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Point of Geeks

A Point of Geeks report

2015 was a fantastic year at the movies and for many fans, the best was saved for last. This December the most anticipated film of the year will be released, [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158). The long-awaited film will dominate the box-office, but there are a few other quirky options that's worthy of your time as well. Check them out...

December 4

Macbeth

Stars: Michael Fassbender. Marion Cotillard

Official Synopsis:

From the producers of THE KING’S SPEECH comes the feature film adaptation of Shakespeare’s play MACBETH about Scottish General Macbeth (Michael Fassbender) whose ambitious wife (Marion Cotillard) urges him to use wicked means in order to gain power of the throne over the sitting king.

Michael Fassbender is probably one of the top ten actors in the world and its hard to imagine a role that he wouldn't be captivating in. However, there is an even more compelling reason to check out Macbeth, the latest Shakespearean reboot. Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, and director Justin Kurzel, are already filming their next film, Assassin's Creed, an adaptation of the hit video game series. So my curiosity about the trio's chemistry has been peaked. Kurzel seems to have a unique visual style that is worth a look as well.

Krampus

Stars: Adam Scott, Toni Collette

Official Synopsis:

Legendary Pictures’ "Krampus," a darkly festive tale of a yuletide ghoul, reveals an irreverently twisted side to the holiday.
When his dysfunctional family clashes over the holidays, young Max (Emjay Anthony) is disillusioned and turns his back on Christmas. Little does he know, this lack of festive spirit has unleashed the wrath of Krampus: a demonic force of ancient evil intent on punishing non-believers. All hell breaks loose as beloved holiday icons take on a monstrous life of their own, laying siege to the fractured family’s home and forcing them to fight for each other if they hope to survive.

This movie definitely has a buzz and feels like a cult-classic in the making. It looks like it has the right balance of low-budget camp and horror to either be fun or to be the butt of jokes for years to come. Regardless, it does look memorable in a Leprechaun or Snakes on a Plane kind of way. While it's the only notable new release this weekend, there are a few movies that I might see a second time, including Creed over this. But you never know until you see it.

December 11

The Big Short

Stars: Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carell, Brad Pitt, Marisa Tomei, Melissa Leo

Official Synopsis:

When four outsiders saw what the big banks, media and government refused to, the global collapse of the economy, they had an idea: The Big Short. Their bold investment leads them into the dark underbelly of modern banking where they must question everyone and everything. Based on the true story and best-selling book by Michael Lewis ("The Blind Side," "Moneyball"), and directed by Adam Mckay ("Anchorman," "Step Brothers") The Big Short stars Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt.

Usually in every director's career they make a daring choice to make a film outside of their known comfort zone. These moments can crush a career or send it to unknown heights. Director Adam McKay, who is known for making awesome fart jokes with Will Ferrell in comedies such as Anchorman and Step Brothers, is the unlikely man a the helm of The Big Short. He expanded his range a little last summer by co-writing a major tentpole, Ant-Man, for Marvel Studios.

His next film tackles the dirty side of the banking and investment world, at a time when the economic world was on the brink of implosion. It's hard to pass on a cast with Bale, Pitt, Leo, Tomei, and Gosling, which would indicate that McKay has a strong vision, and script, for the adaptation. The Big Short isn't topping our most-anticipated movies of the month list, but it definitely looks worth checking out.

In the Heart of the Sea

Stars: Chris Hemsworth, Cillian Murphy, Brendan Gleeson, Ben Whishaw

Official Synopsis:

Oscar winner Ron Howard (“A Beautiful Mind”) directs the action adventure “In the Heart of the Sea,” based on Nathaniel Philbrick’s best-selling book about the dramatic true journey of the Essex.

In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real-life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. But that told only half the story.

“In the Heart of the Sea” reveals the encounter’s harrowing aftermath, as the ship’s surviving crew is pushed to their limits and forced to do the unthinkable to stay alive. Braving storms, starvation, panic and despair, the men will call into question their deepest beliefs, from the value of their lives to the morality of their trade, as their captain searches for direction on the open sea and his first mate still seeks to bring the great whale down.

