Thanksgiving turkeys, tinsel, treats… and theatrical experiences for the whole family. That’s how we know it’s officially the holiday season at the multiplexes.
Hollywood plans to fill our cinematic table with delectable offerings in the coming weeks. The hardest part will be choosing which movie to see first – and how often you’ll go back to the ticket window for “seconds.”
We’ll help you narrow down the selections. These are the five can’t-miss family films expected to open in the next few weeks. Watch the trailers. Grab your tickets. And enjoy your holiday season at the movies!
Marvel continues its stand-alone superhero movies by following the Asgardian warrior Thor (Chris Hemsworth) back to his home realm after the attacks on New York City. Thor turns his half-brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), over to Asgard authorities… but soon has to deal with a new threat from Malekith the Accursed (Christopher Eccleston). From what we hear, Thor will pack teasers for both Captain America: The Winter Soldier AND Guardians of the Galaxy, so if you are a Marvel-happy family, you are going to want to be in theaters when this hammer drops.
The current Golden Age of Disney animation continues. Frozen revives the studio’s musical roots, wrapping a fantastic medley of memorable tunes around an adventurous story of a young girl (Kristen Bell) racing to end an endless winter that is being triggered by her sister, Elsa (Idina Menzel). Heroic action and trademark comic relief – this time provided by a talking snowman – ensure that Frozen will entertain Disney kids of all ages! If you loved Tangled, Wreck-It Ralph, The Lion King or Beauty and the Beast, Frozen is for you.
It’s not all fun and games at the box office this holiday. The Hunger Games return for a second chapter, with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) continuing her quest to expose the hypocrisy of the Capitol. Parents enjoyed journeying to the Districts of Panem in the original Hunger Games, and likely will relish a return trip with their teenaged kids when Catching Fire slings its arrows. Also, this sequel sets up the two-part Mockingjay adaptation, which will fill movie theaters for the next two years… so stay up to date with Katniss and her crew this season.
(Limited: December 13; Wide: December 20)
You won’t need a spoonful of sugar to help this biopic go down. Tom Hanks plays famed entertainer Walt Disney in a magical family drama about the behind-the-scenes efforts to bring Mary Poppins to the big screen. His problem? Poppins author P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) has no interest in creating a “Disney” version of her beloved character. Banks started screening for select critics, and early buzz says it’s “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.”
While Hollywood begins production on a fourth Jurassic Park movie, families await the opening of this 3D adventure, which promises to transport audiences back to a prehistoric era, when dinosaurs walked the Earth. There will be a story to follow – an underdog dino embarking on a mission that will make him a leader in his pack. But the selling point of Walking with Dinosaurs, and the reasons your intelligent children will want to see it on the big screen, is the ability of technology to immerse us in a moment we’ve never experienced quite like this. Bring your thirst for knowledge to theaters in December.
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