The Films of 2022

Discussions of specific films and franchises.
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DarkImbecile
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The Films of 2022

#1 Post by DarkImbecile » Sat Jan 01, 2022 1:00 am

As always, this is the thread in which one can post reactions to any film released this year that doesn't already have a thread created for it; if enough posts accumulate in a bipartisan manner for the same film, a new thread might be created — if a filibuster-proof majority of moderators are willing to do so and the CriterionForum Budget Office decrees that the new thread is deficit neutral. Please limit yourself to one film per post — even if that means a few consecutive posts after a day-long trip to the multiplex — as the mods have hard enough jobs already without having to try to split your 1,000-word treatise defining "disasteurism" in the context of Roland Emmerich's Moonfall and Michael Bay's Ambulance into two different threads. Everyone and anyone is encouraged to offer their thoughts on any 2022 release that provokes a reaction, whether it's a hidden art house gem or the 53rd entry in a big budget franchise.

While it is an indisputable fact that change is scary and bad, I'm going to try something a little different this year: instead of a throwing together a big snarky list of possible projects that may be coming out in 2022 — one that just rehashes more comprehensive lists like Playlist's 100 Most Anticipated Films of 2022 or David Hudson's list from Criterion.com, and would almost certainly include a ton of films that were originally pegged to be released over the previous two years and/or may not actually come out this year — I'm going to briefly touch on the handful of films I'm personally most excited or curious about. I encourage you to do the same as we slog through the first days of the new year... and if no one bites, we'll go back to the big snarky list next year.

DarkImbecile's Most Anticipated of 2022:

Honorable Mention for a Movie That People Will Actually See: Avatar 2 (James Cameron) — Of all the many, many big-budget blockbuster franchise features set to be released this year, this is the one I'm most curious about (apologies to Mission: Impossible 7). Cameron has consistently managed to find new and interesting ways to make his spectacles feel truly eventful and groundbreaking at the time, whether that translates into quality and cultural staying power (Aliens and T2: Judgement Day) or more ephemeral objects that nevertheless run circles around almost every other mega-budget release these days (True Lies and, uh, Avatar). Whether it'll actually be any good, I have no idea, but it's highly unlikely that it won't be worth talking about either way.

10.) Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg) — Cronenberg going back to the horror well with Viggo Mortensen, Léa Seydoux, and Kristen Stewart? Say no more.

9.) Babylon (Damien Chazelle) — Surprisingly, there are still some memberships available in the official club of people who thought First Man was one of the best films of 2018! I continue to find it remarkable that lame controversies about jazz, flags, and botched awards ceremonies dominate nearly every discussion of one of the most talented young directors making movies for adults in the studio system, and am already steeling myself for the cinephilic discourse around his new film's representation of early Hollywood — but none of that dampens my excitement to see what Chazelle does with the era and stars Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie.

8.) Decision to Leave (Park Chan-wook) — The Criterion Channel's recent New Korean Cinema collection spurred me to go beyond the handful of Park's films I had seen, and the combination of his deft formal touch and palpable enthusiasm for subverting narrative and genre expectations made his one of the more exciting and fun set of films I've discovered of late. What sounds like a twisty murder mystery featuring Tang Wei (Lust, Caution) seems ripe for his sensibility.

7.) Women Talking (Sarah Polley) & Men (Alex Garland) — I'm going to cheat here and include two seemingly very different projects from acclaimed directors — one a drama centered around abuse allegations in a closed-off Mennonite colony and the other a secretive high-concept genre film — because as much as I like the auteurs involved, the main attraction for me in both is Jessie Buckley, who has consistently been my favorite part of small indies (Beast), stacked ensembles (The Lost Daughter), and high-concept headfucks (I'm Thinking of Ending Things). These movies will probably both be good, and Buckley will probably be one of the primary reasons.

6.) Triangle of Sadness (Ruben Östlund) — Like several others here, I loved Östlund's Palme-winning The Square, and all indications are his expertise at delivering the comedy of discomfort will be on full display in his latest, which is apparently set on a yacht in the world of modeling. Hopefully this will be at Cannes and the other festivals this year.

5.) The Northman (Robert Eggers) — Eggers has made two of the best period genre films of the 21st century — largely because of the incredible depth of detail in the language and design he infuses into those films — and I'm fervently hoping he's able to maintain that precision of vision, as well as his willingness to follow that vision in weird and unsettling directions, at a larger scale for this Viking epic.

