Similar to 2013, the movie industry seems to prefer the probably-more-profitable sequels over new and original work, because there is a lot of them this year. I'll try to keep it to just my most-anticipated 6 though.
It's a bit late, I know, but fortunately most of these still haven't come out yet... or I haven't seen them yet. I'll start with the one movie that has come out that I have seen. Here we go:
Ride Along 2
This one was a major disappointment. The Cube + Hart combination was so perfect in the first, but here they just seem stuck. Their relationship since the last movie seems to have devolved more than anything else, and Kevin Hart never shuts up.
I mean sure, it wouldn't be funny without the dialog, but there is such a thing as too much. The endless bickering and Hart's eternal goal to prove himself gets in the way of the entertainment, and they went through all of that in the first movie too.
Though these movies might not become more than a duology, I do hope they get their shit together and make a third. A good third. It can still be great. Review here.
John Wick 2
I watched the first John Wick only recently, but it instantly became one of my favorite action movies in a long time past, with its creative action choreography and wicked style. I'm not expecting this one to be as great as the former, but I am looking forward to it! You can read a review on the first one here.
Now You See Me 2
An aggravatingly small number of people (at least among critics) liked the first movie, but I loved it! Can't wait to see what magic they'll have in store for us this time, though this is one of those movies I wasn't expecting a sequel for. It didn't really need one, so I hope they don't ruin what they had with the first. You can read a review on that one here.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny
16 years after the original a sequel is finally due! I did feel the hype around the first was too high, considering that kind of love-story + action combination with a speck of tragedy and sacrifice and focus on the beauty and sadness is a common thing in Asian cinema, and there are plenty of similar movies who would've done just as well in the spotlight, but didn't star as famous actors, or somehow evaded their potential Western audience.
The first wasn't bad though, and considering how acclaimed it's become since then, the pressure must be high to make something fantastic out of this one. I'm looking forward to seeing what they might achieve!
Michelle Yeoh and Donnie Yen are in it too, so that's something to look forward to.
Ice Age: Collision Course
The first Ice Age was awesome, the second was good, the third was not bad, the fourth was OK. The fifth? I hope it exceeds all expectations! And since that is my expectation, that might be hard to accomplish. I am looking forward to it regardless.
Kung Fu Panda 3
Kung Fu Panda is just such a charismatic character. Who doesn't like him? And Jackie Chan's a voice actor, so what could you possibly not like with this series? The combination of modern animation and Asian myth is a perfect combo too.
I'm not expecting as much from this sequel as from the first, or second (which I barely remember... did I even see it?) but no doubt it'll be entertaining.
Argh, I just couldn't keep it to just 6 after all! Here's six more:
It's a Jason Statham movie, and the first one was great. Need I say more? The old Mechanic movies would be worth a watch as well if you haven't seen them.
Underworld: Blood Wars
It's been a long time since the last one, and as far as vampire movies go, this franchise is a favorite. The action and style in the early movies had a Matrix/Blade-like tone to them, and though that has changed a bit, it's never gone bad. I'm hoping this will be just as awesome as the last.
Jack Reacher 2
Here's another action movie that's bound to be awesome, though John did leave a slightly more professional impression than Jack. Or maybe it was the other way around, and that one just went much more overboard with the action.
Either way, Tom Cruise usually delivers, and this has all the potential to be better than the original. I look forward to it.
Star Trek 3
After the first two I am pretty hyped about this! I've watched so many Star Trek movies in a short time now it's like I'm becoming a bigger fan of this than I am of Star Wars. *Knock on wood*
London Has Fallen
Here's a sequel to Olympus Has Fallen. Though I'd rather have seen a sequel for White House Down - Channing Tatum killed that shit, this is the second best thing, and the switch from US to UK seems intriguing.
And last but not least, this one. Matt Damon is back! The Bourne franchise did OK without him, Jeremy Renner tried his best, but it just wasn't the same. Hopefully this will be as pure and intense as all of the first three.
Well, that it's for my most-notable. I missed a bunch of more mainstream sequels, I know, and I am looking forward to those as well! The new Ghostbusters, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Independence Day, Captain America, X-Men, Divergent, Batman V Superman (that's not really a sequel though, is it?) and lets not forget the next Iceman 2 with Donnie Yen again.
Other sequels? I haven't seen The Huntsman yet, but The Huntsman: Winter’s War seems like a sequel as much in style with the Golden Compass as you can get - at least judging by cover images. They say Bad Santa 2 is coming out too. You know, that movie that was promised back in 2013? And the Barbershop movie with both Ice Cube and Nicki Minaj is bound to be interesting too.
All the sequels I've heard of this year seem good. I don't think there's any one I am not looking forward to. Maybe My Fat Big Greek Wedding, but I haven't seen the original yet so I wouldn't know.
Overall, it seems to be one more great year of movies; especially for action. Will they deliver? I'll let you know in a year or so.