Must-See Movies Coming Out This Holiday Season

When it comes to movies, summertime might be the season for so-called “blockbusters” – those popular, actiony flicks meant to drawn in huge audiences who just want a little entertainment. In contrast, winter typically sees the release of films that go on to earn critical acclaim and win awards. And sure enough, the upcoming roster of movies has some sure-to-be winners it in. Here are some of the films you’ll want to catch on the big screen this holiday season.

Rogue One

This is the one we’re all waiting for. “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” was released only a year ago, and it reignited a huge cultural interest in Star Wars once again. Wanting to capitalize on that interest, producers were quick to greenlight another Wars flick, this one set shortly before the original 1977 movie, leading into the events of Darth Vader and the Death Star. With an amazing roster of actors, exotic locales, and an original story, “Rogue One” is sure not to disappoint. At the least, it’ll tide fans over until “Episode VIII” next year.

Passengers

Where “Rogue One” will offer moviegoers a sci-fi epic, “Passengers” goes the other way. This space-based romantic film stars Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt–two of the most popular actors at the moment–and very few else. The plot follows the two, who find themselves accidentally awakened from a deep sleep on a spaceship, but nearly 100 years early. In the midst of falling for each other, they find that their journey might be in more trouble than they thought.

La La Land

Another romance film to watch out for, “La La Land” instead takes place in present-day Los Angeles. The story revolves around a jazz pianist, played by Ryan Gosling, who meets Emma Stone’s struggling actress. A musical, “La La Land” features an original soundtracks with one song by John Legend. The film, which has been screened for critics, has already gained massive critical acclaim, with critics noting that it’s a worthy follow-up to director Damien Chazelle’s previous, similarly acclaimed film, “Whiplash.”

Silence

Here’s the pitch for “Silence”: Legendary director Martin Scorsese finally gets to make the dream movie that he’s been working on since 1990. The film follows two 17th-century priests, played by Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver, who travel to Japan to find their mentor, played by Liam Neeson, who’s disappeared. Mixing historical fiction with high-tension thrills, expect this Scorcese outing to be more “Kundun” and “Gangs of New York” than “Goodfellas” or “Wolf of Wall Street.”

Live By Night

While Ben Affleck may have been a posterboy actor of the 1990s and 2000s, his later career has seen him rise to the level of critically-acclaimed director. Each of the films he’s directed has been lauded with praise, with his previous, “Argo” going to win multiple Oscars, including Best Picture. This time, Affleck directs himself (again) as a bootlegger gangster living in Tampa during the Prohibition Era. The big question is, will Affleck be able to keep his streak running? We’ll find out this holiday season.

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