Eenie Meenie Miney Movies: November 2011


The Muppets

It's official: the holidays are here, and that means time spent with the kids. It's good to have some entertainment in your pocket -- especially if you can con a grandparent or other visiting relative into taking your urchins to the cineplex for you.

Notable Theatrical Releases

Happy Feet Two (November 18, rated PG) -- Remember when a film other than Pixar's latest release won the Best Animated Film Oscar? No? Well, it was 2006 and that film was Happy Feet, up against Pixar's Cars and Monster House. We saw the sequel to Cars this past summer and sure enough, here comes Happy Feet Two to make sure our holiday quota of dancing (and flying?) penguins is filled.

Arthur Christmas (November 23, rated PG) -- Most of my excitement about Arthur Christmas has to do with its cast: James McAvoy, Hugh Laurie, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton. And then there's the fact that it's an Aardman Animation film. Oh hey, the guy who co-wrote Bruno and Borat helped to write this? I usually try to keep my expectations low on Christmas movies, but now (with the help of the trailer below) they're way, way up.

Hugo (November 23, rated PG) -- Speaking of Borat and Bruno(and high expectations), Sascha Baron Cohen is one of the familiar faces you'll see in Hugo, a live-action fantasy directed by Martin Scorsese and adapted by John Logan (who also wrote Rango, one of this year's most surprising animated films). I suppose now we're going to find out what happens when a director like Scorsese takes on the current incarnation of 3D technology, but I think I'm still going to seek out a 2D screening.

The Muppets (November 23, rated PG) -- OK, now we're cooking with gas. Rounding out the crowded Thanksgiving weekend releases is one of the most highly anticipated family film comebacks I can remember. The Muppets (missing from cinemas since 1999's Muppets from Space) return to the big screen in (what else?) The Muppets, a film shepherded into existence by diehard Muppet fan and man-child Jason Segel. God bless him.

Notable Home Video Releases 

Cars 2 (Mike's review) -- There's been a lot of talk about Cars as the weakest entry in the Pixar pantheon, but that's like saying "the least delicious truffle in the box of Godiva chocolates." And let's face it, with more than $10 billion in merchandise sales over the last five years, it represents a very different kind of success in the eyes of its creators. Cars 2 may not have been the most entertaining Pixar movie I've seen but it was definitely a nice distraction and I'm sure I'll be picking up a copy for someone's Christmas stocking.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (Jette's review) -- If you've been holding out for the giant box set of Harry Potter films, now is the time. With the final film now available on home video, you can settle in for a full day (16+ hours, I'm guessing?) of Pottermania.

Timmy Time: Go Kart Timmy -- With the success of Shaun the Sheep, the BBC decided to go even cuter with a series dedicated to the flock's youngest sheep, Timmy. This show is difficult to describe but easy to love.

Netflix Instant Pick

Timmy Time Season 1 -- If you're not ready to spend money on the Timmy Time DVD, you can see the entire first season on Netflix Instant.

Pocoyo: Meet Pocoyo -- I mentioned the delightful Pocoyo series back in August when it was available on DVD, but now you can check out a few different collections of Pocoyo episodes on Netflix.