After a relatively quiet past few months, we’re about to get bombarded by new content. (The quality, well, we’ll find out.)
Aside from maybe Kung Fu Panda 3 and Deadpool, there hasn’t been too much to get excited about in 2016. Shameless returned to Showtime. The Walking Dead is back. That OJ Simpson show is getting killer reviews on FX. People sorta enjoyed Hail, Cesar! Etc., etc. There has been stuff to watch, but ever since Star Wars: The Force Awakens hit last December, there hasn’t been much. Nothing that really grabbed us by the shirt collar and gave us a stiff backhand across the noggin.
That’s changing in March. In addition to services like Hulu and Netflix adding original shows and movies, the box office will start hitting consumers with compelling new content. The month will start off strong with an animated film from Disney, and end on a high with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
I know it’s an unpopular opinion, but Batman v Superman fills me with giddy excitement, especially at the prospect of seeing Ben Affleck as Batman. The most recent trailer focused almost entirely on the Dark Knight, and he looks absolutely brutal. If that’s him as an old and slow Batman, as Affleck says in the trailer, I’d hate to see him fast. And his modulated voice is perfect. Sure beats Bale’s incomprehensible growl.
Of course, a few enthralling trailers does not mean the movie will be good, and there is a worry Warner Bros. has already shown too many of its cards. Looking beyond Dawn of Justice, The Divergent Series hasn’t quite matched The Hunger Games, and The Brothers Grimsby looks awful; whether it’ll be the good kind of awful, a la Borat, or the bad kind of awful, a la The Dictator, remains to be seen.
Finally, the dark horse in all of this could be 10 Cloverfield Lane, which was only just announced last month. The trailers have shown us just enough without giving away too much, and we’re very curious to see if the payoff will be worth it.
Zootopia, March 4
A buddy comedy that takes place in a world populated by animals. Zootopia follows Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin), and Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), as they attempt to uncover a conspiracy. Reviews (the movie has already come out overseas) have been positive so far, and from what we’ve seen in the trailers, Zootopia will be another feather in Disney Animation’s cap.
10 Cloverfield Lane, March 11
We didn’t even know this movie existed until a few weeks ago. The fact that it’s shrouded in so much mystery has us eager to learn what the hell is going on. Is the real monster inside all of us? Or is there a literal monster outside of that janky bunker?
The Brothers Grimsby, March 11
The premise is ridiculous, and the humor offensive. But that’s exactly why Sacha Baron Cohen is such a big personality in comedy. His brand of humor might seem childish, but he uses it as a tool to deftly point out what’s wrong in our crazy world. And, come on, seeing him wear mutton chops, sandals and capri pants leaves a wonderful image.
The Divergent Series: Allegiant, March 18
Allegiant picks up after 2015’s Insurgent, and will follow Tris as she goes beyond the wall of Chicago. It’s the first of two cinematic parts based on the novel Allegiant, and the final in the Divergent trilogy.
The Little Prince, March 18
Based on the 1943 novel of the same name, The Little Prince is a stop-motion fantasy about a young girl who befriends an elderly aviator. It’s not a straight adaptation, but it keeps the spirit and charm of the book. The movie actually came out overseas last year but is just now making its way stateside.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, March 25
This is big. This will kick off DC’s nascent cinematic ambitions, a taste of what’s to come as Warner Bros. builds up toward the Justice League. Batman v Superman is going to feature a healthy dose of DC heroes, including Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman and maybe even the Flash and Cyborg. Can it live up to the hype? Unlikely, but we’re finally glad the movie has finally arrived.
The Path, March 30 (Hulu)
Following 11.22.63, The Path is Hulu’s next big original show. It stars Aaron Paul and Michelle Monaghan and focuses on a controversial cult. It looks intense and features plenty of talent. Can Hulu challenge Netflix with two excellent shows in as many months? We’re about to find out.
House of Cards season 4, March 4 (Netflix)
You know the drill by now. In season 4, the stakes are really being raised as the Underwoods find life in high positions of power to be more than they bargained for. But it’s not outside forces tearing them apart, it’s each other.
Flaked, March 11 (Netflix)
Starring Will Arnett, Flaked is a dark comedy about a recovering alcoholic who struggles to handle the daily grind of life. It looks charming in a depressing kind of way, and Netflix has turned out to be a terrific resource of oddball comedies. I’m guessing this one will surprise a lot of people.
Daredevil season 2, March 18 (Netflix)
Talk about anticipated. The response to Daredevil on Netflix has been overwhelmingly positive, and the prospect of Punisher joining the fray has fans salivating. Whereas Matt Murdock’s Daredevil has a strict “no-kill” policy, Punisher is the polar opposite. It will be a lot of fun to see their differing ideologies clash in the upcoming season.
Pee-wee’s Big Holiday, March 18 (Netflix)
Need some positivity in your life? Pee-wee is your guy. If you weren’t a fan of Pee-wee’s dopey brand of humor in his first stint in Hollywood, Netflix’s reboot won’t do much to win you over. But if you don’t mind seeing a likable goof get into some really hairy situations, Pee-wee’s Big Holiday is perfect.