicia Pictures, Selecta Visión, Splendid Film, Well Go USA Entertainment
Director: Serik Beyseu
Writers: Natalya Lebedeva, Dmitriy Zhigalov
Actors: Dmitriy Frid, Josh Petersdorf, River Kanoff, Luis Bermudez, Egor Koreshkov, Ashely Biski, Nikita Dyuvbanov, Caleb Yen, Petr Romanov, Alyona Konstantinova, Martinez Lisa, Aeric Azana, Carlyle DePriest, Viktor Potapeshkin, Samoukov Kostya
Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Rated: Unknown
Length: 100 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A sci-fi thriller about a space mission sent to terraform a distant planet. However, the mission encounters something unknown that has its own plan for the planet.
 
Project Gemini is our next sci-fi offering for March. The production quality on this space adventure looks outstanding. The visuals in the trailer were spectacular. I was also getting some serious Alien (1979) vibes.
 
I’m not familiar with any of the production team or cast, but the trailer was captivating enough that I am not bothered by that in the slightest.
 
Project Gemini will release direct to Digital and On-Demand services, bypassing theaters here in the US. 

9 - The Bunker Game (3/17)

 
Production/Distribution: Eagle Pictures, Kador, Place du Marché
Director: Roberto Zazzara
Writers: Manuela Cacciamani, Francesca Forristal, Davide Orsini, Kt Roberts, Roberto Zazzara
Actors: Gaia Weiss, Lorenzo Richelmy, Mark Ryder, Tudor Istodor, Makita Samba, Amina Smaïl, Nicolo Pasetti, Felice Jankell, Léa Rostain, Serena de Ferrari
Genre: Horror
Rated: Unrated
Length: 90 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: After several mysterious accidents, A Live Action Role Playing game is interrupted and the players leave the bunker while the staff remains behind to investigate the disappearance of Greg, the mastermind of the game.
 
The Bunker Game is another movie where I know generally nothing about the production team or cast. Once more, I really don’t mind. The story presented for The Bunker Game looks new and refreshing, bringing a new tale to the horror genre.
 
The atmosphere of a bunker-hosted role-playing game is inherently interesting. This one is sure to make claustrophobes and those uncomfortable underground a bit squirmy in their seats. I was intrigued by the filming location, so I looked it up. The Bunker Game was actually filmed in a real bunker system that was built prior to World War II in Italy North of Rome, and later converted into a fallout shelter during the Cold War. This bunker is open to the public as a tourist destination available for tours regularly.
 
The Bunker Game will release as a Shudder exclusive, and you can be sure we’ll be screening it for review.

8 - Alice (3/18)

 
Production/Distribution: Steel Springs Pictures, Roadside Attractions, Vertical Entertainment
Director: Krystin Ver Linden
Writer: Krystin Ver Linden
Actors: Keke Palmer, Common, Jonny Lee Miller, Gaius Charles, Madelon Curtis, Kenneth Farmer, Natasha Yvette, Jaxon Goldenberg, Craig Stark, Alicia Witt, David Andrew Nash, Jim McKeny, Sharonne Lanier, Janet L. Burns, Durrell Lyons
Genre: Drama
Rated: Unrated
Length:100 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A slave in the antebellum South escapes her secluded plantation only to discover a shocking reality that lies beyond the tree line.
 
Alice is a movie that I really hope will do well at the box office. It is absolutely horrifying to learn that this is based on a true story. Somewhere in the backwoods of Georgia, some plantation just decided to take it upon themselves to ignore the laws and pretend the whole Civil War didn’t happen. I honestly don’t know how they got away with it all the way through to the 70s, if the timeline given in the movie is accurate to the real events. It just blows my mind.
 
While the second act of this revenge drama might feel like Blaxploitation at first blush, Alice is clearly thematically opposite. This film is meant to be empowering, and is merely giving a nod to the films of the 70s era where the story is set.
 
Alice has an outstanding cast to pair with this powerful story. Keke Palmer (Ice Age: Collision Course, Scream Queens, Hustlers) is the perfect fit for the titular protagonist and Common (Now You See Me, John Wick: Chapter 2, The Kitchen) was an excellent choice for her modern-day mentor. I honestly didn’t realize that Jonny Lee Miller (Dark Shadows, T2 Trainspotting, Elementary) was under the beard of the plantation owner when I watched the trailer. He really delivered with his performance, as well.
 
