5 Films I’m Here for in 2014

I love watching movies in the theater. I’m totally that person that will attend a film by myself just so I can experience the joy of watching a movie on the big screen. My family knows my love of moviegoing, and each year for Christmas I get a gift card good enough for a few matinees. Here’s what I’m dropping those gift dollars down on this year:

Robocop Reboot Poster
Image via Den of Geek

1. Robocop – U.S. release February 12

Yes, the original Robocop seems cheesy and dated now. But, I’ll fight anyone who dismisses it as a silly ’80s action flick. The commercials in the film alone satirizing conspicuous consumption, the medical industrial complex, and the ways we talk about war still sting as much as they did then. That’s before we discuss the frightening look into what happens when we privatize public services and their critiques of the militarization of the police.

Of course, when I was a kid, I didn’t catch any of that. My brothers and I just liked to act out the action scenes and practice our bad acting on each other. Because of my fond memories, initially the Robocop remake put me off. But, the more I’ve seen of the trailers, the more I believe that the filmmakers are at least attempting to stick to the spirit of the original film in terms of political commentary. I’m still super pressed about the changes they made to Louis that further reduce the presence of women in the film. But, I think it might be worth my seven bucks.[sws_divider_line]

Poster for Cesar Chavez: An American Hero
Image via IMDb

2. César Chávez: An American Hero – U.S. release March 28

If you don’t know who César Chávez is and why he’s important, I’ll wait while you immediately head to the Googles to rectify that. I’m not thrilled about the title of the film and the claiming of Chávez as an “American” hero, and I worry about the softening of his legacy as an ardent, radical labor activist. But, I also would like to support any biopic about such an important figure and a wide release film starting Chicano people who are horrendously underrepresented in such films. I hope the movie will inspire new interest in Chávez, his work, and his ideas and also motivate people to look into current labor and immigration issues.[sws_divider_line]

Poster for Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Image via the Hollywood Reporter

3. Captain America: The Winter Soldier – U.S. release April 4

I never thought that my most anticipated film of any year would be one starring Steve Rogers. I confess that I found Cap totally uninteresting until he graced the big screen. But, ever since The Avengers I’ve taken a shine to him in an “oh, you” kind of way, and this second solo film looks like it’s going to leave me awash in feels. I mean, can we talk about the Winter Soldier arc played out on screen? Can we talk about Sam the motherfucking Falcon and having, woah, two superheroes of color in the Marvel cinematic universe? Can we talk about the film being a political thriller with Cap questioning the function and actions of SHIELD and the federal government? Can we talk about Chris Evans’ ass in that costume? I’ll be there.[sws_divider_line]

Poster for X-Men: Days of Future Past
Image via Wikipedia

4. X-Men: Days of Future Past – U.S. release May 23

Okay, okay, so I already have a lot of critiques about this film. I’m annoyed that Wolverine stars when Kitty Pryde starred in the comic book arc. I’m still and forever annoyed about the flop casting of my queen, Storm. I’m still not entirely sure how the powers that be will pull off such a beloved and iconic story arc in a two hour film. And, I have an entire post stashed away about the appropriation of the struggles of marginalized peoples without actually featuring those peoples in the X-Men canon. I’m so good on “allegorical” marginalized peoples and treating straight, white bodies as if you can transplant anyone’s histories onto them. But, the X-Men remain my favorite Marvel team, and I’m a huge fan of Magneto. (Gotta love those bad boys.) So, I’m going to check it out. If nothing else, I’ll get to see everyone in atrocious ’70s stylings with some bonus Peter Dinklage.[sws_divider_line]

Poster for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Image via FizX Entertainment

5. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – U.S. release July 11

My family loves the Planet of the Apes film, and when I say loves, I mean loves. When my dad passed away in 2007, we buried him with a DVD set of all of the original Planet of the Apes films. You can’t be more of a hardcore fan than that. While he was around for Tim Burton’s disappointing reboot of the franchise, none of us thought it lived up to the first film. So, I regarded this latest reboot with a healthy amount of wariness. But, after seeing the first film and the way the creators framed Caesar’s ascendance as a leader, I look forward to this next film. Now, if I can talk to somebody about the problem with putting “tribal” makeup on apes, that would be fantastic.[sws_divider_line]

Readers, what films are you most anticipating this year?

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Marena recently earned her Master of Arts degree in Social Justice & Human Rights & primarily explores social justice issues in the production & consumption of popular mass media. You may find her creating fanworks, testing her hand-eye coordination with beadweaving, flailing over her fictional faves, reading everything from fanfic to theory texts, or watching low budget sci-fi. You can find her writing on Marena ni yukyats.

5 thoughts on “5 Films I’m Here for in 2014”

  1. I am also excited about X-Men despite everything you mentioned, (which I totally co-sign.) The story of X-men is all about the struggle of marginalized people, so the majority white casting and replacing of characters is disheartening. Despite all that, I still love the X-Men universe so my ass will be in a theater seat opening weekend.

    1. Last year I presented on that exact issue within X-Men (i.e. the allegorical struggles of marginalized peoples and the failure of X-Men writers to meaningfully include actual marginalized peoples). But, like you said, X-Men is my favorite team, and Uncanny X-Men is easily one of my favorite comic titles. SO, I will be there.

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