With the release of Avengers: Infinity War, Deadpool 2, and Solo, the summer movie season is officially in full swing. And as always, it's stacked.
With Ant-Man and the Wasp, and other blockbusters still incoming, you won't run out of exciting things to see on the big screen in the next couple months. But there's plenty more on the horizon, including non-franchise releases, along with some flicks we're looking forward to this year.
Need to fill your cinematic calendar with the most enticing films of 2018? Here's everything we're excited about right now, along with the latest trailers for each. And check back, because we'll be updating this space regularly throughout the year.
ALPHA (24th August)
An epic adventure set in the last Ice Age, ALPHA tells a fascinating, visually stunning story that shines a light on the origins of man’s best friend. While on his first hunt with his tribe’s most elite group, a young man is injured and must learn to survive alone in the wilderness. Reluctantly taming a lone wolf abandoned by its pack, the pair learn to rely on each other and become unlikely allies, enduring countless dangers and overwhelming odds in order to find their way home before winter arrives.
SEARCHING (30th August)
After David Kim (John Cho)'s 16-year-old daughter goes missing, a local investigation is opened and a detective is assigned to the case. But 37 hours later and without a single lead, David decides to search the one place no one has looked yet, where all secrets are kept today: his daughter's laptop. In a hyper-modern thriller told via the technology devices we use every day to communicate, David must trace his daughter's digital footprints before she disappears forever.
VENOM (5 OCTOBER)
Rebooting Spider-Man once again seemed like a questionable idea at first, but once we saw how the web-slinger and Spider-Man Homecoming fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, we were sold – it's the best version to date of the wall-crawler.And now here's Venom, Spidey's symbiotic nemesis, with his own origin story flick starring Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock. Unfortunately, this teaser shows nothing of the villain/antihero… and as far as we know, Spider-Man won't appear and this flick won't tie into the MCU. Still, Venom is legendary in the comics, and Tom Hardy could really do him justice. Let's hope so!
X-MEN: DARK PHOENIX (2 NOVEMBER)
X-Men: The Last Stand is the rare anomaly in the core X-Menfilm franchise in that it's hot garbage – but in a post-Days of Future Past film timeline, they have the ability to try to adapt the legendary "Dark Phoenix Saga" comic arc again. And that's exactly what they're doing.
Due out in November, X-Men: Dark Phoenix portrays Jean Grey's turn as the titular heroine, as her overwhelming powers take control and the mutant team has to fight their ally to save the world. X-Men Apocalypse (shown) wasn't too hot, but the newer X-flicks have been more hits than misses, so hopefully this'll be another great one.
FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE CRIMES OF GRINDELWALD (18 NOVEMBER)
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was a solid spinoff from the Harry Potter series, even if it didn't quite hit the same heights – but now writer J.K. Rowling and director David Yates will have a chance to build from that origin tale with The Crimes of Grindelwald.
The titular Gellert Grindelwald is the Johnny Depp-played villain revealed at the end of the first flick, and we'll see Newt Scamander team up with a young Albus Dumbledore to try and defeat the dark wizarding threat. And now that it's pegged as a five-film franchise, we'll have plenty more Fantastic Beasts for years to come…
CREED II (23 NOVEMBER)
Creed was a shockingly good coda to the classic Rocky boxing film saga, as Rocky Balboa himself trained a young new fighter (and son of Apollo Creed) portrayed by the super-talented Michael B. Jordan. And now we're getting a sequel.
Granted, losing writer and director Ryan Coogler (who went on to Black Panther) seems like a potential knockout blow. But with the entire cast returning and Sylvester Stallone penning Creed II, hopefully, it stays just as affecting and sensationally crowd-pleasing as the last flick – especially as it revisits an old rivalry via the boxer son of Dolph Lundgren's Ivan Drago. There's no trailer yet (revisit the original above), but we should get one very soon.
BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY (25 DECEMBER)
It was supposed to be Sacha Baron Cohen in the role as legendary Queen singer Freddie Mercury, but wow, Mr. Robot himself Rami Malek looks stone-cold brilliant in this first teaser shot from the flick. Bohemian Rhapsody focuses on the first 15 years of the band, from their founding all the way up to their Live Aid performance in 1985.
We'll see if the film still makes it out in 2018, however: director Bryan Singer (X-Men, The Usual Suspects) was just fired after disputes with the studio and Malek during filming, with Dexter Fletcher - yes, of Press Gang fame - stepping in to finish shooting. It shouldn't be a film that requires dramaticpost-production work, though, so a year will hopefully be enough time to get it done.
