Prepare the popcorn for these 20 must-watch movies in 2016

For the year ahead, use this list to stay in sync with the silver screen

It’s the start of a brand new year! Whether you’re the type that looks to the future with a twinkle in your eye, or a bitter, shriveled cynic of a soul that finds each year less exciting than the last, we all share one thing in common if you’re reading this: a love for movies!

2015 was a monumental year for cinema, with more rebootquels than you could shake a stick at. So, will 2016 be one of those gap years in between the release of the mega-movie franchise sequels? Or will there be a surprise instant-classic or two, just waiting to find its audience?

Our crystal ball blew a gasket, and we couldn’t get it repaired over the holidays, so we’ll just have to find out at the same rate as you readers: one movie at a time.

From blockbuster franchises to cult favorites to indie darlings, here’s a list of 20 movies look forward to in 2016.

Joy

The Oscar darlings of the past two years return once again in an inspiring real-life inspired tale seemingly created for the purpose of winning film awards.

The people who brought you The Silver Linings Playbook once again cast Jennifer Lawrence, everyone’s current favorite non-threatening feminist friendly lead actress, as the inventor of the miracle mop.

Be inexplicably charmed by J-Law once again, as she effortlessly J-Laws her way into another possible Oscar nomination, seriously testing the limits of audience’s overexposure to J-Law-ness.

Release date: 7 January

The Forest

Pretty much the first horror movie of 2016, The Forest, like The Grudge and Shutter before it, takes a white girl and sticks her in Japan, where scary things usually happen to white people (such as radioactive sushi, and giant monster lizards).

Natalie Dormer of “Game of Thrones” fame is drawn into the very real suicide forest, Aokigahara Forest, in search of her lost twin. Thick japanese accented English dialogue and fish-out-of-water horror ensues?

If forests are all so scary, maybe we shouldn’t worry so much about deforestation.

Release date: 7 January

The Big Short

Adam Mckay takes his comedic touch to Wall Street, as he attempts to make a massive life-ruining financial collapse passably hilarious.

The cast is full of intense acting types, including Brad Pitt, Christian Bale and Ryan Gosling, so we wonder if this movie will be a serious version of “Anchorman”.

The trailer plays like a financial caper, with everyone dressed in what we assume is suitably 90’s fashion. But is it ever safe to laugh at Christian Bale, on-screen or otherwise?

Release date: 21 January

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