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les misAfter the joy of the festive period dies down and the Christmas movies get put away for another year, we’ll all be in need of some post-December cheering up. Whether it’s witch hunters, alien invasions, zombies, or classic and contemporary novel adaptations, if the latest trailer releases are anything to go by we’ll have plenty of exciting movies to sink our teeth into come 2013.

For those who adore period dramas and musicals Les Misérables is sure to stir some interest in January. As far as adaptations go, this could be at the top of its game. Adapted from Boublil and Schönberg’s popular stage musical, which was based on Victor Hugo’s romantic and dramatic book of the same name, the film has an award-winning director at the helm (Tom Hooper – The Kings Speech) and a highly skilled cast, many of whom have proved their vocal ability in previous films. Classic, heroic and charmingly theatrical, with a soundtrack that’s adored by musical enthusiasts, the film looks to have captured the stage phenomenon perfectly. The trailer realistically merges Emile Baynard’s portrait of young ‘Cosette’, from the original edition of Les Mis (1862), with the young actress portraying the character, creating an authentic link. A tale of love, morality and justice, with 19th century France as a backdrop and starring Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried and Helena Bonham Carter, how could this film not succeed?

If musicals are not your cup of tea and you want a book adaptation that’s a little less theatrical but still fantastical, the trailers for Warm Bodies, The Host and Beautiful Creatures may entice you to the cinema. With the zombie craze currently at the height of its popularity, Warm Bodies is set to give you a different perspective on the flesh-eating folk. The story is told from the perspective of ‘R’, a zombie who begins to feel human emotions after devouring the boyfriend of a girl he later starts to fall in love with. It’s bizarre to say the least and perhaps it’s down to The Black Keys accompaniment in the background, but this film actually looks half way to decent. Whilst many aren’t sold on the general zombie-loving-human idea, the film could have the vital comical edge that the book was lacking. It’s not going to convince everyone and hardcore zombie fans are probably hitting the roof at this first glimpse of the film, but a little controversy never hurt anyone.

2013 looks set to be the year of the book adaptation, as we venture from zombies to dark magic in Beautiful Creatures. Focusing on protagonist Ethan and the mysterious, magical Lena, this is a classic tale of the battle between good and evil. The trailer has the same feel as Dark Shadows, minus the ‘comedy’ that got lost in translation. It’s a different route for P.S. I Love You director Richard LaGravenese, but it’s equipped with quality special effects and a good cast including Jeremy Irons and Emma Thompson, who looks all kinds of crazy. This supernatural drama could be the underdog film that turns into a roaring success.  Certainly one to watch out for!

With the release of the final film in the Twilight Saga, fans are currently drying their tears and pondering what new film revolving around a world-altering love will fill the void. The trailer for Stephenie Meyer’s non-vampire ‘adult’ story, The Host, may present the answer. It’s the future and the world has been taken over by parasitic aliens who use human bodies as hosts. Melanie Stryder’s body has been taken over but her mind is still alive and she refuses to give up, instead forming an unlikely bond with her alien ‘soul’, Wanda. More sci-fi than fairytale fantasy, the trailer doesn’t give much away but does build some excitement surrounding the film. With Saoirse Ronan (who was captivating in Hanna) as the heroin and a silver-eyed Diane Kruger as the Seeker, this looks like a very promising 2013 blockbuster smash. It’s a much-anticipated film for Meyer fans, which might have a more well-rounded appeal than the sparkly vampire franchise. Get ready for Twilight meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers!

If come April you’re still riding the supernatural fantasy train then Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters (a title suspiciously similar to Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) could feed your filmic appetite. Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton look super badass as the brother-sister bounty hunting duo in this mediEVIL recreation of the traditional fairytale. Packed with some major artillery, some matrix-esque slow-mo and some creepy looking witches, it might turn out to be just another dark take on a fairytale. But with Renner as the lead it could ultimately turn out to be awesome.

If fantasy and book adaptations aren’t your thing never fear, there’s something for you too. Crime thriller Side Effects, with Rooney Mara and Jude Law, should satisfy those with a serious side, whilst The Heat (a cross between Miss Congeniality and Bridesmaids), with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy, will provide some light comedic relief. See, the world’s still able to make films that don’t feature aliens, zombies and supernatural entities.

And if that’s not enough to have you running head first into the New Year with cinema new-release excitement then we don’t know what is. Perhaps the prospect of another Scary Movie film, this time featuring Lindsay Lohan? Who are we kidding? Nobody’s excited about that.

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