Dune II, Aquaman, Barbie, and 12 other movies to look out for in the second half of 2023

Omoleye Omoruyi
Dune II, Aquaman, Barbie, and 12 other movies to look out for in the second half of 2023

The first half of 2023 is gone, dusted, so get ready for an exhilarating cinematic journey as the second half of 2023 brings a wave of highly anticipated movies to the silver screen.

From epic superhero sagas, as we have had in Transformers, Spider-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Ant-man, to long-awaited sequels and mind-bending science fiction, this lineup is set to captivate audiences worldwide.

Brace yourself for the return of beloved characters, the exploration of new realms, and the continuation of gripping narratives.

Here, we present 15 movies that should be on your radar as they promise to deliver unforgettable experiences [or disappoint you] and push the boundaries of storytelling.

So, mark your calendars as we take you through the multiverse of movies:
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” [June 30, 2023]

Daredevil archaeologist Indiana Jones races against time to retrieve a legendary dial that can change the course of history. Accompanied by his goddaughter, he soon finds himself squaring off against Jürgen Voller, a former Nazi who works for NASA.

Indiana Jones - movies of 2023

“Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” is directed by James Mangold, and co-written by Mangold, Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth and David Koepp. The film is a sequel to “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” (2008) and serves as the fifth and final instalment in the “Indiana Jones” film series. The film stars Harrison Ford in his final portrayal of archaeologist Indiana Jones. John Rhys-Davies and Karen Allen reprise their roles as Sallah and Marion Ravenwood, respectively, from earlier films.

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning” Part One [July 12, 2023]

Tom Cruise returns as Ethan Hunt in the seventh instalment of the “Mission: Impossible” franchise. This time, he’s on a mission to stop a nuclear attack.

Mission Impossible - movies of 2023

Ethan Hunt and the IMF team are mandated to track down a terrifying new weapon that threatens all of humanity if it falls into the wrong hands. As the mission tour across the world continues, Ethan is forced to choose between those he cares about and the mission, as he confronts a mysterious, all-powerful enemy.

Oppenheimer” [July 21, 2023]

Physicist J Robert Oppenheimer works with a team of scientists during the Manhattan Project, leading to the development of the atomic bomb.

Oppenheimer - movies of 2023

“Oppenheimer” is a biographical thriller by Christopher Nolan about J. Robert Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist who helped develop the first nuclear weapons. Based on the 2005 biography “American Prometheus”, the film stars Cillian Murphy as Oppenheimer, with a supporting ensemble cast including Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Robert Downey Jr., and Florence Pugh.

Barbie” [July 21, 2023]

Written by Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach, the “Barbie” storyline is known to only a few people. The movie’s IMDb notes that the plot is, A doll living in ‘Barbieland’ is expelled for not being perfect enough and sets off on an adventure in the real world.


According to Vulture, in the original plot, “she then goes on an adventure in the real world and by the time she returns to Barbieland to save it, she has gained the realisation that perfection comes on the inside, not the outside, and that the key to happiness is belief in oneself, free of the obligation to adhere to some unattainable standard of perfection.”

“Haunted Mansion” [July 28, 2023]

A woman and her son enlist a motley crew of so-called spiritual experts to help rid their home of supernatural squatters.

Haunted Mansion (2023)

A single mom named Gabbie hires a tour guide, a psychic, a priest, and a historian to help exorcise her newly bought mansion after discovering it is inhabited by ghosts. Directed by Justin Simien, the film’s producers are Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich, with Nick Reynolds and Tom Peitzman serving as executive producers.

Meg 2: The Trench” [August 4, 2023]

Jonas Taylor leads a research team on an exploratory dive into the deepest depths of the ocean.

Meg 2: The Trench

“Meg 2: The Trench” is directed by Ben Wheatley from a screenplay by Jon Hoeber, Erich Hoeber, and Dean Georgaris, based on the 1999 novel “The Trench” by Steve Alten. Serving as the sequel to The Meg (2018), the film stars Jason Statham, Wu Jing, Sophia Cai, Page Kennedy, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Skyler Samuels, and Cliff Curtis.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem” [August 4, 2023]

After years of being sheltered from the human world, the Turtle brothers set out to win the hearts of New Yorkers and be accepted as normal teenagers.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem” is directed by Jeff Rowe, co-directed by Kyler Spears, and written by Rowe, Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Dan Hernandez, and Benji Samit. It is the seventh theatrical Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film and features an ensemble voice cast including Micah Abbey, Shamon Brown Jr., Hannibal Buress, Rose Byrne, Nicolas Cantu, John Cena, Jackie Chan, Ice Cube, Natasia Demetriou, Ayo Edebiri, Giancarlo Esposito, Post Malone, Brady Noon, Seth Rogen, Paul Rudd, and Maya Rudolph.

Blue Beetle” [August 18, 2023]

An alien relic chooses Jaime Reyes to be its symbiotic host, bestowing the teenager with a suit of armour that’s capable of extraordinary and unpredictable powers, forever changing his destiny as he becomes the superhero Blue Beetle.

