2018 was an excellent year for fantasy, sci-fi, superhero and other genre films that many would classify under the umbrella term “nerdy.” There was Avengers: Infinity War, Black Panther, A Quiet Place, Annihilation, Aquaman, Ready Player One, and many, many more.
Thankfully, 2019 looks to be following suit, because there’s an embarrassment of riches heading to theaters this year. That being said, we here at Epicstream have compiled a list of 25 nerdy movies we’re looking forward to in 2019.
Check out our picks and then let us know which movies you’re looking forward to most in the comments section!
Glass (Jan. 18)
Director M. Night Shyamalan is returning for the third chapter of the Eastrail 177 Trilogy, which began with Unbreakable in 2000 and continued with Split in 2016. The film will serve as a culmination of sorts, bringing together familiar faces from both previous films in what promises to be an epic collision course.Advertisement
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (Feb. 8)
In 2014, The Lego Movie took the world by storm. This year, everything is poised to be “awesome” once more, because the highly anticipated sequel, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, finally hits theaters. The film takes place five years after its predecessor, but this time, Emmet and company will face the out-of-this-world threat of LEGO DUPLO invaders. What more could we ask for?
Alita: Battle Angel (Feb. 14)
Based on the Yukito Kishiro manga Gunnm/Battle Angel Alita, Alita: Battle Angel has all the pieces of either a runaway hit or a critical and commercial disaster. There are big names behind the camera (James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez), countless delays in production and major controversy surrounding the look of Rosa Salazar’s titular character, with many comparing her to an anime doll come to life. With all that in mind, this film could end up exceeding expectations and blowing us away thanks to Cameron and Rodriguez, or it could end up being a massive train wreck that you just can’t help but stare at. Either way, we’re all in for Alita: Battle Angel.
How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (Feb. 22)
The first two chapters of the How to Train Your Dragon trilogy both received massive praise and were met with incredible financial success. That being said, there’s no reason not to expect big things from the third and final installment, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. Plus, we can also expect even more dragons this time around, as Hiccup and Toothless embark on a journey to a secret dragon utopia.Advertisement
Captain Marvel (March 8)
The Marvel Cinematic Universe celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. However, this year will mark an even greater milestone, as Marvel Studios releases its first female-led superhero film, Captain Marvel. The trailers promise a movie that’s jam-packed with action, Skrulls and ‘90s nostalgia, and that’s a winning formula we can all get behind.
Dumbo (March 29)
Tim Burton directing a live-action Dumbo sounds like something jumbled together in Mad Libs, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t completely on board for the ride. Plus, you’ve got music by Danny Elfman, and a star-studded cast consisting of Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito and Eva Green. Let’s just hope there aren’t any racist crows.
Shazam! (April 5)
Hot on the heels of Aquaman breathing new life into the struggling DC Extended Universe comes Shazam!, which will be the first DCEU film completely devoid of Zack Snyder’s influence. That’s not to say we aren’t fans of Snyder’s contributions to the DCEU, for better or worse, but we’re certainly interested to see what Warner Bros. is able to deliver and what direction the shared universe is heading.
Hellboy (April 12)
Originally planned as a sequel to Hellboy II: The Golden Army, this R-rated reboot of the Guillermo del Toro/Ron Perlman franchise has certainly piqued our interest. The look of David Harbour’s take on Big Red is outstanding, but the recently released trailer evokes memories of Suicide Squad, which – depending on your taste – can be either good or bad. In any case, Hellboy is absolutely on our radar for 2019.
Avengers: Endgame (April 26)
No film on this last has us more excited than Avengers: Endgame. After the climactic and heartbreaking ending to Infinity War and a teaser trailer that left us with more questions than answers, no one knows quite what to expect from the fourth installment in the Avengers franchise. Well, we know a number of Thanos’ casualties will return, but the “how” remains a relative mystery, and with the literal future of the MCU hanging in the balance, you’d better believe we’ll be at the theater on opening day.
Pokémon: Detective Pikachu (May 10)
Color us intrigued on this one. For one thing, it’s Pokémon, so that alone is enough to get us to the theater. Plus, you’ve got Ryan Reynolds voicing the eponymous electric mouse, so that’s another check mark in this movie’s favor. However, some of the CGI Pokémon look downright terrifying (looking at you, Mr. Mime), and given the mixed track record of live-action/CGI hybrid films, we’re naturally skeptical. It apparently performed well with test audiences, though, so perhaps Warner Bros. has a major hit on its hands.
Aladdin (May 24)
The second of three live-action remakes of Disney animated classics arriving in 2019 is Aladdin, which has already been mired in controversy. From whitewashing accusations to brownfacing extras to Will Smith’s Genie not being blue in the first official photos, the number of complaints – warranted and unwarranted alike – are definitely worrisome. Nevertheless, we have a very fond appreciation for the 1992 animated film and can’t wait to see the iconic story unfold in live-action.
Brightburn (May 24)
What would happen if a humanoid alien crash-landed on Earth, was adopted by a loving couple who tried to instill in him their ideals, but he ended up becoming an evil, super-powered monster? Well, that’s the question Brightburn will attempt to answer. It’s a clever (and admittedly scary) take on the Superman origin story, and with James Gunn’s involvement, it promises to be one of the sleeper hits of 2019, at least critically.
Godzilla: King of the Monsters (May 31)
Who doesn’t love giant kaiju fights? What’s more, who doesn’t love giant kaiju fights when they involve classic Toho monsters such as Mothra, Rodan, King Ghidorah and, of course, Godzilla? Admittedly, the 2014 Godzilla film left much to be desired, but Godzilla: King of the Monsters looks to be a titanic step in the right direction for Legendary’s MonsterVerse.
