New On Screen: December 2023

It's fun for the whole family with holiday blockbusters Wonka and Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom, and the de rigueur Christmas movie – Candy Cane Lane, starring Eddie Murphy.

By Yong Shu Chiang        6 December 2023

Next Goal Wins

Out in cinemas now (Available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Michael Fassbender, Oscar Kightley, Kaimana

A football coach who’s about to be fired, Thomas Rongen (Fassbender), finds himself appointed the new head coach of one of the worst national football teams in the world. American Samoa, located in the South Pacific, once lost an international football match 31-0. Seeking to qualify for the 2014 World Cup, they hire Rongen to rouse their team into getting just their second-ever win, after having lost more than 30 matches in a row. Faced with an almost impossible task, Rongen starts to bond with the players and mould them into a team.

SAFRA members enjoy special discounts on MovieMax Member rates and Combo Sets at Shaw Theatres. For more info, go to safra.sg/promotions/shaw-theatres

Michael Fassbender: Why so serious

The Double Oscar nominee is known for his intense on-screen persona and penchant for complicated characters, and his latest film is a rare comedy on his CV.

The Irish actor Michael Fassbender has played iconic characters and historical figures.

From Carl Jung to Mr Rochester, Macbeth, Magneto and Steve Jobs, the one common thread in Fassbender’s performances has been his smouldering intensity.

Born in the former West Germany, the 46-year-old is today an A-list leading man who has seldom veered beyond so-called serious roles. 

He made his acting debut on the war miniseries Band of Brothers in 2001, and continued his early career in television before landing the role of Stelios, a Spartan warrior, in Zack Snyder’s epic 300.

In the past two decades, his notable credits have included Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds (2009), Jane Eyre, A Dangerous Method, and Shame (all in 2011).

The latter, directed by Steve McQueen, had Fassbender playing a troubled sex addict and garnered him Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations. 

He would go on to get his first Academy Award nomination in 2014, after reuniting with McQueen on 12 Years a Slave (2013), where he played a sadistic slave owner. 

His second Oscar nomination came in 2016, after he had portrayed Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in the 2015 biopic of the same name.

More recently, Fassbender has reprised two roles for multiple films, that of Magneto in the X-men franchise over four films, and the android David in Ridley Scott’s Alien films Prometheus (2012) and Alien: Covenant (2017). 

After playing a yoga-loving hitman in The Killer earlier this year, Fassbender can next be seen in Taika Waititi’s comedy Next Goal Wins, about a football coach finding himself a fish out of water trying to coax a South Pacific national team to victory.


Out in cinemas now (Available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Timothée Chalamet, Olivia Colman, Hugh Grant

Before there was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, before there were any Golden Tickets and before there was a Wonka Chocolate Factory at all, there was just wee Willy Wonka (Chalamet). Describing himself as something of a magician, an inventor and a chocolate maker, the young Wonka is noticed by a cartel of chocolatiers, who scheme to put him out of the chocolate business. Unbowed, Wonka continues to follow his dreams, and is aided by an unlikely ally, an orange-faced, green-haired little man called Oompa-Loompa (Grant).

Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom

Out in cinemas 20 December (Available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Jason Momoa, Patrick Wilson, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II

Arthur Curry (Momoa) leads an idyllic life years after he had defeated his brother Orm (Wilson) to become the true king of Atlantis. Trouble brews when the former pirate Black Manta (Abdul-Mateen), whom Curry – also known as Aquaman – had defeated, returns more powerful and hungry for revenge than before. As Black Manta, now armed with the Black Trident, threatens his loved ones and the fate of seven underwater kingdoms, Aquaman releases Orm from prison and enlists his help to confront their common enemy. 

Candy Cane Lane

Out now, Prime Video

Stars: Eddie Murphy, Tracee Ellis Ross, Jillian Bell

About to be laid off at work and feeling hopeless about the future, Chris (Murphy) pins his hopes on winning a hefty cash prize for having the home with the best Christmas decorations. Wandering into a decoration shop that, unbeknownst to Chris, is the creation of an evil elf (Bell), he signs a magical receipt that curses him to be turned into a glass figurine. His only hope, he realises, is to collect all the golden rings mentioned in the carol, The Twelve Days of Christmas. To do that, he will need help from his family and some newfound friends.

Leave The World Behind

Out 8 December, Netflix

Stars: Julia Roberts, Mahershala Ali, Ethan Hawke

A family of four rent a house in a remote area for a vacation. They then get visitors at night, a couple who claim to own the house and that their premature return is due to a blackout in the city. With the Internet and other communications down, the family and the couple are suspicious of each other, but agree to share the house for the time being. Strange things begin to happen: a group of deer congregate outside the house, news of a nationwide cyberattack appears on television, and loud noises that can crack glass are heard.

Rebel Moon: Part One – A Child Of Fire

Out 22 December, Netflix

Stars: Sofia Boutella, Charlie Hunnam, Doona Bae

A woman with a hidden past, Kora (Boutella), sees a spaceship approaching her peaceful farming community and knows what will come next. As the soldiers of the Imperium, the army of the Motherworld, approach Kora and her friends, she is forced to fight and reveal her true identity as a former soldier herself. This time, she rallies her fellow farmers to take up arms against the Imperium, to defy the corrupt Motherworld, and to make a stand. She also starts to recruit a band of mercenaries and warriors to give her budding resistance a chance.

SAFRA members, sign up for a SAFRA MovieMax membership and enjoy special perks such as discounts on movie tickets and food combo sets, monthly movie contests and more! Until 31 March 2024, enjoy 50% off a MovieMax 2-year membership (U.P. $30) and get a $5 GrabGifts voucher and a popcorn set (Includes a 32 oz sweet/salted popcorn and 22 oz drink) for every sign up! Get more information at safra.sg/interest-groups/moviemax

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