It’s January! As usual, the pickings are slim, but we’ll see what we can cobble together for one of the most depressing months of the year! 

First up is Night Swim. Based on a short film, the plot revolves around the Waller family as they move into a new fixer-upper, only to find that a supernatural presence haunts the backyard swimming pool. The trailer is essentially an extended scene of the popular pool game Marco Polo. I’m not sure how good the idea of “spooky water” will be, but with horror producer hot-shots James Wan (director of The Conjuring) and Jason Blum (producer of sleeper hit M3GAN), this could have some hidden ingredients I just can’t see yet. Dive into the deep end on Jan. 5.

For some good ol’ action, look no further than The Beekeeper. Jason Statham stars as Mr. Clay, a former operative in a group called Beekeepers. Now he’s an actual beekeeper. When his friend gets robbed, he naturally takes it upon himself to absolutely obliterate all the criminals involved. The trailer has lots of death, bee jokes and the ever popular “this one guy took out all my men” lines. The plot seems comically undercooked, but Statham is a lauded action star through and through; that might just be enough to get you to the theaters when it opens Jan. 12.

Mean Girls; photo courtesy Paramount Pictures
Main image cutline: Nightswim; photo courtesy Universal Pictures

For a musical twist on a classic comedy, check out Mean Girls. Based on the hit Broadway musical … which is based on the hit 2004 film … which is based on the hit 2002 book Queen Bees and Wannabes, this iteration takes the original plot and adds in music and dance. Starring Angourie Rice (The Nice Guys) as Cady, and relative newcomer Renee Rapp as Regina (who played the same role in the Broadway musical), the film looks like an excellent trip back in time with a few fun changes to the formula. Tina Fey returns to write the script and star in her original role as Ms. Norbury, with another return performance by Tim Meadows as Principal Duvall. Don’t miss out on being so fetch when it arrives on Jan. 12. 

For a heist film, try Lift. Kevin Hart stars as a world class thief who is tasked with robbing a plane mid-flight. If he fails, he goes to prison for all his previous illegal deeds. Vincent D’Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket) and Jean Reno (Leon) also show up as a part of Hart’s crew and the main antagonist, respectively. The trailer is full of corny jokes and Ocean’s 11-style robbery shenanigans. If you’re bored on a Friday night, this movie might do the trick when it lands on Netflix Jan. 12. 

Lastly, for an anime film nearly 25 years old, grab tickets for Cowboy Bebop: The Movie. Originally released in 2001, the film follows the bounty hunters Spike, Jet, Faye and Ed as they deal with an international terrorist who plans to use a biological weapon on innocent civilians. Based on the wildly popular anime of the same name, the film has beautiful animation, wonderful voice acting and some great fight choreography. Knowing a bit about the show helps, but it’s not needed to enjoy the story. It’s in theaters January 21-23.

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