Alice will be released to theaters as well as digital and On-Demand services.

7 - After Yang (3/4)

 
Production/Distribution: A24, Cinereach, Per Capita Productions, Watcha, Elevation Pictures, Front Row Filmed Entertainment, Showtime Networks
Director: Kogonada
Writers: Kogonada, Alexander Weinstein
Actors: Colin Farrell, Jodie Turner-Smith, Adeline Kerns, Ava DeMary, Brett Dier, Clifton Collins Jr., Eve Lindley, Haley Lu Richardson, Justin H. Min, Malea Emma Tjandrawidjaja, Orlagh Cassidy, Ritchie Coster, Sarita Choudhury
Genre:  Drama, Sci-Fi
Rated: PG
Length: 96 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: In a near future, a family reckons with questions of love, connection, and loss after their A.I. helper unexpectedly breaks down.
 
Every time I see that there’s a new Colin Farrell (Seven Psychopaths, Dumbo, Voyagers) project releasing, I get a bit giddy. He is among the handful of actors that I would watch in absolutely anything, and one of my all-time favorite Irish thespians. Imagine my excitement that there are 2 of his movies hitting screens this month. Of course, the characters from each couldn’t be more different from one another. That’s a bit of the point, though. I digress.
 
Farrell, while a huge draw, is not the only reason why I am eagerly anticipating After Yang. I am also happy to see Jodie Turner-Smith (The Last Ship, Queen & Slim, Anne Boleyn) in this production. I became a big fan of hers with the series Nightflyers (2018). Of course, we couldn’t forget the titular character, Yang, played by Justin H. Min (Dating After College, New Amsterdam, The Umbrella Academy). I think Min is a really good choice for Yang, and I’m really looking forward to seeing what he does with this role.
 
As I mentioned before, this March is a strong month for sci-fi. After Yang gives us the new term ‘techno-sapien’ as a new moniker for androids, and shows us a family where one of these AI beings is considered one of the children of the household. The trailer mentions Yang specifically as a ‘sibling’ to the young girl played by Malea Emma Tjandrawidjaja (Tim and Eric's Bedtime Stories, Coop and Cami Ask the World, iCarly).
 
Ultimately, the film seems to pose some deep existential questions about the nature of ‘being real’ and the connections of family. While it’s likely this will be a bit of a slow burn and lean more heavily towards the drama genre, I am here for all of it.
 
After Yang will have a limited release theater run and will also be available On-Demand. I saw that the Showtime network was mentioned with After Yang’s release information, but it is unclear if that means the film will be available at a later date via Showtime or if there will be an immediate availability to subscribers.

6 - Everything Everywhere All at Once (3/25)

 
Production/Distribution: AGBO, Hotdog Hands, Ley Line Entertainment, Year of The Rat, A24, Elevation Pictures, Entract Films
Directors: Dan Kwan, Daniel Scheinert
Writers: Dan Kwan, Daniel Scheinert
Actors: Amanda, Andy Le, Anthony Molinari, Audrey Wasilewski, Brian Le, Harry Shum Jr., James Hong, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jenny Slate, Jonathan Ke Quan, Michelle Yeoh, Peter Banifaz, Stephanie Hsu
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: R
Length: 140 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: An aging Chinese immigrant is swept up in an insane adventure, where she alone can save the world by exploring other universes connecting with the lives she could have led.
 
I had an excruciatingly hard time deciding the order for the next several movies, this one included. From here on out in my list, I am pretty much bouncing in my seat with anticipation for watching each and every one of these films. It’s fairly literal. I’m having trouble ‘holding my horses.’
 
The trailer for Everything Everywhere All at Once is just absolutely bonkers in all the best ways. I love the multiverse concept explored here, and how the character, Evelyn, is connected to all of her selves much like the characters of Sense8 (2015-2018) were. Of course, brilliant insanity is something we should expect from the writing and directing team from Swiss Army Man (2016).
 
Sure, the plot looks amazing for Everything Everywhere All at Once (and, seriously, the googly eyes everywhere) but can we talk about this cast for a minute? There’s a veritable hit parade going on here.
 
