Holiday Movie Preview: What's Hot, and What's Not?


Holiday Gift Guide.

If "great family movies" is at the top of your wish list this holiday season, you're in luck -- this fall, the multiplex will be packed with kid-friendly characters, from dancing penguins (Happy Feet Two) and swashbuckling cats (Puss in Boots) to everyone's favorite Muppet gang and even a Twilight vampire or two for teens. Get the buzz now, and be sure to come back when we post our complete reviews -- as always, we'll provide detailed ratings and reviews on everything from violence to sexual content, plus conversation starters so you can talk to your kids about what you see.


Arthur Christmas
Release Date: Nov. 23
Target Age: Young Kids
What's the Buzz?: From the animators responsible for Wallace & Gromit and Chicken Run comes this English holiday comedy about Father Christmas' (that's Santa to us Yanks) son Arthur (voiced by James McAvoy), who must find a way to use his father's state-of-the-art North Pole technology to deliver the correct present to one special little girl by Christmas morning.

Hugo
Release Date: Nov. 23
Target Age: Tweens
What's the Buzz?: Based on author Brian Selznick's award-winning illustrated novel, this is the first family film to be directed by legendary director Martin Scorsese. Set in 1930s Paris, the story follows young orphan Hugo Cabret (Asa Butterfield) as he uncovers the mystery of his father's disappearance, all while living in the walls of a train station. An epic adventure from an Oscar-winning director, Hugo is one of the most highly anticipated movies of the season.

The Muppets
Release Date: Nov. 23
Target Age: Young Kids and Tweens
What's the Buzz?: Families will have plenty to choose from over Thanksgiving break as the first Muppet movie in 12 years hits the big screen. Starring the always adorable Amy Adams and Jason Segel -- not to mention everyone's favorite Muppet characters Kermit, Piggy, Fozzy, and the gang -- the live-action comedy is sure to be a crowd-pleaser for all ages.

New Year's Eve
Release Date: Dec. 9
Target Age: Tweens and Teens
What's the Buzz?: Like Valentine's Day, this multiple-storyline romantic comedy will feature more than a dozen characters (played by A-list stars, naturally) as they navigate New Year's Eve in New York City. Teens will especially be drawn to the stories starring Ashton Kutcher and Glee's Lea Michele, teen actress Abigail Breslin, and High School Musical's Zac Efron.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked
Release Date: Dec. 16
Target Age: Young Kids
What's the Buzz?: Alvin, Simon, and Theodore are back, and this time they're getting their vacation on with their long-suffering guardian Dave (Jason Lee) and the three Chipettes (from Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel). Plenty of song-and-dance numbers later, the 'munks and their gal pals wind up ashore on a deserted island. Your young elementary schoolers will squeal in delight.


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