Action audiences are in for a real treat this February, as two of the genre’s most recognizable stars – Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis – go head-to-head for box office supremacy. While one aged action star leaves the comforts of his ensemble series behind, the other returns to the franchise that made him a household name.
Though the month is typically known for love stories and romantic comedies, trust us when we say there will be plenty bullets and viscera-filled films to go around.
Here are 7 Movies We’re Looking Forward to in February 2013.
Audiences have seen the “star-crossed lovers” tale done to death, and they’ve even seen stories that feature love between a supernatural character and an average girl/guy, but nothing quite like Warm Bodies. Directed by Jonathan Levine (50/50), the film’s story follows the unconventional relationship that forms between a zombie named R (X-Men: First Class‘ Nicholas Hoult) and the very-much-alive Julie (Teresa Palmer), who just so happen to live in a post-apocalyptic world where zombies, not humans, are the norm.
There’s obviously some level of self-awareness there – and some overt allusions to Romeo and Juliet – but rather than hurt the film we think it could make Warm Bodies one of February’s sleeper hits. It may sound like Twilight with zombies, but we hope it’s much more than that.
In the film, Stallone’s character – a New Orleans-based hit man – teams up with a naive cop (Fast Five‘s Sung Kang) to take down a common enemy – a mercenary/hit man named Keegan (Jason Momoa). With legendary action and western director Walter Hill behind the camera, Bullet to the Head has all the makings of a bona-fide Stallone hit. Whether it will deliver, however, is another question.
Check out the trailer for Bullet to the Head.
While we’re not sure if Side Effects will be the last feature-film Steven Soderbergh makes before his highly-publicized sabbatical, we’re happy he’s still willing to push himself. Like the majority of his filmography, Side Effects is unlike anything Soderbergh has done before, but features many of his frequent collaborators.
This time around he’s reuniting with Channing Tatum, Jude Law, and screenwriter Scott Z. Burns (Contagion) for a thriller that centers on a young woman (Rooney Mara) who is prescribed anxiety medicine with unexpected…side effects. It’s hard to say that Side Effects is the ideal lasting impression we’d like to see Soderbergh leave before his hiatus, but it’s hard to deny the film has unique premise and a stellar cast.
Check out the trailer for Side Effects.
After both Movie 43 and A Haunted House failed to hit the mark, audiences could really use a solid comedy. Enter Identity Thief, the new film from Horrible Bosses‘ director Seth Gordon, featuring two top comedic talents, Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy.
McCarthy (Bridesmaids, This is 40) dominates nearly every scene she’s in, so we’re excited to see how her and Bateman — who is typically the comedic straight man — act off each other. To be fair, these types of pairings don’t all work, but Bateman and McCarthy seem like perfect fits as the identity theft victim and culprit, respectively.
Check out the trailer for Identity Thief.
Bruce Willis is back as John McClane for his fifth Die Hard movie, A Good Day to Die Hard. In McClane’s previous outing, audiences were introduced to John’s daughter Lucy McClane, and now it’s time to meet his estranged son, Jack (Jai Courtney), as the two team up to prevent a nuclear weapons heist. Jack, like his father, has a penchant for ending up in the wrong place at the wrong time, so it only makes sense that when the two get together, the explosions and the stakes both double.
Fans will also be happy to know that Die Hard 5, unlike Live Free or Die Hard, will be rated R. That means that along with the bloody shootouts — of which there should be plenty — this entry will almost assuredly have McClane spouting his trademark “Yippe Ki Yay MFer” catchphrase… at least once.
Check out the trailer for A Good Day to Die Hard.
While the paranormal and the supernatural have been dominating our horror and suspense films as of late, that doesn’t mean there still isn’t a place for aliens in the mix. Case in point: Dark Skies, the new film starring Kerri Russell and Josh Hamilton. In the film, Russell and Hamilton play two parents being harassed by an extraterrestrial force, which is wreaking havoc not just on their home but on their environment (see: birds crashing into their windows).
If the trailers are any indication, Dark Skies appears to be a slow burn – using its scares sparingly while building up to the big alien reveal. Of course, we’re hoping that there’s something more to the film than just aliens, but even if there isn’t, it looks mighty creepy.
Check out the trailer for Dark Skies.
We’ll admit that the only reason Snitch probably will register on moviegoers’ radars is the presence of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson – but even then, that’s a pretty good reason to pay attention. As the father of a kid set up to take the fall for dealing illegal drugs, The Rock’s character must infiltrate a major drug cartel in order to prove his son’s innocence. Yes, it sounds like a generic action/drama flick – but once again it’s important to remember The Rock is involved.
That isn’t to say that Mr. Johnson’s record is spotless – he has had quite a few duds over the course of his career – but oftentimes his characters are fascinating enough to carry a film. Hopefully this is one of those cases.
Check out the trailer for Snitch.
History has shown it’s usually not a Valentine’s Day-focused movie that ends up winning February’s box office battle; rather an action or a genre film. That leaves plenty of opportunity for any of these 7 movies to open big and surprise everyone.
There are also a few films releasing in the month that didn’t make the list, but are worth noting: the Nicholas Sparks adaptation Safe Haven; the witchcraft/teen romance flick Beautiful Creatures; and the animated film Escape From Planet Earth (all Valentine’s Day releases). But in all honesty, it’s Stallone film vs. Willis that’s most intriguing to us. The only question is: who will come out on top?
Once again here are the 7 Movies We’re Looking Forward To in February 2013:
- February 1st: Warm Bodies, Bullet to the Head
- February 8th: Side Effects, Identity Thief
- February 14th: A Good Day to Die Hard
- February 22nd: Dark Skies, Snitch