Vampires looking for a new blood supply, a superhero flying around in a metal suit and a human taking on Olympic gods and mythological creatures will have audiences filling movie theaters in 2010 looking for action.
#5 – “Daybreakers” – Coming in first on the list is one of the earliest action movies of 2010. This is a vampire movie of a different sort. This time, the vampires are numerous and rule the world, while humans are hunted and farmed for their blood to feed the dominant species. The problem is, the vampires have nearly farmed the humans into extinction and need to come up with a new food supply. There are some who want to find a synthetic blood to feed vampires, while others want to save the human race. The scenes released in the trailer show a stylish, futuristic city, vampire militia hunting humans and renegade vampires fighting others of their ilk with crossbows. That’s pretty much sold me on this film. “Daybreakers” stars Ethan Hawke as a researcher, Willem Defoe as a renegade vampire and Sam Neill as one of the leaders of the vampires looking the food substitute. It has been scheduled for a January release.
#4 – “Prince of Persia: Sands of Time” – Normally, movies based on video games are not very good and so have lost their ability to draw much excitement. “Prince of Persia,” which is based on a video game of the same name, may change that a bit. First of all, it’s produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, who not only is known for making excellent action movies, but also was able to make a believer out of me on another movie of his I had doubts about, “Pirates of the Caribbean.” When I first heard that film was based on the Disney ride, I couldn’t see how that possibly could be made into something I would want to watch. But Bruckheimer and Johnny Depp did it, more than once. Disney is also responsible for “Prince of Persia,” which stars Jake Gyllenhaal as a prince who must keep a magical dagger from falling into the hands of a tyrant who would destroy the world with it. It also stars Ben Kingsley, Gemma Arterton and Alfred Molina. I haven’t actually played the game, but the trailer looks great and Bruckheimer certainly knows what he is doing on these films, which could make it one of the top action movies of 2010. The computer generated scenes look great, not cheesy, and there seems to have been some real work put into “Prince of Persia,” not simply a hastily thrown together film to capitalize on a video game’s success. “Prince of Persia” is scheduled for a release late in May.
#3 – “Season of the Witch” – Nicholas Cage and Ron Pearlman in the middle ages transporting a girl who is accused of being the witch that started the Black Plague to a monastery for her trial – isn’t that enough? The trip is fraught with peril as it appears the suspected witch summons all sorts of beasts and spirits to stop the knights from completing their mission. I love Nicholas Cage and Ron Pearlman and the settings from the trailer look great. Lionsgate Films will bring it to theaters in March, and that company is one of my favorites for delivering movies that aren’t afraid to take a bit of a chance.
#2 – “Clash of the Titans” – In 1981, “Clash of the Titans” brought a stellar cast (including Laurence Olivier as Zeus, Ursula Andress as Aphrodite and a very young Harry Hamlin as Perseus) and, in its time, state of the art special effects to deliver the tale of a Greek on a quest to save a princess, along the way fighting such mythological creatures as Medusa, the Kraken monster and the Lord of the Underworld. I love myths of all sorts, so bringing the story of Perseus, including his riding the winged horse Pegasus, to the big screen was a special thrill for me. In March of 2010, “Clash of the Titans” returns to the big screen, with bigger special effects, more action, bigger and meaner monsters and another star-studded cast, making it one of the most anticipated action movies of 2010. French director Louis Leterrier, whose past action films include “Transporter 2,” “Unleashed” and “The Incredible Hulk.” This time, Sam Worthington, Gemma Arterton, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes and others star.
#1 – “Iron Man 2” – The most highly anticipated action movie of 2010 has to be “Iron Man 2.” Robert Downey Jr. returns as Tony Stark, also known as Iron Man, the high tech superhero. Directed by Jon Favreau, the first was a surprise hit since Iron Man is mostly considered a second tier hero in the Marvel universe. However, Favreau and Downey changed that in 2008. Adding to the anticipation is that “Iron Man 2” will be the first of three Marvel movies released that together will lead up to an “Avengers” movie. The other two movies will be “Thor,” directed by Kenneth Branaugh, and “Captain America.” The Avengers are known as Earth’s Mightiest Superheroes in the Marvel comics universe and is a team of superheroes working for the government to protect the Earth. First things first, though. “Iron Man 2” will take place six months after Tony Stark announces to the world that he is Iron Man. He will face the villainous Whiplash, played by Mickey Rourke, who has electrical whips and his own power suit. On the industrial front, there will be a challenge to Stark and Iron Man from Justin Hammer, played by Sam Rockwell. Scarlett Johansson will portray the mysterious Black Widow and Don Cheadle is taking over for Terrance Howard as Rhodey, Stark’s friend who later becomes War Machine, another Iron Man-type hero. Favreau is directing again and Gwyneth Paltrow returns as Pepper Potts. “Iron Man 2” is scheduled for a May release.