ZERO (21 DECEMBER)
King Khan plays a dwarf who falls in love with a superstar played by Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma also stars in the film, but her role has been kept under wraps so far.
Eventhough Anand L Rai’s new film is slated to release on 21 December 2018, there’s a lot of excitement surrounding the film. Not only does it feature a mainstream Bollywood star playing a dwarf for the first time on the big screen, if you look at Anand L Rai’s track record so far — he was the man behind Tanu Weds Manu and Ranjhaanaa, the film will surely have an interesting take on the conventional love story for sure.
Christopher Robin (17 August)
We've seen some Winnie the Pooh animated affairs in the past, but this is something very different – and very real. It's about the grown-up Christopher Robin, now a family man and business executive, who has lost his childhood wonder.
But here's Pooh to fix him right up, and the fuzzy fabric bear and his pals look absolutely wonderful in this full trailer. Ewan McGregor and Hayley Atwell ought to be strong anchors on the human side of things, and Disney may have a family film as irresistably charming as Paddington 2 on its hands here.
Peppermint (7 September)
The early seconds of the trailer suggest a sappy family film, but give it time – there's a grim twist that turns Jennifer Garner's character into the kind of badass vigilante that we'd pay to see up on the big screen.
Peppermint hails from the director of Taken, and if Liam Neeson can do the skilled assassin thing then surely Garner can as well. We're not expecting anything mind-blowing here, but it could be a rollicking fun ride after a couple of pints.
Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (3 August)
Last year's The Lego Batman Movie was a welcome, hilarious respite from the oft-bad, grimdark DC Cinematic Universe films – and Teen Titans Go! To the Movies seems to continue that trend of offbeat, energetic DC side flicks.
Even if you haven't seen any of the 200+ episodes of the Teen Titans Go! TV series, the film adaptation looks like a lot of fun. Better yet, it pokes fun at DC's own middling movie efforts, not to mention how villain Deathstroke is incredibly similar to Marvel's Deadpool (trivia: Deathstroke actually came first). That said, we're struggling with the fact that Deathstroke voice actor Will Arnett is also the voice of Lego Batman…
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 (30 November)
Last time we saw Ralph, the retro video game character was traipsing through other, newer game worlds. And this time around, he's found something even more modern to explore: the Internet.
As the title suggests, Ralph Breaks the Internet finds the John C. Reilly-voiced Wreck-It Ralph himself in some surprising new terrain, as he and Vanellope von Schweetz explore eBay and poke fun at viral videos. Hopefully it's not as lame as The Emoji Movie, which treaded similar ground, but maybe the Star Wars, Marvel, and other Disney cameos will keep it entertaining.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (14 December)
It's too soon for a sequel to Spider-Man Homecoming (that's next year), but Sony won't let the year pass without another starring role for the wall-crawler – but this won't be the same one seen in Avengers: Infinity War.
Instead, Into the Spider-Verse is an animated take on the comic hero, and it's the one portrayed by Miles Morales. And also Peter Parker. And also... Gwen Stacy? That might not be all, either. The style is absolutely dazzling, punching up crisp 3D animation with hand-drawn bits, and it looks like a nicely atypical big-screen take for the well-known hero.
Mary Poppins Returns (21 December)
Given the enduring love for the original classic, Disney had better not mess this up. Mary Poppins Returns sees the magical nanny return to the Banks family after 25 years, surely still packing songs and life lessons alike.
Of course, it's been 54 years since the first Mary Poppins, so Returns swaps in Emily Blunt as the lead – and she seems to capture the role well based on this early tease. Furthermore, with Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda alongside and plenty of other notable actors throughout the cast, it's sure to have some serious star power. Hopefully it doesn't sully any childhood memories along the way…
Bumblebee (26 December)
Each successive Transformers movie became more and more difficult to watch, as incoherent storylines and obnoxious characters kept the outrageous action from being much fun. But maybe Bumblebee will be a welcome fresh start for the series.
The shake-up begins behind the camera, with Kubo and the Two Strings' Travis Knight taking over for Michael Bay, and you can see the difference in the trailer. The 1987-set Bumblebee clearly has more heart and charm than the past films, plus the Transformer looks a lot closer to the old cartoon and action figure source material. We're keeping fingers crossed on this one.