Sherlock Holmes photos courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures
For the Teens: Sherlock Holmes or The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus
Both movies have stylish directors (Guy Richie for Sherlock Holmes and Terry Gilliam for Imaginarium) who promise to thrill. In Sherlock Holmes, Robert Downey, Jr. — who’s certainly been on a hot streak lately — plays a faithful-to-the-book version of Holmes with Jude Law as his ever-loyal Watson. The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus — forever known as Heath Ledger’s last performance — also has Jude Law, along with Johnny Depp and Colin Farrell, picking up the role where Ledger left off. It works because the movie is a total, delicious fantasy that takes Ledger’s character through the looking glass — literally — to show him the Alice in Wonderland-like world of his own imagination.
For Adults: It’s Complicated
Director Nancy Meyers (The Holiday, Something’s Gotta Give) is nothing if not adult, and her story about people of a certain age learning to deal with divorces and dating stars Baby Boomers Meryl Streep, Steve Martin, and Alec Baldwin.
For the Men: Invictus
Sports, history, politics, and Clint Eastwood — this film, in which Morgan Freeman plays Nelson Mandela and encourages the South African rugby team to bring home the World Cup, has everything a man can ask for.
For the Ladies: The Young Victoria
Sure, it has all the girlish pleasures of a period melodrama (fabulous costumes, British suitors), but also the girl-power story of a young queen who learns how to manage her court and figure out who to trust.
For Music Lovers: Nine and Crazy Heart
What’s your poison? If the let’s-put-on-a-show musical tunes are your faves, see Nine. Director Rob Marshall hopes to follow up his Chicago success with another stage-to-screen adaptation — this one starring a singing Daniel Day-Lewis along with Marion Cotillard, Penélope Cruz, and Nicole Kidman. If you prefer music you can set your cowboy boots to, Jeff Bridges stars as a past-his-prime country singer in Crazy Heart, and a young journalist played by Maggie Gyllenhaal falls for him as she tries to tell his story.
For Oscar-Watchers and Those Who Swoon Over Clooney: Up in the Air
George Clooney faces off with newcomer Anna Kendrick in this film about downsizing, restructuring, automating, and going digital (not that we can relate). Juno’s Jason Reitman directs, and the awards buzz around this darkly funny picture is almost deafening.
For Die-Hard Lit Fans: The Lovely Bones
Peter Jackson’s adaptation of Alice Sebold’s novel has only gotten middling reviews, but if you’re a huge fan of the book it might be fun to see his take on “the in-between.”