From Oscar Contenders to Blockbusters: 12 Winter Movie Releases We're Excited About

Don't know what to watch this holiday season? We got you covered.

Winter brings colder weather, holiday food comas and hot movie releases.

From Oscar contenders like "Mary Queen of Scots" and "Vice," to heartwarming films like "Mary Poppins Returns" and "Second Act," there is something for everyone this season. We know there's A LOT to choose from, but don't fret, TooFab has you covered.

If you're looking for something to do with the family this season, we've got plenty of movie theater suggestions. For those lazy people out there-- we don't judge -- films like "Dumplin'" and "Roma," are premiering both in select theaters and on Netflix.

December also includes the release of the highly-anticipated superhero flick "Aquaman," which might be the only thing to save the DC universe at this point. The blockbuster looks promising, but if all else fails, the world gets to see Nicole Kidman wield a trident.

Another film that hits theaters in January is M. Night Shyamalan's "Glass," starring James McAvoy, Samuel L. Jackson and Bruce Willis. The thriller, which takes off after the events of 2016's "Split," is undoubtedly going to be a hit.

Check out all of the must-see films below. (NOTE: All of the movies are in order of release date.)

"Mary Queen of Scots"

Stars: Saoirse Ronan, Margot Robbie, Gemma Chan

The Gist: If you recall from history class, Mary Stuart, Queen of Scotland, attempted and failed to take the crown from her cousin Elizabeth I, Queen of England. Queen Elizabeth then condemned Mary to years of imprisonment and eventually executed her (via beheading). The film follows the true story but is based on the 2004 John Guy biography "Queen of Scots: The True Life of Mary Stuart," offering a new perspective on one of the greatest rivalries in history.

Why You Should See It: According to critical reception so far, Ronan shines in the film as Mary Stuart and may even be up for her fourth Oscar nomination. Robbie's portrayal of Queen Elizabeth is said to be just as mesmerizing. The historical drama manages (miraculously) to make Robbie look less than perfect, as Elizabeth contracted smallpox at the age of 29. The screenplay is also written by Beau Willon, the mastermind behind political drama "House of Cards."

Release Date: December 7, 2018


Stars: Jennifer Aniston, Danielle McDonald, Odeya Rush

The Gist: This Netflix film follows Willowdean (McDonald) a.k.a "Dumplin,'" a plus-size teenager and daughter of a beauty queen (Aniston), who signs up for her mom's Miss Teen Bluebonnet pageant as a protest. Her bold statement becomes a revolution when women of all sizes follow Willowdean's example and join the pageant.

Why You Should See It: Aniston is poised once again to steal the show, with her quick wit, comedic timing, and undeniable charm. "Dumplin,'" which is based on the novel of the same name, looks like the feel-good movie the world needs right now, with positive messaging and a heartwarming story. The film also features new songs from Dolly Parton.

Release Date: December 7, 2018 (Netflix)

"Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse"

Voiced By: Shameik Moore, Nicolas Cage, Hailee Steinfeld, Jake Johnson

The Gist: The animated film concentrates on a young Spider-Man, Miles Morales (voiced by Moore), who learns that the world consists of multiple dimensions and many Spider-Men. Miles learns how to be the ultimate superhero from the O.G. Spider-Man, Peter Parker (Johnson). When the fate of the universe is at stake, all of the Spider-Men from the "Spiderverse" must team up to save the world from a villainous threat.

Why You Should See It: With the all-star cast voicing the characters and the A-list soundtrack (Post Malone anyone?), the movie seems like a flat out good time at the movies. Be warned: This is not your average Spider-Man tale, nor is it part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Miles Morales' Spider-Man is our first introduction to a whole new franchise launched by Sony, and for once it looks like a rival studio has produced a comic book based film series that has real promise and can challenge the quality (if not the scale) of an MCU project. Plus, this is one of the few superhero movies with true diversity in the casting.

Release Date: December 14, 2018

"If Beale Street Could Talk"

Stars: Kiki Lane, Stephan James, Regina King

The Gist: "Beale Street" chronicles a young, pregnant woman in Harlem, Tish Rivers (Lane), who is determined to the prove the innocence of her fiance, Alonzo 'Fonny' Hunt (James), after he is convicted of a crime that he didn't commit.

Why You Should See It: The film, which marks writer-director Barry Jenkins' cinematic follow up to 2016's "Moonlight," has already generated Oscar buzz this year. If you recall, Jenkins' "Moonlight" snagged three Academy Awards, including Best Picture (who can forget that famous mix-up). The drama is guaranteed to provoke plenty of discussion at the holiday dinner table and its fair share of tears, what to speak of potential accolades.

Release Date: December 14, 2018


Stars: Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de Tavira, Diego Cortina Autrey

The Gist: The black-and-white drama, written and directed by Academy Award-winning director Alfonso Cuaron, follows Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio), a young domestic worker for a middle-class family in the neighborhood of Roma in Mexico, City in 1970s. The drama, that will be released both on Netflix and in select theaters, is Cuaron's first project since 2013's "Gravity." The director is said to have taken inspiration from his own childhood in the creation of the film.

