Ah the joy of being a swing state. Almost non-stop political ads on every channel. Robocalls. Volunteers knocking on your door soliciting a vote for their candidate. Pollsters asking who you’re voting for. Except for those of us who are political junkies, it can get pretty overwhelming, or even painful, as our favorite TV shows are interrupted with ad after political ad, or even superseded by debates and thoughtful analysis. Yeah, sometimes you just have to escape – no matter who you are.
Take a Break from Politics with a Movie:
Families looking for a breather from politics can take the weekend before the election to enjoy Disney’s new animated film, Wreck-It Ralph. Ralph is a muscle bound bad guy from a video game (circa Mario Brothers, Sonic the Hedgehog, Donkey Kong) who wants to become a hero in a new, slick modern video game. Last year, Disney released Tron, the story of a human trapped in a video game, so it’s only fitting that this year we come full circle with a character from a video game trying to escape, but fortunately not into the human world. Ralph is voiced by John C. Reilly whose instantly recognizable voice is a perfect match for the big, bumbling, lovable bunch of pixels. Fans of 30 Rock will also recognize the voice of Jack McBrayer (Kenneth) who plays the video game hero builder, Fix-It Felix.
For a little more serious fare that same weekend, Denzel Washington stars as a pilot whose heroics save an airliner from doom in, Flight. However, an investigation into the near disaster reveals Washington as a flawed man with many issues. Directed by Robert Zemeckis, whose previous films included Back to the Future and Castaway, Flight will keep moviegoers thinking. Finally, Russell Crowe joins Jamie Chung, Lucy Liu, RZA and Pam Grier in The Man with the Iron Fists, an action movie set in feudal China.
No matter who wins on November 6, we’ll have a Republican in the White House just a few days later – Abraham Lincoln. Daniel Day-Lewis portrays the doomed 16th president in Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. The film focuses on the final few months of Lincoln’s life and his fight to abolish slavery. After early screenings, the Oscar buzz has already started for best picture, best director, best actor and Tommy Lee Jones for best supporting actor.
The Return of Franchise Favorites
Looking for fantasy of a different kind during the pre-holiday weekend? Check out Rise of the Guardians where Santa Claus, Jack Frost, the Easter Bunny and other legendary characters help save the innocence of children’s dreams. Or, transport back to 19th century Russia for Anna Karenina starring Keira Knightley and Jude Law.
Celebrate Thanksgiving with a tiger! Ang Lee brings the literary best seller, Life of Pi to life in glorious 3D. The story of Pi, an Indian boy, and a Bengal tiger adrift in a lifeboat after a ship carrying zoo animals, sinks in the Pacific, will be on the lists of many Academy voters and critics when it’s time for the year-end awards and nominations.
In Silver Linings Playbook, Bradley Cooper steps out of his Hangover to portray a teacher who moves back into his parents’ house after a stay in a mental hospital. Jennifer Lawrence stars as the ex-wife Cooper tries to reconcile with.
Looking ahead to next month, December begins with Bill Murray portraying FDR in Hyde Park on the Hudson and continues with Peter Jackson’s highly anticipated return to Middle Earth in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Judd Apatow is back with a sort-of sequel to Knocked Up called This Is 40. Tom Cruise returns in Jack Reacher and even Sulley and Mike are back, this time in 3D, in Monsters, Inc.. The year ends with Quentin Tarantino’s high powered Django Unchained; Seth Rogan and Barbara Streisand driving cross-country in Guilt Trip and Billy Crystal and Bette Midler as grandparents taking care of three kids in the comedy Parental Guidance.
No matter who you choose to vote for, be sure to vote for seeing movies on the big screen at a movie theatre. When the lights go down, it doesn’t matter which party you support. Do your part for bipartisanism and go to the movies.
Release dates subject to change. Check theatre listings for more information.
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