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Tuesday, November 28, 2023
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Daily Cardinal arts writer Dominic LeRose previews his list of top films and shows to look out for in 2019. 

Most anticipated films and TV of 2019


It: Chapter 2


Pennywise the Dancing Clown will return to Derry, Maine in "It: Chapter 2".

Set 27 years after “Chapter 1," the Losers Club is all grown-up and ready to face off against the demonic clown Pennywise for a second time. Stephen King’s classic horror novel contains even darker, scarier material when his characters are adults, and as a reader of the book, I can only imagine how this terrifying and bittersweet horror drama will play out on screen. 2017’s “It” made over $700 million worldwide and is the single highest-grossing horror movie of all time. With Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy and Bill Hader in the leading cast, “It: Chapter 2” is the movie event of 2019 we’ve all been waiting for. 

Release Date: Sept. 6  

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood


Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio star in Quentin Tarantino's "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood".

The legendary Quentin Tarantino’s next film follows Leonardo DiCaprio as a washed-up western actor in the 1960s who gets involved with the real-life actress Sharon Tate, played by Margot Robbie, in a film that we still don’t know that much about. Following the Charles Manson murders and cult, Tarantino’s film is poised to take us into the peak of Hollywood and more than likely deliver another stylish, gripping, darkly-comedic tale that will be talked about for years. Brad Pitt and Al Pacino co-star in what Tarantino says is most like “Pulp Fiction” out of all his films. I like the sound of that. 

Release Date: July 26 



Joaquin Phoenix on set in make up as the "Joker".

Do most people, myself included, think that Heath Ledger’s Joker from “The Dark Knight” will ever be able to be replaced as the best? Nope. That said, look out for Joaquin Phoenix's new take in the Joker stand-alone film. Many are skeptical, but with one of the best actors alive portraying a twisted, gritty and darkly comedic villain, the odds are that “Joker” will be one of the best comic book movies ever made. Director Todd Phillips promises a film that is a societal examination of one man’s path into madness. With Joaquin’s previous work in films like “The Master," expect another amazing performance in a unique film. 

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Release Date: Oct. 4

The Lion King

A computer generated Simba offers us a first look at "The Lion King" remake.

While I think Disney should pursue more original and creative stories, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited for this film. A CGI live-action “Lion King” is irresistible and should be a visual spectacle that could potentially rival the magic of the original animated feature from 1994. 

Release Date: July 19

Star Wars: Episode IX


The still unnamed ninth episode of the epic space saga has fans buzzing.

No matter how you felt about the previous film — 2017’s “The Last Jedi” no one can deny the anticipation for the final episode of the current "Star Wars" trilogy. We don’t even have a title for this episode yet, nor plot details or a second of released footage, but with J.J. Abrams back in the director's chair, expect a big, bold, fulfilling finale to the modern trilogy. 

Release Date: Dec. 20

Avengers: Endgame


The hugely anticipated "Avengers: Endgame" promises to be an epic conclusion to the current phase of Marvel films.

After a traumatizing ending in “Infinity War," one can only hope that Marvel’s greatest heroes (that are still alive, that is) can defeat the titan Thanos for good. Most Marvel fans have a feeling that what was done at the end of the last film will be undone, but how that happens exactly is still an event moviegoers and comic book fans are desperately awaiting. “Endgame” should be an epic conclusion to the “Avengers” series, and we can hardly wait to see how it all goes down. 

Release Date: April 26

The Irishman

Academy Award winning director Martin Scorsese brings the story of Jimmy Hoffa to the screen in "The Irishman".

Martin Scorsese directing a gritty mob movie with Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci and Harvey Keitel? That alone should be enough to excite you. With mob hits like “Goodfellas” and “The Departed” under his belt, Scorsese should deliver another crime classic, this time following real-life mobster Jimmy Hoffa and those involved with his crime ring. 

Release Date: Unknown


Jordan Peele's "Us" looks to continue his new trend of chilling, ingenious thrillers.

Jordan Peele’s first film since 2017’s brilliant “Get Out” stars Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o as a mother of a family who encounters a group of violent strangers that appear identical to her family and are trying to murder her and her loved ones. This looks weird, confusing and creepy, but if it’s anything like “Get Out," expect a chilling, ingenious thriller that creatively examines important social issues. 

Release Date: March 15


Game of Thrones

"Game of Thrones" final season looks to deliver bittersweet, yet fulfilling finish.

The epic medieval fantasy arrives for its eighth and final season in what is without question the most anticipated season of any television show in history. With the Army of the Dead reaching beyond the wall and our heroes assembled to come together to defeat the Night King and his army, we can expect a spectacular, flat-out amazing ending to the greatest story in television or film history. Our characters' journeys that have lasted years are coming to a close, and we can expect several of our remaining favorites to meet their ends. I have no idea how “Game of Thrones” will end all together, but I’m expecting a bittersweet and fulfilling finish. 

Release Date: April

Stranger Things

"Stranger Things" third season will take us back to the Upside Down.

The third season of Netflix’s hit sci-fi drama arrives this summer. We know absolutely nothing about the plot, and after a cliff-hanging end to season two, fans can only speculate on ways for the show to continue. Could “Stranger Things” have ended after last season? Probably. But with many fun, lovable characters and still much to explore, we can expect another fun, exciting, and captivating season in the Upside Down.

Release Date: July 4

Big Little Lies


"Big Little Lies" will return following a shocking, brilliant end to season one.

The HBO hit series returns for its second season after a shocking and brilliant end to last season. Expanding past the novel that was adapted for season one, season two of “Big Little Lies” should take us back to the complex suburban characters of Monterey after the intensity that previously followed. Where they’re going with this show remains a mystery, but let’s hope it can live up to the quality of season one. 

Release Date: Unknown

True Detective

"True Detective" will feature Mahershala Ali as the lead in the upcoming third season.

Season one of “True Detective” featuring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in career-defining roles was a masterpiece of crime storytelling that examined the pressures facing two broken men in a dangerous, scary world. The following season with Colin Farrell, Vince Vaughn and Rachel McAdams was a flat, regurgitated cop drama that followed one-dimensional depressing detectives in a boring, unengaging investigation. Season three of HBO’s detective anthology could go one of two ways. With Academy-Award winner Mahershala Ali in the leading role as a detective investigating a grizzly murder in the Ozarks, I’m convinced the series will return to its stylish season one roots and deliver an intense and deep character study. 

Release Date: Jan. 13

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