With the holiday season upon us, chances are you’re going to need to find something to do with the relatives headed to your house. You might be looking for an outing to connect with friends. Or you might just need to get away by yourself for a couple of hours to unwind.
Georgia’s booming film industry can help with all three. Here are a few locally produced movies to consider when looking for a group or solo trip to the cinema.
“Almost Christmas,” in theaters now. The movie stars Danny Glover as a lovable widower whose squabbling family collides under his roof at Christmas. Mo’Nique is hilarious as his outrageous sister-in-law while Kimberly Elise, Romany Malco, JB Smoove, Gabrielle Union, Omar Epps, Nicole Ari Parker, Keri Hilson, Jessie T. Usher and DC Young Fly play the rowdy pack of friends and relations who defy the very notion of peace on Earth. Hilson’s character becomes an inadvertent party crasher at the height of the dysfunction.
“If you feel bad about your family, if you think your family is crazy, wait until you see this one,” producer Will Packer said during an interview with several cast members. “If this family can survive, yours has a chance.”
“Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk,” in theaters now. Directed by triple Oscar winner Ang Lee and based on the novel by Ben Fountain, it features new talent and new technology. Joe Alwyn stars in the title role in his first feature film, which was shot at an ultra-high frame rate for an immersive feel.
“It all came about so quickly I didn’t really have time to figure out what was happening, ” Alwyn said during an interview. “I didn’t have time to get nervous. When we started shooting it, it kind of became clear. To have a chance at such a prominent role, it’s amazing.”
“The Accountant” and “Boo! A Madea Halloween,” released in October. You may be able to find these still rolling, perhaps at discount cinemas, this holiday season. In the former, Ben Affleck stars as a math genius whose skills put him at the center of all sorts of drama. In the latter, Tyler Perry stars as Madea.
Office Christmas Party, out Dec. 9. There’s a reindeer drinking from a toilet, some drunk lady passed out cheeks down on a copier machine and a guy taking a bathroom break in an outdoor planter. God bless us, every one!
The movie, starring Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman, Kate McKinnon, TJ Miller, Olivia Munn and Courtney B. Vance, is a madcap comedy about the power of partying. Specifically: “When the CEO tries to close her hard-partying brother’s branch, he and his chief technical officer must rally their co-workers and host an epic office Christmas party in an effort to impress a potential client and close a sale that will save their jobs.”
“Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love,” launching Nov. 30 on NBC. Here’s a small-screen option if you feel like staying in.
“Coat of Many Colors,” inspired by Dolly Parton’s iconic autobiographical song, was a ratings hit with viewers last year. The song shares the true story of how her mother stitched a coat from scraps of fabric when Dolly was a child; the family couldn’t afford store-bought finery. Although other kids made fun of her homemade garment, Dolly cherished the priceless gift and eventually penned the moving song about it.
In the sequel, the Parton family’s struggles and triumphs continue. The film stars Ricky Schroder and Jennifer Nettles as Dolly’s parents, Alyvia Alyn Lind as young Dolly and - shown below - local actor Dylan Michael Rowen, 14, as Dolly’s brother, Denver Parton.
“I am so happy to share this story with the viewers and to say there is so much more to tell, because mine truly has been a life of many colors,” Parton said in a statement. “I hope the viewers will fall in love all over again.”