Hey I'm as skeptical as the next man when it comes to these unanticipated 2016 releases. However, I'm also an optimist (on the most part) and I like a challenge. So with that in mind I've decided to task myself with answering the question no one is asking: "what if these movies could actually turn out good?" Don't worry there will be no superstitious crossing of fingers or hopeful gushes here. I'm gunna base these arguments on cold, hard facts. I'll be looking at the evidence that could point towards the haters, myself included, being proved wrong. I'm not expecting any of these films to be the next Citizen Kane, but I'll also be looking at why they could not only be passably watchable, but actually good, quite good even! So here we go! On a side-note, don't kill me if they all turn out to be terrible!
Yep, that's right, we're going straight for the kill! Ghostbusters 2016; the reboot responsible for having most disliked trailer in Youtube history could end up being, you guessed it, good. In fact, of all the anticipated flops of 2016, I think this one has a better than average chance of proving us all wrong. For one, director Paul Feig has had a pretty solid run of good movies as of late. These titles include The Heat, Spy, and the now cult-comedy-classic Bridesmaids. He also created the cult-series; Freaks and Geeks. Ghostbusters will also be featuring the controversial Melissa McCarthy. However, for this one I'm going to consider this a good thing given that it was Feig that made her a house-hold name in the first place. It's also written by a key writer of Parks and Recreation. Feig hasn't let us done so far as of late, and with a formula that has clearly been proved successful in the past, who knows he could surprise us all!
Independence Day: Resurgence
Many have noted the absence of Will Smith in the CSI love-fest that is the Independence Day: Resurgence trailer. And as such they have already sealed Resurgence's fate as a soon-to-be disappointment. But there's still a lot of hope for this perhaps slightly too late update to the Independence Day saga. For one, not having Will Smith in it to mutter something about "saving the world" for the fiftieth time is somewhat of a breath of fresh air. And also it's biggest strength may be found in the unlikeliest of places; and that's due to the fact that it's clearly going to be dumb. I don't know about you but I kind of miss stupidly entertaining popcorn flicks. Blockbusters have recently been saturated with extremely well-written, well-directed and well-acted, interesting and layered stories set in complex and inter-connected movie universes. I'm looking at you Disney with your MCU and Star Wars franchising churning out smart concept after smart concept and extremely clever ideas. I mean Civil War had enough political relevance, emotional depth and detailed story-telling to keep even the most snobbish of International Relations students happy! And truth be told I'm very, very glad that the blockbuster genre has taken this turn. However, it has got me yearning for a slice of just plain stupid, 'switch your brain off' cinema once more! Jurassic World served this purpose last year, so who knows, maybe Resurgence will do the same for us this summer!
Star Trek: Beyond
Talking of smart, well-written, directed and acted franchises, Star Trek: Beyond's predecessors are most certainly part of that trend. And, well, let's be frank, Beyond is very unlikely going to be an addition to that high quality club. Yes I admit it looks a lot like a space filler to keep the fans happy before JJ gets a chance to return. And yes it looks like The Fast and the Furious had a weird, mutant love child with Guardians of the Galaxy in space. But, yet again, this could be a good thing! Maybe. For one, Into Darkness was as smart, and as cleverly written as it's predecessor, but hasn't faired nearly as well. Very few people remember the plot line of the move, who was in it, or how it actually ends. So taking a drastically different tact could end up working for Beyond. Again! Maybe! Director Justin Lin knows how to reinvigorate a franchise and it'll be at the very least interesting to see him play with the sci-fi genre. Especially given the fact that he clearly already knows how to make his characters defy gravity! Justin Lin also directed the critically acclaimed and smartly told Better Luck Tomorrow. So who knows, for all those die-hard Trekkies out there, Lin still may be able to inject a level of intelligence to the plot that you weren't expecting. It's certainly a possibility!
Most people and their dog are starting to get tired of Seth Rogan and his jokes predominantly surrounding genitalia. His releases ever since This is The End have gradually been falling both critically and at the box office. As such, when it was announced that Seth Rogan's latest addition to his filmography was amply titled Sausage Party, the entire internet face-palmed. And I'll admit, so did I. And then I watched the trailer and realised it was going to be animated. This is a medium Seth has never ventured in before, and I believe this is a very good thing. Seth's greatest hits are usually found in his earlier work when he was doing things for the first time and trying to break new ground. His recent releases weren't as well received because they began to feel to samey. However, Seth has as of late changed this pattern and began to adapt. First he featured in a serious role for once, playing Steve Wozniak in Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs. He's also working on an adaptation with James Franco of the making of Tommy Wissou's The Room, and so I'm beginning to put my faith back into Rogan in his ability to make good work. Who knows, maybe Sausage Party won't be so bad. It could even end up being good!
Ok this slot was going to be allotted to the upcoming Assassin's Creed movie. But then the trailer got released and despite the Kanye audio people have now become pretty hyped for the movie! As such, my attention has had to move to another video game adaptation which ironically had made it on to my personal top 5 most anticipated films of summer 2016. So at least on this one you can't call me out for being disingenuous! The fact that World of Warcraft, much like Resurgence is about 10 years too late plays a significant factor for the lack on anticipation this movie is generating. The dubstep infused lacklustre trailer hasn't helped matters and the fact that it's coming from a genre that has literally never created a good movie has often been the final nail in the coffin for many potential viewers. However, I still hold hope. Director Duncan Jones has yet to make a bad movie. Moon is one of the best sic-fi movies of all time, and Source Code was an extremely well-crafted, intelligent sic-fi thriller in it's own right too. Jones is also an avid fan of WOW and has devoted three and a half years of his life to this project. If that's not devotion I don't know what is. A summer release date also shows that the studio still has hope in the project. Overall, I still retain that this potential franchise could end up being good, maybe even great if Jone's other work is anything to stand by! It just might surprise you!
I've always followed the don't judge a book by it's cover' motto. So whilst I admit these films have as good a chance as any at being bad, hopefully I've shown why they also have a shot at being good. Admittedly I think a large part of these movie's anticipated hate is a more of a negative reaction from viewers who are tired of Hollywood constantly churning out prequels, sequels, spin-offs, reboots and re-imaginings. And I completely understand where that frustration comes from. In fact I would be lying if I didn't say I was part of that group. However what this article is meant to show is that whilst generally speaking always having more of the same isn't great, it doesn't necessarily mean that more of the same is always bad. And that where we find the good films can often come from the unlikeliest of places. Either that or I just like sticking up for the underdog. Yeah that's probably it.