One of the biggest movie periods of the year is upon us with a better than average cinematic selection for all ages and tastes including an underwater long haired adonis from atlantis saving the world, a solo film of a cheeky yellow transformer, a double dose of Disney with Ralph continuing his wreckage to the flawless return of a singing British nanny. Adult fare such as an 18th century erotic drama and a sharp political satire are not to be missed.
That's only the beginning of a delectable assortment of silver screen delights. Do what I do, mix your Malteasers in warm popcorn, grab a mega coffee, sit back and be taken into another world. Here is everything you need to know.
SPIDER-MAN INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE (PG) 117 min. Hailee Steinfeld, Nicholas Cage, Jake Johnson. Just when you thought superhero films were all alike, here is a tale of multiple Spider-persons in a remarkable action packed emotional journey. Animation so good you forget it is a cartoon.
THE GRINCH (G) 86 min. Benedict Cumberbatch, Rashida Jones, Pharrell Williams. Far cry from the Jim Carrey Dr. Suess version, this is an irresistible take on the classic tale of a grumpy green citizen of Whoville planning to ruin Christmas.
BUMBLEBEE (PG) 113 min. Bailee Steinfeld, John Cena, Megyn Price. More mechanical action mayhem in prequel spin-off from the Transformers film series set in the 1980s shows how a battle scarred on the run metal shapeshifter becomes sarcastic yellow volkswagen befriending a teen girl.
FROM BOXING DAY
AQUAMAN (M) 143 min. Jason Momoa, Willem Dafoe, Amber Heard. Deep blue sea hero Aquaman last seen in Justice League wields his trident out of the Atlantis depths joins forces with his marine life and friends to save the world. Filmed in Australia Nicole Kidman. Dolph Lundgren also star, great fun.
RALPH BREAKS THE INTERNET (PG) 112 min. John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jane Lynch. Follow up to Disney video game pop culture favourite Wreck it Ralph, goes an extra dimension into the world wide web, only to dismantle it in his own clumsy lovable way. Delightful feel good story full of game references and fun.
THE FAVOURITE (MA) 119 min. Emma Stone, Olivia Coleman, Rachel Weisz. This is no Jane Austen true romance fluff, definite adults only fare set around 18th century England as a frail Queen Anne occupies the throne enjoying manipulation of the mind and intimate body games with palace colleagues.
HOLMES AND WATSON (M) 89 min. Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly, Hugh Laurie. Amusing anything goes take on the greatest detective the world has ever know Sherlock Holmes. Beware of politically incorrect jokes and pratfalls.
VICE (MA) 132 min. Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Amy Adams. Award season contender Christian Bale transforms physically and mentally into former Vice President Dick Cheney in a mostly untold and somewhat true story of a Washington insider. Edgy, dark political satire with an amazing cast.
COLD WAR (M) 88 min. Joanna Kulig, Jeanne Balibar, Tomasz Kot. In glorious black & white Polish love story of opposites attract set around eastern Europe in the 1950s. Lovers of arthouse films should not miss this.
FROM NEW YEAR’S DAY
MARY POPPINS RETURNS (G) 130 min. Emily Blunt, Lin Manuel-Miranda, Emily Mortimer. Glorious return of the umbrella flying British nanny with all the right moves to bring happiness and joy into the lives of whoever she comes in contact with. Fine musical sequences, astonishing production, terrific wit, all round beauty.
FROM JANUARY 3
HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 3 (PG) 99 min. Cate Blanchett, Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler. Third instalment of the incredibly emotional and beautifully made 'Train your Dragon' film series follows accidental hero Hiccup and charming Toothless discovering a hidden world of new creatures and the adventures that follow.
FROM JANUARY 10
INSTANT FAMILY (PG) 118 min. mark Wahlberg, Rose Byrne, Isabela Moner. True story loving couple suddenly realise they are out of depth when fostering three children, cue kids run riot, adults fall over before happy feel good finale.