Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (12/16 – PG-13)
A recognizable cast returns to adapt the exploits of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s 125-year old sleuth. Though Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law put more action into the heroics of Holmes and Doctor Watson than the literary tradition would prescribe, the movie can be forgiven a few liberties when attempting to deliver a Christmas present blockbuster.
What to watch for: Compare it to the Sherlock Holmes film released in 2009 for the balance of character and plot development versus action and effects. Or check out Conan Doyle’s book The Final Problem, which provides much of the framework for this film adaptation.
The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn (12/21 – PG)
Animated adventures across land and sea and air. …And a cute white-fox terrier named Snowy. That’s what’s served up in a gripping mix of spectacle, story, imagination and suspended disbelief. With this adaptation of a hugely popular European comic book series, sit back and enjoy a savory caper seasoned with tasty morsels of Belgian heroes, Moroccan adventures and comic twists.
What to watch for: Discover new locales and characters that may be familiar on continental Europe but not so much here.
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (12/25 – PG-13)
Christmas is a film season of big action and heavy emotion. This is an example of the latter, but all the more daring for its timely look at the recent decade-anniversary of the World Trade Center collapse. It recounts the relationships of father-mother-son and the quest for a child to unlock a greater understanding of a life forever changed.
What to watch for: Be confident of the strength and perspective you can bring to difficult situations and watch how you can help pull loved ones, and those in need of love, together.
We Bought A Zoo (12/25 – PG)
Lions, tigers, bears and Matt Damon, oh my! Based on the memoir of Benjamin Mee, the adapted story (repositioned from the English country to the wilderness of SoCal) tells of a struggling family’s acquisition of a real-life zoo.
What to watch for: Enjoy the adventure that presents itself even in the most challenging situations. Painful times, with the right perspective, can yield unexpected discoveries.