Serenity (January 25)
It will probably suck, but maybe this thriller about a fishing boat captain–from Steven Wright (“Locke” and “Peaky Blinders”)–will keep audiences hooked and give us a surprising ending.
Cold Pursuit (February 8)
Another year, another revenge thriller starring Liam Neeson. But this one is based on the Norwegian film “In Order of Disappearance” and seems to have a fun attitude. Maybe it won’t be bad?
The Prodigy (February 8)
If you’ve watched the teaser for this thriller, you’ll have seen what I consider one of the finest horror trailers I’ve seen in recent years.
The Rhythm Section (February 22)
A terrific trio of actors (Blake Lively, Jude Law, and Sterling K. Brown) star in a spy thriller based on a Mark Burnell novel. Lively has been on fire of late, so I’ll keep an eye on this one.
Us (March 15)
Jordan Peele recently dropped the first trailer for his follow-up to the critical and box office success, “Get Out.” “Us” has all the promise of that incredibly tense socially conscious horror movie.
Pet Sematary (April 5)
The last big film remake of a Stephen King story was “It,” and that worked really well. This might not look nearly as good, but I think it might be worth seeing.
Avengers: Endgame (April 26)
If you’re not excited to see how this whole thing ends, I’m sorry for you. “Infinity War” (now on Netflix) boasts the most unexpected ending of any Marvel movie to date. Maybe “Endgame” will keep up the excitement.
Detective Pikachu (May 10)
A more lifelike take on the hit franchise hits theaters, and I couldn’t be more excited about it. Justice Smith (“Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”) is one of the human stars, and Ryan Reynolds uses his PG Deadpool voice to give life to Pikachu.
Ad Astra (May 24)
A sci-fi space thriller that sounds a bit like “Interstellar,” but with Brad Pitt starring and James Gray (“The Lost City of Z”) directing, “Ad Astra” was one of the films on this list that I hadn’t heard about before researching.
Toy Story 4 (June 21)
I was one of the few people in my friends group to immediately and openly hope for a follow-up to the crazy-good “Toy Story 3.” I loved the new characters introduced in that movie, especially Bonnie’s toys, so another entry with those characters excited me. I think the toys’ story can and should continue as long as there’s new ground to cover.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (July 26)
Quentin Tarantino says this will be his last movie. That alone is reason to watch. But a Manson-related period piece starring Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Margot Robbie, and Al Pacino?! I’m looking forward to watching the first trailer more than I’m looking forward to watching most of 2019’s movies.
The New Mutants (August 2)
It’s not often I get excited about a new X-Men movie (“Logan” was an exception). I’ve been sick and tired of all the recycled entries in the tired franchise, with its mix of old cast and new cast and blah blah blah. X-Men movies have always been about people discovering that they are different, and navigating their own responses to that discovery and society’s reactions to it. This looks like a promising way to tell that familiar story.
Midsommar (August 9)
Ari Aster’s follow-up to the amazing “Hereditary” is this horror-thriller with Will Poulter (“Black Mirror: Bandersnatch”) and Florence Pugh (terrific in 2018’s mini-series “Little Drummer Girl”). Definitely worth anticipating.
It: Chapter Two (September 6)
The new adult cast (including James McAvoy, Bill Hader, and Jessica Chastain) will take on Pennywise in this sequel to one of the most under-appreciated horror movies in recent years.
The Kitchen (September 20)
A writer for “Straight Outta Compton” and “Blood Father” makes her directorial debut with a movie that sounds similar to the premise of “Widows”: the wives of Hell’s Kitchen gangsters continue their husbands’ operations after the husbands get locked up.
Joker (October 4)
The photos from the set of this villain origin story look incredible. Joaquin Phoenix has the look down, at least.
Midway (November 8)
One of my favorite directors, Roland Emmerich (“The Patriot,” “The Day After Tomorrow,” “2012”), takes on the Battle of Midway in a movie that is sure to be heavy on larger-than-life explosions and more exciting action than any movie realistically needs. A particular fan of this type of movie, I will be watching on the biggest screen I can find.
Frozen 2 (November 22)
People who say they didn’t like “Frozen” were probably lying. It was good. Good music, good comedy, good story, good morals.
Star Wars: Episode IX (December 20)
C’mon. This was always going to be on this list. I had no choice.