Mark your calendar: Movie Month

Posted Dec. 10, 2008, at 9:39 p.m.

If, somehow, you are capable of Christmas shopping, cooking, entertaining and gift wrapping on top of holding down a job, bathing, sleeping, going to school, breathing and whatever else you do in your life, then perhaps you might have time to squeeze in a movie some evening. After all, December is the time that movie studios roll out the big guns — the Oscar contenders, as well as the big, flashy blockbusters that didn’t make the cut for summer. Opening this weekend is “The Day the Earth Stood Still,” a (probably unnecessary) remake of the 1951 sci-fi classic, starring Jennifer Connelly and Keanu Reeves. Remember this phrase: Klaatu barada nikto. Also lined up for December releases are “Doubt,” an adaptation of the Tony-award winning play by John Patrick Shanley, starring Meryl Streep, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams; “Seven Pounds,” starring Will Smith as a man trying to come to terms with being the only survivor of a major car crash; “The Tale of Despereaux,” a CGI film directed by French animator Sylvain Chomet, best known for the utterly delightful “The Triplets of Belleville,” that tells the tale of the valiant, adventuring mouse Despereaux; “The Spirit,” an adaptation of the Frank Miller comic book of the same name, done in the style of the astoundingly awesome 2006 movie “Sin City”; “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” director David Fincher’s new film with Brad Pitt as a man who is born with the body of an 80-year-old and gradually grows younger; and “Valkyrie,” the Bryan Singer film starring Tom Cruise as a German officer with Hitler in his sights. And that, incidentally, just scratches the surface of all the films coming out this month. Come on, Hollywood! Don’t you know we’re already busy enough trying to keep the Christmas tree from falling down while staking out Best Buy for the last Wii?

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