Movies are rated on the following scale, best to worst: Full Price, Matinee, Rental, TV, or Never.
1. Bad Kids Go to Hell [NSFW trailer]
It’s as simple as this: What if The Breakfast Club was a really snarky horror movie? No seriously; this film is specifically and unapologetically designed to riff off The Breakfast Club (and horror tropes), right down to casting Judd Nelson in a supporting role. Six stereotypical prep school teens are literally locked in library detention, unsupervised, when mysterious and murderous hilarity ensues. Bonus: Farscape’s Ben Browder tags along as the kindly custodian who knows more than he should. Probably funnier to us old farts who remember the John Hughes era than the young whippersnappers who only know the classics from Netflix streaming.
Release date: Dec. 7
Geekend rating: Rental
2. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey [trailer]
Yes, the studio is stretching Tolkien’s shortest and most ably paced work into three cash-grab movies. Yes, they changed the story to add extra subplots and characters. No, none of that matters. Peter Jackson is doing Middle Earth on the big screen again, Ian McKellen is still playing Gandalf, and Andy Serkis is still amazing everyone as Gollum. What more could you possibly want? There’s a reason no studio was crazy enough to release another sci-fi or fantasy tentpole for the entire month of December — it wouldn’t even get noticed. There is but one movie to rule them all, and it’s The Hobbit. See you there.
Release date: Dec. 14
Geekend rating: Full Price
3. Monster’s Inc. 3D [trailer]
Believe it or not, this movie is 11 years old, so most of its target demographic weren’t even alive when Sully and Mike originally hit the big screen. And just because your kid owns the movie (probably in multiple formats) doesn’t mean us parents can avoid taking them to see Boo in 3D. Just accept it.
Release date: Dec. 19
Geekend rating: Matinee
4. Django Unchained [trailer]
The guy who gave us Kill Bill and Inglourious Basterds is back to finally deliver his long-promised Blaxploitation homage — only it’s a western. Jamie Foxx plays Django, an American slave hired by a bounty hunter to help track down and kill plantation owner Leo DiCaprio in exchange for his freedom. Once upon a time Quentin Tarantino was one of the hottest, most innovative directors in Hollywood. Unfortunately, that time was 1994, and we’re a long way from Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs. Django looks (once again) to be all style and no substance — there aren’t even any memorable quotes in the trailer — which is fine for a lark, but probably not worth paying theater prices for.
Release date: Dec. 25
Geekend rating: Rental
Know of any films you think need adding to our holiday wish list, or just want to discuss which movies look naughty and nice? We’re checking the comments twice in our discussion area.