Thursday, January 7, 2016

A Reel Preview: The Year in Film 2016: Episode I

For years, the months of January and February have traditionally served as a dumping ground for movies not quite good enough for the fun summer months or the gold of Oscar Season. There are mostly cast-offs, with the occasional gem amongst the piles of coal. This first Episode of monthly previews for 2016 looks at the notable releases for January:
It all gets deadly with...

THE FOREST – Based on the famed real-life location of a Japanese forest where people go to commit suicide, Natalie Dormer (CAPTAIN AMERICA, THE HUNGER GAMES), goes into the woods looking for her lost sister.

RIDE ALONG 2 – The long-awaited sequel (ha) to the 2014 comedy hit. Ice Cube and Kevin Hart reprise their roles as cops acting like idiots.

THE 5TH WAVE – In this science-fiction thriller based on the novel of the same name, Chloe Grace Moretz (KICK-ASS), plays a young girl who, with her baby brother, tries to survive an Earth which has been knocked back to the Stone Age after an alien attack. Co-stars Liev Schreiber (SPOTLIGHT), Maggie Siff (SONS OF ANARCHY), Ron Livingston, and Maria Bello.

13 HOURS: THE SECRET SOLDIERS OF BENGHAZI – Michael Bay (THE ROCK, TRANSFORMERS), directs this true-story thriller about the six members of a security team who fought to defend the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi after a terrorist attack. Stars John Krasinski (THE OFFICE), and James Badge Dale (IRON MAN 3). It is written by Chuck Hogan (THE STRAIN).

DIRTY GRANDPA – In this screwball comedy, Robert De Niro plays a grumpy old man who tricks his grandson, played by Zac Efron, to drive him to Florida.

KUNG FU PANDA 3- Jack Black reprises his role as the high-kicking talking panda in the third installment of the animated franchise. Includes the voice talents of Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Jackie Chan, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, Bryan Cranston, Kate Hudson, and J.K. Simmons.

JANE GOT A GUN – This troubled film, which has seen various changes in cast-members and directors since 2011, finally sees the big screen. Set in the Old West, Natalie Portman (BLACK SWAN), defends her home from a gang of marauders. Co-stars Joel Edgerton (WARRIOR), Noah Emmerich, and Ewan McGregor. Directed by Gavin O’Connor (WARRIOR).

THE FINEST HOURS – Loosely based on the true story of a rescue mission involving an oil tanker which split in half during a massive storm. Stars Chris Pine (STAR TREK), Casey Affleck, Ben Foster, John Ortiz, and Eric Bana.


Next month, Episode II previews the month of February.

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