The 2021 Film Release Calendar: December

It’s been such a protracted year, but finally we’re ready to finish the Release Calendar (and finally I can actually start watching stuff from this year in earnest.

By now, the calendar’s starting to get more filled out than it usually is when I start going over everything and we’re starting to get a sense that maybe, just maybe, by the latter half of the year movie theaters will be open and operating again at a level relatively near to what we’re used to.

So, in the hopes of that happening, let’s go over all the stuff that’s fixing to come out.

Here’s December:

December

Nightmare Alley

An ambitious carny with a talent for manipulating people with a few well-chosen words hooks up with a female psychiatrist who is even more dangerous than he is.

It’s Guillermo Del Toro, which means 4 stars automatically. I’m thrilled to see what he does here. I almost went 4.5 here, I love Guillermo so much. But let’s stay 4 and let’s just let the film be as great as I think it can be.

West Side Story

An adaptation of the 1957 musical, West Side Story explores forbidden love and the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds.

Totally unnecessary, yes. But you gotta trust Spielberg. He wanted to do this. So let’s figure the guy who’s made so many great films can make another one, even though the 1961 version still holds up as one of the greatest films ever made.

4.5 stars. Has to be. I need this to actively justify its own existence. Otherwise this was a futile exercise.

Spider-Man: No Way Home

A continuation of Spider-Man Far From Home.

These Spider-Man films have been a lot of fun. Homecoming was great and Far from Home was solid. I think they’re doing a Spider-Verse thing, so I’m gonna break my usual Marvel rule and say 4 stars for this. Because you know what? I think this has a shot at being one of the exemplary ones if they do it right. Worst case? 3.5 stars, usual Marvel rating and oh well. But let’s hope they can rise above the formula for a change.

Sing 2

Buster Moon and his friends must persuade reclusive rock star Clay Calloway to join them for the opening of a new show.

I mean, sure?

2.5 stars. Didn’t particularly care for the first one, so let’s just say I won’t care about this one and best case it’ll go 3 and I’ll go, “Yeah, that was okay.”

The Nightingale

The lives of two sisters living in France are torn apart at the onset of World War II.

Stars both Fanning sisters and is directed by Melanie Laurent. I’m excited for this.

4 stars.

The Matrix 4

It’s another Matrix movie. The first one is a masterpiece, the second two are not as good but still fun movies. Now, 18 years later, we’re back. Will Lana Wachowski tell a story worth telling? Who knows. Will I be excited to see what they do with this? Absolutely.

4 stars. They’ve earned the benefit of the doubt with these films. Even if it sucks I imagine I’ll still end up going 3.5 minimum here. But I feel like they’ll do right by this story. They didn’t need to do this. So let’s assume they have a plan and that plan will, at the very least, largely pay off.

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