Why You Should See It: "Roma" was screened at multiple film festivals this year and garnered early praise by critics. The movie already boasts a 99 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes and has been generating Oscar buzz. With its breathtaking cinematography and unique storyline, "Roma" is an essential for those cinephiles out there.

Release Date: December 14, 2018 (Netflix)

"Mary Poppins Returns"

Stars: Emily Blunt, Lin Manuel-Miranda, Meryl Streep

The Gist: In this Disney sequel (54 years after the original), the magical nanny Mary Poppins (now played by Blunt) returns to visit the Banks siblings and Michael's children following the loss of their mother in Depression-era London. With the aid of her friend Jack (Miranda) Mary Poppins helps the Banks family rediscover the joy and wonder in their lives.

Why You Should See It: Relive the magic from the Julie Andrews original, while seeing how the iconic story continues. Although most Disney remakes or sequels never beat their predecessors, this is still certain to generate plenty of box office success. Besides, the world could really use some Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious right now. An added bonus? Dick Van Dyke also reprises his role as Mr. Dawes.

Release Date: December 19, 2018


Stars: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Nicole Kidman

The Gist: The action-adventure movie directed by James Wan ("The Conjuring") follows Aquaman's human alter ego, Arthur Curry, on his journey to becoming the superhero we all know and love. He's the one true heir to the kingdom of Atlantis, but like most kingdoms, there's another guy in armor who wants to control it. This time, it's baddie Orm (Wilson), who is fixated on waging war on humans.

Why You Should See It: Besides the fact that "Aquaman" is probably the most highly-anticipated movie on this list, the film might just have what it takes to resurrect the D.C. universe after the disappointment of last year's "Justice League." Another reason to see the superhero flick? Kidman plays Aquaman's mother and wields a trident like the badass she is.

Release Date: December 21, 2018

"Second Act"

Stars: Jennifer Lopez,Milo Ventimiglia, Leah Remini, Vanessa Hudgens

The Gist: Maya (Lopez) leaves her job as a big box store worker when a friend sends in a fake resume for a big-wig position on Madison Avenue. Given a second chance at life, Maya plans to prove that street smarts can outdo book smarts.

Why You Should See It: "Second Act" marks J.Lo's return to romantic comedies. If that's not enough for you, the ever swoon-worthy Ventimiglia plays Trey, the supportive husband, who encourages Maya to achieve her dreams.

Release Date: December 21, 2018


Stars: Hailee Steinfeld, John Cena, Justin Theroux

The Gist: This "Transformers" spinoff takes place decades before the eponymous Autobot met Sam Witwicky (Shia LeBeouf) in the first blockbuster installment, and this time we'll see Bumblebee bonding with a teenage girl (Steinfeld), who finds the yellow Bug in a junkyard in 1987 before discovering it's alive and transformable.

Why You Should See It: The action-adventure teases not only a strong female character but also promises the introduction of a storyline that actually includes characters with emotional arcs -- not just CGI action sequences and heroic slo-mo vanity shots. Plus, Bumblebee is just so dang cute.

Release Date: December 21, 2018


Stars: Christian Bale, Sam Rockwell, Amy Adams, Steve Carell

The Gist: The biopic follows the story of Dick Cheney (Bale), his rise to become arguably the most powerful vice president in U.S. history, and how his policies changed the course of America as we know it.

Why You Should See It: For starters, Bale gained a whopping 100 pounds for the role and is unrecognizable in his spot-on impression of Cheney. Bale, along with Rockwell, who plays President George W. Bush, have already been rumored to receive Oscar noms this year. And with Adam McKay, writer-director of "The Big Short," at the helm, we're guaranteed one helluva theater-going experience.

Release Date: December 25, 2018


Stars: Nicole Kidman, Sebastian Stan, Tatiana Maslany

The Gist: Erin Bell (Kidman), an LAPD detective, is forced to revisit a traumatic undercover assignment from her distant past when a key figure returns.

Why You Should See It: At first glance, it's hard to recognize Kidman under her character's hair and makeup -- and we promise you, her chameleon-like transformation extends beyond just the exterior. Kidman perfectly portrays a highly-flawed alcoholic, clinging on for life, both figuratively and literally. "Destroyer" also might bring Kidman another Oscar. Part crime drama and part action flick, "Destroyer" is a must-see.

Release Date: December 25, 2018


Stars: Samuel L. Jackson, James McAvoy, Bruce Willis, Sarah Paulson

The Gist: David Dunn (Willis), Elijah Price/Mr. Glass (Jackson) and Kevin Wendell Crumb (McAvoy), find themselves in a mental institution under the supervision of Dr. Ellie Staple (Paulson). Following the events of "Split," Dunn confronts Crumb, a disturbed man who has twenty-four personalities, including one persona possessing frightening superhuman abilities. To make matters worse, Mr. Glass wants Crumb to unleash the frightening Beast within.

Why You Should See It: The film wraps up the trilogy that began with 2000's "Unbreakable." Following the box office success of "Split" (2016), the final installment looks to be the best of the series, including all three characters clashing in what promises to be one helluva showdown.

Release Date: January 18, 2018

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