25 potential Oscar contenders for 2014
Who will be left standing by...August?
Director: Paul Greengrass
Stars: Tom Hanks, Catherine Keener, Max Martini, Yul Vazquez, Chris Mulkey
Release Date: October 11
Festival Speculation: Venice, Telluride, Toronto
Distributor: Sony Pictures
Why: Paul Greengrass's last outing, 2010's perfectly fine actioner “Green Zone,” left critics and audiences indifferent, but “Captain Phillips” finds the British filmmaker back in the true-life territory that earned him an Oscar nomination for “United 93.” Adapted from the autobiography of Richard Phillips, the steel-nerved American sea captain whose container ship was hijacked and held hostage by Somali pirates for five days in 2009, the material promises to play to Greengrass's strengths as a master of gravitas-infused tension, and offers two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks, who hasn't been nominated since 2000, his meatiest-sounding lead in many a year. It could also be complemented by the superb, similarly-themed Danish thriller “A Hijacking,” being released by Magnolia this year.
- Guy Lodge