March 2004 Forecast

By Kim Hollis

1. Starsky and Hutch

Don't give up on us baby
Don't make the wrong seem right
The future isn't just one night
It's written in the moonlight
Painted on the stars
We can't change ours

Owen Wilson singing original Hutch David Soul's number one hit is worth one beeeeellion dollars. Cash money.

2. Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed

If the first live-action version of Scooby-Doo proved nothing else, it's that flatulence sells. Judging from the commercials and trailers, the sequel has an abundance of it. Scooby-Doo 2 also has that bad-sequel-to-an-animated-series-adaptation mojo going against it. The scales tip ever so slightly to burping and potty humor.

3. Dawn of the Dead

Two words: Zombie Baby. A "re-imagining" of one of the greatest horror films ever, this is obviously much more crassly commercial than the George Romero gore fest, but it still looks fantastic. Like the updated version of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre before it, Dawn of the Dead is poised to bust the doors of the box office open. Hopefully there won't be any zombies there when it does.

4. The Ladykillers

"We must have waffles forthwith!" is the entire reason I'm hot to see this film. Well, that and the fact that Tom Hanks is in it. Oh, and it's written and directed by the Coen Brothers, too. This film looks to be a true test of Hanks' "can't miss" record over the past several years, as it's just too quirky-looking for words. If it can somehow appeal to a wide audience beyond the cinephiles who follow the Coens, it has potential to be their biggest hit yet.

5. Secret Window

Johnny Depp is Hollywood's Golden Boy at the moment, though that might change once Secret Window hits theaters. Adapted from a widely disliked Stephen King novella, it's already facing an uphill battle. It's tough enough to translate King's good stuff to screen, let alone the garbage. Depp's name should be enough to push the film along to a decent opening, though whether or not it has legs will depend totally on quality.

6. Hidalgo

King Viggo Mortensen is unproven away from his hobbit friends, and a boring-looking film about a man and his horse doesn't appear to be the vehicle to establish him as a bona fide star. While the horse is certainly pretty, jaded audiences that react to freshness will find Hidalgo just a little bit stale in the aftermath of Seabiscuit.

7. Jersey Girl

Aw, look! Little Kevin Smith is all grown up! Though the backlash against the remnants of Benifer may negatively affect perception regarding the film, reaction to the trailer has been nearly universally positive across a much wider demographic than your typical Smith film. I expect it to be Smith's biggest box office performer yet.

8. Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London

Remember when Agent Cody Banks opened last year? Don't worry, if you're not 14-years-old, the chances are probably slim. Nonetheless, Malcolm in the Middle's Frankie Muniz is back for this Hilary Duff-less sequel, which also swaps out Angie Harmon for -- wait for it -- Anthony Anderson. Agent Cody Banks 2 should perform fine for a teen flick, but won't really be anything to write home about.

9. Taking Lives

After the dismal performance of Twisted in February, I don't think we should really expect much more from a film that looks unfortunately quite similar in tone, style and genre. While the premise is actually pretty intriguing, the marketing just doesn't look make it look original enough to hope for a breakthrough of any kind. Yawn.

10. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Jim Carrey stars in an idiosyncratic Charlie Kaufman movie! North America fails to notice!

The big problem here is that whenever Carrey tries to show off his “acting chops,” the associated films generally tend to do just terribly. Remember The Majestic? Didn’t think so. How about Man on the Moon? Me either. Audiences really prefer the rubbery-faced actor in broad comedies like Bruce Almighty. Or maybe they just like films about the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

  • Read Tim Briody's March Forecast
  • Read Marty Doskins's March Forecast
  • Read Walid Habboub's March Forecast
  • Read Zach Kolkin's March Forecast
  • Read David Mumpower's March Forecast



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