2018 Holiday Movie Pool - Preview | Aquaman | Bohemian Rhapsody | Bumblebee

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2018 Holiday Movie Pool - Preview

Bohemian Rhapsody
Creed II
Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Holmes & Watson
Instant Family
Mary Poppins Returns
Mortal Engines
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Robin Hood
Second Act
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
The Girl in the Spider’s Web
The Mule
The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
Welcome to Marwen

The Party City costumes have been picked over, the lawn sprinkler restrictions are back on, and, just like last year, after tonight’s Dodgers game I’m looking for some eggnog to spike, so it's time for the 22th Annual Holiday Movie Pool!

We've only got this week to get our picks in, so don't delay and tell me which films are going on the Nice List and which will have a coal in their stocking.

Will Mary Poppins Returns have a jolly holiday with Mary? Can The Grinch deliver Seussian charms or is it more like green Minions? Will kids get off their tablets enough to notice Ralph Wrecking the Internet? Can Aquaman float on his own or is he like that rubberband lobster at the front of the restaurant just waiting for someone to put him out of his misery?

Make your predictions, cast your votes, and take a dip in the 2018 Holiday Movie Pool! It's the pool where all you have to do is guess the Top Five domestic money makers of the season. It's not like we're asking you to do anything hard like compliment your aunt’s Jell-O celery dessert on Thanksgiving.


November 2

- Bohemian Rhapsody
It’s not often a movie pool starts off with a historical drama. It’s also not often that a historical drama promises to Rock You, Clap, Boom Boom, Clap. While I doubt this movie gets into the important stuff Queen did like scoring the music to the legendary Flash Gordon movie in the 80’s, it is remarkable how this band has stayed so relevant and connected with people through the years. It’s also interesting to wonder if it wasn’t for Wayne’s World introducing the 90’s kids to Bohemian Rhapsody, would that song still be a thing today?

- The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
Remember that famous story people used to tell all the time about a nutcracker? Yeah, neither does anyone else. I have no idea how much of this is Disney Imagineering and how much of this was actually in whatever story they based The Nutcracker ballet, but this definitely feels like a “If we make it, they will come” type of movie by the Mouse House. Sometimes that works (the first Pirates of the Caribbean) and other times it’s John Carter.

November 9

- Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch
The good news is no one is going to say: “No, please, don’t ruin my memories of that great Jim Carrey Grinch movie!” That said, 2000’s live-action Grinch movie topped the Holiday Movie Pool that year despite no one really liking it. Still, any attempt at How The Grinch Who Stole Christmas is always going to be comparing a beloved story you can read in five minutes to a bloated 90-minute kids movie. That’s a lot of bloating!

- The Girl in the Spider’s Web
It’s really odd how Sony scrapped doing further Lisbeth Salander movies after the tepid returns of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo in 2010 and are now making a Lisbeth Salander movie that most people don’t even know is a Lisbeth Salander movie. If fans of the first book didn’t come to the movie they’d already read, will they come to the movie that they didn’t read?

- Overlord
I didn’t necessarily agree when one of my kids said Edge of Tomorrow looked like a video game. However, when I saw the trailer for Overlord, now THIS looks like a video game! I can’t believe it’s not branded as Castle Wolfenstein or some other video game title that’s done this kind of plot a hundred times. Maybe there’s no copyright on WWII soldiers stumbling onto crazy Nazi experiments in a creepy castle because, you know, that happened all the time.

November 16

- Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
The Harry Potter spin-off series spun it’s way to some success in 2016 and is back for more in 2018. Me talking about this would be like my wife talking about Lord of the RIngs, so I’ll just stay the muggle I am and do what I normally do when I see actors with British accents: wonder which of these could be the next James Bond.

- Instant Family
Mark Wahlberg loved making family comedies like Daddy’s Home so much with Will Ferrell that he decided to do one without him. I’m not sure this is ok. Would Laurel leave Hardy? Would Tom leave Jerry? Would Mac leave Cheese? I’m starting to think something smells rotten in this funky bunch.

- Widows
When Annie Lennox and Aretha Franklin sang Sisters are Doing it for Themselves, I’m not sure robbing the mob and making off with millions is what they had in mind, but maybe that was the 4th verse on the 12-inch single. Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez and other Girl Powers stars come together in this female crime story about taking back yours before yours gets taken.

