Movies coming out on Boxing Day 2021 include West Side Story and Swan Song

Delicious (M)

Writer/director Éric Besnard's historical comedy is set in France in 1789, just before the revolution. When cook Manceron (Gregory Gadebois) serves an unapproved dish of his own creation at a dinner hosted by the Duke of Chamfort (Benjamin Lavernhe), the repercussions are brutal, and he is promptly dismissed. Manceron retreats with his son to a regional inn where vegetable soup is the common meal. But when the mysterious Louise (Isabelle Carré) arrives and offers to pay to become his apprentice, things start cooking.

Licorice Pizza (M)

In a Hollywood landscape that seems to be dominated by franchise movies, sequels and reboots, the films of writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson, like Boogie Nights, are among those that are original and distinctive. In his new film, set in the San Fernando Valley, California in 1973, Alana (Alana Haim) and Gary (Cooper Hoffman) become friends and this might lead to something more - but she's 25 and he's 15, so the relationship is, as they say, complicated. The cast includes Bradley Cooper, Sean Penn, Christine Ebersol and Tom Waites.

The Matrix Resurrections (M)

The fourth film in the franchise is set two decades after The Matrix Revolutions (2003). Neo (Keanu Reeves) now lives an ordinary life as Thomas Anderson, but you know things aren't going to stay that way. Another red pill and away he goes again. Carrie-Anne Moss also returns and there are new versions of a couple of the original characters.

Sing 2 (PG)

In this sequel to the animated movie Sing (2016), koala Buster Moon (voiced by Matthew McConaughey) and his friends have a shot at the big time with their new show but face a lot of challenges. Putting on a new show is always difficult, but they need to find reclusive rock star Clay Calloway (Bono) and persuade him to join the cast, since they've promised his presence to the powerful producer (Bobby Canavale).

Swan Song (M)

Udo Kier - who starred in Blood for Dracula and Flesh for Frankenstein back in the 1970s - stars as retired hairdresser Pat Pitsenbarger, who escapes the confines of his small-town Sandusky, Ohio nursing home after learning of his former client's dying wish for him to style her final hairdo. Pat embarks on an odyssey to confront the ghosts of his past - and collect the beauty supplies necessary for the job. Swan Song is a comical and bittersweet journey about rediscovering one's sparkle, and looking gorgeous while doing so.

The Tragedy of Macbeth (M)

William Shakespeare's play has been adapted several times for the screen, including Roman Polanski's very dark 1971 version. Here screenwriter-director Joel Coen is working without his brother Ethan, his collaborator on such films as The Big Lebowski,No Country for Old Men and Fargo, who apparently wanted to leave film for theatre, at least for now. Shakespeare might seem an odd choice of subject for this filmmaker, but Coen Brothers films have often been about such things as crime and the whims of fate. Here, Denzel Washington plays the ambitious lord Macbeth, who is told by witches he will become king. With the encouragement and connivance of his wife (Frances McDormand), he murders King Duncan (Brendan Gleeson) and seizes the throne. But he soon discovers that "naught's had, all's spent, When we our desires get without content."

West Side Story (M)

The recent death of lyricist Stephen Sondheim brings a special poignancy to the release of Steven Spielberg's new film. It's an adaptation of the 1957 Broadway musical - written by Arthur Laurents, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins, with music by Leonard Bernstein - that transposed Romeo and Juliet to a New York street gang setting. Tony (Ansel Elgort), one of the Jets, falls in love with Puerto Rican girl Maria (Maria Zegler). But she is the sister of Bernardo (David Alvarez), leader of the Jets' arch-enemies the Sharks, so love may not conquer all. The 1961 film adaptation won 10 Oscars including best supporting actress for Rita Moreno, who has a new supporting role here.

The Worst Person in the World (MA15+)

Renate Reinsve won the best actress award at Cannes in Norwegian director Joachim Trier's comedy. She plays Julie, a woman turning 30 who is struggling with life and career. Her older boyfriend, Aksel (Anders Danielsen Lie) wants them to settle down but one night at a party she meets Eivind (Herbert Nordrum) and dumps Aksel for the younger man.

Clifford the Big Red Dog (PG)

Norman Bridwell's longrunning canine kids' book series began in 1963. In this live-action/CGI movie adaptation, bullied young Emily Elizabeth (Darby Camp) meets a magical animal rescuer (John Cleese) who gives her a little red puppy. She wishes Clifford - as the dog is named - was big and strong and wakes up to find the dog is now three metres tall, which might be somewhat inconvenient in a New York apartment. Released December 30.

Ariana DeBose, left, as Anita and David Alvarez in West Side Story. Picture: Niko Tavernise/20th Century Studios.

Ariana DeBose, left, as Anita and David Alvarez in West Side Story. Picture: Niko Tavernise/20th Century Studios.

This story Movies to combat the Boxing Day blues first appeared on The Canberra Times.