11 Movies to Watch Over the Holiday Break
Grab the popcorn because the best time for going to the movie theater is upon us. Movie studios save some of their most award-worthy films and guaranteed box office smashes for the last few weeks of the year, and viewers can gobble ‘em all up with the free time they have during the holidays (or as much free time as humanly possible). Scroll down for the 11 movies that will keep you entertained over the break, from mindless ones like Daddy’s Home to innovative films like Anomalisa, to remakes like Point Breakto critics’ favorites like Joy.
The stop-motion comedy about a man trying to connect with people features the voices of Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tom Noonan, and David Thewlis. Its innovation helped it win the Venice International Film Festival’s top honor, the Grand Jury Prize, as well as a Golden Globe nomination for Best Motion Picture Animated.
Will Smith is getting rave reviews for his role in this sports-driven drama as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the pathologist who took on the NFL to reveal brain damage in football players. His performance earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama.
Will Ferrell returns to the big screen this holiday season in this bro comedy in which he plays Brad, a relaxed man who is stepdad to the two children of wife Sarah (Linda Cardellini). That is, until her sexy ex Dusty (Mark Wahlberg) swoops back in to steal the hearts of his modern family.
Jennifer Lawrence stars in her third David O. Russell film as Joy Mangano, the single mother of three who went on to invent the Miracle Mop. She stars alongside Bradley Cooper and Robert DeNiro, and her performance earned her a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy.
This remake is for those who loved the 1991 cult classic. This time, Edgar Ramirez takes on Patrick Swayze’s role of the badass Bodhi, and rising star Luke Bracey plays Johnny Utah, the role Keanu Reeves created. The story follows what happens when an FBI agent (Bracey) infiltrates a group of sports criminals to get to the bottom of their plan, only to struggle to figure out what’s really right and wrong. If you’re interested in seeing an action flick with big stunts, this is it.
Son of Saul
This Hungarian drama, starring Geza Rohrig as Saul Auslander, is set in Auschwitz in 1944. Working at the camp as a prisoner, he thinks he finds the body of his son, and he goes through great lengths to give the body a proper burial, even with all the chaos going on around him. The film won the 2015 Cannes Film Festival Grand Prix award as well as a Golden Globe nomination for Best Foreign Film. We foresee some foreign Oscar nominations headed its way, too.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
The saga continues with this highly-anticipated fantasy film, which is expected to be one of the biggest movie openings of all time, deadline.com reports. In the film, some of the franchise’s staple stars return, including Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill, while newcomers such as Daisy Ridley, Lupita Nyong’o, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver are introduced.
The Big Short
This drama, adapted from Michael Lewis’s book of the same name, goes behind-the-scenes to uncover the causes behind the 2007 financial crisis. Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, Steve Carell, Finn Wittrock, and Max Greenfield all star, making it an amazing ensemble film—so good, in fact, it already won an award for its casting. The National Board of Review will award the Best Ensemble honor to The Big Short cast in New York City on Jan. 6. The film itself earned a Golden Globe nod for Best Motion Picture Musical or Comedy and two stars, Bale and Carrell, are both up for a Golden Globe in the same category: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy.
The Hateful Eight
Quentin Tarantino takes on the post-Civil War Western genre with this film about blood-hungry bounty hunters trapped in a blizzard. It’s a story of survival and trust, and stars Channing Tatum, Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, and Jennifer Jason Leigh, who earned a Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in Any Motion Picture Golden Globe nomination for her role as Daisy Domergue.
Leonardo DiCaprio is back, on the move to get a Best Actor Oscar nod for the fourth time—and his turn as fur trapper Hugh Glass in this biographical Western might just get him his first win (he’s already nominated for Best Actor at the Golden Globes). The Alejandro G. Inarritu-directed movie follows DiCaprio’s frontiersman character on an expedition out West, but after being attacked by a bear, he is left for dead by those he’s traveling with (Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, and more). Of course, he’s not dead, and now he wants revenge. It’s worth seeing to see what all the buzz is about: It scored a Golden Globe nod for Best Motion Picture Drama.