Holiday Movie Preview

Here's more than two dozen of the most buzzed, most loved, most hotly anticipated movies for the 2012 holiday season.

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Daniel Smith
NOOMI RAPACE as Sim, ROBERT DOWNEY JR. as Sherlock Holmes and JUDE LAW as Dr. Watson in Warner Bros. Pictures� and Village Roadshow Pictures� action adventure mystery �SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS,� a Warner Bros. Pictures release.Photo by Daniel Smith
Daniel Smith
"Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows": Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law return as 19th-century London's favorite crime fighters, this time in a showdown with their arch nemesis, Dr. Moriarty, played by Jared Harris. Opens Dec. 16, watch the trailer.
"Carnage": Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster, John C. Reilly and Christoph Waltz star in Roman Polanski's adaptation of the Tony-winning comedy of manners about two pairs of parents brought together to discuss a teeth-shattering playground incident between their sons. Opens Dec. 16, watch the trailer.
Pathé UK
"The Iron Lady": Meryl Streep's semi-annual Oscar bid finds her playing Margaret Thatcher in this biopic that focuses on the personal sacrifices she made so that she might help lift her country out of its post-WW II doldrums. Opens Dec. 16, watch the trailer.
"Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol": Tom Cruise returns, along with Simon Pegg, Paula Patton and Jeremy Renner, in this adventure that finds the MI team accused of bombing the Kremlin. Brad Bird ("The Incredibles") makes his live-action directorial debut. Opens Dec. 16, watch the trailer.
"The Adventures of Tintin": Steven Spielberg directs this motion-capture adaptation of the beloved comic book, in which Tintin and Capt. Haddock set off in search of a treasure that went down with a ship helmed by Haddock's ancestor. Opens Dec. 21, watch the trailer.
"The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo": David Fincher directs Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara in this adaptation of the global bestseller about a journalist and a hacker trying to solve a decades-old disappearance. Opens Dec. 21, watch the trailer.
"War Horse": Also from Spielberg comes this adaptation of the hit play about a boy and his horse who are torn apart by WW I, and the boy's determination to be reunited. Stars Emily Watson, Jeremy Irvine, David Thewlis and Tom Hiddleston. Opens Dec. 21, watch the trailer.
"We Bought a Zoo": Matt Damon stars in Cameron Crowe's adaptation of the memoir of a widower who buys a rundown zoo and moves in with his kids to renovate it. Co-stars Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church and Patrick Fugit. Opens Dec. 21, watch the trailer.
Francois Duhamel
"Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close": Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock star in this adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer's novel about a boy trying to solve a mystery left behind by his father who died in the attacks on 9/11. Opens Dec. 21, watch the trailer.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 1: If you're a Twi-hard, you already had this date in your calendar and a faux wedding invitation on your wall. Bill Condon ("Chicago," "Dreamgirls") directs Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, et al, as the Twilight saga begins its final chapter with a wedding, a busted headboard and a baby that could kill Mrs. Cullen-Swan. But you already knew that, didn’t you? In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"The Descendants": Following a lauded debut at the Telluride Film Festival and much buzzed-about play at the Toronto Film Fest, "The Descendants" marked director Alexander Payne’s return to filmmaking after a 7-year absence following "Sideways." Back, and in fine form, the film starred George Clooney as a wealthy Hawaiian land owner who takes his daughter on a trip from Oahu to Kauai after his adulterous wife lands in a coma, though it’s not nearly as "Days of Our Lives" as that may sound. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Happy Feet Two": Mumble (voiced by Elijah Wood), the tap dancing penguin, is back and this time he has a son, Erik, who, like his father, is struggling to realize his talents in the Emperor Penguin world. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Arthur Christmas": On Christmas Eve, Santa’s clumsy but loveable son, Arthur Christmas (voiced by James McAvoy) is sent on an all-important mission. Also featuring Hugh Laurie as Steve, Arthur’s cool, capable older brother, and Jim Broadbent as the big man in red himself. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Hugo": Martin Scorsese’s first 3D film, based on Brian Selznick’s novel, "The Invention of Hugo Cabret," about an orphan boy living a secret life in the walls of a Paris train station, is a long way from the Mean Streets he usually sticks to. Family fun with Scorsese? Are you talkin’ to me? In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"The Muppets": “It's time to play the music / It’s time to light the lights / It’s time to meet the Muppets”…as Jason Segal reinvents them. In the Muppet’s first theatrical release in 12 years, the film follows some of the world’s biggest Muppet fans, including Segel and Amy Adams, as they fight to save the Muppet Theater from a greedy businessman (Chris Cooper) who plans to demolish it to drill for oil. Cameos, from Lady Gaga to Danny Trejo, abound. In theaters now, watch any of the amazing trailers.
