TAGGED AS: movies
If our social media polls are any indication, post-holiday audiences are looking for thrills of all stripes. With the exception of a heartwarming Tom Hanks dramedy — and who doesn’t love those? — all of the films that cracked the January top five are designed to quicken your pulse, from a campy, meme-worthy horror film that was tops in all of our polls to a Gerard Butler action flick and a pair of very different psychological thrillers. Read on for the most anticipated movies of January!
#1 on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube
Release Date: January 6
Usually it would be pretty easy to dismiss M3GAN’s rise to the top of our polls as a result of the typical January theatrical doldrums and the film’s meme appeal… but then the reviews started rolling in. Who knew that this campy, creepy thriller about a killer doll would actually end up impressing the critics? Clearly, producers Jason Blum and James Wan — who know a thing or two about what works in horror — knew they were onto something here, and so far, fans have responded with lots of enthusiasm.
#2 on Facebook, #3 on Instagram and YouTube
Release Date: January 13
Two films tied for distant second behind M3GAN, but one of them is expanding from a limited release, so we’ll start with the brand new one. Gerard Butler is back in a new action film, starring as a commercial pilot who must team up with a convicted murderer (Mike Colter) to protect his passengers when his plane crashes on a remote island ruled by warring militias. This feels like something out of the [Location] Has Fallen franchise, which means Butler is comfortably in familiar territory here, and most fans seem to understand what they’re in for.
#2 on YouTube, #3 on Facebook and Twitter
Release Date: January 13
The film that tied Plane for second couldn’t be more different. Tom Hanks stars in this English-language adaptation of the Swedish novel A Man Called Ove, which was previously made into a critically acclaimed film. The film centers on a cranky widower who learns to soften up when a young family moves in next door, and it opened in limited release at the tail end of December before its planned expansion on January 13. The material feels like a perfect fit for Hanks, which probably explains why folks are looking forward to it.
#2 on Instagram, #4 on Facebook and Twitter, #5 on YouTube
Release Date: January 27 (limited)
Turning back to thrillers, the next title on our January list comes from Brandon Cronenberg, who is beginning to emerge from his father’s shadow even as he is clearly influenced by his work. His third feature follows a young couple on vacation who get wrapped up in the mysterious, sinister world that exists outside the confines of their island resort. Among others, the film stars Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth, who are both fan favorites, and it looks like it will provide plenty of creepy thrills.
#4 on YouTube; #5 on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter
Release Date: January 20
Lastly, we have a sort-of sequel to the 2018 film Searching, which took place almost entirely on a computer screen. Missing employs the same idea, this time focusing on a young woman (Storm Reid) in Los Angeles who utilizes technology in an attempt to find out what happened to her mother, who disappeared while vacationing in Colombia with her new boyfriend. Searching was surprisingly well received, so there’s reason to hope this one could be a winner too.
Thumbnail by Geoffrey Short/©Universal Pictures