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2013 is looking like a great year for films. We can look forward to genuine blockbusters like Star Trek 2, Iron Man 3 and Man Of Steel, potential Oscar bait like The Wolf Of Wall Street and The Great Gatsby, and original films by big names like The Counselor from Ridley Scott and Guillermo Del Toro’s Pacific Rim.

There are reboots (Jack Ryan), re-imaginings (Evil Dead), sequels (Thor 2) and three-quels (Hangover 3) all vying for our attention, but with all these huge releases, some smaller, lesser-known films can fail to find the audience they deserve. Here we’re going to be taking a look at the films that are up against big studio endeavors that might still offer a rewarding cinematic experience over the next 12 months…

 

10. Dead Man Down

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First up for your consideration is Dead Man Down released in March. This is a film from Niels Arden Oplev, the director of the original version of The Girl With A Dragon Tattoo and tells the story of Victor (Colin Farrell) right hand man to Terence Howard’s underground crime lord, who secretly wants revenge for the death of his family. When he strikes up a friendship with Noomi Rapace, who also wants revenge on Howard, things get messy.

This is Oplev’s first film since the global success of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, so he will be eager to show it wasn’t a flash in the pan. It also has a really interesting cast with Isabelle Huppert and Dominic Cooper rounding out the supporting characters. It looks like a gritty, intense and adult thriller, but if Noomi Rapace can channel her inner Lisbeth Salander then it might just be the best thriller of the year so far.

However, if you prefer your crime thrillers to be a bit more slick and polished, you could opt for Broken City which promises to be a solid two hours of big studio entertainment also released in March. As an added attraction, it also features Russell Crowe wearing so much fake tan his skin is the colour of a hangover pee.

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This article was first posted on February 27, 2013