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article imageOp-Ed: 10 movies to see before 2013 ends

By Michael Thomas     Oct 11, 2013 in Entertainment
With less than three months to go before 2013 comes to an end, Hollywood has plenty of movies up its sleeve before 2014 rears its head. Here are a few suggestions of blockbusters and Oscar bait to see leading into the holidays.
Captain Phillips (October 11)
There is already a big buzz generating for this movie, with critics praising direction and cinematography, as well as the lead performances from Tom Hanks and Barkhad Abdi. The film follows Captain Richard Phillips, who was taken hostage by Somali Pirates in 2009. Expect a lot of tension, as evidenced by this recent trailer.
12 Years a Slave (October 18)
This historical drama is based on the 1853 autobiography of Solomon Northrup, a freed slave. Besides boasting an all-star lineup including Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch and Brad Pitt, the film was also won the TIFF People's Choice Award during this year's festivity. Apparently the film was initially supposed to release in December of this year, but "exuberant test screenings" prompted the studio to move up the date.
Ender's Game (October 25)
Orson Scott Card's best-selling, absorbing novel has finally turned into a blockbuster. The story about children recruited to fight off an alien menace has reverberated with readers for over two-and-a-half decades, and the grand scale of the book should translate well to the big screen. The film will star Asa Butterfield as the protagonist Ender Wiggins, with supporting roles by Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley and Viola Davis.
Last Vegas (November 1)
Perhaps taking a page from the Red idea that old people can be compelling when together on screen, this comedy features a group of old men getting together in Las Vegas for a bachelor party. As one might expect, their age makes them outsiders, and the journey through the city that never sleeps probably won't do well for their pacemakers. The film features Morgan Freeman, Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas and Kevin Kline.
Thor: The Dark World (November 8)
The Marvel movie release train will never cease to slow, this time expanding the story of formerly exiled Norse god Thor (Chris Hemsworth). The original Thor succeeded in bringing the high-fantasy story into the 21st century by having the god exiled from his home of Asgard to Earth, grounding the spectacular fighter and forcing him to adapt to unfamiliar territory. This sequel looks to take place largely in Asgard, and seems to hint that Thor will be forced to team up with his often-treacherous brother Loki, who nearly brought about the end of the world in The Avengers.
Frozen (November 27)
Pixar has had a rough go with critics lately, despite its movies generally earning their keep. This new film, based in a snow-covered world and drawing from Hans Christian Anderson's "The Snow Queen" may be the one to get Pixar's reputation back on track. The frozen, snow-covered landscapes should be a visual treat, and it may invoke some of the warmth that Disney's classic 2D animated films still bring out today. Voices include Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel.
Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom (November 29)
Another biopic based on an autobiography, this time by South Africa's most influential leader ever. Mandela's life is long and storied, and this film is especially relevant given his long stint in the hospital early this year. Idris Elba stars as the anti-Apartheid activist, and Naomie Harris plays the role of Winnie, Mandela's wife.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (December 13)
This one probably needs little introduction. It's the second in Peter Jackson's three-move trilogy depicting the story of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. This chapter will pay special attention to the dragon Smaug (voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch, who also voices the Necromancer), and the battle Frodo's (Martin Freeman) company does with it. Expect lots of battles and a whole lot of mythical creatures.
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (December 20)
Just in time for Christmas comes the continuing saga of Will Ferrell's arguably most popular character ever, the smooth TV anchorman, Ron Burgundy. In the new movie, the Channel 4 news team disbands, but gets back together when a 24-hour news channel is in the works. Besides a slew of funny people in the main cast, including Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, Kristen Wiig and Vince Vaughn, the film will also feature cameos from Green Day, Drake, Sacha Baron Cohen, Will Smith, Tina Fey and many more. We can only hope that this sequel will "stay classy."
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (December 25)
From early reviews, it looks like this film will be one you'll either love or hate. It's the second film adaptation of James Thurber's 1939 story, directed by and starring Ben Stiller. The movie revolves around the titular character, a man who constructs a fantasy world around himself to replace the tedium of everyday life. Mitty in the film works for Life magazine and embarks on a quest to find a missing picture that will complete the magazine's final issue.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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