We have Jamie Lee Curtis (Scream Queens, Knives Out, Halloween Kills) embodying the antagonist, which is fun. I really enjoy the work of Harry Shum Jr. (Crazy Rich Asians, Escape Plan: The Extractors, Love Hard) and Jenny Slate (The Secret Life of Pets, Venom, Bob's Burgers), too. Michelle Yeoh (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny, Mechanic: Resurrection, Star Trek: Discovery), playing our heroine Evelyn, is iconic and amazing. I’m over the moon about James Hong (Kung Fu Panda, Star Wars: Rebels, Beast Mode), too. He has had a storied acting career dating back to the 1950s, and has appeared across my whole life’s cinematic landscape on big and small screens. He was even in the original Godzilla: King of the Monsters! (1956).
 
I think I’m the most excited to see Ke Huy Quan (Encino Man, Second Time Around, Finding 'Ohana), though. He is none other than Short Round from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) and Data from The Goonies (1985). Some of the segments in the trailer for Everything Everywhere All at Once really reminded me of his delivery for those characters and the nostalgia feels hit me like a ton of bricks.
 
I absolutely can’t wait for this hilarity to unleash on the world.
 
Everything Everywhere All at Once will release to theaters and On Demand, and will follow up with availability on Showtime (likely after the now-standard 45 day run) according to the deal A24 has with the network.
 
I feel I must add a disclamer. There is a minute chance that this film release has been postponed. A24’s website as well as most other sources show that it is still on target for the March date; however, MovieInsider is showing the date has been changed to April 8th. I’m crossing my fingers this doesn’t get bumped.

5 - Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre (3/18)

 
Production/Distribution: Miramax, STX Films, Tencent, Ascot Elite Entertainment Group, Constantin-Film, Diamond Films, Elevation Pictures, Encore Films, Golden Village Pictures, Leonine Distribution, Roadshow Films, STX Entertainment, The Searchers, Eagle Films
Director: Guy Ritchie
Writers: Ivan Atkinson, Marn Davies, Guy Ritchie
Actors: Aubrey Plaza, Bugzy Malone, Cary Elwes, Conor MacNeill, Eddie Marsan, Eugenia Kuzmina, Hugh Grant, Jason Statham, Josh Hartnett, Kaan Urgancioglu, Lourdes Faberes, Max Beesley, Peter Ferdinando, Sam Douglas
Genre: Action, Comedy, Thriller
Rated: Unrated
Length: 155 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: Special agent Orson Fortune and his team of operatives recruit one of Hollywood's biggest movie stars to help them on an undercover mission when the sale of a deadly new weapons technology threatens to disrupt the world order.
 
When you put Guy Ritchie (Sherlock Holmes, Aladdin, Wrath of Man) and Jason Statham (The Expendables, Redemption, The Meg) together, magic happens. I really could leave it there, but Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre deserves so much more.
 
Statham is only the tip of the iceberg that makes up this stellar cast. I’m excited to see Josh Hartnett (30 Days of Night, The Ottoman Lieutenant, Wrath of Man) in more action oriented roles again. He’d gone to the drama genre side pretty hardcore in recent years. Hugh Grant (The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Gentlemen, The Undoing) is always impeccable, and I adore Aubrey Plaza’s (Ingrid Goes West, Legion, Happiest Season) quirky sense of humor and delivery. Can we take a moment, though, to appreciate that Cary Elwes (Saw, Stranger Things, A Castle for Christmas) is also involved here in a serious (okay, as serious as one of these comedic action thrillers gets) role?
 
I loved every minute of Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre’s trailer and I can’t wait to see the whole movie. This is just the sort of popcorn movie to provide some much needed humor and escapism right about now.
 
Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre is set to release to theaters and On Demand, though, I feel I need to add another release date disclaimer here. While most sources still list March 18th as the official release date for the film, MovieInsider seems to indicate that this might be changing to an uncertain future point in time. I’m definitely keeping my fingers crossed that it stays on track for March.

4 - Turning Red (3/11)

 
Production/Distribution: Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures, HKC Entertainment, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Disney+, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Director: Domee Shi
Writers: Julia Cho, Domee Shi
Actors: Ava Morse, Finneas O'Connell, Ho-Wai Ching, Hyein Park, James Hong, Jordan Fisher, Josh Levi, Lori Tan Chinn, Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, Orion Lee, Rosalie Chiang, Sandra Oh, Sasha Roiz, Sherry Cola, Wai Ching Ho
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: PG
Length: 90 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A 13-year-old girl named Mei Lee turns into a giant red panda whenever she gets too excited.
 
