Winter Movie Preview: February 2016

The February boneyard looks above average this year, thanks largely to the Coen Brothers, an R-rated superhero, The Witch, and Eddie the Eagle, which has “sleeper hit” written all over it.

February 5

The Choice

Yet another Nicholas Sparks “white people with fake problems” movie.

Hail, Caesar!

I cannot believe a Coen Brothers movie is being released in FEBRUARY, but I suppose this is the price being paid for the financially disappointing Inside Llewyn Davis (because in every other regard, that movie is fucking great). Hail, Caesar! looks incredible.

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Once upon a time, this was supposed to star Natalie Portman. Now it stars Cinderella and Dr. Who and that guy who was Angelina Jolie’s bird-slave in Maleficent. Looks stupid as fuck, but that perspective shot from the zombie POV is kind of cool.

Regression

Oh yeeaaaahhhhh. I totally forgot about this movie. Which is probably why it’s coming out in February with no fanfare and limited release.

Limited

February 12

Deadpool

Ryan Reynolds spent years lobbying to get this movie made, and now he’s spent years—or at least, it feels like years—imploring us to go see it. Bless his heart, I hope this works out for him.

How to be Single

Obligatory Valentine’s Day rom-com, except I kind of dig this trailer. Maybe this is all the best stuff from the movie, but Rebel Wilson usually can make me laugh, and though Fifty Shades of Grey did its best to make Dakota Johnson seem as limp and unappealing as possible, she was adorable on the short-lived Fox comedy Ben & Kate. She could be a good-to-great 21st century rom-com star.

Touched with Fire

AKA, Mentally Ill People In Love. AKA, Silver Linings Playbook 2.

Limited

Zoolander 2

Another one that took years to get off the ground and seemingly just as long devoted to marketing. I hated Zoolander the first time I saw it, but it grew on me over time. I hope I like Zoolander 2 right out of the gate, because the trailers are really doing it for me.

February 19

Race

I can’t believe we’re just now getting a Jesse Owens biopic. WAY overdue.

Risen

I wish they’d spend a little more time and money on these faith-based films, because the premise of Risen is solid—a Roman soldier has to investigate the disappearance of Jesus’ body from his tomb. But these movies get tossed off so fast, and for so cheap, that they’re basically knee-capped from the beginning. There’s an audience for these movies, and I wish they got a better end product in general. Hopefully, Risen will be an exception, because really, that premise is kinda great.

The Witch

One of the best movies I saw at TIFF last year. It deserves better than a February release, but I can also see where this is a tough sell. The Witch is a horror movie set in the seventeenth century about colonial Americans and it uses era-appropriate dialogue, so it’s not the most obvious crowd pleaser. But it’s really, REALLY good, and you should all see it.

February 26

Eddie the Eagle

This got rave reviews at twenty-four hour film fest/endurance test Butt-Numb-A-Thon late last year, and played well again at Sundance last month. It looks pretty incredible, and Taron Egerton is making a case for being more than just the next action hero for the comic book machine to grind up. I also always enjoy non-Wolverine Hugh Jackman. I love Wolverine, too, but it’s easy to forget Jackman can do so much more than growl.

Gods of Egypt

This movie looks fucking awful and no one has figured out what to do with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau outside of Game of Thrones, but at least there’s Chadwick Boseman.

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