11 Movies You Have To Watch in January 2016

Biggest movies of January 2016

We take a look at the biggest and best big-screen adventures that you need to keep your eyes and ears out for this month.

Most movie-goers will spend January doing one of two things – catching up with some of December’s many award-courting releases, or watching Star Wars: The Force Awakens for the seventeenth time. But don’t miss the handful of new films well worth your attention. Here’s your handy guide to what’s hitting cinemas in SA in January:


Release date: 1 January 2016

Will Smith stars in Concussion, a dramatic thriller based on the incredible true David vs. Goliath story of American immigrant Dr. Bennet Omalu, the brilliant forensic neuropathologist who made the first discovery of CTE, a football-related brain trauma, in a pro player and fought for the truth to be known. Omalu’s emotional quest puts him at dangerous odds with one of the most powerful institutions in the world.


Release date: 8 January 2016

Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence (who starred in Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle together) team up once again for the biographical drama, Joy. The film follows the story of family, loyalty and love – spans four generations, and focused on the woman who rises to become founder and matriarch of a powerful family business dynasty. Joy Mangano is a struggling single mom with three children, who invented the ‘Miracle Mop’ and went on to become the President of Ingenious Designs, LLC.

The Secret in their Eyes

Release date: 8 January 2016

An all-star cast featuring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Julia Roberts, Nicole Kidman all star in this film about a close knit team of FBI investigators Ray (Ejiofor) and Jess (Roberts), and their District Attorney supervisor Claire (Kidman) friendship is shaken by the brutal and inexplicable murder of Jess’s teenage daughter. Thirteen years later a new lead is discovered that could potentially resolve the case.

Ride Along 2

Release date: 15 January 2016

Buddy action/comedies have a long history of reining in box office dollars. So, when Ride Along combined the massive appeal of stars Ice Cube and Kevin Hart back in 2014, it wasn’t much of a shock to see the film perform well.

With both leads back in action (and Hart’s character now a cop himself), the stakes are higher than ever for James Payton (Ice Cube) and Ben Barber (Hart) as they head to Miami to take down a drug lord (Benjamin Bratt) before Ben’s wedding to James’s sister. Ride Along 2 may not be breaking any new ground, but the film’s popular cast — and new additions like Olivia Munn and Ken Jeong — should deliver the laughs that audiences expect.

The Big Short

Release date: 15 January 2016

When a cast features the talents of Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, and Steve Carell, you know the movie is already off to a good start. Based on the true story and best-selling book by Michael Lewis “The Big Short” tells the story of four outsiders in the world of high-finance who predicted the collapse of the economy. Their bold investment leads them into the dark underbelly of modern banking where they must question everyone and everything.

Daddy’s Home

Release date: Friday 22 January 2016

2010’s action comedy The Other Guys was a hilariously successful outing and collaboration between two polarising actors, Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg, so it was only a matter of time before the two did another project together. This time, the film gets a domestic setting, throwing Farrell and Wahlberg into a feud to see who can win the illustrious title of “Greatest Dad.” It’s sure to be full of ridiculous pranks, jokes, and some outlandish moments.

The Revenant

Release date: Friday 22 January 2016

Perhaps the most visually stunning film to come out in a while is The Revenant. This based-on-real-events survivalist saga by Birdman director Alejandro González Iñárritu stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a fur trader who, after barely living through a bear attack, seeks revenge against a traitorous comrade (Tom Hardy). It’s violent, brutal, and awe-inspiring from beginning to end.

Norm of the North

Release date: Friday 22 January 2016

Since Minions and Penguins of Madagascar, and furthermore Disney’s recent The Good Dinosaur, animated movies haven’t been as prominent at the box-office, especially over the holiday period, but another CGI laugh-fest is on the way to get things back on track in 2016. With help from his furry sidekicks, a polar bear (Rob Schneider) travels to New York to stop a maniacal developer from building luxury condominiums in the Arctic. It clearly doesn’t have the budget of other big-name animated flicks, but it should deliver some good humour and stylised visuals.

The Hateful Eight

Release date: Friday 29 January 2016

Quentin Tarantino’s sprawling, bloody three-hour Western charts the nasty business perpetrated by a group of strangers (including Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tim Roth and Michael Madsen) who all converge during a blizzard at a remote cabin. Backstabbing, mystery, and chaos ensues in what is being called one of Tarantino’s best works to date.

The 5th Wave

Release date: Friday 29 January 2016

With The Hunger Games coming to a close and the Divergent series heading towards its own conclusion, The 5th Wave could easily end up the next big franchise based on a series of young adult novels. Chloë Grace Moretz plays Cassie Sullivan, a teenage girl navigating the barren wasteland left in the wake of an alien invasion in the hopes of rescuing her young brother (Zackary Arthur). Moretz has proven time and again that she’s a capable, versatile talent, but — aside from reprising her role as Hit-Girl in the Kick-Ass sequel — the young actress has yet to secure her own franchise.

The Finest Hours

Release date: Friday 29 January 2016

Over the years, Disney has become a reliable source of inspirational dramatisations of true events, and The Finest Hours is the studio’s next such effort, as the film is loosely based on the Pendleton rescue mission attempt in 1952 by Coast Guard ships. Chris Pine, Casey Affleck, Ben Foster, Holliday Grainger, John Ortiz and Eric Bana lead the cast. With such a strong team behind the project and even stronger material, The Finest Hours could prove to be a surprise hit this month.

More movie stuff:

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Spoiler-Free Review

5 Best Teaser Trailers That Didn’t Ruin The Movie

5 Most Ridiculous Monster Movies Ever Made

6 Video Game Movies Heading Our Way In 2016 And Beyond

Top 7 Worst Movies Based On Video Games

5 Bombed-Movies That Are Actually Pretty Good

8 Best Superhero Movies Ever Made

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