As the holiday season approaches, the glittering lights of Hollywood are set to shine even brighter with a dazzling array of cinematic offerings. Senior Writer, Eric Andersson, invites movie enthusiasts to buckle up for an exhilarating ride through the much-anticipated 2023 holiday movie lineup, featuring A-list stars, gripping plots, and a variety of genres to cater to every taste.
A Culinary Thriller and Haunting Fantasies
The movie buffet kicks off with “Leave the World Behind,” a paranoid thriller written and directed by Mr. Robot’s Sam Esmail. Starring Mahershala Ali, Julia Roberts, and Ethan Hawke, the film follows a married couple’s getaway gone awry, plunging them into a world of suspense and uncertainty. Premiering in select theaters on November 22 and streaming on Netflix from December 8, it promises to keep audiences on the edge of their seats.
Next on the menu is “Maestro,” Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut, in which he also stars alongside Carey Mulligan. The biopic chronicles the life of famed conductor and composer Leonard Bernstein, offering a glimpse into the complexity of marriage and the various forms love can take. Set to hit select theaters on November 22 and Netflix on December 20, “Maestro” promises a symphony of emotions.
Holiday Laughter and Heartfelt Dramas
Eddie Murphy takes the lead in “Candy Cane Lane,” a holiday comedy directed by Reginald Hudlin. Murphy’s character, Chris Carver, enters a festive competition with a mischievous elf, resulting in a hilarious mishmash of jump scares, car chases, and kung-fu fighting. Streaming on Prime Video from December 1, this unique holiday movie guarantees laughter and heartwarming moments.
For those seeking poignant narratives, “May December” is a gripping drama inspired by the real-life saga of Mary Kay Letourneau. Julianne Moore stars as Gracie Atherton-Yoo, exploring the aftermath of a controversial relationship. Premiering on Netflix on December 1, this thought-provoking film promises to delve into the complexities of love and societal perceptions.
Thrilling Mysteries and Mesmerizing Musicals
“Eileen,” a tense thriller set in 1960s Massachusetts, introduces Anne Hathaway as the glamorous psychologist Rebecca. Thomasin Adlin plays Eileen, a mousy secretary whose life becomes entangled with Rebecca’s, leading to a shocking climax. In select theaters on December 1 and opening wider on December 8, “Eileen” offers an intriguing blend of mystery and psychological drama.
Ava DuVernay directs “Origin,” a heartbreaking story centered around writer Isabel Wilkerson, portrayed by Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor. The film explores Wilkerson’s personal losses while working on her book “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents,” a deeply researched history of inequality. In select theaters on December 8, “Origin” promises a poignant narrative and stellar performances.
Madcap Dramas and Sci-Fi Spectacles
Emma Stone reunites with Yorgos Lanthimos in “Poor Things,” a stylish and offbeat drama where Stone’s character, Bella Baxter, is brought back to life by an eccentric scientist, played by Willem Dafoe. The film, releasing in theaters on December 8, takes audiences on a cross-continental adventure, challenging societal norms.
Fans of Broadway can rejoice as “Waitress: The Musical” gets a big-screen adaptation with Sara Bareilles starring as Jenna Hunterson. Premiering in theaters on December 7, the film follows Jenna’s journey to escape a loveless marriage through a baking contest and a newfound romance, promising a delightful mix of music and emotion.
Heartwarming Comedies and Unconventional Dramas
Mark Wahlberg takes on a unique role in “The Family Plan,” where he plays Dan Morgan, a former government assassin turned family man. Streaming on Apple TV+ from December 15, the film combines laughs and action as Morgan’s past comes back to haunt him during a road trip to Las Vegas.
Timothée Chalamet dons the iconic hat of Willy Wonka in the whimsical prequel “Wonka.” With Hugh Grant and Rowan Atkinson in supporting roles, the film explores the origins of the beloved candy man. Set to hit theaters on December 15, “Wonka” promises a delightful journey into the world of pure imagination.
Sci-Fi Adventures and Historical Dramas
Zac Snyder’s “Rebel Moon — Part One: A Child of Fire” presents a sweeping sci-fi epic with Sofia Boutella leading a team against threatening forces. Streaming on Netflix from December 22, the film promises a thrilling intergalactic adventure.
George Clooney directs “The Boys in the Boat,” a historical drama depicting the true story of a University of Washington rowing team making it to the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. Releasing in theaters on December 25, the film celebrates the resilience of underdogs and the power of determination.
Conclusion: A Cinematic Wonderland Beckons
As the holiday season approaches, the 2023 Holiday Movie Preview invites audiences to immerse themselves in a diverse range of cinematic experiences. From heartwarming comedies and gripping dramas to whimsical fantasies and sci-fi spectacles, this year’s lineup promises to cater to every taste, ensuring that the magic of storytelling continues to captivate audiences worldwide. So, whether it’s a cozy night on the couch or a trip to the local theater, there’s a cinematic wonderland waiting to unfold.