It’s officially one long, stuff yourself silly and watch movies weekend. Here are the films we’ll be watching, talking about, nominating, and inevitably, in some cases – regretting – this season.
LINCOLN (opened November 16th)
This one has already been up nearly a week, and is struggling to get the attention being thrown upon Twilight and James Bond – but is one that we’ll definitely hear about come Oscar time. The movie tells the story of our 16th President Abraham Lincoln. As the Civil War continues to rage, America’s president struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield and as he fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves.
Why we’ll be talking: Daniel Day Lewis is a dead ringer for the guy. This kind of role is custom made for Oscar Buzz. Directed by Steven Spielberg, it also stars Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln and Tommy Lee Jones as Thadeus Stevens.
THE TWILIGHT SAGA BREAKING DAWN PART 2 (opened November 16th)
If you’re a teenage girl, (okay, a fair share of adults love it too) this is the highly anticipated next chapter of the Twilight Saga. The married bliss of Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) couldn’t last forever – so why be surprised to learn that the honeymoon is cut short be a series of unfortunate betrayals and all around bad things threaten to destroy their world. Bella gets preggers and why wouldn’t that provide some problems during delivery, given that the dad is a vampire and all. but their new daughter causes more problems than she may be worth with Volturi, the fearsome council of vampire leaders, setting the stage for an all-out battle.
Why we’ll be talking: Well, you know how it is – when Twilight movies come out – we seem to talk about them! They make far too much money to be ignored!
Synopsis: Pat Peoples (Bradley Cooper) is a man always trying to look on the bright side of life –but finds himself in a mental hospital after losing his wife to another man, Then the former teacher moves back in with his parents while trying to reconcile with his now ex-wife. But things get more complicated when he meets Tiffany, (Jennifer Lawrence of “The Hunger Games”) a mysterious girl with problems of her own.
Why we’ll be talking – Cooper and Lawrence are both red hot right now- and this ‘anti-blockbuster’ has an innocence and emotional journey that is already getting good buzz.
THE RISE OF THE GUARDIANS (November 21st)
Childhood icons like the Easter Bunny, Santa, Jack Frost and the Sandman join forces to protect children from something or other. It’s CGI and kid friendly, plus a clever concept, so it should do well with families.
Synopsis: Set during the period in which Alfred Hitchcock was making the movie ‘Psycho,’ this is the story of a love triangle of sorts: That between Alfred Hitchcock and his wife Alma Reville – and the ‘other woman’ in his life – filmmaking itself.
Why we’ll be talking: This is starting in limited released – but the remarkable peformance from star Anthony Hopkins will likely lead to an Oscar nomination. Helen Mirren plays his wife with equal aplomb.
Synopsis: This prequel to The Lord of the Rings trilogy follows Bilbo Baggins, an upstanding member of the “little people” Hobbits, on a dangerous journey to the Lonely Mountain with Gandalf the Grey. They aim to take back a treasure stolen from them by a dragon.
Expect lots of foes: dragons, giant spiders, hostile elves, ravenous wolves, and even more we can’t explain. You just have to see it.
Trivia: Daniel Radcliffe, Shia LaBeouf, James McAvoy, and Tobey Maguire were among those considered for the role of Bilbo Baggins. The role ultimately went to Martin Freeman – an English actor relatively unknown in the U.S.
Why we’ll be talking: this will be a blockbuster, much like the first installments of the series. End of story!
Synopsis: Ex-military homicide investigator Jack Reacher (Cruise) seeks the truth behind what seems an open-and-shut murder case after a trained military sniper is arrested for shooting five random victims. Not surprisingly, things aren’t what they seem to be. Based on a book in Lee Child’s crime series.
Why we’ll be talking: Tom Cruise is a good actor who makes great movies – but while his box office returns are still respectable, he is no longer the sure thing he used to be. Given that he has come under more scrutiny about Scientology and his split from Katie Holmes, people will be watching to see if the career of this one-time golden boy will survive another PR hit.
An adaptation of the successful stage musical based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel set in 19th-century France, in which a paroled prisoner named Jean Valjean seeks redemption. It was a hit on Broadway for years. Hugh Jackman plays ex-prisoner Jean Valjean, hunted for decades by the ruthless policeman Javert (Russell Crowe) after he breaks parole. When Valjean agrees to care for factory worker Fantine’s (played by Anne Hathaway) young daughter, Cosette, their lives change forever. (Helena Bonham Carter and Amanda Seyfried also star.)
Why we’ll be talking: It’s truly an epic film – and the director used a remarkable new technique to get the actors to bring even more passion to their performances. They sang live on set, with earpieces and minimal orchestration – not in a studio. The lush ochestral flourishes were added in later.
Have fun, and save me some popcorn!
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