These are the movies we most want to see this year. We know there are a bunch missing (yes, yes, The Avengers, The Hobbit, we get it). So tell us what you would have chosen in the comments below, or holler at us over at @TIMECulture. Enjoy.
Haywire (Jan. 20)
Steven Soderbergh’s second movie in four months (after Contagion) stars mixed martial arts fighter Gina Carano as a former special operative who has to kick ass (including that of TIME favorite Michael Fassbender) all over the place after she is betrayed. Heist, action-comedy, historical drama, indie experimental — Soderbergh is adept across many genres, so we’re just going to trust him here.
The Innkeepers (Feb. 3)
Director Ti West’s homage to ” ’80s babysitter-in-peril films,” The House of the Devil, offered a master class in how to draw out tension. This haunted-hotel flick should deliver more of the same. Also, Kelly McGillis (yes, Top Gun‘s Kelly McGillis) is in it.
The Raid (March 23)
At the Toronto Film Festival in September, this Indonesian action flick received an over-the-top audience reaction during its midnight screenings. The plot — a SWAT team on the hunt for a drug lord has to storm an apartment complex and fight floor to floor against extremely well equipped henchmen — is absurdly basic, which allows viewers to focus all their attention on some amazing fight choreography.
The Hunger Games (March 23)
You’ve read the book, we’ve read the book and there’s a huge Harry Potter–size hole in all our hearts.
The Deep Blue Sea (March 30)
Terence Davies’ adaptation of the Terence Rattigan play stars Rachel Weisz as a woman who cheats on her husband, an older judge, with a young military pilot. It’s got a definite End of the Affair vibe going on, and every year could use one extremely sad yet beautiful British love tragedy.
The Pirates! Band of Misfits (March 30)
Aardman Studios is best known for its Wallace and Gromit characters (and more recently, Arthur Christmas), and the sense of humor that runs throughout its stop-motion animated films is of a special kind. Its latest stop-motion film (also in 3-D, with a dash of CGI) is based on the wonderfully wry Gideon Defoe mini-pirate novels.
(LIST: 25 All-TIME Animated Films)
Wettest County (April 20)
If this list were ranked, this film might well be near the top. Starring Tom Hardy, Jessica Chastain, Gary Oldman and Guy Pearce and directed by John Hillcoat and written by musician Nick Cave — the same team from Australian western The Proposition — Wettest County is about three bootlegging brothers in Depression-era Virginia and the authorities who want to bring them down.
Moonrise Kingdom (May 25)
Starring Bruce Willis, Bill Murray and Frances McDormand, this new Wes Anderson film is a must-see.
Prometheus (June 8)
Ridley Scott’s Alien prequel that’s not an Alien prequel but is totally an Alien prequel. Charlize Theron, Noomi Rapace, Idris Elba and Michael Fassbender star.
Brave (June 22)
Following the critical drubbing of last summer’s Cars 2 (which was nonetheless a financial success), Pixar could use a quality hit. This film, about a young Scottish princess, is the studio’s first to feature a female hero. This will be the point of everything you’ll read about this movie over the next several months.
The Amazing Spider-Man (July 3)
After three Spider-Man films starring Tobey Maguire and directed by Sam Raimi, the franchise gets a reboot. Andrew Garfield (Mark Zuckerberg’s best friend in The Social Network) and Emma Stone will star as Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy (goodbye, Mary Jane!). Behind the lens is Marc Webb, whose only prior feature-film experience (despite having worked on scores of music videos) is directing the romantic-comedy (500) Days of Summer.
LIST: All-TIME 100 Movies