It’s two weeks before Christmas, and baby Jesus (and/or Santa) have delivered unto us some more films. There’s that Star Wars one, a couple depressing (but ultimately redeeming) ones, and an “oh shit 2016 is almost over let’s shove this out the door now” one.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
I’m in kind of a happy place with Star Wars: I don’t care enough about it to seek out all the spoilers and reviews and opinions, and I’m disconnected enough from pop culture to not be overwhelmed with its media saturation. I hadn’t even seen a trailer for this movie until I sat down to write this post. Not because I was actively avoiding seeing anything, I just.. didn’t care to. I’m content to wait for the films to come out, enjoy them (or not) and then forget all about it.
So, now that I’ve seen this trailer, it looks like it might be an enjoyable film. However, director Gareth Edwards doesn’t have a great track record. His first film, Monsters, showed promise but wasn’t remarkable. Godzilla was amazing from a audio/visual production standpoint but fell flat in every other department. George Lucas apparently loves this Rogue One movie, so that can’t be a good sign either. Anyway, Star Wars. It’s a thing. It’s here, again.

Collateral Beauty
Will Smith’s daughter dies in a tragic swinging-by-her-arms accident, and in his grief/depression Smith resorts to speaking with imaginary characters representing love, time, and death. Why aren’t there more stories about people who suffer from depression that wasn’t caused by a traumatic loss. It’s always “oooh my son died” or “waaah my lover got ran over by a bus!” What about the guy that has been sinking in metaphorical quicksand so slowly and for so long that he didn’t even notice it until it was up to his nose! Wouldn’t that make a great film too?! No? Oh.. okay. Forget I said anything.

Limited Releases

A Kind of Murder
Congratulations to Jessica Biel for maturing from the “seductive mistress” role to the “jealous wife” role. It’s a big day for her. This is a noirish film about a man that completely fails to convince everyone, including himself, that he did not murder his wife. Patrick Wilson continues to look like Will Arnett’s unfunny older brother.

A film about Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, who is hunted by the Chilean government for his communist tendencies. Looks good. The director of this film also directed last month’s Jackie, which makes me wonder if my lukewarm feelings about that movie were caused entirely by a badly cut trailer.

Anthony Hopkins plays a doctor with psychic powers, helping the FBI chase a murderer with more powerful psychic powers. According to Wikipedia, this film was originally developed as a sequel to Se7en, and debuted at the Toronto Film Festival in September of 2015. Sounds like a real winner, no?

Denzel Washington directs and stars in this film about a guy who has a wife and a son, and his wife and son think he’s kind of a dip, but he thinks he’s doing right by his family so whattya gonna do, ehhhh?