Boxing Day movie guide 2017

The Australian tradition of Boxing Day being the biggest cinema-going day of the year is a time-honoured past time, where some of the summer’s biggest movies are finally available for your viewing pleasure. 

Here’s what’s being released this December 26.


Director: With a background in visual effects and commercials, Australian Michael Gracey is making his film directing debut.

Stars: Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron.

The story: After losing his job, P. T. Barnum brings together performers of all descriptions to create the famous Barnum & Bailey circus.

Rating and length: PG, 105 minutes.

Who it's for: Fans of Our Hugh, musicals and colourful entertainment.

Buzz: A feelgood musical that is a Hugh Jackman passion project, with music by La La Land's Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.


Director: Lee Unkrich, whose strong track record includes Finding Nemo and Toy Story 2 and 3, with screenwriter-storyboard artist Adrian Molina

Stars: Voices of Benjamin Bratt, Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal

The story: A 12-year-old Mexican boy's quest to play guitar like his hero, despite his family's long-time opposition, sees him trapped in the land of the dead.

Rating and timing: PG, 105 minutes

Who it's for: Fans of Pixar movies

Buzz: The studio has delivered yet again with a vibrant comic celebration of Mexican culture.


Director: Alexander Payne of Sideways, The Descendants and Nebraska fame.

Stars: Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau.

Rating and timing: M, 135 minutes.

The story: After scientists discover how to shrink people as a solution to over-population, a couple abandon their stressed lives in Omaha to move into a tiny community.

Who it's for: Fans of adult dramas and Payne's films.

Buzz: It's a thought-provoking parable about a modern-day Lilliput.


Director: Andy Serkis, Gollum himself, who is making his film directing debut.

Stars: Andrew Garfield, Claire Foy, Tom Hollander, Hugh Bonneville.

The story: Based on the real-life parents of producer Jonathan Cavendish, a love story about adventurous couple who have rich inspiring lives despite a polio diagnosis.

Rating and timing: M, 118 minutes.

Who it's for: Fans of romance and inspirational greeting cards.

Buzz: Very British, very sentimental.


Director: Jake Kasdan, best known for the Cameron Diaz comedies Bad Teacher and Sex Tape.

Stars: Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas.

The story: In an action-fantasy sequel to 1995's Jumanji, four teenagers discover an old video-game-console and get sucked into a jungle with adult avatars.

Rating and length: PG, 119 minutes.

Who it's for: Fans of action comedies, the Rock and Jack Black.

Buzz: It's had a mixed reception by critics, with The Hollywood Reporter calling it "an enjoyable modernisation" of the Jumanjichildren's book and Variety dismissing it as "trash".


Director: Luca Guadagnino, the Italian director of I Am Love and A Bigger Splash

Stars: Armie Hammer, Timothee Chalamet

The story: A romantic coming-of-age drama – adapted from a novel by Andre Aciman – about a 17-year-old boy's first love with an American student who stays with his family in Italy in 1983.

Rating and length: M, 132 minutes.

Who it's for: Fans of love stories, affecting dramas and LGBTI films.

Buzz: The acclaim has included numerous top 10 lists of the year's best films and three Golden Globe nominations – for best motion picture drama and the acting of its two stars.


Director: Carine Tardieu, the French director best known for The Dandelions.

Stars: Francois Damiens, Cecile de France, Guy Marchand, Andre Wilms.

The story: Sharp French comedy about lonely 45-year-old bomb disposal expert, a widower who has to deal with a pregnant daughter while searching for his own biological father.

Rating and timing: M, 100 minutes.

Who it's for: Fans of French films and intelligent comic tales.

Buzz: Well-acted charmer about the complications of families.


Director: Rachel Talalay who has moved into TV – including the Dr Who series – since the films Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare and Tank Girl.

Stars: Peter Capaldi, Jodie Whittaker, David Bradley.

The story: This Christmas special is the last appearance of Capaldi as the Twelfth Doctor – he joins the First Dr on an adventure involving aliens stealing victims from frozen time – before the arrival of Whittaker as number 13.

Rating and timing: M, 103 minutes including two shorts.

Who it's for: Hardcore Doctor Who fans given it's also on TV.

Buzz: One British review called it "a surprisingly slight tale", beefed up by special features celebrating Capaldi's time as the Dr and Steven Moffat's as showrunner and lead writer.