Dark Phoenix (June 7)
The first of two X-Men films on this list that are mired in development drama is Dark Phoenix. Originally titled X-Men: Dark Phoenix before having “X-Men” dropped from the title, this film has undergone massive reshoots and faced a number of delays. However, 20th Century Fox has had more hits than misses since soft-rebooting the X-Men franchise with First Class, and while the acclaimed Dark Phoenix Saga has been butchered on film once before with The Last Stand, we remain optimistic in franchise veteran Simon Kinsberg’s ability to pull it off this time around (though perhaps we’re just naïve).
Men in Black: International (June 14)
F. Gary Gray, Chris Hemsworth, Tessa Thompson and the Men in Black franchise as a whole are all proven moneymakers, and despite the mixed reception of the latter two MIB films, this upcoming spinoff has plenty of potential. Hemsworth and Thompson’s chemistry was off the charts in Thor: Ragnarok, so as long as that transfers over to Men in Black: International, we should be in for a great time.
Toy Story 4 (June 21)
Toy Story is arguably Disney/Pixar’s most enduring franchise. It survived the “sequelitis” that many animated films are so susceptible to, it survived an 11-year gap between Toy Story 2 and 3, and it’ll likely continue to thrive, despite a nine-year gap between 3 and 4. Plus, in addition to the majority of the phenomenal voice cast reprising their roles, Toy Story 4 will also include voice work from Keegan-Michael Key, Jordan Peele and Keanu Reeves, who are all welcome additions.
Spider-Man: Far From Home (July 5)
Despite “dying” in Avengers: Infinity War, Tom Holland’s friendly neighborhood Spider-Man is headlining his very own sequel, Spider-Man: Far From Home, just over two months after Endgame hits theaters. (How convenient.) Obviously, that means we know Peter Parker will be brought back in Endgame, but we’re still excited to see the continuation of Spidey’s journey that began in Captain America: Civil War and really swung into high gear in Homecoming. Plus, Mysterio!
The Lion King (July 19)
If we had to choose between Aladdin and TheLion King for our most-anticipated live-action Disney film of 2019, The Lion King would just manage to edge out the competition. That, of course, is because of director Jon Favreau, who blew us away with his live-action rendition of The Jungle Book in 2016. Well, that, as well as the fact that The Lion King is arguably the greatest film of the 1990s Disney Renaissance. (Sorry, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid.)
The New Mutants (Aug. 2)
Another X-Men film, another project riddled with setbacks. In fact, even more so than Dark Phoenix, The New Mutants has been hit with a slew of reshoots and delays, catapulting the film from a planned April 2018 release all the way to August 2019. The massive reshoots were allegedly to make the film more frightening, as it’s adapting the horror-esque Demon Bear Saga, so let’s hope the final product lives up to the source material and was worth the wait.
It: Chapter Two (Sep. 6)
Stephen King adaptations are often hit or miss. However, in 2017, It proved to be an even bigger hit than New Line Cinema could have hoped for, prompting the studio to swiftly begin production on the already planned sequel, It: Chapter Two. This film, of course, will feature the original characters from the story as adults, but will still include flashbacks to 1989 with the younger cast we fell in love with (and feared for the lives of) in 2017. And naturally, Bill Skarsgård will reprise his role as the horrifying Pennywise the Dancing Clown to incite a whole new string of nightmares for moviegoers.
Joker (Oct. 4)
The more we learn about this film, the more interested we become. At first, the notion of a standalone origin film for the Clown Prince of Crime seemed baffling, especially given the state of the DCEU. However, the set photos and videos of Joaquin Phoenix’s Arthur Fleck have us foaming at our laughing-gassed mouths for Joker.
Terminator 6 (Nov. 1)
The untitled Terminator reboot, currently referred to as Terminator 6, has its work cut out for it. Not only does it need to wash the bad taste of Genisys out of fans’ mouths but it also seems to be taking a page from Halloween’s book by serving as a sequel to Terminator 2: Judgment Day and ignoring all subsequent sequels, which can certainly be confusing for audiences. Still, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton reprising their roles, Mackenzie Davis and Gabriel Luna joining the cast and Tim Miller, David S. Goyer and James Cameron each having a hand in the production, our hopes remain high.
Sonic the Hedgehog (Nov. 8)
Much like Detective Pikachu, the live-action/CGI hybrid Sonic the Hedgehog has us oddly fascinated. Many fans responded negatively to the first teaser poster, criticizing the character design of the titular hedgehog. However, with our love of the original Sega video games, James Marsden playing the lead human character and Jim Carrey playing Dr. Robotnik (seriously!), we can’t wait to see how this movie turns out.
Frozen 2 (Nov. 22)
From November 2013 well into 2014, was there anyone who didn’t sing “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” or “Let it Go” at least once, likely more? And if not someone you knew personally, you can bet their kids did. That being said, we’d be lying if we didn’t admit we were at least a little excited for Frozen 2, and you’d be lying to yourself if you didn’t do the same.
Star Wars: Episode IX (Dec. 20)
To say Star Wars: The Last Jedi was polarizing would be an understatement. The eighth chapter of the Skywalker saga literally drove a wedge in the fan base. Still, this very well may be the last episodic Star Wars movie, as Lucasfilm appears to be heading in the direction of standalone projects and non-saga series/trilogies. With that in mind, as well as our love for all things Star Wars, we can’t wait for Episode IX.