December is here and there are more movies to watch, than hours in the month. Don't worry about the math, we figured it all out ahead of time... There are films for every taste including historical epics, biopics, musicals, adult comedies, family films, and so much more. Let's not waste any more time and dig into all of the holiday joy in store for us all!
Plot Synopsis: The ancient wonders of the world have long cursed explorers who've dared to uncover their secrets. But a team of U.S. archaeologists gets more than they bargained for when they discover a lost pyramid unlike any other in the Egyptian desert. As they unlock the horrific secrets buried within, they realize they aren't just trapped, they are being hunted.
Ugg...what a way to start out this month's Media Roundup. Okay, I'm literally only including this on the list because there aren't many options this weekend and life is short. However, part of going to the movies is going on a ride and letting the unexpected happen. Sometimes a movie surprises you with how entertaining it is. Not saying that's the case here...eh...whatever...moving on. But setting a horror movie in the ancient Egyptian pyramids worked for The Mummy, so who knows?
Plot Synopsis: "Inherent Vice" is the seventh feature from Paul Thomas Anderson and the first ever film adaption of a Thomas Pynchon novel. When private eye Doc Sportello's ex-old lady suddenly out of nowhere shows up with a story about her current billionaire land developer boyfriend whom she just happens to be in love with, and a plot by his wife and her boyfriend to kidnap that billionaire and throw him in a loony bin... well, easy for her to say. It's the tail end of the psychedelic '60s and paranoia is running the day and Doc knows that "love" is another of those words going around at the moment, like "trip" or "groovy," that's being way too overused—except this one usually leads to trouble. With a cast of characters that includes surfers, hustlers, dopers and rockers, a murderous loan shark, LAPD Detectives, a tenor sax player working undercover, and a mysterious entity known as the Golden Fang, which may only be a tax dodge set up by some dentists... Part surf noir, part psychedelic romp - all Thomas Pynchon.
This looks like the spiritual successor to The Big Lebowski. Say no more. I'm in. Paul Thomas Anderson has gotten mighty serious in recent films to stellar results. However, some of my fondest memories in film are watching his characters interact and talk by the pool in Boogie Nights. He has a way of putting real-life situations on the screen that are inherently humorous...hmmmn. Can't wait to check this one out.
Exodus: Gods and Kings
Plot Synopsis: From acclaimed director Ridley Scott ("Gladiator," "Prometheus") comes the epic adventure "Exodus: Gods and Kings," the story of one man's daring courage to take on the might of an empire. sing state of the art visual effects and 3D immersion, Scott brings new life to the story of the defiant leader Moses (Christian Bale) as he rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses (Joel Edgerton), setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.
I have been a long-time fan and apologist for Ridley Scott's work. While the acting, epic scale, and cinematography all look top-notch, it is hard to look past the insensitive casting and comments made by Scott justifying his leads, who clearly do not fit the roles racially or culturally. In any case, Exodus is one of the greatest stories ever told and the recreation of the plagues look jaw-dropping. This is one of the bigger spectacle movies of the month to look out for.
Plot Synopsis: Pulsing with the rhythm of his greatest stand-up, Chris Rock's "Top Five" takes things to the next level, reveling in the high and the low, and blending a star-studded comedic romp with an irresistible romance. "Top Five" digs under the surface of show business, politics, rap, and the exigencies of being black and famous today - holding it all up to the light in the way only Chris Rock can. Mingling echoes of Woody Allen and Dick Gregory with the energy of Kanye West and Jay Z, "Top Five" is an original and radically new kind of American movie. Written, directed by, and starring Chris Rock, "Top Five" tells the story of New York City comedian-turned-film star Andre Allen, whose unexpected encounter with a journalist (Rosario Dawson) forces him to confront the comedy career--and the past--that he’s left behind.
Top Five took the festival circuit by storm, immediately sparking a bidding war between studios. The buzz is that Chris Rock has written and directed his most mature film yet. While gathering some of the finest black comedians and actors alive to participate in his passion project. Judging by the trailer the movie seems slightly auto-biographical in nature, so it will be interesting to watch Rock exorcise some of his show business demons.
Top Five Clip
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Plot Synopsis: From Academy Award-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies," the third in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" brings to an epic conclusion the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, Thorin Oakenshield and the Company of Dwarves. Having reclaimed their homeland from the Dragon Smaug, the Company has unwittingly unleashed a deadly force into the world. Enraged, Smaug rains his fiery wrath down upon the defenseless men, women and children of Lake-town. Obsessed above all else with his reclaimed treasure, Thorin sacrifices friendship and honor to hoard it as Bilbo's frantic attempts to make him see reason drive the Hobbit towards a desperate and dangerous choice. But there are even greater dangers ahead. Unseen by any but the Wizard Gandalf, the great enemy Sauron has sent forth legions of Orcs in a stealth attack upon the Lonely Mountain. As darkness converges on their escalating conflict, the races of Dwarves, Elves and Men must decide – unite or be destroyed. Bilbo finds himself fighting for his life and the lives of his friends in the epic Battle of the Five Armies, as the future of Middle-earth hangs in the balance.
How can you not be excited about the epic finale to Jackson's arduous and rewarding journey through Middle-Earth? The special "Legacy" trailer was a tear-jerker and that barely included any new footage. This is one of the classic cases of not knowing what you have until it's gone. So let's go appreciate it one last time.
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb
Plot Synopsis: Get ready for the wildest and most adventure-filled Night At the Museum ever as Larry (Ben Stiller) spans the globe, uniting favorite and new characters while embarking on an epic quest to save the magic before it is gone forever.