Blue Beetle (2023)

Jaime Reyes suddenly finds himself in possession of an ancient relic of alien biotechnology called the Scarab. But, of course, evil forces are hellbent on acquiring the Scarab. “Blue Beetle” is the first superhero movie with a Latino character at the forefront, and Jaime’s closest relatives also have huge parts to play in the story.

Equalizer 3” [September 1, 2023]

Since giving up his life as a government assassin, Robert McCall finds solace in serving justice on behalf of the oppressed. Now living in Southern Italy, he soon discovers his new friends are under the control of local crime bosses. As events turn deadly, McCall becomes their protector by taking on the mafia.

Equalizer 3

“Equalizer 3” is directed by Antoine Fuqua. It is the sequel to the 2018 film “The Equalizer 2”, and will serve as the final installment of “The Equalizer” trilogy, which is loosely based on the TV series of the same name. The film stars Denzel Washington, reprising his role as retired U.S. Marine and former DIA officer, Robert McCall. Dakota Fanning, David Denman, Sonia Ammar, and Remo Girone also star in the film.

The Nun II” [September 8, 2023]

In 1956 France, a priest is murdered, and it seems evil is spreading. Sister Irene once again comes face to face with a demonic force.

The Nun II

‘The Nun II” is directed by Michael Chaves and written by Akela Cooper, Ian Goldberg, and Richard Naing from a story by Cooper. It serves as a sequel to “The Nun” (2018) and the ninth installment in “The Conjuring Universe” franchise. The film stars Storm Reid and Anna Popplewell, with Bonnie Aarons, Taissa Farmiga, and Jonas Bloquet reprising their roles. James Wan and Peter Safran return as co-producers, with Judson Scott also serving as a producer.

Expend4bles” [September 22, 2023]

Armed with every weapon they can get their hands on, the Expendables are the world’s last line of defence and the team that gets called when all other options are off the table.


“Expend4bles” (also known as The Expendables 4) is directed by Scott Waugh from a screenplay by Kurt Wimmer, Tad Daggerhart, and Max Adams, based on a story by Spenser Cohen, Wimmer, and Daggerhart. It is the sequel to “The Expendables 3” (2014) and the fourth installment in The Expendables film series. The film stars an ensemble cast including Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren, and Randy Couture reprising their roles from previous films, alongside Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Megan Fox, Tony Jaa, Iko Uwais, and Andy García.

Saw X” [October 27, 2023]

The film is the tenth instalment overall in the “Saw” film series.

Saw X

On Letterboxd, a small description states that the plot will revolve around a “corrupted doctor” who is selling miracle treatments to desperate people. To teach him a lesson, the doctor will be trapped in a “decaying hospital” and forced to play Jigsaw’s “brand new game.” It is directed by Kevin Greutert.

Dune: Part Two” [November 3, 2023]

Paul Atreides unites with Chani and the Fremen while seeking revenge against the conspirators who destroyed his family. Facing a choice between the love of his life and the fate of the universe, he must prevent a terrible future only he can foresee.

Dune: Part Two

“Dune: Part Two” is directed by Denis Villeneuve, who co-wrote the screenplay with Jon Spaihts. The sequel to “Dune” (2021), it is the second of a two-part adaptation of the 1965 novel “Dune” by Frank Herbert, and follows Paul Atreides as he unites with the Fremen people of the desert planet Arrakis to win the war against House Harkonnen. Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Dave Bautista, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Stellan Skarsgård, Charlotte Rampling, and Javier Bardem reprise their roles from the first film.

Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” [November 17, 2023]

Years, before he becomes the tyrannical president of Panem, 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow, sees a chance for a change in fortunes when he mentors Lucy Gray Baird, the female tribute from District 12.

Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

“The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” is directed by Francis Lawrence from a screenplay by Michael Lesslie and Michael Arndt. It is based on the 2020 novel “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” by Suzanne Collins, serves as a prequel to The “Hunger Games” (2012), and is the fifth instalment in “The Hunger Games” film series.

The film stars Tom Blyth, Rachel Zegler, Peter Dinklage, Hunter Schafer, Josh Andrés Rivera, Jason Schwartzman, and Viola Davis. Set 64 years before the events of the first film, its plot follows a young Coriolanus Snow, his relationship with the Hunger Games tribute, Lucy Gray Baird, and the events that eventually lead him on the path to becoming the tyrannical leader of Panem.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” [December 20, 2023]

Aquaman forges an uneasy alliance with an unlikely ally in a bid to save Atlantis and the rest of the planet.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

“Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom” is produced by DC Studios, the Safran Company, and Atomic Monster, and set for distribution by Warner Bros. Pictures, it is intended to be the sequel to “Aquaman” (2018), and the 15th and final instalment in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). The film is directed by James Wan and stars Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry/Aquaman alongside Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Temuera Morrison, and Nicole Kidman.

Which of these movies are you looking forward to?

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