The 2013 Winter Movie Season Preview


Ok, boys and girls. The Holiday Season is over… and the Spring Season, full of mini Blockbusters, is still months away.

Between now and then lies Hollywood’s dumping ground. The Hollywood fields lie fallow in the winter, bearing little quality product. It’s the two months of the year we need to “Get through”. While January typically offers some limited releases from the prior year going wide, there’s typically little else to get excited over.

Will this year be different? Are there any movies to get excited about these next two months? Let’s take a look at the release slate and see what we’ve got!


January 4th

“Texas Chainsaw 3D”


Directed By: John Luessenhop

Starring: Alexandra Daddario, Dan Yeager, Trey Songz, Scott Eastwood, Tania Raymonde

Take classic horror property. Update with unknowns. Repeat.

January 11th

“A Haunted House”


Directed by: Michael Tiddes

Starring: Marlon Wayans, Nick Swardson, David Koechner, Essence Atkins, Cedric the Entertainer, Alanna Ubach, Jamie Noel

Marlon Wayans (screenplay) strikes again! Once again he’s mining his Scary Movie/Parody movie comfort zone, this time with a more Afro-centric perspective. I know that it’s a comedy, but I’m actually a little frightened of the fact that this movie prominently features Nick Swardson.


“Gangster Squad”


Directed By: Ruben Fleischer

Starring: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Robert Patrick, Michael Pena, Giovanni Ribisi, Anthony Mackie, Nick Nolte, Wade Williams, Mireille Enos

I know that the cast is loaded. I know that this was originally slated for a September release and not January (pushed back due to the Aurora shootings). I know that it’s a cop/mob movie. But something here is severely setting off my “Stinker Alarm”. I hope I’m wrong, I really do… I definitely like the cast, but I’ve got to call it like I see it, and my money’s on “Disappointment”.


January 18

“Broken City”


Directed by: Allen Hughes

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Barry Pepper, Kyle Chandler

Wahlberg and Crowe squaring off? Sure, that sounds good to me! This flick strikes me as a cross between “City Hall” and “Unfaithful”… Whether it’s half as good as either of those is yet to be seen.


“The Last Stand”


Directed by: Kim Jee-Woon

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Forest Whitaker, Peter Stormare, Jaimie Alexander, Rodrigo Santoro, Zach Gilford, Johnny Knoxville, Harry Dean Stanton, Luis Guzmán, Génesis Rodríguez

He’s Back!

Is Schwarzenegger too old? We’ll see, in this January shoot-em-up. At least they acknowledge he’s getting old via a joke or two.




Directed by: Andres Muschietti

Starring: Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

You know what has me hoping this might be good (aside from the involvement Jessica Chastain)? It’s produced by Guillermo del Toro. In Guillermo I trust. 😀


January 25

“Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters”


Directed by: Tommy Wirkola

Starring: Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton, Zoe Bell, Famke Janssen, Peter Stormare, Ingrid Bolso Berdal, Thomas Mann

This movie has a chance at the “Dumb Fun” route to success. My worry is, it will take itself too seriously and just wind up “Dumb”. 😦 I’m not encouraged by the fact that this movie was bumped by its March 2012 release date, that’s not a sign of studio confidence.

“Movie 43”

Movie 43

Directed by: Patrik Forsberg, Elizabeth Banks, Steven Brill, Steve Carr, Rusty Cundieff, James Duffy, Griffin Dunne, Peter Farrelly, James Gunn, Bob Odenkirk, Brett Ratner, Jonathan van Tulleken

Starring: Hugh Jackman, Emma Stone, Gerald Butler, Chloe Grace Moretz, Elizabeth Banks, Kristen Bell, Naomi Watts, Anna Faris, Chris Pratt, Kate Winslet, Josh Duhamel, Richard Gere, Uma Thurman, Halle Berry, Patrick Warburton, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Liev Schreiber, Seann William Scott, Jason Sudeikis, Kate Bosworth, Bobby Cannavale, Justin Long, J.B. Smoove, Kieran Culkin, Leslie Bibb, Terrence Howard, Jack McBrayer, Tony Shalhoub

No, you’re not seeing things. That’s 12 directorial credits. 12. That’s not a confidence builder, right there. The fact that the movie is able to boast such big names amongst the massive cast is mildly reassuring, but there’s a strong possibility that this movie has nothing going for it beyond its shock value.




Director: Taylor Hackford

Starring: Jason Statham, Jennifer Lopez, Bobby Cannavale, Clifton Collins, Jr., Wendell Pierce, Michael Chiklis, Nick Nolte, Sala Baker

You know? I’d actually like this movie to be good. I like Statham, J Lo was great a long time ago in “Out of Sight” and The Shield and The Wire represent. The trailer looks slick, let’s hope there’s a cool crime caper here to be had!


