Give Hollywood Your Money$!$!

Dan Huycke, Sentry Staff Reporter

’Round the corner came December, a month of holly jolly joy, eggnog, worsening weather and last but not least, great Oscar vying film releases. The last two or three months of the Gregorian year, and bleeding into the first two of the new one, have consistently held promise for mind blowing and intellectually titillating cinema. The following is a breakdown of this holiday season’s must-see films.

  1. Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance– In this writer’s humble opinion, Birdman, starring Michael Keaton and Zach Galifinakis, is one of the most incredible feats in filmmaking history. Composed of a seemingly seamless single two-hour long shot, beautiful dream sequences and a story-within-a-story dynamic, Birdman is a truly worthwhile film and an Oscar-worthy performance by both the actors and director Alejandro Inarritu. It is worth every penny of legal American tender (which is saying a lot considering the cost of going to the theater and bloated inflation rates). In theaters now. Rated R.
  2. Interstellar– Christopher Nolan’s latest endeavor starring True Detective‘s Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway delves ultra-deep into the visually stunning genre of contemporary space science fiction. Its modern contemporary, last year’s Gravity, took audiences on a wild and nearly nauseating ride into the intense scenario of free fall just out of Earth’s gravitational pull. Interstellar broadens those horizons of the ultimate frontier by incorporating an apocalyptic twist: considering Earth’s lifespan can finally be estimated and it seems the end is in the not so distant future. An excellent film for the thrill-seekers and adrenaline junkies, indeed. In theaters now. Rated PG-13
  3. St. Vincent– Bill Murray, once a Saturday Night Live comedian, has had his career take off in incredible ways. This year’s comedy St. Vincent blows many of his past acting endeavors out of the water. A grumpy Nam vet takes an intelligent but shrimpy and often-bullied new kid under his wing while his single mother works eighteen-hour shifts at the local hospital. This hilarious, heartbreaking and heartwarming film is a gem in Murray’s nearly spotless career (Garfield). In theaters now. Rated PG-13
  4. Inherent Vice– P.T. Anderson’s most recent behemoth film is based on Thomas Pynchant’s novel of the same name. Joaquin Phoenix plays a hazy-eyed private investigator whose ex-girlfriend comes to him with a story about her billionaire land-developer boyfriend and his wife and her boyfriend and a plot to lock the billionaire boyfriend in the loony bin. Anderson has employed the help of Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Benecio Del Toro and so many more big name actors in what seems to be an entertaining bit of cinematic fun. Anderson’s past films have had darkly comic undertones and motifs, but he has been quoted in saying that the highly acclaimed Airplane was his inspiration for the film. In theaters January 9. Rated R.
  5. American SniperFrom the heavy boozing and shenanigans in Vegas to the perm-wearing undercover scene in American Hustle, here comes Bradley Cooper, America’s heartthrob, in Clint Eastwood’s latest hurrah, American Sniper. This is the story of a Navy SEAL with more than one hundred and fifty confirmed kills, according to the Internet Movie Database synopsis. If you’re looking for a war drama and a heart wrenching, gut-churning moral dilemma, this may be the movie to enjoy on Christmas Day. In theaters December 25. Rated R.