Winter movies preview

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By Erin Tobin

By Erin Tobin

The winter season is a time for gift giving, family gathering and a time off from school. Luckily, those who make movie have created a plethora of films to help spend all that free time and holiday cash.

Unfortunately, many of them are a waste of time. Does the public really need to see a movie version of “Fat Albert” or watch a stereotypical horror flick that can’t come up with a better title than “The Boogeyman?”

Don’t worry, there’s still a few redeeming films this season and there is actually a nice variety. Sports fans can look forward to the debut of “Coach Carter” on Jan. 14 and those looking for a nice comedy will be delighted with “Meet the Fockers” on Dec. 25 or Adam Sandler’s newest romantic comedy-drama “Spanglish” on Dec. 17. Fans of planes can catch “The Aviator” on Dec. 17 as well and then return to their nearest film house for “Flight of the Phoenix” on Dec. 22.

Those willing to search a bit will delight on Jan. 28 with James Cameron’s newest documentary “Aliens of the Deep” will takes a look at life way under the sea. Also having a limited release is Kevin Bacon’s drama “The Woodsman” which offers a look at a convicted pedophile attempt to rebuild his life after he was released from prison.

Then there’s “Assault on Precinct 13,” a run of the mill action film that will go big at the theater on Jan. 21.

If these films exactly what you were wishing for this holiday season, here’s a few more in-depth looks at the a few best, and worst, movies to be expected.

Elektra – Jan. 14

Jennifer Garner will prove that sometimes it takes a woman to complete a (super) man’s job when “Elektra” opens on Jan 14.

The “Alias” star will take a stab at playing the title character in the spin-off from last year’s Ben Affleck comic book flick “Daredevil.” The creators of “X-Men” and the director of “X-Files” have put together a strong story where Garner will play Elektra Natchios who, after dying in “Daredevil” is brought back to life by a group of ninjas and trained to be an assassin.

Things don’t exactly go as planned when Natchios meets her next target, but since it’s Goran Visnjic from “E.R.” who can blame her.

Amazing special effects and a possible lack of stilettos will put “Elektra” above most other female superhero movies.

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou – Dec. 25

A big film deserves a big title and with its amazing cast “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” promises to not fall short when it hits theaters on Dec 25.

Bill Murray, still flying high from the success of “Lost in Translation,” takes us out on the big blue ocean as Steve Zissou, an oceanographer bent on finding the shark that killed his partner. Along the way Zissou picks up a man who may, or may not, be his son (Owen Wilson.)

This movie proves to be much like director Wes Anderson other quirky hit “The Royal Tenenbaums,” as a smart comedy for an older family.

The Phantom of the Opera – Dec. 25

Lurking down in the vaults of many a Hollywood studio are the countless renditions and spoofs of Gaston Leroux’s classic “The Phantom of Opera.”

Now yet another will reveal its ugly face on Dec 24 (though the rumor mill is saying this face isn’t ugly enough.) While fellow musicals “Moulin Rouge” and “Chicago” were hits, Joel Schumacher’s version of the Andrew Lloyd Webber hit will most likely alienate both musical lovers and the average viewer there to catch a glimpse of Gerard Butler (playing Mr. Phantom) or Minnie Driver who is sure to steal the show as the diva antagonist Carlotta.

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