Turning Red captured my attention for so many reasons. First, and foremost, I loved the trailer and it looks amazingly cute and endearing. The story feels important, tackling the emotional roller coaster that kids experience while growing up. In this case, we see a physical manifestation of the main character’s emotions.
 
I am also digging that this new Disney Pixar star has red hair and glasses. I can forgive them that they didn’t give her curls. (Merida is my girl. Just saying.) I digress.
 
Fun plot and adorable red panda aside, Turning Red is stacked with an amazing cast and some Disney benchmarks.
 
Sandra Oh (Grey's Anatomy, Raya and the Last Dragon, Killing Eve), Jordan Fisher (To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, Work It, Star Wars: Visions), and James Hong are worth mentioning among the voice talent here. Finneas O'Connell (Life Inside Out, Modern Family, Glee) is also lending his voice to this animated movie, though the character he’s playing isn’t clear yet. (Of course, his sister, Billie Eilish, also has a song on the soundtrack; and Finneas is heavily involved with the production of her work, as well.)
 
Rosalie Chiang (Clique Wars, The Interns, Soiled) is playing the main character, Meilin Lee, in her full-length feature debut. If the trailer is an accurate reflection of the overall performance, it looks like she hit this one out of the ballpark on her first at-bat. Doubling down on the ‘firsts,’ this is also the directorial debut for Domee Shi (SparkShorts, Pixar Short Films Collection 3, Bao). Her career thus far has mostly been in Pixar’s animation department, so she’s not new to the process. I have a good feeling that she’s going to do some great things.
 
I am super excited that Turning Red will be released directly to Disney+ for subscribers without the need for premium purchase. 

3 - The Lost City (3/25)

 
Production/Distribution: Paramount Pictures, 3dot productions, Exhibit A, Fortis Films, Paramount Pictures International, United International Pictures, Universal Pictures International
Directors: Aaron Nee, Adam Nee
Writers: Oren Uziel, Dana Fox, Adam Nee
Actors: Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, Brad Pitt, Da'Vine Joy Randolph, Daniel Radcliffe, Héctor Aníbal, Oscar Nuñez, Patti Harrison, Raymond Lee, Thomas Forbes-Johnson
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: Unrated
Length: 92 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A reclusive romance novelist on a book tour with her cover model gets swept up in a kidnapping attempt that lands them both in a cutthroat jungle adventure.
 
The Lost City is everything I need right now.
 
When unlikely adventurers are forced into a crazy life and death situation that they are generally unequipped to deal with, if handled correctly, it adds up to absolute comedy gold. Then you add an outstanding cast with Sandra Bullock (Gravity, Minions, Bird Box) and Channing Tatum (Foxcatcher, White House Down, Dog) paired for the leads, Daniel Radcliffe (Jungle, Guns Akimbo, Miracle Workers) as the antagonist, and a cameo by Brad Pitt (World War Z, Fury, Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood) and it’s a done deal. I just absolutely have to watch it.
 
I didn’t forget Da'Vine Joy Randolph (Office Christmas Party, Dolemite Is My Name, Only Murders in the Building), who plays the publisher or agent (if I’m correct). Her appearance in the trailer had me in stitches. Seriously, what about her skillset does she think will help the situation?
 
This is the sort of luck I seem to have. The moment in the trailer that Bullock’s character reaches for the car door handle and the whole vehicle falls off the cliff was an unbelievably relatable and hilarious moment.
 
Even before I read it on the IMDb Trivia page for The Lost City, I was getting some serious Romancing the Stone (1984) vibes when I watched the trailer. That just gave me an extra little nostalgic boost of happy.
 
The Lost City falls squarely in the ‘shut up and take my money’ category. This film will be releasing to theaters, but given its Paramount affiliation, look for it on Paramount+ in 30-45 days. 

2 - The Adam Project (3/11)

 
Production/Distribution: 21 Laps Entertainment, Maximum Effort, Skydance Media, Netflix
Director: Shawn Levy
Writers: Jonathan Tropper, T.S. Nowlin, Jennifer Flackett, Mark Levin
Actors: Alex Mallari Jr., Ben Wilkinson, Braxton Bjerken, Catherine Keener, Ellie Harvie, Jennifer Garner, Lucie Guest, Mark Ruffalo, Melanie Hubert, Ryan Reynolds, Walker Scobell, Zoe Saldana
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: PG-13
Length: 106 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: A time-traveling pilot teams up with his younger self and his late father to come to terms with his past while saving the future.
 