November 21

- Creed II
The Rocky redeux series came out swinging three years ago with Michael B. Jordan as Apollo Creed’s son being trained by original Rocky, Sylvester Stallone. Now Michael B. is fighting the son of Ivan Drago, the boxer who killed his fictitious dad in 1987’s Rocky IV. They even brought Dolph Lundgren back to play Ivan himself! This is all nonsense, completely ridiculous, and I couldn’t be more excited. Can they cast Chadwick Boseman as the son of James Brown to sing “Living in America?”

- Ralph Breaks the Internet
Five years ago Wreck-It Ralph took a fun look at video game life. Now he’s stepping-up his game and poking his noggin into the everyday life of the internet. I don’t think he’ll find anything of interest. I’ve been online for years and I still keep searching for something to do.

- Robin Hood
Whereas Disney is trying to create a story where no one knew one existed with The Nutcracker, I’m always at a loss at why every five years someone tries to make a Robin Hood movie or TV show. I get how it’s in the public domain, but outside of Errol Flynn and Kevin Costner, no one’s had a hit movie with this idea in 80 years.

December 14

- Mortal Engines
Peter Jackson sure loves books as now he’s taking another visionary book series and bringing it to life on the big screen. In the post-apocalyptic future, cities exist on moving wheels roaming around the land. It’s like The Road Warrior but with cities instead of cars. It certainly “looks” amazing, but can they convince moviegoers to take a ride?

- Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Sony Animation brings us the first animated Spider-Man movie and they use the freedom to go full whack-a-doodle. Connecting different Spider-Man timelines and Spider-Man universes, this has multiple different Spider-”Men” working together to save the day and put things right. Sounds like a sticky situation to me.

- The Mule
Clint Eastwood directs himself in the true story of a 90 year-old drug mule. You know, amongst all those pranks in those Grumpy Old Men movies, I always said, “But when is he going to frame the other one as being a mule for a drug cartel!” Always saw that as a missed opportunity, so I’m glad to see Clint taking advantage of the situation.

December 18

- Mary Poppins Returns
Emily Blunt started the year in A Quiet Place and ends it in a musical! Over 50 years since the original classic, Disney is Mr. Banksing on making another classic. I really do hope it’s supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Unfortunately, I remember when they tried to Return to Oz in 1985 and no one went off to see the wizard for that one.

December 21

- Aquaman
After last year’s mostly confusing Justice League, I really hope the DC Universe has a whale of a tale here. Jason Momoa returns as the king of the sea and hopes to rewrite the narrative of Aquaman being one of the lamest superheroes… because talking to fish is really helpful when stopping bank robbers in Des Moines.

- Bumblebee
The Transformers have found a way to do something the WWE never could… turn John Cena into a bad guy! This origin story of Bumblebee feels like the ol’ “kid who finds a robot and hijinks ensue” storyline that the cartoon series was back in the 80’s. Does that mean anyone will want to see it or will it “transform” the Transformers movies away from slo-mo and explosions and toward storytelling?

- Second Act
Jennifer Lopez is in a movie. That’s all I’ve got.

- Welcome to Marwen
Director Richard Zemeckis looks to get back to his whimsical storytelling ways. Here he casts Steve Carell as a broken man who creates a fictitious town with his hands and his imagination helps his rehabilitation. This could go the way of Forrest Gump and Castaway or it could be too high-concept for people to care.

December 25

- Holmes & Watson
Will Ferrell dumps usual Holiday Movie Pool partner Mark Wahlberg for his other main hombre, John C. Reilly. Instead of being Step Brothers this time, they’re the most famous literary detective duo of all time: Encyclopedia Brown and Nancy Drew! Ok, maybe it’s more like Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, but I doubt even they could foil Bugs Meany!

- Vice
Adam McKay follows-up his all-star cast endeavor of The Big Short with this all-star cast endeavor about former Vice-President Dick Cheney. Christian Bale in the title role, Amy Adams as his wife, Steve Carell as Donald Rumsfeld, and Sam Rockwell himself as George W. Bush. A cast like that definitely gets my vote.

by Matt Neuenburg on 10/28/2018

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Aquaman, Bohemian Rhapsody, Bumblebee, Creed II, Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Holmes & Watson, Instant Family, Mary Poppins Returns, Mortal Engines, Overlord, Ralph Breaks the Internet, Robin Hood, Second Act, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, The Girl in the Spider’s Web, The Mule, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, Vice, Welcome to Marwen, Widows
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