2014 Holiday Movie Preview

Photo Credit:http://geekmyinterest.com/hobbit-fivearmies-trailer/

It’s that time of year again! But instead of having too much egg nog and passing out in front of the fireplace, you’ve got a ton of movies to see between Thanksgiving weekend and the end of the year. The Oscar race is hardly clear at this point and there’s a few big blockbusters hitting screens throughout the season. We’ve narrowed down ten films that you absolutely shouldn’t miss over the next couple weeks. Happy holidays!

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2084970/The Imitation Game

Benedict Cumberatch plays Alan Turing, a genius computer scientist responsible for cracking Nazi messages back in World War II who would later be convicted for indecency due to his homosexual relationship. It’s a true story that’s been begging for a film adaptation in our more friendly LGBT culture. Actually, the script was at the top of Hollywood’s Black List in 2011. Now it’s considered a major awards contender. (Nov. 28)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2321549/?ref_=nv_sr_1The Babadook

Horror films usually finish coming out around Halloween, giving way for fantasy and awards films. Not this year. Early buzz for this Australian horror flick is really picking up steam. With hardly any solid commercial horror films scattered throughout 2014, The Babadook may quench a thirst filmgoers have been wishing for since The Conjuring. (Nov. 28)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2305051/?ref_=nv_sr_3Wild

Reese Witherspoon still has a lot of star power, and Wild may be her most challenging role yet. Here she plays Cheryl, a woman hitting a life crisis after a nasty breakup that encourages her to spend some time alone in the woods. Witherspoon is getting some Oscar talk for her largely alone performance, making this one of the big character pieces of the season. (Dec. 5)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2784678/?ref_=nv_sr_1Top Five

Chris Rock, star of Grown-Ups 2, is making his directorial debut this holiday season. While that may not excite some, early reception has been extremely positive. The film will explore the life of a famous comedian who doesn’t find himself funny anymore. Rock’s account of what could very well be his own career is solid inspiration for a film. (Dec. 5)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1528100/?ref_=nv_sr_1Exodus: Gods and Kings

Ridley Scott’s last couple of features haven’t exactly been met with a warm reception. But this Biblical tale, closing out a year filled with them, looks to have the feel of Scott’s own classic Gladiator and his criminally underrated Kingdom of Heaven. Throw in a cast that includes Christian Bale, Joel Edgarton, Sigourney Weaver, and Ben Kingsley, and this could be a return to form for the director. (Dec. 12)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1791528/?ref_=nv_sr_1Inherent Vice

Paul Thomas Anderson has made some of the best films of the past two decades, but Inherent Vice looks a lot more like Boogie Nights than The Master. It sure helps that after Her Joaquin Phoenix is a star to be excited again. Rounding out the cast is Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio del Toro, and Jena Malone. (Dec. 12)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2310332/?ref_=nv_sr_2The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Nine years ago, we were in a similar position with The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King about to finish a monumental piece of filmmaking. Regardless of how you feel about The Hobbit trilogy, most fans should be excited to see the epic battle that concludes J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic novel. Being hailed as the “Defining Chapter” that could prove true off screen as well. Will it continue the greatness that was The Desolation of Smaug, or sink back into the crazy pacing issues of An Unexpected Journey? (Dec. 17)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2473794/?ref_=nv_sr_1Mr. Turner

I don’t like to promote obvious Oscar-bait movies, but Timothy Spall is a great actor that has yet to prove himself on the big screen as a leading man. He plays J. M. W. Turner, a British painter that challenged what we thought of as art a few centuries ago. It’s a period piece sure to lock Oscar nominations in both major and technical categories. Predictions may be done once this film comes out. (Dec. 19)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2180411/?ref_=nv_sr_1Into the Woods

Disney is bringing this classic fairy-tale musical to the big screen with none other than Meryl Streep as the poster child. Following the stories of classic children’s tales in a way that suggest realism and maturity, this beloved musical was bound to get the big Hollywood treatment. Rob Marshall is directing while the cast is rounded out by Emily Blunt, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, and Johnny Depp. (Dec. 25)

 

Photo Credit:http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1809398/?ref_=nv_sr_1Unbroken

This film could be the defining moment of Angelina Jolie’s directing career. After a few films that have gotten mixed receptions, this looks to be her most daring attempt yet. Even more encouraging is that she brought in Joel and Ethan Coen to work on the script. Jack O’Connell is a rising star, playing Olympic athlete turned POW Louis Zamperini. It’s a biopic that could warrant an Oscar nomination, which would be a first for Jolie. (Dec. 25)

 

What movies are you most excited to see for the rest of 2014? Let us know in the comments below!

 

By Matt Dougherty

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