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85 Movies to Watch in 2017

We are a few months into 2017 and already we had a number of standout movies like Get Out, Logan, and The Lego Batman movie. Hopefully that is just the start of what is to come. Considering that Dan and Kevin combine forces to put a list together of 85 more movies to watch in 2017. They both created their separate list and then did some fun math to come up with a final list.

Below you will see what they chose along with where each Cinema Geek ranked that specific film on their own individual list. The person who ranked the film the highest wrote up the piece about it. When looking at these films they talk about what makes them excited, but also what could possibly go wrong.

Let us know what you think of the list in the comments below. Did they leave any off? Are the rankings off base? Let your voice be heard!



85. Landline

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Dan’s Rank: 70
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: Obvious Child was one of the biggest surprises for me back in 2014. It was a raw honest take on a very serious issue but was always able to maintain a sense of humor about itself. I had limited experience with Jenny Slate prior but her performance landed in the top five of the year for me. Now that Slate and director Gillian Robespierre are together again the hope is they can repeat that past success.
What Can Go Wrong: Prior to Obvious Child Jenny Slate was mostly known for her comedic work and short stint on Saturday Night Live. When a comedic actor moves into a serious role sometimes we can grade their performance on a curve even without realizing it. Now I still think Slate was great in Obvious Child but now the expectations are raised. Was that last performance a fluke or does she really have acting chops?

84. Tulip Fever

Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 69
What Can Go Right: A historical drama starring Alicia Vikander is always going to garner my attention. Not to mention the like of Christoph Waltz, Judi Dench, and Dane DeHaan among this star studded cast. The plot seems somewhat interesting as well
What Can Go Wrong: This film was originally planned to be made in 2004 with Jude Law and Keira Knightley. After all kinds of legal and rights issues it changed companies, directors and stars. The film was then scheduled to release in July of 2016 however when producers (Harvey Weinstein) was reportedly unhappy with the final cut it got pushed to February of 2017. Later, for one reason of another it got pulled once again and rescheduled for an August release this year. This cannot bode well for the overall film based on history of films with similar evolutions.



83. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 69
What Can Go Right: Six years removed from the last installment in this film series, I for one am ready once again to journey the seven seas along with Jack Sparrow. Let’s see what tricks they still have up their sleeves. Javier Bardem seems like a perfect addition to this world that should be able to chew up the scenery quite easily.
What Can Go Wrong: Are people over this franchise? Is waiting six years going to pay off or going to be the kiss of death. Can the film find something unique to say or do at this point or will it come across as a regurgitation of past exploits.Are people over this franchise? Is waiting six years going to pay off or going to be the kiss of death. Can the film find something unique to say or do at this point or will it come across as a regurgitation of past exploits.


82. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword

Dan’s Rank: 83
Kevin’s Rank: 83
What Can Go Right: We when first started Cinema Geeks (MWIRE Weekly at the time) this was one of those films we brought up very often so finally seeing it coming out makes me intrigued to see what exactly this final product will be. This was one of thoes films that announced it was shooting to become a seven movie franchise before day one of filming so the movie studios have ot have faith it will be good right? Guy Ritchie has his detractors but has made some pretty fantastic films like Snatch, and his Sherlock movies have a pretty solid fanbase. So maybe he could pull of that same type of magic with the world of King Author?
What Can Go Wrong: Do we really need the Batman Begins of King Author? Will this a failure akin to Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood that pretty much everyone forgot ever happened? Charlie Hunnam has never impressed as a leading man. He fits into that mix of leading actors Hollywood wants to make into a star but simply hasn’t up to now. This could easily become another failed attempt of a movie studio trying to create a franchise rather than make a good movie.

81. Lost in London

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Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 63
What Can Go Right: How can we not find a spot for a film that marks the debut of director Woody Harrelson? Especially, when that films stars Willie Nelson. It’s also the first film ever broadcast live.
What Can Go Wrong: Granted this film has already been ‘released’ but knowing nothing about its success or failure I think the fair question to ask if this film relies solely on its ‘gimmick’ or if it stands on its own as worthy piece of cinema.

80. Magdalene

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Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 60
What Can Go Right: Mary Magdalene is director Garth Davis’s follow-up to last years academy darling, Lion. The film will revolve around Mary Magdalene played by Rooney Mara. Chiwetel Ejiofor will also be a part of the cast but the real reason this film makes this list is because it gives us, are you ready for this…Joaquin Phoenix as Jesus himself.
What Can Go Wrong: Although I am intrigued by the fact that this film will be attempting to tell the story of Mary Magadalene in a completely modern setting which we have seen done successfully with some Shakespeare stories, one has to question if they will be able to translate this biblical story as cleverly or not.