February 1

“Bullet to the Head”


Directed by: Walter Hill

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christian Slater, Jason Mamoa, Jon Seda, Brian Van Holt

Nothing is over!!

Is Stallone too old? We’ll see, in this February shoot-em-up. At least they acknowledge he’s getting old via a joke or two.


“Stand Up Guys”


Directed by: Fisher Stevens

Starring: Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, Julianna Margulies, Mark Margolis, Alan Arkin, Bill Burr

Hell yes! LOL. The combination of Walken, Pacino and Arkin is enough to pique my interest! Old mob guys? Those guys? You betcha! Of course, it’s only batting 50% on Rotten Tomatoes right now… Dammit!!


“Warm Bodies”


Directed by: Jonathan Levine

Starring: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, Rob Corddry, John Malkovich, Analeigh Tipton, Dave Franco, Cory Hardrict

Ok, this just looks dumb. Seriously. I already have it penciled in as a nominee for the 2013 MAJOR Awards “Worst Movie” category.

February 8

“A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III”


Directed by: Roman Coppola

Starring: Charlie Sheen, Bill Murray, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jason Schwartzman, Aubrey Plaza, Patricia Arquette, Katheryn Winnick

Ok. If there’s one movie on this list that I’m really hoping lives up to its potential here, it’s this one. Could it wind up a hot mess? Of course it could. But it could also turn out to be a batshit crazy funny movie. Hopes are high for the latter. 😉


“Identity Thief”


Directed by: Seth Gordon

Starring: Jason Bateman, Melissa McCarthy, Amanda Peet, John Cho, Clark Duke, Maggie Elizabeth Jones, Mary-Charles Jones, Jon Favreau, Génesis Rodríguez

Bateman is funny. McCarthy is funny. The second trailer seems funny. We’ll see if they can put a cohesive flick together… I’m already suspicious about the gangster debt seeming subplot they allude to in the trailer. When you get your guard up over a subplot just during the trailer? That’s not a good sign.


“Side Effects”


Directed by: Steven Soderbergh

Starring: Rooney Mara, Jude Law, Channing Tatum, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Vinessa Shaw, David Costabile

There’s certainly some talent attached here, between Soderbergh and the cast. I’m not overly enthused for some reason, but hopefully it will be (at the least) a decent enough movie along the lines of Soderbergh’s last couple.

February 13th

“Beautiful Creatures”


Directed by: Richard LaGravenese

Starring: Viola Davis, Alice Englert, Emma Thompson, Emmy Rossum, Jeremy Irons, Alden Ehrenreich, Thomas Mann, Kyle Gallner

Twilight lite! LOL


February 14th

“A Good Day to Die Hard”


Directed by: John Moore

Starring: Bruce Willis, Jai Courtney, Sebastian Koch, Yuliya Snigir, Cole Hauser, Amaury Nolasco, Megalyn Echikunwoke, Anne Vyalitsyna, Mary Elizabeth Winstead

“Live Free or Die Hard” was a June release that grossed $134 million domestically and $330+ mil worldwide. That was just over five years ago. Now they’ve targeted Valentines Day. Can you say “Lowered Expectations”?


“Escape from Planet Earth”


Directed by: Cal Brunker

Starring: (The voices of) Brendan Fraser, Rob Corddry, Jessica Alba, William Shatner, Sarah Jessica Parker, Jane Lynch, Paul Reubens, Sofia Vergara, George Lopez, Craig Robinson

Wow. That animation looks bland as hell. LOL. Doesn’t look that promising, to me. 😦

“Safe Haven”


Directed by: Lasse Hallström

Starring: Josh Duhamel, Julianne Hough, David Lyons, Cobie Smulders, Mimi Kirkland, Noah Lomax, Mike Pniewski

Just how prolific is Nicholas Sparks, anyways? Are we gonna get an adaptation of his syrupy gobbledy-goop every year?


February 22nd

“Dark Skies”


Directed by: Scott Stewart

Starring: Keri Russell, Josh Hamilton, Dakota Goyo, J.K. Simmons

This strikes me as “Paranormal Activity” with Aliens, minus the found footage conceit. J.K. Simmons makes any movie better, Hell, I even like his Farmer’s Market insurance commercials. But will he be enough?




Directed by: Ric Roman Waugh

Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Susan Sarandon, Benjamin Bratt, Barry Pepper

You know what? At least we get to see the Rock fighting people. None of this lame-ass family movie dreck he’s spent the last five to ten years or so on. Punch some people Rock, will ya?! Fer godssakes…


Well, there it is people. The lineup from now until March.

Are there any amongst this bunch that you’re looking forward to? A jewel in the rough? Which of these really set off YOUR stinker alarm?

Lets hear it! What are your thoughts about the 2013 Winter Season??


