It would’ve been easier to write a list called “The Only 3 Movies I Won’t See in 2013,” but that wouldn’t have done anybody any good. So instead I made an entirely subjective list of 40 reasons why I think this will be an amazing year for film. Missing are big films that I’m just not that enthusiastic about (The Hunger Games: Catching FireMan of Steel), films that would be on the list if it weren’t for the director’s last film being a total letdown (e.g. Ridley Scott’s The Counselor; thanks a lot, Prometheus!), and films that would be on the list had I written it any other day (sorry, The EastLowlife, and Kill Your Darlings). For the most part, the order is arbitrary. However, the top five are set in stone, and if I could only watch one movie this year it would be the film at number one.

So, without any further ado…

 Evil Dead 

DIRECTOR: Fede Alvarez

CAST: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Jessica Lucas, Lou Taylor Pucci and Elizabeth Blackmore


WARNING: Graphic trailer. Remaking Evil Dead might sound like sacrilege to die-hard fans of the original, but this blood-soaked red band trailer makes the new film look so very wrong in all the right ways.



39. Trance

DIRECTOR: Danny Boyle

CAST: James McAvoy, Rosario Dawson and Vincent Cassel


Boyle reunites with John Hodge, the screenwriter of his first four features (including Trainspotting), for this crafty tale of crime, amnesia and hypnosis.



DIRECTOR: Ben Wheatley

CAST: Alice Lowe and Steve Oram


I’m a fan of Wheatley’s last film, the horror-gangster hybrid Kill List, and his latest, a dark comedy about a homicidal couple traversing the British Isles, has already collected rave reviews overseas.


37. Upstream Color

DIRECTOR: Shane Carruth

CAST: Shane Carruth & Amy Seimetz


I’m still trying to figure out Primer, Carruth’s 2004 time-bending debut, but his better-late-than-never follow up looks just as fascinatingly complex.


36. A Most Wanted Man

DIRECTOR: Anton Corbijn

CAST: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Rachel McAdams, Robin Wright, Willem Dafoe and Daniel Brühl


Photographer-turned-filmmaker Corbijn has made two good films, Control and The American, that barely missed being great. His third, an adaptation of John le Carre’s (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy) espionage novel, might be the charm.


35. Nymphomaniac

DIRECTOR: Lars Von Trier

CAST: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Stellan Skarsgard, Shia LaBeouf, Jamie Bell, Uma Thurman, Willem Dafoe and Christian Slater


This could very well be the Antichrist director’s most controversial film…and that’s saying something. At the very least, it’ll be the most awkward film-going experience of the year.


34. Anchorman: The Legend Continues


CAST: Will Ferrell, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Christina Applegate and maybe Kristin Wiig

RELEASE DATE: December 20

I’m not ashamed to say that I love the first Anchorman. In fact, I love it so much that I almost don’t want to see a sequel. Please, God, don’t let them tarnish Ron Burgundy’s good name.



33. Blue Jasmine 

DIRECTOR: Woody Allen

CAST: Alec Baldwin, Cate Blanchett, Louis C.K., Sally Hawkins, Peter Sarsgaard and Andrew Dice Clay


Allen’s annual offerings have been inconsistent as of late, but every once in a while he surprises us with something like Midnight in Paris — and that’s worth getting excited about. This time he’s working with the likes of Blanchett (!) and C.K. (!!) for the first time. 

Blue Jasmine


32. This Is the End

DIRECTOR: Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen

CAST: Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Emma Watson and pretty much anyone you’ve ever seen in a Judd Apatow movie.


The most epic Judd Apatow production of all time! Okay, so his name is nowhere to be found in the credits, but it might as well be. All of his regulars are here. Playing themselves. During the apocalypse. If that doesn’t sound like fun to you, I don’t think we can be friends.


31 and 30.  


DIRECTOR: Chan-wook Park

CAST: Nicole Kidman, Mia Wasikowska, Matthew Goode, Dermot Mulroney, Jacki Weaver and Lucas Till

RELEASE DATE: February 28



DIRECTOR: Joon-ho Bong

CAST: Chris Evans, Kang-ho Song, Tilda Swinton, Jamie Bell, Octavia Spencer, Alison Pill, Ewen Bremner, Ed Harris and John Hurt


A Korean invasion is happening in 2013. Three of South Korea’s most prominent filmmakers are making their English-language debuts, starting with this weekend’s Arnold Schwarzenegger-vehicle The Last Stand, directed by Jee-woon Kim (A Tale of Two Sisters).

A little later we get Oldboy director Chan-wook Park’s highly anticipated Stoker, an eerie melodrama that promises meaty roles for its three leads, especially Kidman.

Finally, the most intriguing of the bunch comes from The Host director Joon-ho Bong. Snowpiercer is an ambitious sci-fi allegory about the class system that develops on a non-stop train that houses the remainder of mankind during another Ice Age.  The cast is first-rate and Bong gets bonus points for bringing his Host star, Korean character actor Kang-ho Song, along for the ride.