"Rampart": Woody Harrelson stars as Dave "Date Rape" Brown, a pill-popping, skirt-chasing, martini-swilling killer cop who's a menace to everyone in his path. Co-stars Ben Foster and Sigourney Weaver, directed by Oren Moverman, who co-wrote the film with James Ellroy. In theaters now.
"My Week With Marilyn": Based on the true story of a young man working on the film "The Princess and the Showgiril," and has a brush with romance with star Marilyn Monroe. Stars Michelle Willians and Eddie Redmayne. In theaters now.
"A Dangerous Method:" Who wants to see Keira Knightley getting spanked by Michael Fassbender? David Cronenberg, as kinky as ever, delves into the world of Carl Jung (Fassbender), looking at his relationship with Sigmund Freud (Cronenberg regular Viggo Mortensen), his affair with a young patient (Knightley) and the birth of psychoanalysis, which proves it’s often the sickest people who become shrinks. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"The Artist" Silent, French and black and white; not exactly what has folks lining up for the typical Friday movie night. But buzz out of Toronto and Jean Dujardin’s Best Actor win at the Cannes Film Festival, make this story of roaring 20s Hollywood, as silent movies are replaced by the talkies, and the connection between a declining male film star and rising actress, a must-see. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Shame:" More kinky sex with Michael Fassbender. This time Fassbender stars as a 30-something Manhattan yuppie (think Patrick Bateman without the homicidal tendencies), who is unable to keep is sexual urges in check (and, really, who would want that from Fassbender?). After his younger sister (Carey Mulligan) moves into his apartment, his world spirals out of control. Directed by Steve McQueen who worked with Fassbender on the exceptional 2008 film, "Hunger." In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Sleeping Beauty": A sexually charged offering that divided critics following its Cannes debut, "Sleeping Beauty" stars Emily Browning ("Sucker Punch") as a college student who takes a job as the leading lady in a bizarre sex game. Offering explanation for the title, the idea is she takes a drug that puts her to sleep while paying customers do almost whatever they want with her limp body. Delightful. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"We Need to Talk About Kevin": Based on Lionel Shriver’s chilling novel, Tilda Swinton stars as the mother of a boy named Kevin (Ezra Miller), who is recounting and reliving the events that lead up to her son’s massacre of students and teachers at his high school. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
20th Century Fox
"The Sitter": Jonah Hill in his last film as a fat guy, stars in this updated take on the '80s classic "Adventures in Babysitting," as a guy who brings his charges along on a drug deal he's doing in an effort to woo a girl. Directed by David Gordon Green. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy":: Director Tomas Alfredson assembles one of the best casts of the year for his adaptation of John Le Carre's masterpiece about the hunt for a traitor who's infiltrated the British intelligence community. Stars Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Tom Hardy, Benedict Cumberbatch, Toby Jones and Mark Strong. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
"W.E.": Madonna directed and co-wrote this film that follows parallel romances, one between a modern-day woman (Abbie Cornish) and a security guard (Oscar Isaac), the other between Wallis Simpson and King Edward VIII. In theaters now.
"Young Adult": Director Jason Reitman and screenwriter Diablo Cody reunite for this dark comedy starring Charlize Theron as a writer of young-adult fiction who heads back to her hometown intent on hooking up with her high school sweetheart, who since has married and had kids. Co-stars Patrick Wilson and Patton Oswalt. In theaters now, watch the trailer.
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