I never got into these movies. But that is probably because they came after I had passed the targeted age range, but I can imagine loving it as a kid. This is the closest thing to Bill & Ted gathering historic figures and going on an excellent adventure that we can get for the time being... So even though it never gripped me. I can understand its appeal. Plus it should be uplifting to get another comedic performance from Robin Williams. Seems like a reasonable family film option.
Plot Synopsis: A Broadway classic that has delighted audiences for generations comes to the big screen with a new, contemporary vision in Columbia Pictures' comedy, "Annie." Academy Award nominee Quvenzhané Wallis ("Beasts of the Southern Wild") stars as Annie, a young, happy foster kid who's also tough enough to make her way on the streets of New York in 2014. Originally left by her parents as a baby with the promise that they'd be back for her someday, it's been a hard knock life ever since with her mean foster mom Miss Hannigan (Cameron Diaz). But everything's about to change when the hard-nosed tycoon and New York mayoral candidate Will Stacks (Jamie Foxx) – advised by his brilliant VP, Grace (Rose Byrne) and his shrewd and scheming campaign advisor, Guy (Bobby Cannavale) – makes a thinly-veiled campaign move and takes her in. Stacks believes he's her guardian angel, but Annie's self-assured nature and bright, sun-will-come-out-tomorrow outlook on life just might mean it's the other way around.
Annie has gotten revamped and looks...corny. But that is exactly what Annie has always been! Think about it!
Plot Synopsis: "Selma" is the story of a movement. The film chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in President Johnson (Tom Wilkinson) signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. Director Ava DuVernay's "Selma" tells the story of how the revered leader and visionary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (David Oyelowo) and his brothers and sisters in the movement prompted change that forever altered history.
Considering the state of current affairs, this film couldn't be coming at a more poignant time. Despite steps forward in racial harmony and progress, judging from the news, there is still a long ways to go. This film is coming at the right moment and is getting rave reviews from everyone who sees it. Definitely going to see this one.
Into the Woods
Plot Synopsis: "Into the Woods" is a modern twist on the beloved Brothers Grimm fairy tales, intertwining the plots of a few choice stories and exploring the consequences of the characters' wishes and quests. This humorous and heartfelt musical follows the classic tales of Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Rapunzel—all tied together by an original story involving a baker and his wife, their wish to begin a family and their interaction with the witch who has put a curse on them.
Musicals simply are not my thing. Unless this is Labyrinth part two, it will be hard to get my antennae up for this. However, they have assembled a strong cast and the musical has been a favorite on stage. Let's see what happens.
Plot Synopsis: From director Clint Eastwood comes "American Sniper," starring Bradley Cooper as Chris Kyle, the most lethal sniper in U.S. military history. But there was much more to him than his skill as a sharpshooter. U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle is sent to Iraq with only one mission: to protect his brothers-in-arms. His pinpoint accuracy saves countless lives on the battlefield and, as stories of his courageous exploits spread, he earns the nickname "Legend." However, his reputation is also growing behind enemy lines, putting a price on his head and making him a prime target of insurgents. He is also facing a different kind of battle on the home front: striving to be a good husband and father from halfway around the world. Despite the danger, as well as the toll on his family at home, Chris serves through four harrowing tours of duty in Iraq, personifying the SEAL creed to "leave no man behind." But upon returning to his wife, Taya Renae Kyle (Sienna Miller), and kids, Chris finds that it is the war he can't leave behind.
Clint Eastwood knows what it takes to make a movie that will catch the attention of the Academy. This time he is teaming up with Academy Award nominee Bradley Cooper in a film that is sure to be talked about this award's season. Plus, from Sniper to Shooter, movies that focus on sharpshooters inherently add an extra layer of tension. Cooper has been on fire as of late, I will give this one a shot. (Sorry...I'm lame.)
Plot Synopsis: In the action-comedy "The Interview," Dave Skylark (James Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapoport (Seth Rogen) run the popular celebrity tabloid TV show 'Skylark Tonight.' When they discover that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is a fan of the show, they land an interview with him in an attempt to legitimize themselves as journalists. As Dave and Aaron prepare to travel to Pyongyang, their plans change when the CIA recruits them, perhaps the most unlikely candidates, to 'take out' Kim Jong-un.
Clearly Seth Rogen and James Franco are bored with their millionaire actor lifestyles and felt the need to make their real-world a little more dangerous. Reportedly North Korea isn't pleased with the movie, so the fact that Franco and Rogen may be endangering themselves for a wacky comedy...makes it even that much more meta and cool.
A Most Violent Year
Plot Synopsis: Set during the winter of 1981 -- statistically one of the most crime-ridden of New York City's history -- "A Most Violent Year" is a drama following the lives of an immigrant and his family as they attempt to capitalize on the American Dream, while the rampant violence, decay, and corruption of the day drag them in and threaten to destroy all they have built.
This will be the last year people don't know the name and face of Oscar Isaac. He is has a large role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and has recently been cast as the lead villain Apocalypse, in 2016's X-Men: Apocalypse. In fact, this will be one of the last times to check out his work on a screen smaller than an IMAX. Jessica Chastain is one of the strongest actresses working today, so seeing them share a film should be entertaining.
While the month starts off a little slow, it is jam-packed with awesome flicks for just about everyone's tastes. What movies are you looking forward to? Let us know what you think of the upcoming films on the comment boards, Facebook and Twitter!
Source: Point of Geeks