Straat Picks: 5 Movies to Watch in January 2016

The spotlight is on Hollywood’s leading ladies, and one particular man, for this month’s must-see movies.



Scheduled release: January 7th
Director: David O. Russell
Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper

It’s a reunion of sorts for director David O. Russell, actress Jennifer Lawrence and fellow thesp Bradley Cooper, as they look to secure top position at the box office with their combined effort, not unlike what they did for Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle. This movie sees the titular character, played by Lawrence, hustling to build a better life for her family, while dealing with acts of betrayal and stiff competition.

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The Danish Girl


Scheduled release: January 7th
Director: Tom Hooper
Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander, Ben Whishaw

Eddie Redmayne, a leading man in Hollywood by virtue of his ability to portray characters and emotions at will, takes on the role of Einar Wegener, a real-life artist who eventually becomes a transgender. This movie chronicles Einar’s journey of discovery, then acceptance, of his sexual orientation, and the crucial role that his wife Gerda Wegener (Alicia Vikander) played in his life transformation.

The Forest


Scheduled release: January 7th
Director: Jason Zada
Cast: Natalie Dormer, Eoin Macken, Stephanie Vogt

Japan’s Aokigahara Forest, known as one of the most popular suicide locations in the world, is the premise for this feature film. Natalie Dormer plays twin sisters Sara and Jess Price, and when one half goes missing inside the infamous forest, the other goes in search of her, inevitably inviting the spirits of the departed to show up and cause a disturbance.

The 5th Wave


Scheduled release: January 14th
Director: J Blakeson
Cast: Chloë Grace Moretz, Nick Robinson, Ron Livingston

An alien incursion, comprising four waves of systematic attacks, has left a trail of destruction on Earth, with a final wave set to be the finishing blow for mankind. Adding a dose of uncertainty to the mounting fears is the fact that the aliens have taken on human forms and infiltrated the population. In a bid to save her younger brother, Cassie (Chloë Grace Moretz) joins forces with the mysterious Evan Walker (Alex Roe), who may be her final hope for victory in humanity’s last stand.

The Big Short


Scheduled release: January 21st
Director: Adam McKay
Cast: Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt

Based on a true happening in the business world not too long ago, The Big Short centers on a few men who foresaw the collapse of the credit and housing bubble, and turned it to their advantage. It’s a movie that even the non-financial savvy can appreciate, and a breath of fresh air for big names like Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt, who show that brains can triumph over brawn, even on the silver screen.

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