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What to watch, what's new and what's everyone talking about this month — Christmas edition

What to watch, what's new and what's everyone talking about this month — Christmas edition

Jingle bells

Text: Aravin Sandran


For those who believe Santa is real: Mary Poppins Returns

Tagline: This Christmas, when you lose your way, just remember the magic always returns. 

Cast: Star of Devil Wears Prada (2006) Emily Blunt plays the inimitable Mary Poppins while living legend Meryl Streep and Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda have supporting roles in this sequel that comes 54 years after the original.

Premise: It's circa 1930s Depression-era London when the clouds are grey, rations are running low and it's bleak AF. The kids, Michael and Jane, have grown up. After Michael's wife passes away for reasons unknown, everyone's favourite nanny Mary Poppins descends from the skies on Cherry Tree Lane once again. This time, she uses voodoo magic skills to conjure (a dolphin in the bathtub) and move objects (paper planes in the library) like one of the mutants from the X-Men franchise to cheer up the family with saccharine fairytales and sassy one-liners.

Trivia: The film will integrate some whimsical hand-drawn animation with its live-action, a technique that was last seen in 2011's Winnie the Pooh.

One-sentence review: Imagine taking LSD while watching Julie Andrew's 1964 performance — this sequel is so much more bonkers, in a good way. 

What the Internet is saying: "Excuse me, just tearing up over here being reminded of my childhood."

Release date: 25 December 2018

For those who might slit their wrist upon hearing Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You': Aquaman

Tagline: A tide is coming. 

Cast: Hunky Hawaiian Jason Momoa stars alongside Johnny Depp's ex Amber Heard, Australia's most famous acting export Nicole Kidman and the personification of the all-American, guy-next-door cliché Patrick Wilson.

Premise: Directed by James Wan of The Conjuring series, Aquaman gets his own solo spin-off even if he might be regarded as the least impressive superhero in the Marvel universe. While his supporting roles in Justice League (2017) provided a little insight into his rambunctious persona, this wham-bam action flick sees him attempting to claim his rightful place at the throne of the underwater kingdom of Atlantis. There'll be fit mermaids, things being blown up and brooding looks into the camera.

Trivia: The underwater filming required cast members to be hosed down before the shooting happened on a cold soundstage.

One-sentence review: Wet hair, wet bodies and wet dreams Seaworld has never looked better.

What the Internet is saying: "Sharks with freakin' laser beams attached to their heads."

Release date: 13 December 2018

For those who are hosting parties but planning to cater food: Nailed It Holiday

Cast: Comedian Nicole Byer is like that one cool auntie who you see two times a year. Every time she walks through the door, you know there'll be some LMFAO jokes, say-it-like-you-mean-it real talk and a helluva lot of good food.

Premise: Each episode sees three amateur home bakers with a terrible track record take a shot at recreating an edible masterpiece for a $10,000 prize. It's a real food contest like Masterchef or The Great British Bake Off but with none of that esteem or plating finesse, all of it is just for laughs.

Trivia: Guest judge Jay Chandrasekhar left in the middle of taping to attend to a "babysitting emergency", but made it back just in time to judge the final round  a bust of Donald Trump. 

One-sentence review: When our mothers try to be Ina Garten or Nigella Lawson in the kitchen.

What the Internet is saying: "This woman is the friend you need. So much energy!"

Release date: 7 December on Netflix

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