29. Iron Man 3

DIRECTOR: Shane Black

CAST: Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebecca Hall, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley and Jon Favreau


I’m not so much excited about the return of Tony Stark as I am about the return of Shane Black! The writer of beloved action flicksThe Last Boy Scout and The Long Kiss Goodnight made his directorial debut in 2005 with the criminally underseen Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang and didn’t bother making another film until Downey called him up and offered the Iron Man gig. Now we can expect some tough and witty banter with our big action spectacle.


28. Kick-Ass 2 

DIRECTOR: Jeff Wadlow

CAST: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloë Grace Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Jim Carrey, Donald Faison, Morris Chestnut and John Leguizamo


The first Kick-Ass was bloody, irreverent fun…and a box-office disappointment. So, the fact that we’re getting a sequel starring none other than Jim Carrey is, well, the name says it all.




27. The Zero Theorem

DIRECTOR: Terry Gilliam

CAST: Christoph Waltz, Tilda Swinton, David Thewlis, Mélanie Thierry, Ben Whishaw and Matt Damon


The plot is something about a computer hacker and the meaning of life, but all you really need to know is that the man who gave us Brazil and 12 Monkeys is giving us one more vision of the future. Be excited.


26. Labor Day

DIRECTOR: Jason Reitman

CAST: Josh Brolin, Kate Winslet, Tobey Maguire, J.K. Simmons, Brooke Smith and James Van Der Beek


Reitman adapts the coming-of-age novel about a depressed mother and her son who provide shelter for an escaped convict over Labor Day weekend. The darker subject matter should be an interesting change of pace for the Up in the Air director.


labor day


25. Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

DIRECTOR: Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller

CAST: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Josh Brolin, Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Rosario Dawson, Jeremy Piven, Ray Liotta, Juno Temple and Dennis Haysbert


Rodriguez and Miller have been talking about a Sin City sequel since before Sin City came out. Filming is finally underway with perfectly-suited additions Levitt and Brolin…but I’m afraid this post might jinx it.


24. Only Lovers Left Alive

DIRECTOR: Jim Jarmusch

CAST: Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska, Anton Yelchin and John Hurt


A centuries-long romance between two vampires … no, no wait, come back! If anyone can make the vampire genre interesting again, it’s minimalist extraordinaire Jim Jarmusch; just check out his spin on the western and samurai genres (Dead Man and Ghost Dog, respectively) on Netflix streaming to get an idea. Plus, if anyone was born to play a vampire, it’s Tilda Swinton.


23 and 22.

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: His

DIRECTOR: Ned Benson

CAST: Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Viola Davis, Jess Weixler, Bill Hader and William Hurt


These are two separate films about the same relationship, one focusing on the perspective of the wife and the other of the husband. It’s a lofty project, especially for a first-time director, and Chastain and McAvoy make an enticing couple.


disappearance of eleanor rigby


21. Old Boy 


CAST: Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olson, Sharlto Copley, Lance Reddick, Michael Imperioli and Samuel L. Jackson

RELEASE DATE: October 11

By my calculations, Spike Lee is allotted one stroke of genius per decade: Do the Right Thing in the ’80s, Malcolm X in the ’90s, and 25th Hour in the ’00s. Here he’s adapting another filmmaker’s masterwork, but, with the trio of leads he’s assembled in front of the camera and Hunger and Shame cinematographer Sean Bobbitt behind it, all the ingredients are there for one of his own.


old boy

*Check in next week for films 1-20 in 40 Movies I Can’t Wait to See in 2013, Part II ….

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PABLO CORNEJO leads a double life. During the week, he attends the University of Texas at Arlington, where he is one semester away from obtaining a Bachelor's in Journalism with a minor in English. On the weekends, he lives in Austin with his long-time girlfriend and their ingrate cat, Evie. From attending Fantastic Fest to the Dallas International Film Festival, Pablo tries to absorb the film culture in both cities. You can find him on Twitter (@CDLM_pablo).

6 responses to “40 Movies I Can’t Wait to See in 2013, Part I”

  1. jmblaine says:

    I love Anton Corbijn’s
    Depeche Mode Concert Film

    • Pablo Cornejo says:

      He’s great with atmosphere and visuals, that sounds like an awesome combination. Just found the whole thing on YouTube, I’ll be sure to check it out!

  2. Nate says:

    I am not happy that they are remaking Oldboy. It is unnecessary. If American’s weren’t adverse to reading (in pretty much all forms) the first would be a classic appreciated on the level of films like Reservoir Dogs, Donnie Darko, and The Usual Suspects.

    That said, of course I’m going to watch it.

    • Pablo Cornejo says:

      Yeah I’m definitely with you that it’s unnecessary, and I’d be against it if it weren’t for Spike and that cast. Elizabeth Olson really impressed me in Martha Marcy May Marlene and Copley hasn’t had a meaty role since he broke out in District 9. Here’s hoping it ends up like the Let the Right One In remake, totally unnecessary but respectable.

  3. Nate says:

    I do think it will be, at least, respectable. My fear is the reception from the American moviegoers will be less than stellar for it to have a legitimate chance to succeed IF it is in fact a worthy remake.

    I agree with you about Olson as well. Terrific casting. Spike Lee is due for a major hit too.

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