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My 10 Most Anticipated Films for the Rest of 2016

As the summer of 2016 is starting to fade away, I would like to bring to your attention the 10 films yet to be released, that I am most excited to see. It has been a relatively slow year for movies so far. There have only been a handful of films that I consider to be great and memorable. There are only a few more summer movies that I am looking forward to until we get to the fall and winter. The end of the year is always my favorite time for movies. This is when we get the films that will most likely be nominated for awards, and are always the best and most memorable of the year. I’m focusing more on the films that haven’t been discussed a lot so far, and moving away from films like Suicide Squad, Star Wars: Rogue One, and Doctor Strange which have been talked about nonstop lately.

Honorable Mentions:

Fences – Denzel Washington stars and directs this drama that is already getting a lot of Oscar buzz.

Sully – The new Clint Eastwood biopic which stars Tom Hanks.

Snowden – The new Oliver Stone film which stars Joseph Gordon Levitt as Edward Snowden.

(Keep in mind the release dates are US release dates)


Title: Jason Bourne

Release Date: July 29th, 2016

Jason Bourne brings back Matt Damon, as Jason Bourne, and director Paul Greengrass. It has been 9 long years since we have seen this character, so it is extremely intriguing to see what he has been up to. I’m expecting plenty of action with very minimal dialogue. This should be one of the best, if not the best action film of the year.


Title: The Light Between Oceans

Release Date: September 2nd, 2016

This film has an already proven director in Derek Cianfrance. His last two films, Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond the Pines, were both fantastic and this film shouldn’t be any worse. It stars two actors who were both in my Top 10 lists for current actors and actresses: Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander. I’m expecting a very good story, which is adapted from the novel of the same name, and fantastic, emotionally-draining performances from the leads.


Title: The Girl on the Train

Release Date: October 7th, 2016

This film has been on every single most anticipated of 2016 list since the beginning of the year. It is based on a critically acclaimed book which is supposed to be similar to Gone Girl. “Thriller” is my favorite movie genre so I’m hoping this delivers the tension and thrills like the book did for readers. It stars one of my favorite current actresses, Emily Blunt, who has been on fire lately. If all things go well, this will be one of the best films of the year and Blunt will be nominated for Best Actress at the Academy Awards, but we will see. I have purposely not looked at any of the trailers, because I want to come into this film fresh with a clean slate.


Title: The Birth of a Nation

Release Date: October 7th, 2016

This film intrigues me in a number of ways. First of all, it is one of the films with the most Oscar buzz. The last Academy Awards was famous for not having enough films with African American actors. This year should offer a number of films that deal with race issues involving African Americans, and The Birth of a Nation should be the best out of them all. This film was a huge success at Sundance and even got a standing ovation before the film was even shown. The critical success has been phenomenal, but surprisingly it is getting a lot of hate. It currently has a 5.4 on IMDB with a lot of people just giving it a 1 star rating. From what I have read, it sounds like a more serious Django Unchained. I’m excited to see how it shapes up and if it is the 12 Years a Slave of 2016.


Title: Nocturnal Animals

Release Date: November 18th, 2016

This will be Tom Ford’s first film in 7 years. His last film was A Single Man which was a critical success and starred Collin Firth who was nominated for an Academy Award. This film stars Jake Gyllenhaal who has proven to be one of the top actors in the business. It also stars Amy Adams who is nominated for acting awards almost every year. This film has a very intriguing plot line. It is basically a story-within-a-story about a married woman (Adams) who receives a manuscript called Nocturnal Animals from her ex-husband who she hasn’t spoken to in years. As she begins to read Edward’s book, we read it right along with her, and we wonder what does it all mean? Is the book an act of forgiveness, or an act of revenge? Gyllenhaal plays one of the characters in the novel she reads. It seems very unique and I have a feeling it will be very good.