This year has been full of epic movies like Everest, The Walk, and The Revenant, which are based on real-life events that seem too fantastic to be true. It looks like In the Heart of the Sea could be the next one added to the list. The movie was pushed from its original March release date, which is hopefully a sign of the studio's confidence that the film could be an awards contender. This has all of the elements of real world monster movie and it will be interesting to get on the ride with present and future Avengers, Chris Hemsworth and Tom Holland. Rush proved that there is some chemistry between director Ron Howard and Hemsworth, hopefully they are able to take things to the next level in this movie. But honestly, they had me at the poster. I will be there.


December 18

Sisters

Stars: Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Ike Barinholtz, Maya Rudolph, John Cena, John Leguizamo, Dianne Wiest

Official Synopsis:

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler reunite for "Sisters," a new film from "Pitch Perfect" director Jason Moore about two disconnected sisters summoned home to clean out their childhood bedroom before their parents sell the family house. Looking to recapture their glory days, they throw one final high-school-style party for their classmates, which turns into the cathartic rager that a bunch of ground-down adults really need.

I'm always down to see movies about slightly over-the-hill people getting their party on. Whether it's the Will Ferrell classic Old School or the recently released Seth Rogen comedy, The Night Before, there is a precedence for hilarity to ensue when a great comedic mind is put in the lead role. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are hilarious and it seems that it has a solid supporting cast, to add to ridiculousness. It is going to be great counter-programming, since there is that whole Star Wars thing that might be getting most of the attention that weekend...

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Stars: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Carrie Fisher

Synopsis:

"A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...."

The most anticipated movie of the month. The most anticipated movie of the year. One of the biggest cinematic events this century. We will be there.

December 25

Concussion

Stars: Will Smith, Alec Baldwin, Luke Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Paul Reiser, David Morse, Albert Brooks

Official Synopsis:

The film is based on the David vs. Goliath journey of Dr. Bennet Omalu, the forensic neuropathologist who made the first discovery of football-related brain trauma in a pro player and fought to bring awareness to the public. In his search for the truth behind the devastating malady, Omalu’s quest humanizes the price paid by professional athletes in impact sports but also by people who challenge the status quo as it exposes the political, cultural and corporate interests that fuel the business of sports.

As a football fan, it feels like this is a movie that could change perspectives after people step out of the theaters. However, the trailer and film unfortunately looks so boring its unclear who will actually show up. It's clear that Sony is betting on getting some overflow from The Force Awakens which will be in its second week of release. But there are simply so many choices over the holiday weekend it's hard to not imagine this getting lost in shuffle. Which couldn't make the NFL happier... The truth be told, the movie looks like a something you can catch on cable. Regardless, Will Smith rarely phones in his performances and is lined up for a resurgent 2016 with the pending release of Suicide Squad. It will be interesting to see the reception that the movie receives.

Point Break

Stars: Edgar Ramirez, Luke Bracey, Ray Winstone, Teresa Palmer, Delroy Lindo

Official Synopsis:

In the fast-paced, high-adrenaline “Point Break,” a young FBI agent, Johnny Utah (Luke Bracey), infiltrates a cunning team of thrill-seeking elite athletes – led by the charismatic Bodhi (Édgar Ramírez). The athletes are suspected of carrying out a spate of crimes in extremely unusual ways. Deep undercover, and with his life in imminent danger, Utah strives to prove they are the architects of this string of inconceivable crimes. The film is replete with the most daring athleticism ever seen in a motion picture. These action adventure feats are performed by elite athletes representing the world’s best in class in big-wave surfing, wingsuit flying, sheer-face snowboarding, free rock climbing, and high-speed motorcycling.

The first thought of this remake made me physically nauseous. However, after a few months to sit on it, I am now only moderately queasy. On paper, the thought of using extreme sports such as base-jumping and dirt biking, which have made huge advancements since the first film, could make compelling action scenes. Edgar Ramirez is a solid actor. But...I will have to catch this on a streaming service in a few months.

Daddy's Home

Stars: Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg

Official Synopsis:

"Daddy's Home" follows a mild-mannered radio executive (Ferrell) who strives to become the best stepdad to his wife’s two children, but complications ensue when their freewheeling and freeloading real father (Wahlberg) arrives, forcing him to compete for the affection of the kids.

Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg re-team for their second movie after The Other Guys and it looks...formulaic... It's hard to get excited for this particularly after both actors have made a string of forgettable movies recently. On a lighter weekend I might have bought a ticket, but there is simply too much quality available to get too excited about this.

P.S. - The Revenant and The Hateful Eight don't go into wide release until January, but definitely should be on your radar.

Source: Point of Geeks

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