The moment someone mentions Ryan Reynolds (Life, Free Guy, Red Notice) is attached to a project, my answer is always going to be ‘yes.’ I don’t need any other reason, really. I’ve enjoyed pretty much everything I’ve ever seen him in. His wit and cheeky humor is absolutely amazing. I need more laughs like this in my life right now.
 
I do realize, however, that there is more to The Adam Project than just Reynolds. I’m excited to see that Jennifer Garner (Peppermint, Llama Llama, Yes Day), Mark Ruffalo (Now You See Me 2, Dark Waters, What If...?), Zoe Saldana (Columbiana, I Kill Giants, Maya and the Three), and Catherine Keener (Get Out, The Croods 2: A New Age, Brand New Cherry Flavor) are also involved with the film.
 
This will be the debut for young Walker Scobell as well. If the trailer was a good indication, I think he has a promising career ahead of him. It will be a treat to see him in his first role.
 
The icing on the proverbial cake here is that this is a time travel sci-fi action/adventure story. Those are all words that make my heart go pitter pat. In any other month, The Adam Project would have easily been my #1. The competition was too stiff this time around, though.
 
What’s better still? The Adam Project is a Netflix original so I won’t have to wait to see it and can blast my surround sound from the comfort of my own couch. 

1 - The Batman (3/4)


Production/Distribution: 6th & Idaho Productions, DC Comics, DC Entertainment, Warner Bros., HKC Entertainment, Roadshow Films, Warner Bros. Pictures Germany, Warner Bros. Pictures
Director: Matt Reeves
Writers: Matt Reeves, Peter Craig, Bob Kane, Bill Finger
Actors: Alex Ferns, Amber Sienna, Andy Serkis, Barry Keoghan, Charlie Carver, Colin Farrell, Con O'Neill, Elena Saurel, Iana Saliuk, J.K. Simmons, Jayme Lawson, Jeffrey Wright, Jeremy Irons, Joe Manganiello, John Turturro, Jonah Hill, Mark Killeen, Matthew McConaughey, Max Carver, Paul Dano, Peter Sarsgaard, Robert Pattinson, Rupert Penry-Jones, Zoë Kravitz
Genre: Action, Crime, Drama
Rated: PG-13
Length: 175 minutes
 
IMDb Blurb: When the Riddler, a sadistic serial killer, begins murdering key political figures in Gotham, Batman is forced to investigate the city's hidden corruption and question his family's involvement.
  
Do I really need to give a reason why The Batman is my #1 pick? 

I could leave you with a single word: ‘duh;’ but I won’t.
 
Honestly, it took me all of a few minutes to get over my knee-jerk reaction to the announcement years ago that Robert Pattinson (Good Time, High Life, Tenet) was going to be the new Batman. It was really an unfair reaction – and one too many people have, still. Pattinson is really underrated as an actor. His range is phenomenal. Everyone just has him stuck in this shoebox that those sparkly vampire movies created. He is so much more than that. Trust me when I say that I’m not even saying that from a swoony standpoint. The minute I saw him in the first trailer for The Batman, I knew they were really onto something here.
 
I think that the franchise is in good hands with Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In, War for the Planet of the Apes) at the helm. Everything feels grounded and gritty, like the world of Gotham should be. He’s drawing inspiration from some really heavy and serious material that will take this story and the future installments to a whole new level.

 
I can’t wait to see what he’s done with it. The better news is that he’s in a 3 picture deal so there will be a full trilogy to play with. I am anticipating with bated breath what he’s going to do next.
 
The Batman is releasing exclusively in theaters, though I would expect a high-price On-Demand rental might be available. Look for the movie to hit HBO Max after the 45 day window.

Movies to Look out For

According to: Selina

The Exorcism of God .20
The Weekend Away .19
X .18
Project Gemini .17
Monstrous .16
Jujutsu Kaisen 0 .15
Asking For It .14
Expired .13
So Cold the River .12
After Yang .11
Cheaper by the Dozen .10
Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre .9
Alice .8
Turning Red .7
The Adam Project .6
The Bunker Game .5
The Lost City .4
Against the Ice .3
Everything Everywhere All At Once .2
The Batman .1

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