There are many films to get excited about in 2012. Giddily excited even. Some people might even, under extreme circumstances, find themselves gibbering, sitting under a blanket-covered desk in an abandoned office building, with only a flashlight and a half-eaten Milky Way bar while watching the flickering screen of the laptop drain the last dregs of the battery after playing that Prometheus trailer for the 2,548th time in a row (it’s okay, I’ve recovered by now).
But among those films we have such high hopes for, there are a few that bring with them a tinge of worry. We worry that the immense expectations might not be completely fulfilled. We worry that some films might crumble under the weight of their own ambition. And we worry that some awesome concepts might not turn out to be just as awesome when realized.
Here are the five films we at Filmophilia are most afraid might disappoint in 2012:
5. John Carter
Disney’s epic adventure film, based on Edgar Rice Burroughs‘ Barsoom novels, aims for early glory with its March release. Animation dynasty Pixar is handling extensive design and effects duties (as well as sporting Andrew Stanton in the director’s seat), so the canvas for the Mars-set behemoth will without a doubt look good, but what about the rest. Atli Sigurjonsson has his doubts after seeing the trailer, saying it “looks cheesy and unappealing and just not epic enough.” Will John Carter succeed or will it falter in the shadow of Avatar, to which it bears somewhat of a narrative resemblance? We’ll figure out soon enough.
Remember Snakes on a Plane? An endlessly cool concept turned out to be a completely middle-of-the-road film, and like I felt before seeing snakes, Mary Cummins sums up her anticipation for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter with: “I WANT this to be awesome. I really, really want it to be. But I don’t think it will be.” We’re still holding out hope, though. This is just too good of a concept to mess it up. Right?
A couple of years ago, fresh off the third (and wildly disappointing) Sam Raimi Spider-Man film, Sony made the bizarre announcement that they were rebooting the franchise, at only seven years and three films old. They decided to go with relative indie newcomer Marc Webb as director and cast Andrew Garfield, a genuinely good but not a widely known actor, as Spidey himself. However, after a promising teaser, a stunning Emma Stone and a damn good poster, hopes are suddenly raised. Bjarki Dagur, though, still finds his biggest worry unsoothed: “Yet another Spider-Man origin story that producers have tried to make interesting by messing with fundamental aspects of the character.”
Blame Christopher Nolan for making such an outrageously good Batman film that few can imagine could ever be topped by a sequel. And then make a sequel and getting everyone waaayyy beyond hyped about it. Could this actually be better than The Dark Knight? The cast is there. The character gallery is there. The insanely intriguing storyline is there. And then we got… The Prologue. Alarm bells -not many, mind you- have started ringing. Kolbrun Bjort has this to say: “Given the prologue screened with MI4 in IMAX, Bane may prove too hard to understand. And I mean his speach, not his actions or ideas.” Stay calm, though, as Nolan himself has declared that Bane’s speech will be cleared up somewhat. But still, can it ever live up to expectations, no matter how good it is? Or as Engilbert Aron comments, it might disappoint ”only because it is the most anticipated movie in recent history, not because I don’t have faith in Christopher Nolan & co.”
1. The Avengers
Touted by some optimists as The Biggest Movie Ever, The Avengers is facing a lot of pressure. A lot. A lot a lot. The accumulated anticipation of every single Marvel superhero (almost) film combined amount of pressure. The If-Joss-Whedon-Fucks-It-Up-He’ll-Be-Relegated-To-Farrelly-Films-Second-Unit-Forever type of pressure. And as some individual Avengers films have turned out to be less than spectacular (we’re looking at you Iron Man 2) and all of them have faced serious third-act issues, we all really need this to be awesome. Few in our group are as excited about the film as Sverrir Sigfusson, but even he is ”ever so slightly concerned that The Avengers might crumble under the weight of its own ambition.” But then again, it might just become the ultimate nerdgasm we’re hoping it’ll be.
What are the films you’re afraid might disappoint this year? Sound off in the comments.