79. The Trip to Spain

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Dan’s Rank: 58
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: The Trip films to this point have existed on a simple premise. Just let the funny people and funny. When you have naturally gifted comedians like Stee Coogan and Rob Brydon you can make something as basic as two people eating dinner or driving in a car highly entertaining. Comedy sequels most often fail, but The Trip is different. Often comedic films are based on an unlikely scenario that happened based on an unlikely series of events occurring. Something like The Hangover for example. You can tell that story once, but once you try to recreate the same type of unlikely scenario everything becomes forced and derivative. The Trip is different because of its simplicity. Just two guys going on a trip eating at nice restaurants throughout the world. It is the people not the events that make it funny.
What Can Go Wrong: Although the Trip to Italy was a successful comedy it was not to the level of the first Trip film. It did try to recreate some of the signature moments from the first like the infamous Sean Connery impression off, and I worry we will get more of that with this third installment. It should be noted that although The Trip is a movie franchise in the states across the pond it is a TV mini-series. So far that has let them cut it down to create a tighter package, but are there story elements that are on the chopping block that will play an important role in this installment? Was the intention to make this many versions of this story from the beginning? If it wasn’t that challenge of editing this down to another movie has to become more and more difficult with each installment.

78. The Fate of the Furious

Dan’s Rank: 57
Kevin’s Rank: NotRanked
What Can Go Right: Since the Fast franchise stopped trying to take itself seriously and started to be over the top heist films they became a lot more fun to watch. Since Fast Five this franchise has been one of the best examples of popcorn entertainment. And of course it is always about family. Well that and explosions, car chases, and gradations sex appeal.
What Can Go Wrong: I worry this franchis has simply gone too far. After you have cars jumping out of airplanes what more is there to do? The plotline of an evil Vin Diesiel does little to excite, and not to remind us of the bad new Paul Walker was a key part of what made these movies work. It will not be the same without him.

77. Le’ Fidele

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Dan’s Rank: 56
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: Michaël R. Roskam is a director not a lot of people know but if you are a fan of the crime genre he has been putting on some fantastic stuff over the last few years. Matthias Schoenaerts gave a greatly overlooked performance in his film Bullhead so it’s exciting seeing them teaming up in this film. Writer Thomas Bidegain also wrote A Prophet and Rust and Bone two very well regarded movies in their own right. Casting wise this film is shaping up.
What Can Go Wrong: There is not much that worries me at this point. I know a lot of people had some issues with Michaël R. Roskam’s The Drop, but I found it quite enjoyable. That may cause some to turn away. With this being a foreign film there is a good chance the US does not see it till next year.



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Dan’s Rank: 63
Kevin’s Rank: 94
What Can Go Right: Michel Hazanavicius’s The Artist is a remind of why winning the Best Picture Oscar can hurt the notariety of a film. What started as a nice surprise movie go gutted by critics and fans who tagged it as nothing more than overrated Oscar bait. I enjoy The Artist a great deal, but what I enjoy even more is Michel Hazanavicius’s OSS films. For those who thought The Artist was stuffy they show he has a very twisted sense of humor.
What Can Go Wrong: One thing The Artist and the OSS series had in common was Jean Dujardin. The guy just oozes charm and was a major reason those movies worked. Michel Hazanavicius’s last film The Search was also absent Dujardin and I did not know if even existed until just now. Maybe Hazanavicius’s movies were helped moreso by a charming lead than his direction.


75. The Lovers

Dan’s Rank: 55
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: Part of me including this on the list simply because I wanted a reason to implore people to go see Terri. It is such a sweet little film with a breakout performance by Jacob Wysocki and John C. Rieilly being amazing as always. I am excited to see Azazel Jacobs making another movie and hope he can recreate that same type of magic. Tracy Letts is one of today’s best character actors, and Indie movies often exist for characters actors to show their true talents in full form.
What Can Go Wrong: Azazel Jacobs has not made a movie in six years so that is a lot of time to stay away from the craft. He has been directing TV in that time, but film is an entirely different beast. Debra Winger, as one of the leads also has me concerned as her work as of late has been nothing to write home about. Sometimes though an indie film like this can remind people of the talent that is still there.

74. Last Flag Flying

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Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 54
What Can Go Right: Linklater always knows how to surprise us and here he goes again in giving us a sequel to a film from 1973! The Last Detail was a film from 1973 starring Jack Nicholson and Randy Quaid that garnered three Academy Award nominations. Now, in 2017 we get a sequel directed by Richard Linklater (who seemingly can do no wrong) which will star Steve Carell, who is proving year after year that he can balance both drama and comedy, Bryan Cranston and Laurence Fishburne. I’m on board!
What Can Go Wrong: Making a sequel to a film almost 45 years old is no small order. Granted Linklater has a penchant for pulling off the unthinkable but one still has to wonder if this film will be able to resonate with modern audiences.

73. The Discovery

Dan’s Rank: 77

Kevin’s Rank: 96

What Can Go Right: This film will ride entirely on the strength of the plot as there are questions when it comes to the directing, casting and acting. The plot is an interesting concept that has the power to overcome most of that. Unless of course, it abandons the intrigue to instead go down roads already traveled in this genre
What Can Go Wrong: Charlie McDowell has yet to prove himself as a director and is still trying to find his bearings in the film world. Romantic Science Fiction films take a lot of work to get just right and he may not be ready to tackle that task quite yet. Also, is Jason Segel miscast for this type of role and will he be able to give us the authenticity and dramatic prowess to not be overshadowed by Rooney Mara in a way that makes their chemistry fail to come across to the viewer.

