This weekend sucks.

The lone new release hitting theaters this weekend the found-footage exorcism movie The Devil Inside, which I will not be seeing.  I hate found-footage movies.  And I hate exorcism movies.  This movie could not be less appealing to me unless it starred Katherine Heigl and a horse.  Surely Heigl is reading the script for the first great shaky camera horsorcism feature as I type this, pushing it through the Hollywood system for a January 2013 release.  That’s how bad January movies usually are.

Seriously though, this January actually has a few promising releases I’m looking forward to.  Next week brings
Contraband, Hollywood’s latest attempt to make Mark Wahlberg an action star.  I’ve always preferred him in comedies (The Other Guys) and dramas (Boogie Nights, The Fighter), but I’ll probably give it a shot.

Red Tails (January 20) tells the story of black fighter pilots and resurrects Cuba Gooding Jr. from direct-to-video hell, while Haywire introduces the world to gorgeous former female MMA fighter and American Gladiator Gina Carano as she runs away from and beats up a bunch of famous people in the thriller from Steven Soderbergh (Contagion, Traffic).

The months ends nicely with The Grey, because who doesn’t want to watch Liam Neeson kill a bunch of wolves?  And Man on a Ledge looks fun in a Phone Booth sort of way.  So there’s hope on the horizon with an atypically strong batch of January releases.  Until then, it’s time to get caught up on all the December releases and Oscar bait.  Here’s a half-assed attempt to rank all of the movies currently worth seeing in theaters:

1.  Hugo – Oozing with Martin Scorsese’s contagious love for movies.  See it before it’s gone.

2.  Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy – Slow, methodical spy thriller is intoxicating, but not for everyone.  I’m excited to see it again.  Expanding into 800+ theaters this weekend.

3.  We Bought a Zoo – My guilty pleasure/feel-good movie of the year.  Cameron Crowe gets me every time.  See it with your family and loved ones.

4.  Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol – Excitement from start to finish.  Tom Cruise is back and I couldn’t be happier about it.

5.  The Artist – This tribute to silent cinema is an Oscar front-runner, even if I don’t think it’s quite that good.

6.  The Descendents – Nice little dramedy starring some guy named Clooney, who will probably win his second Oscar this year.

7.  Young Adult – The more I think about it, the more I like it — probably because Charlize Theron is so hard to watch as a self-destructive bitch.  I mean that as a compliment.  Seriously.

8.  The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – The fact that I rank this #8 says a lot about how many good movies are in theaters right now.

One last thing.  Since everyone is getting a free trial of Showtime this weekend, you no longer have an excuse not to watch the best show on TV, “Homeland.”  I don’t normally write about television, but I might do a full write-up on the show after I finish watching the first season.


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