Richard Kelly didn't exactly set the world on fire with Southland Tales, but his previous film Donnie Darko is one of my favorite movies of all time and I'm hoping this new film is more along those lines. Based on a short story by Richard Matheson, The Box stars Cameron Diaz and James Marsden as a couple whose financial problems can be cleared up quite simply. If they press the button on a mysterious box then they will be given a million dollars but someone they don't know will die. Sounds like a classic Twilight Zone moral dilemma, and Matheson did pen a few episodes of the series. We can find out what's in the box on October 30.
I really like the look of this animated feature since it doesn't look like Disney's typical work (they're releasing it here in the States) and it looks kind of atypical for Japanese anime as well. Hayao Miyazaki, the man behind Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, Kiki's Delivery Service and My Neighbor Totoro directs. I'd be more interested if the trailer gave a better idea of what the movie is about -- but Miyazaki's resume speaks for itself. This one gets a limited release on August 14.
The Last Airbender
M. Night Shyamalan directs this adaptation of the animated fantasy series Avatar: the Last Airbender and I dearly hope he's going to forgo the twist ending this time. In a world consisting of four nations, each corresponding to earth, air, fire and water, a twelve year old boy with the power to control all four elements is the last hope for peace. The traier is actually a fairly sparse teaser, but it will have fans of the series aching for more. Dev Patel of Slumdog Millionaire is in the cast. Things start getting bent on July 10, 2010.
I see a lot of promise in this one. In the year 2019 most of the world's population have become vampires thanks to some kind of plague. The human population is dwindling along with the vampire's food supply and the race is on to find a blood substitute. This is directed by the Spierig brothers who helmed a pretty decent Australian zombie flick called Undead so count me in. Watch for this one on January 8, 2010.
Ashton Kutcher plays an irritating ladies' man. Nice to see him finally stretching as an actor. His character ultimately falls for a woman who is playing him just as badly as he's played every woman he's ever met. Do we really need this? Watch for this one on August 14.
New on AOL Moviefone:
- Strangers - An unlikely romance grows between an Israeli man and a Palestinian woman as they meet on their way to the World Cup finals in Berlin
- The Beaches of Agnes - Produced and directed by Agnès Varda, the film provides a look back on Varda's career.
- District 9 - A space ship full of extra terrestrial refugees arrives in South Africa.
- The Time Traveler's Wife - Romantic fantasy about a Chicago librarian with a rare genetic disorder that sends him to different time periods when under stress.
- Shutter Island - Directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, this is the story of a U.S. Marshall investigating the disappearance of a mental patient on a secluded island.
- Cheri - Stephen Frears, the director of Dangerous Liaisons returns with another colorful period costume drama.