Daniel Fogarty

78 thoughts on “The 2013 Winter Movie Season Preview

  1. Great list and great synpsis, I think the only ones I’m looking forward to a little more than you are Gangster Squad (Though I share the same concerns as you, so maybe our anticipation is the same) and Warm Bodies, most because I really enjoyed Writer/Director Jonathan Levine’s last movie, 50/50, and if Warm Bodies can get anywhere close while adding in zombies I think I’ll probably enjoy it

    • Yeah, anticipation for Gangster Squad is 0, so you probably ARE anticipating it more than I am, LOL. 😀



      I hadn’t known that this guy did 50/50.


      [That’s the sound of me mentally stopping in my tracks, LOL]

  2. Love this, Fogs! Some bland films to look forward to. However, it will make for some great reviews and commentary. I may even steal the commentary you used for both Arnold (The Last Stand) and Stallone (Bullet to the Head). Funny stuff there man!

    I wonder how many of these we will see eye to eye on. I’m betting about a 80% compatibility. 😀

    Thanks for the list.

    • Lol. It’s a safe bet that there’s going to be a lot of “Group Think” going on, cause I’m betting that a lot of these flicks are going to be undeniably bad. LOL 😀

      Wait. I shouldn’t be smiling about that. 😦

  3. And here I was totally sucked into Warm Bodies. Looks excellent to me! One of the few I’m really looking forward to during this somewhat slow season.

    Gangster Squad too. I can see where you’re coming from in that this could be a potential stinker, but refusing to acknowledge those thoughts.

    And Mama – can’t wait! Though, Del Toro did produce and write the screenplay for Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and that wasn’t exactly amazeballs.

    • LOL. I kinda liked “Afraid”, but I hear what everyone is saying. Didn’t diminish my opinion of him, let’s put it that way.

      Someone just let me know that “Warm Bodies” is by the guy who did 50/50. So… I might have to wind up recanting some of the things I said. 50/50 was awesome. We’ll see how warm bodies winds up.

      I hope Im wrong about Gangster Squad. For your sake. LOL 😀

  4. Pingback: Anticipating the Top 12 Most-Disappointing Movies of 2013 -Part 1 « The Focused Filmographer

  5. I’m glad to see that “A Haunted House” and “Scary Movie V” look exactly the same. I’m sure they will be equally lame, too, so I suppose that’s expected.

  6. Great summary Fogs! Interesting that you didn’t anticipate Gangster Squad, I thought I was the only one. I know lots of people love that cast but aside from Emma Stone, the rest are meh for me. True that in Jan and Feb there are very few films I’m anticipating, Broken City sounds ok just to see Crowe + Wahlberg squaring off as well, but hopefully there’s more to it than that.

    • On the Gangster Squad cast, there’s a lot of people I’m fans of… Love Josh Brolin and Sean Penn, of course, and Ryan Gosling is like king shit right now. LOL. The Place Beyond the Pines looks incredible. Holy crap! LOL

      But the film as a whole? Yeah… looks rough. 😦

      • Funny that you mention those three, as I was just telling Terrence that they’re a trifecta of actors I don’t care for, and they’re all in one movie!!

  7. Yeahhhh, it looks like January and February will be a good time to catch up on last year’s films. Can’t say I am interested in any of these, unfortunately.

    Great writeup though, man.

  8. Texas Chainsaw 3D, No way on Earth. Nope. Not doing it.

    A Haunted House. Again, no. The Scary Movie franchise just pissed me off.

    Gangster Squad. Will cross my fingers and give it a shot. Hope it at least looks good. (Sets, Costumes, Hair and make up, Music)

    Broken City. It isn’t tripping my trigger. I’ll have to take a look at trailers and see how I feel about it.

    The Last Stand. Of course I plan to see that. So far it is looking pretty good. We will see if it works or not.

    Mama. I totally agree with you on del Toro.

    Hansel and Gretel. Totally worried it will be very bad. Will probably go to it anyway.

    Movie 43. Despite the great cast, totally worried it will be awful and it isn’t capturing my interest.

    Parker has Statham in it. I don’t need to know anymore. If it’s bad, I can just look at Statham the entire time. Where is the downside?

    Bullet to the Head. I’m a child of the 80’s. I’ll be there.

    Stand Up Guys looks really really good. I can’t wait to see it.

    Cold Body Warm Heart. Isn’t it just Twilight with Zombies?

    A Good Day to Die Hard. The child of the 80’s comment still stands.

    Snitch. See Parker. Change Statham to Johnson. Comment stands.

    Charlie Sheen. No way on Earth. I think I would kill myself first. Nope. Not going to happen.

    The others listed, Meh.

    • LOL. So on the high level, you’d agree with me that most of these dont look very good then. 😀

      I dont have that fall back option with “Parker” lets just hope its good, huh? LOL Movie 43 DOES look awful. Early candidate for worst movie of the year.

      Why’re you hating on Charlie Sheen though? Cmon! Show crazy Charlie some love! 😀

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