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At the Movies: December 21

"Marry Poppins Returns"; "Aquaman"; "Bumblebee"; "Second Act"; "Welcome to Marwen"…


Mary Poppins Returns

Now an adult with three children, bank teller Michael Banks learns that his house will be repossessed in five days unless he can pay back a loan. His only hope is to find a missing certificate that shows proof of valuable shares that his father left him years earlier. Just as all seems lost, Michael and his sister receive the surprise of a lifetime when Mary Poppins -- the beloved nanny from their childhood -- arrives to save the day and take the Banks family on a magical, fun-filled adventure.

PG. Fantasy/Adventure. Directed by Rob Marshall. 2h 12m.

What the Internet Says

“Against all the odds, this is a very worthy follow-up to the original movie. Blunt is pitch-perfect, as ever, in a film that all but insists you leave with a smile slapped on your face.” – Empire

“Blunt is flawless as a woman described as perfect in every way. Whenever she’s sweeping her magical way through, above and even below London, the movie is the jolly, jolly holiday it wants to be.” – People

Our Take: Get ready for a whimsical and magical trip down memory lane! This long-awaited sequel is nostalgic and sincere to the original; Mary Poppins Returns is the perfect film for the whole family to enjoy this holiday weekend.

Aquaman

Once home to the most advanced civilization on Earth, the city of Atlantis is now an underwater kingdom ruled by the power-hungry King Orm. With a vast army at his disposal, Orm plans to conquer the remaining oceanic people -- and then the surface world. Standing in his way is Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Orm's half-human, half-Atlantean brother and true heir to the throne. With help from royal counselor Vulko, Aquaman must retrieve the legendary Trident of Atlan and embrace his destiny as protector of the deep.

PG-13. Fantasy/ Science Fiction. Directed by James Wan. 2h 22m.

What the Internet Says

“‘Aquaman’, under the guidance of a smart director in James Wan, delivers the goods expected by fans of the comic book creation and is fortunate to have the light touch Momoa brings to a role that easily could have been waterlogged in other hands.” – Deadline

Our Take: DC Comic fans this one is for you! Aquaman makes his big screen debut – we’ll be there (with popcorn).

Watch the trailer here.

Bumblebee

On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee the Autobot seeks refuge in a junkyard in a small California beach town. Charlie, on the brink of turning 18 years old and trying to find her place in the world, soon discovers the battle-scarred and broken Bumblebee. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns that this is no ordinary yellow Volkswagen.

PG-13. Action. Directed by Travis Knight. 1h 53m.

What the Internet Says

“An impassioned ode to both the toys and their era, this, at last, is the Transformers movie we’ve been waiting for.” – Empire

“‘Bumblebee’ is basically the movie that fans of the 1980s animated series wanted all along.” – Variety

Our Take: We couldn’t be more excited for the latest installment in the Transformers series – we think this may be the best one yet! Gownups and teens alike will surely enjoy this film.

Second Act

Value Shop assistant manager Maya Vargas (Jennifer Lopez) wants only one thing for her 43rd birthday -- a promotion. While her résumé may not scream upper management, her track record certainly does. Vargas is an innovator who listens to her customers and delivers results. When she loses the job to a college-educated candidate, Maya sets out to prove to Madison Avenue that street smarts are as valuable as book smarts -- and it's never too late for a second act.

PG-13. Romance/Comedy. Directed by Peter Segal. 1h 45m.

What the Internet Says

“‘Second Act’ has a meta whiff of revival, centering a prolific renaissance woman in the medium that first made her famous. It’s nice to have her back.” – Vanity Fair

“You know you’re watching a connect-the-dots comedy, but the dots sparkle. And Lopez gives her first star performance in a while.” – Variety

Our Take: J.Lo has already won us over. Plus an easy-to-watch rom-com, seems like the ideal flick to see this  weekend.

Welcome to Marwen

When a devastating attack shatters Mark Hogancamp (Steve Carell) and wipes away all memories, no one expected recovery. Putting together pieces from his old and new life, Mark meticulously creates a wondrous town where he can heal and be heroic. As he builds an astonishing art installation—a testament to the most powerful women he knows—through his fantasy world, he draws strength to triumph in the real one. In a bold, wondrous and timely film, Welcome to Marwen shows that when your only weapon is your imagination…you’ll find courage in the most unexpected place.

PG-13. Drama. Directed by Robert Zemeckis. 1h 56m.

What the Internet Says

“A genuine oddity, Welcome To Marwen may not hit the emotional highs but mixes high-concept fun with a sincere attempt to describe trauma in an original visceral way. And Zemeckis’ filmmaking remains exemplary.” – Empire Online

Our Take: Regardless, this emotional true story is genuinely moving. Steve Carell does an exceptional job playing Mark Hogancamp and the telling of his story.

Watch the trailer here.