The 2020 Film Release Calendar: December

This has been perhaps the strangest Release Calendar I’ve ever done. Because the Oscars were held a few weeks earlier than they usually are, I wasn’t able to fit in the majority of the calendar before them. Usually I get the whole thing done by late January. And now, we’re post-Oscars, and I’m only on March. And the only reason January and February got done is because I wanted to get them up before some of the films actually came out.

But, here we are, working our way through the rest of the calendar for all the films to look forward to. I think you all know how this works — I’m gonna preview everything that’s set to come out (and a lot more that isn’t), and then guess what I think I’m gonna rate them all when I do manage to see them. And then we’ll use this as evidence of my ineptitude come the December wrap-up articles. These are my own twenty-seven 8×10 colored glossy pictures with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one.

Anyway, here’s December:

December

Samaritan

A young boy learns that a superhero who was thought to have gone missing after an epic battle twenty years ago may in fact still be around.

This hasn’t started shooting yet. There’s a long line of December movies like this that never come out.

But we’ll preview it just in case. It sounds interesting. Stallone is apparently the superhero. But I assume this is CGI heavy in some way… I don’t see how this comes out.

The director did Overlord, of all things.

3.5 stars, I guess. I have NO CLUE what to make of this. It’s MGM, too. Which leads me to believe that if this does start shooting soon, they’ll bump it into 2021.

Coming 2 America

Akeem learns he has a long-lost son in the United States and must return to America to meet the unlikely heir to the throne of Zamunda.

So it’s Akeem’s son. But does that mean Lisa never became the queen? Because I’m pretty sure he wasn’t fucking. So I’m guessing they made it that she didn’t want to be queen and left shortly after the events of the other movie? I have no clue.

But more importantly — it’s a Coming to America sequel! I have no idea what to make of this, but Eddie Murphy seems to be very happy about it, otherwise he wouldn’t have made it, and Craig Brewer directs, coming off Dolemite with Eddie. So I gotta assume they know what they’re doing to at least make it worthwhile.

3.5 stars. Not going higher than that on the guess, but boy, would I like the actual rating to go higher than this. I could use a great Coming to America sequel. Though I do hope they don’t go all out just referencing the first on in unnecessary ways. But we’ll see. Maybe they’ve got a few tricks up their sleeve.

Dune

Feature adaptation of Frank Herbert’s science fiction novel, about the son of a noble family entrusted with the protection of the most valuable asset and most vital element in the galaxy.

I’ve been torn about this since they announced it. Because it’s Denis Villeneuve. Who — Prisoners, Sicario, Arrival, Blade Runner. Amazing run of films. But also… Dune.

I know people love that novel. So maybe they’re gonna make a proper adaptation of it. Top notch writers on it, amazing cast — Timothee Chalamet, Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Jason Momoa, Zendaya, Bautista, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgard, Charlotte Rampling, Javier Bardem. And, like I said, it’s Villeneuve. He makes things that sound so-so great.

4 stars. I can’t assume 4.5, but I can assume 4 with Denis. I think he’ll make it really worthwhile.

Though — is this two movies? I remember hearing it was two. But then maybe it’ll just be one giant three hour movie? What are we getting with this? Do they even know yet?

West Side Story

It’s Steven Spielberg doing West Side Story. That’s really all you need to know.

4.5 stars. I mean, he better make this great, or else a lot of people are gonna be mad at him. He’s also made a few good movies in his day, so let’s just assume he knows what he’s doing.

Tom and Jerry

Adaption of the classic Hanna-Barbera property, which reveals how Tom and Jerry first meet and form their rivalry.

A fucking origin story? Really?

2.5 stars.

I already know what the animation style is gonna look like, and I already don’t care. Double worse that it looks like it’s gonna be hybrid too. All kinds of ‘NOPE!’ here.

The Croods 2

The prehistoric family the Croods are challenged by a rival family the Bettermans, who claim to be better and more evolved.

Why?

Why did we need a sequel to a movie that was just whatever?

2.5 stars. Do not care, do not care.

But Nicolas Cage is in this, so that’s cool.

News of the World

A Texan traveling across the wild West bringing the news of the world to local townspeople, agrees to help rescue a young girl who was kidnapped.

Tom Hanks and Paul Greengrass reunite after Captain Phillips. And it’s a WESTERN.

4.5 stars. I know I’m overdoing it, but IT’S A WESTERN. WITH TOM HANKS.

I’m so fucking in on this. Bring it on.

The Tomorrow War

A man is drafted to fight in a future war where the fate of humanity relies on his ability to confront his past.

Chris Pratt action movie. The director did the Lego Batman movie, and the writer’s done nothing of note.

Hard to see this as anything other than 3 stars. It looks like the bloated studio action movie that comes out around Christmas and just bombs terribly. Maybe it’ll be good, who knows. But that seems like what it’s fixing to be. They’re literally bringing soldiers from the pat to fight a futuristic war. It seems so generic and a 3.5 star movie at best.

The Last Duel

King Charles VI declares that Knight Jean de Carrouges settle his dispute with his squire by challenging him to a duel.

It’s Ridley Scott directing Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, based on a script by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck. And Nicole Holofcener. Oh, and Jodie Comer and Adam Driver are also in this.

4 stars. Automatic. That’s easy. Could even be 4.5. Sounds great, and I’m in.

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