4.) Bardo (or False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths) (Alejandro González Iñárritu) — Another divisive filmmaker whose work I find consistently compelling and occasionally great, Iñárritu has returned to Mexico to make a dark Spanish-language comedy with no major international stars. From the handful of set photos floating around, it appears that Iñárritu is still doing something ambitious and visually dynamic (which cinematographer Darius Khondji should help deliver), but it'll be interesting to see if he goes for something less kinetic and more philosophical than his last couple of films.

3.) Killers of the Flower Moon (Martin Scorsese) — I mean, obviously. But also: One of my favorite elements of The Irishman was Scorsese's interest in using American history as a tool to contrast what kind of country this really is with what it perceives itself to be, and this story is ripe for opportunities to continue to do so.

2.) Disappointment Blvd. (Ari Aster) — I love just about everything Ari Aster has done thus far in his career — from delightfully deranged shorts to the one-two punch of Hereditary/Midsommar — so his new film was always going to be high on any list like this one for me. The prospect of his working with Joaquin Phoenix on something outside the horror genre (though apparently still demented and unsettling, as one would hope) only further heightens my expectations, even if I doubt reports that it will end up being a four-hour epic.

1.) Blonde (Andrew Dominik) — The mere combination of Dominik and Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe had me very excited for this when it looked like it was aiming for the festival circuit last year, but after the film was pulled at the last minute from a Venice premiere, Dominik seemingly won a standoff with Netflix to retain his cut — including graphic sexual content and Dominik's typical mass-audience-alienating aesthetic. Fascinated to see what Dominik and de Armas have done with an iconic personage, especially now that it's clear they swung for the fences.

I tried to include only films I was reasonably confident would be released in 2022 (hence the absence of fingers-crossed projects from Malick, Glazer, Fincher, Wes Anderson, and many others), but even with that caveat there were literally dozens of other films that could have been on this list — many I was unaware of before reading the Playlist compilation linked above. I highly recommend digging into it to stoke your excitement for the year in cinema, and sharing those that do so.

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Ribs
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Re: The Films of 2022

#2 Post by Ribs » Sat Jan 01, 2022 1:22 am

I think the Wes Anderson seems 100% certain it’ll be ready at least for the Fall fests if not Cannes - I don’t think he’d be going into production on his follow up to that one in the spring as has been indicated if it would delay post work for this film.

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DarkImbecile
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Re: The Films of 2022

#3 Post by DarkImbecile » Sat Jan 01, 2022 1:35 am

He was still shooting in the fall, so Cannes seems like a quick turnaround, but here’s hoping you’re right!

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Re: The Films of 2022

#4 Post by colinr0380 » Sat Jan 08, 2022 1:00 pm

If it affects your desire to see Mission: Impossible 7 DarkImbecile apparently last Summer a train stunt for the film was shot in my local area! (In Stoney Middleton, which is close to the original plague village of Eyam) Which goes to prove the old adage (that I have just made up) that once you have visited the Peak District there remains nothing else left to do on Earth except to shoot yourself into space in a rocket!

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Re: The Films of 2022

#5 Post by DarkImbecile » Sat Jan 08, 2022 1:05 pm

That series has become the most dependable and fun big-budget action franchise around, so the latest entry already had my curiosity, but now it has my attention

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Re: The Films of 2022

#6 Post by DarkImbecile » Fri Jan 14, 2022 8:34 pm

I'm the right age to have a fair amount of nostalgia for the first two Scream movies, which managed to carry off fairly well what turns out to be a difficult balancing act of commenting on its genre while also being a solid example of it; as the later sequels and nearly all of the wave of ripoffs demonstrate, it's remarkably easy to make something superficially and unimaginatively 'meta' while utterly failing at the basics of executing a minimally watchable slasher.

In that respect, this new Scream — there's a halfway convincing reason it's not titled Scream 5, despite being a direct sequel to the previous movies — does a passable enough job of reheating the old recipes, but I think the general critical acceptance of the movie is rooted in appreciation for its
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mockery of toxic fandoms
more than its mediocre execution as a horror film. While it's better than the most recent entries, any hope that this Scream could somehow match the grim hipness of the '90s originals fades pretty quickly when the few deviations and subversions of the original films' formula run into the need to archly cover the same well-trod ground, and it becomes clear that any cleverness brought to this entry won't extend to taking it anywhere truly new and interesting.

The new cast of knife-fodder teens are the usual blend of forgettable and attractive, and the returning original cast members are game enough — Neve Campbell in particular does an admirable job of exuding the kind of weariness with knife-wielding serial killers one might expect from someone in her character's situation — but that's not quite enough to overcome the feeling that whatever scraps left to be mined from this franchise probably aren't worth the effort anymore.

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