Hard to believe but here we are at the beginning of the final month of 2015… and what a great year for film it has been.
However, it is not over yet as there are some exciting and some of the most anticipated films of the year still to hit the big screen in the coming months.
We take a look at some of the December movies that we are really looking forward to – and there are a couple that you really cannot afford to miss.
– Victor Frankenstein – released 3rd December
James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe are joining forces for the first time this December for Victor Frankenstein, a new take on the iconic tale by Mary Shelley.
McAvoy and Radcliffe will take on the roles of Victor Frankenstein and Igor as they team up with director Paul McGuigan. McGuigan has brought us movies such as Gangster No. 1 and Lucky Number Slevin during his career and this will be his first feature since Push back in 2009. Chronicle scribe Max Landis has also penned the screenplay for the film.
The director has assembled a terrific cast list as McAvoy and Radcliffe are joined by Jessica Brown Findlay, Andrew Scott, and Daniel Mays.
Radical scientist Victor Frankenstein (McAvoy) and his equally brilliant protégé Igor Strausman (Radcliffe) share a noble vision of aiding humanity through their ground-breaking research into immortality.
But Victor’s experiments go too far, and his obsession has horrifying consequences. Only Igor can bring his friend back from the brink of madness and save him from his monstrous creation.
McAvoy and Radcliffe are two of this country’s exciting actors and it is great to see them working together this December and I can’t wait to see the duo in action later this week.
– By The Sea – released 11th December
It was back in 2005 when Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt teamed up for the first time in Mr & Mrs Smith – yes, it really was a decade ago. This month sees them reunite for By The Sea, which also sees Jolie return to the director’s chair.
By The Sea is the third feature film of Jolie’s career and the first since Unbroken. While Pitt and Jolie have shared the screen together before, it is the first time that Pitt has been directed by his filmmaker wife. It is also the first time that Jolie has starred in one of her own films.
As well as being in the director’s chair and on the cast list, Jolie has also penned the film’s screenplay. Pitt and Jolie take on the role of husband and wife Roland and Vanessa, a married couple who are drifting apart. They are joined on the cast list by Mélanie Laurent, Sarah Naudi and Melvil Poupaud.
By the Sea follows an American writer named Roland (Pitt) and his wife, Vanessa (Jolie Pitt), who arrive in a tranquil and picturesque seaside resort in 1970s France, their marriage in apparent crisis.
As they spend time with fellow travellers, including young newlyweds Lea (Laurent) and François (Poupaud), and village locals Michel (Arestrup) and Patrice (Bohringer), the couple begins to come to terms with unresolved issues in their own lives.
Jolie is one of the most exciting emerging filmmaker around and By The Sea looks set to be completely different to the movies that she has delivered before.
– Star Wars: The Force Awakens – released 17th December
When it comes to December movies, there is nothing that is going to be bigger than Star War: The Force Awakens, which has already grossed $50 million in pre-sale tickets. I think it is fair to say that it is going to be one of the biggest films of 2015.
It has been ten years since the last Star Wars film hit the big screen The Force Awakens will see J.J. Abrams direct a Star Wars film for the first time; this is his first movie since Star Trek Into Darkness back in 2013.
There are plenty of new names to watch out for on the cast list as Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Adam Driver, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Gwendoline Christie, and Lupita Nyong’o are all on board.
But there are some franchise favourites making a return as Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Peter Mayhew are all back as Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Lei, and Chewbacca.
The plot is still being kept under wraps but we do know that it will be second thirty years after the events of Return of the Jedi.
We all know that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is going to be a monster hit but just how quickly will it gross $1 billion? Can it break the record of thirteen days that was set by Jurassic World earlier this year? I guess we are going to have to wait and see.
– Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie – released 21st December
If there is one film I am really looking forward to this December then it is Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie as I was a huge fan of the cartoon when I was growing up.
This is the first time that Snoopy, Charlie Brown and co have been brought to the big screen and the film sees Steve Martino back in the director’s chair. Martino is no stranger to the animation film, having directed Ice Age: Continental Drift and Horton Hears a Who! in recent years.
Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy, Linus and the rest of the beloved ‘Peanuts’ gang make their big-screen debut, like they’ve never been seen before, in state of the art 3D animation. Snoopy, the world’s most lovable beagle – and flying ace – embarks upon his greatest mission as he takes to the skies to pursue his arch-nemesis The Red Baron, while his best pal, Charlie Brown, begins his own epic quest.
Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie has already been enjoying success at the U.S. box office and I cannot wait to see this colourful characters on the big screen.
This film will be a treat for those who grew up with the comics and the cartoon but it will also introduce Snoopy and Charlie Brown to a whole new generation. I really cannot wait to see it!!!!!
– In The Heart of the Sea – released 26th December
In The Heart of the Sea is another December film that I am looking forward to as it marks the return of filmmaker Ron Howard. In The Heart of the Sea is the first film for Howard since the success of Rush and sees him reunite with actor Chris Hemsworth – this is set to be a very different role for the popular and in-demand actor.
In The Heart of the Sea is based on the book of the same name by Nathaniel Philbrick, which chronicled the singing of whaling ship Essex in 1820. The sinking of the ship would go on to inspire the well-known tale Moby Dick.
Hemsworth takes on the central role of First Mate Owen Chase and is joined on the cast list by Benjamin Walker, Cillian Murphy, Tom Holland, Brendan Gleeson, and Ben Whishaw.
In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real-life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. But that told only half the story.
In the Heart of the Sea reveals the encounter’s harrowing aftermath, as the ship’s surviving crew is pushed to their limits and forced to do the unthinkable to stay alive. Braving storms, starvation, panic and despair, the men will call into question their deepest beliefs, from the value of their lives to the morality of their trade, as their captain searches for direction on the open sea and his first mate still seeks to bring the great whale down.
Every year there is Boxing Day movie that is not to be missed and, for 2015, In The Heart of the Sea is that movie. Howard has made some terrific films during his career and this really is promising to be another gem.
Other December movies that are not to be missed include Christmas With The Coopers, The Night Before, Sisters, and Daddy’s Home.