The 10 biggest 3D movies of 2017

3D movies in 2017 are going to be all about the blockbusters; here's what's coming this year.

They're still the most spectacular way of enjoying some big-screen thrills, but the glory days of 3D movies seem to be coming to an end. After peaking around 2011, audiences numbers and the percentage of films available as in-your-face 3D extravaganzas has been gradually declining.

Why? There seems to be an assortment of possible reasons. In today's austere times, the inflated prices of tickets for 3D movies aren't quite as attractive, meaning that younger viewers are deciding to save a bit of money by going to the 2D version instead.

Then there's the business of those 3D glasses; whichever way you spin it, they're not comfortable to wear, something that's played a major part in the failure of 3DTV.

But perhaps the biggest factor is that 3D movies have lost a lot of their impact; they're not as new and exciting as they were when you queued up to see Avatar that time. 

And so this year's crop of 3D movies is looking just a little thin, but what it lacks in size it's going to make up for in spectacle, because it's only the biggest blockbusters that are getting the 3D treatment in 2017. Here's what's lined up.

01. The Lego Batman Movie

Perhaps the most amazing thing about The Lego Batman Movie is that it hasn't already happened and had at least two sequels. Batman and Lego; it's a dream intersection of two of the things that millennials love most in the whole wide world. Box office gold.

Naturally the big bad in this Batman adventure's going to be everyone's all-time favourite villain, the Joker, who of course has an evil scheme to take over Gotham City. But we're told that the film's really about Batman going on a personal journey to find himself and learn the importance of teamwork and friendship. Heartwarming!

02. Logan

What happens when superheroes get a little past their prime? That's what we get to find out in Logan, which sees Hugh Jackman bowing out of his Wolverine role after 17 years in the job. Inspired by the eight-issue Wolverine series, Old Man Logan, in which our over-the-hill hero has one last adventure in a post-apocalyptic future, Logan opens with him as a recluse ,caring for Professor X on the Mexican border, but things take a turn for the exciting when a young mutant turns up, pursued by dark forces.

03. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

We hope you like Marvel films, because they kind of dominate this year's 3D line-up. Guardians of the Galaxy came out of almost nowhere in 2014, catapulting Chris Pratt from lovable sidekick to international superstar over the course of a couple of hours, and a sequel was an absolute no-brainer. Set a couple of months after the original, Vol. 2 gets the gang back together, travelling around the cosmos and helping Peter Quill find out about who his parents really are.

04. Alien: Covenant

Bridging the gap between Prometheus and the original Alien movie is the upcoming Alien: Covenant, once again directed by Ridley Scott. Starring Michael Fassbender both as David, the synthetic crew member from Prometheus, and Walter, a more advanced synthetic, Alien: Covenant focuses on the colony ship Covenant and its crew, discovering what they believe to be an uncharted paradise but discovering that it's not quite what it seems. If you're after some proper 3D scares this year, this is what you'll want to see.

05. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

The fifth in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, you can be sure this latest outing will be big on over-the-top swashbuckling, giving Johnny Depp the perfect opportunity to show off for a couple of hours as Captain Jack Sparrow. Ghost pirates? Check. Ancient artefacts full of spooky occult powers? You got it. It's going to be a rollercoaster ride of salty nonsense, and we can't wait.

06. Blade Runner 2049

So, is Rick Deckard a replicant or not? Obviously he is, right? But maybe we'll get the definitive answer in Blade Runner 2049. Set 30 years after the original Ridley Scott sci-fi classic, it stars Ryan Gosling as K, an LAPD officer who discovers a long-buried secret with the potential to plunge society into chaos, leading him into a quest to find the long-vanished blade runner, Rick Deckard. Don't expect to see too much of Harrison Ford in it; he's unlikely to show up before the third act.

07. The Emoji Movie

"And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth."

08. Spider-Man: Homecoming

You want more Marvel? You got more Marvel! The second cinematic Spider-Man reboot in recent years, it follows on from Captain America: Civil War, and stars Tom Holland in the iconic costume, as a 15-year-old Peter Parker, trying to balance life as a high school student with his after-hours crimefighting sideline, as a new arch-enemy, the Vulture (played by ex-Batman Michael Keaton), emerges in New York City. Don't like Spider-Man? It's okay, Robert Downey Jr.'s in it as well as Tony Stark, who happens to be young Parker's mentor. And watch out for Stan Lee's cameo appearance.

09. Justice League

If you loved Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice then you're in for a treat here. With Zack Snyder at the helm and both Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill reprising their roles as Batman and Superman, we reckon Justice League is going to provoke strong opinions, if nothing else. It's going to get together a bunch of DC Comics heroes including Wonder Woman, Aquaman and The Flash, in race to save the world from Steppenwolf and the Parademons. Let's see if the can out-Marvel Marvel.

10. Star Wars Episode 8: The Last Jedi

So, who's the last Jedi, then?

We could quite easily get used to this whole business of a new Star Wars movie every Christmas. After the hugely enjoyable and surprisingly bleak Rogue One, this year it's back to the main storyline with The Last Jedi. Obviously there's going to be quite a bit of focus on Luke Skywalker, who showed up in the final seconds of The Force Awakens, but is he really the last Jedi? Somehow we doubt it. 

Hopefully this time around we'll get to see Rey wielding a lightsaber, we're praying that there'll be another Sith tantrum from Kylo Ren, and we'll probably get something in our eyes when Princess Leia shows up. Whatever happens, it's bound to be dazzling; see you at the cinema!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jim McCauley is a writer, editor and occasional podcaster, and is available for space parties.