While many VCU students struggle with end of the semester deadlines, winter break is almost here to take those anxieties (mostly) away. The end of the year also means we’re about to be hit by a wave of fantastic films all vying for Oscar nominations early next year and audience approval in the box office.
I’m hoping to get the word out about some of these films and other notable releases during the break so that you can find something interesting to watch in between vacation time and family time.The one movie missing from this list is “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” I know most of you have already bought your tickets, so it’s kind of redundant to suggest it.
The Disaster Artist (December 8)
When most people watch Tommy Wiseau’s infamously awful film “The Room,” they laugh and move on. James Franco decided he wanted to tell Wiseau’s story and how this trainwreck was made. Franco directs and stars in this comedic biopic full of big name stars who are all trying to recreate the madness that was the production of this garbage fire of a movie.
The Shape of Water (December 8)
Guillermo Del Toro is the mastermind behind “Pan’s Labyrinth” and “Pacific Rim,” and his latest film looks to be his most mature. It follows the love story of a mute woman played by Sally Hawkins and a humanoid aquatic creature living inside a government containment facility Hawkins cleans for. This strange romance looks to be beautifully filmed, and told and is certain to have the magical realism Del Toro is known for.
Call Me By Your Name (Currently in Limited Release)
Set in Italy in the 1980s, this romantic drama sees a young Italian boy falling in love with his father’s research assistant as he discovers his own sexuality. This movie has been making the rounds as of late and is looking to be the next big independent hit of the year if it gets a wider release. This drama has been praised for its cinematography and the performances from its lead actors, Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet. Director Luca Guadagnino is known for his ability to capture beauty and sensuality — this movie looks to be no exception.
Phantom Thread (December 25)
The last time director/writer Paul Thomas Anderson and actor Daniel Day-Lewis worked together, they created “There Will Be Blood,” one of the most iconic and critically acclaimed movies of the 2000s. Now they’ve joined forces again to produce a film exploring the life and relationships of a troubled fashion designer in 1950s England. This is said to be Day-Lewis’ final performance before he retires and it’s guaranteed to at least be beautiful.
Molly’s Game (December 25)
Molly Bloom is a former U.S. skier who was investigated by the FBI in the 2000s for running illegal underground poker games across the nation that included many socialites as players. Now in 2017, Aaron Sorkin, best known for writing award-winning scripts like “The Social Network” and creating “The West Wing,” is writing and making his directorial debut with the film adaptation of this bizarre story. With an A-list cast, and Jessica Chastain as Bloom, this is looking to be one of the year’s most interesting movies.
The Post (January 12)
Steven Spielberg directs Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in a movie about how The Washington Post released the Pentagon Papers exposing the U.S. government’s involvement in the Vietnam war. What else do I need to say? Hanks and Streep are fantastic actors and the subject matter is fascinating and inherently intense. Plus, Spielberg has been synonymous with movie gold for the past few years. There’s little to no chance of this being a bad movie.
Samuel Goodrich, Staff Writer