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Annual Top Films Lists

Top 25 Most Anticipated Studio Films of 2015: #5. Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant

All things documentary, foreign and American independent film are what the staff unabashedly bleeds for here at Film snobbery aside, we’ve identified twenty-five studio film offerings that we fancy, included are a pair of big ticket/budget items from the Weinsteins. The likes of Baltasar Kormákur, Michael Mann, Ariel Vromen, Tarsem Singh, Ridley Scott, and Danny Boyle all have ’15 offerings that didn’t crack our top 25, but actor Tom Hardy appears to have made some sound film role choices last year with a slew of projects prepped for release this year that are spotted throughout our listing. Without further ado, here is our countdown leading to our number five pick:

25. Mr. Holmes – Bill Condon
24. Dark Places – Gilles Paquet-Brenner
23. Crimson Peak – Guillermo del Toro
22. Untitled Whitey Bulger Project – Ben Affleck
21. Untitled Edward Snowden Film – Oliver Stone
20. Truth – James Vanderbilt
19. Straight Outta Compton – F. Gary Gray
18. Untitled Howard Hughes biopic – Warren Beatty
17. Jupiter Ascending – Wachowski Siblings
16. Trainwreck – Judd Apatow
15. Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
14. Child 44 – Daniel Espinosa
13. The Lost City of Z – James Gray
12. Joy – David O. Russell
11. Triple Nine – John Hillcoat
10. Life – Anton Corbijn
9. Macbeth – Justin Kurzel
8. Sicario – Denis Villeneuve
7. Silence – Martin Scorsese
6. Our Band is Crisis – David Gordon Green

The Revenant

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu // Writers: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Mark L. Smith

With Birdman still awaiting the anticipation of further awards fall out this Oscar season, director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu races forth into another English language film, The Revenant, based on the novel by Michael Punke. The film promises to be a major awards contender this time next year for the studio starring Tom Hardy and Leonardo DiCaprio as leads in a mostly male cast. Based partially on the life of 1820s frontiersman Hugh Glass (DiCaprio), a fur trapper, when he is mauled by a bear while hunting his companions (Hardy, Poulter, and Gleeson) rob him and leave him to die. But he survives and sets out to get revenge on the men who betrayed him. We’ve yet to see Iñárritu tackle something that appears to be inherently genre, as well as anything studio financed (Birdman was actually Fox Searchlight, the independent minded sister company). Initially a project circled by Park Chan-wook with Samuel L. Jackson in the lead, then John Hillcoat and Christian Bale, we can’t wait to see what Iñárritu has in store next, and so soon after his latest.

Cast: Tom Hardy, Leonardo DiCaprio, Will Poulter, Domnhall Gleeson, Kristoffer Joner

Producers.: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Anonymous Content’s Steve Golin (Laggies), Keith Redmon (Triple Nine), David Kanter (The End of the Tour) , Arnon Milchan (Gone Girl), James Skotchdopole (Birdman)

U.S. Distributor: 20th Century Fox

Release Date: The film is set for limited theatrical release on December 25, 2015.


Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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