Title: Arrival

Release Date: November 11th, 2016

This film is anticipated to me for one reason: Denis Villeneuve. Villeneuve is one of my favorite directors working today and has given us some modern day masterpieces. His last four films were Incendies, Prisoners, Enemy, and Sicario. All of those films are fantastic, and Prisoners is one of my favorite films of all time. Villeneuve is set to direct the Blade Runner sequel coming out next year, and Arrival will prove us whether or not he can do science-fiction. Amy Adams plays a woman who is recruited by the military to investigate a mysterious spaceship that has come down to Earth. I expect this to be one of the best films of the year, and I haven’t even seen a trailer yet.


Title: Manchester by the Sea

Release Date: November 18th, 2016

This film, like The Birth of a Nation, was a major success at Sundance. Manchester by the Sea got nothing but good reviews from critics and is written and directed by Kenneth Lonergan. It is an original screenplay which is what intrigues me most. I hear that the story is really good, and Casey Affleck is getting a lot of oscar buzz for his performance. This is an indie film that could surprise everyone and be nominated for Best Picture and should be nominated for Best Actor from Casey Affleck. It has a basic plot about a man who takes care of his nephew after his brother dies. Kyle Chandler, Michelle Williams, and Matthew Broderick round up the cast which should be a powerful drama full of emotion.

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Title: La La Land

Release Date: December 2nd, 2016

I had a big smile on my face after watching the first trailer for this film. La La Land is directed by Damien Chazelle, whose last film was Whiplash. I was a huge fan of Whiplash, and this film is made with a bigger budget, and a more confident Damien Chazelle. From the look of the trailer, I could tell that this is gonna be another well-made, original film with great music. It’s stylish and takes place in Hollywood, so the Academy Awards should drool all over this. I’m expecting a lot of awards from this film, and hopefully it lives up to the hype. Emma Stone plays the assuring aspiring actress who falls for a jazz musician played by Ryan Gosling. Gosling and Stone have proven they have great chemistry in Crazy, Stupid, Love and should both light up the screen and prove they can not only act but sing. This is probably my #1 most anticipated, so my fingers are crossed to see how it turns out.


Title: Passengers

Release Date: December 21st, 2016

I’m still waiting to see the trailer and find out more information about this film, but it has been one of my most anticipated movies all year. I actually read the screenplay which was leaked online, and I can say it is very very good. Chris Pratt plays the lead character who is accidentally awaken too soon on a spaceship, 90 years before his destination. After awhile he decides to awake another passenger, Jennifer Lawrence, to keep him company. This is a fascinating plot line, that will give Pratt and Lawrence plenty of screen time together. They are pretty much the only characters in this film, and they might be my favorite actress and actor working today. So, obviously I am super stoked to watch this!! It’s probably my 2nd most anticipated behind La La Land.


Title: Silence

Release Date: December (No official date yet)

Silence is directed by Martin Scorsese, nuff said. Scorsese is one of the greatest of all time, and continues to make incredible films. Silence should be nothing different, and is another period piece, but takes place in the seventeenth century. Liam Neeson is the lead in this film. It will be very nice to see him in a role that is not the lead in a cheesy action film. The supporting cast is very interesting as well with actors like Adam Driver, Andrew Garfield, and a lot of foreign actors I have never heard of. There is no question this film will be nominated for awards and has the potential to be one of the best films of the year, and if done right, a masterpiece. However, I have not heard much about it, and I’m still waiting for a trailer. Regardless, this is Scorsese’s next film so it should be very good.


  1. Derek Jacobs

    Fantastic list here, and I echo many of the sentiments expressed here, ESPECIALLY the Denis Villeneuve love! I basically flipped out and turned my blog into a love-letter to Denis in anticipation of last year’s Sicario, so I ended up writing reviews for all of his films! I also love that you’re so into “Prisoners”, as I recently just included it on my list of “Top 21 Films of the 21st Century” (to accompany the BBC list that just came out).

    Anyway, keep up the good work over here, and maybe drop by every once in awhile to share the Villeneuve love!

    1. Brendan Bellavia (Post author)

      Thanks for the comment! Yeah Villeneuve has slowly become one of my favorite filmmakers working today. I LOVE Prisoners. I will never forget the first time I saw that in theaters. What do you think is the best or what is your favorite Villeneuve film?


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