72. Coco

Dan’s Rank: 73
Kevin’s Rank: 81
What Can Go Right: Anytime a Pixar movie is being released there is reason to be excited. Especially when that movie is an original property and does not involve talking Cars. You will note Cars 3 is not on this list. Pixar may have ruined their perfect record with movies like Cars 2 and Monsters University but Inside Out righted the ship a great deal. Pixar showed they are still capable of making amazing animated films that are chalk full of create details.
What Can Go Wrong: You may be wondering why a movie by Pixar would not be high and its for oen simple reason: Adrian Molina. Molina made what I consider to be the least inspired film in Pixar history The Good Dinosaur. Sure it looked go but the story, characters, and direction was subpar for any movie studio let alone Pixar. Also appears to be focused on a young boy with musical talents solving a mystery that involves his family. On the surface that sounds a great deal like Kubo and the Two Strings. Will that familiarity cause this to feel less original and more overdone?

71. Inner City

Image result for inner city dan gilroy

Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked
Kevin’s Rank: 53
What Can Go Right: Dan Gilroy is coming off of his biggest film to date in 2015’s Nightcrawler and he’s doing so in grand fashion with Denzel Washington and Colin Farrell in the cast. A crime drama with Denzel is music to my ears, let’s hope the film is as well.
What Can Go Wrong: We seem to get a film at least once a year with a big name legitimate actor doing some lame business or crime drama. Think, Al Pacino in Misconduct from last year for example. Given Gilroy’s work in Nightcrawler one would think this would not be that film for 2017, but there’s always that chance.

70. Colossal

Dan’s Rank: 50
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: I knew nothing about Colossal until I saw the trailer and it did what trailers do and peeked my interest. It took me some time to realize Anne Hathaway was the star of this movie. I mean the concept is not something you think would attract an Oscar winning actress. Knowing that gives me hope this high concept can actually work.
What Can Go Wrong: This could easily be a huge misstep that leads it to become one of the worst movies of the year. I wonder how exactly are they going to make an entire movie out of this idea? Would it be better suited for a short sketch rather than feature length movie? It is going to take a lot of great writing to keep the movie working.

69. Youth in Oregon

Dan’s Rank: 62
Kevin’s Rank: 89
What Can Go Right: Joel David Moore is not a name you may know but he is an actor you have surely see. Considering the amount of money Avatar made his recognizable face is hard to miss. Here he is directing and although Moore is not a world renowned actor he has great skill. When you look at sports average tend to make the best coaches. With acting usually it is the character actors that make the transition to director the best.
What Can Go Wrong: Road trip movies have been done to death and although the plot of this deals with a lot more than that the foundation of it is the road trip concept though. Really though the biggest risk is this becoming overly melodramatic very quickly. For this to work there needs to be a quality sense of humor that lightens the mood to avoid the sappiness.

68. Happy End

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Dan’s Rank: 49
Kevin’s Rank: Not Ranked
What Can Go Right: Michael Haneke is a director with a capital D. The man has man some true recent classics like Amour, The White Ribbon, and Funny Games. Isabelle Huppert has been getting heaps of praise along with an Oscar nomination for her performance in this year’s Elle. The idea of these two film heavyweights coming together garners a great deal of excitement.
What Can Go Wrong: The refugee crisis is probably the most debated topic in the world right now with people firmly on very opposing sides. That does not mean you should not make a movie about it, but at times when a movie hits too close to home too soon it can be too much to take in for audiences. Often why a movie like The Hurt Locker won praise but performed so poorly at the box office.


67. Granite Mountain

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Dan’s Rank: 57
Kevin’s Rank: 93
What Can Go Right: Joseph Kosinski is a directing that has shown some great potential. Movies like Oblivion and Tron: Legacy have their problems but there elements in both films that impressive to witness. The world design in Oblivion in particular was a thing a beauty. This cast is also full of some great talent. Miles Teller is just getting better and better as an actor, Jennifer Connelly is capable of being fantastic, and Jeff Bridges is coming off another Oscar nomination.
What Can Go Wrong: This is the first time Joseph Kosinski is directing a movie that is not set in some sort of futuristic world. The exact opposite as this is the rugged danger of a forest fire. Can he make a movie that is not in the Science Fiction genre? I love Miles Teller as an actor–when he is in the right role. I do know if I can buy him as a hero fire fighter. His sardonic attitude doesn’t seem to fit with what I imagine that personality being.

66.  The Current War

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Dan’s Rank: Not Ranked

Kevin’s Rank: 47
What Can Go Right: Benedict Cumberbatch is playing Thomas Edison, Michael Shannon is playing George Westinghouse and Nicholas Hoult is playin Nikola Tesla. It’s also being directed by the guy who did Me Earl and the Dying Girl. Let the electricity wars begin!!
What Can Go Wrong: The closest film from 2016 that I can compare to this is Elvis and Nixon, which wasn’t a bad film overall. If this can carry more emotional resonance and a dramatic touch that Elvis and Nixon never went for, then I think this is a film that will garner a heavy dose of discussion.

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