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story.lead_photo.caption Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell in the movie "The Christmas Chronicles: Part Two." (Joseph Lederer/Netflix/TNS)

In a year like no other, when most high-profile releases are tagged "Do not open until 2021," there will still be new movies this holiday season stretching from Thanksgiving to Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January. The trick is knowing where to find them. Across streaming services, on-demand platforms, virtual cinemas and even actual cinemas (where theaters are open), will be Oscar contenders, action and horror flicks, comedies and thrillers, as well as international titles, animation and documentaries to break up your virtual family get-togethers.

Release dates are subject to change.

Running now

The Princess Switch: Switched Again

Vanessa Hudgens reprises her dual roles in this sequel to the 2018 rom-com about a Chicago baker who trades places with her royal look-alike. Directed by Mike Rohl. Streaming. Netflix


Documentary about a team of investigative reporters at a Romanian newspaper. Directed by Alexander Nanau. Theaters and VOD. Magnolia Pictures


Russian comedy written and directed by Sergei Loznitsa. Virtual cinemas. Film Movement


A young man has a rocky relationship with his father, an MMA fighter, in this drama. With Stephen Dorff, Darren Mann, Donald Faison, Karrueche Tran. Directed by Nick Sarkisov. Theaters and VOD. IFC Films


A young woman tangles with a small-town sheriff when she investigates the murder of her abusive father in this drama. With Bella Thorne, Mickey Rourke. Written and directed by Chad Faust. Theaters; VOD, Nov. 24. Screen Media

Iron Mask

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jackie Chan have supporting roles in this martial-arts fantasy about a cartographer who travels to 18th century China. With Jason Flemyng. Directed by Oleg Stepchenko. Digital and VOD. Lionsgate

Jiu Jitsu

Nicolas Cage and Tony Jaa star in this fantasy about martial-arts masters defending Earth from alien invaders. With Frank Grillo, Rick Yune, Marie Avgeropoulos. Directed by Dimitri Logothetis. Theaters, digital and VOD. The Avenue

Koshien: Japan's Field of Dreams

Documentary about Japan's national high school baseball championship. Directed by Ema Ryan Yamazaki. Virtual cinemas. First Run Features

The Last Vermeer

Fact-based drama about an art forger who duped the Nazis. With Guy Pearce, Claes Bang, Vicky Krieps. Directed by Dan Friedkin. Theaters. TriStar Pictures

Markie in Milwaukee

Documentary about a transgender woman from a conservative Midwest family. Directed by Matt Kliegman. Virtual cinemas Icarus Films


A chronically ill teen grows suspicious of her overprotective mother in this thriller. With Sarah Paulson, Kiera Allen, Pat Healy, Erik Athavale. Written by Aneesh Chaganty, Sev Ohanian. Directed by Chaganty. Streaming. Hulu


Documentary profiles billionaire philanthropist and Holocaust survivor George Soros. Directed by Jesse Dylan. VOD. Abramorama

Sound of Metal

Drama about a hard-rock drummer who begins to suffer severe hearing loss. With Riz Ahmed, Olivia Cooke, Paul Raci. Directed by Darius Marder. Screenplay by Darius Marder and Abraham Marder. Theaters; Amazon Prime, Dec. 4. Amazon Studios

Team Marco

A young boy learns to play bocce ball from his Italian American grandfather in this family comedy. With Owen Vaccaro, Anthony Patellis. Directed by Julio Vincent Gambuto. Virtual cinemas and PVOD. Samuel Goldwyn Films

The Twentieth Century

The rise of former Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie King is reimagined in this comedic fable. With Dan Beirne, Sarianne Cormier. Written and directed by Matthew Rankin. Virtual cinemas. Oscilloscope Laboratories


Jackie Chan plays the head of a covert security company in this globetrotting action thriller. Directed by Stanley Tong. Theaters. Gravitas Ventures

Words Can't Go There

Documentary profiles John Kaizan Neptune, a California surfer turned master of the traditional Japanese flute called the shakuhachi. Directed by David Neptune. VOD. Sky Castle Pictures


Documentary recalls the life and times of comic actor and "SNL" star John Belushi. With Dan Aykroyd, Jim Belushi, Chevy Chase, John Landis. Directed by R.J. Cutler. Cable and streaming. Showtime Documentary Films

Shawn Mendes: In Wonder

Documentary profiles the chart-topping singer-songwriter. Directed by Grant Singer. Streaming. Netflix

Buddy Games

Comedy with Dan Bakkedahl, Kevin Dillon, Josh Duhamel, Olivia Munn, James Roday Rodriguez, Dax Shepard and Nick Swardson. Directed by Duhamel. Digital and VOD. Saban Films/Paramount Pictures

Hillbilly Elegy

Glenn Close and Amy Adams star in director Ron Howard's drama about three generations of one Appalachian family. Based on the memoir by J.D. Vance. Streaming. Netflix

Saul & Ruby's Holocaust Survivor Band

Documentary about two Jewish musicians in their 90s who return to Poland for a concert. Directed by Tod Lending. Digital and VOD. Samuel Goldwyn Films

She Is the Ocean

Documentary about female divers, surfers, etc. Directed by Inna Blohina. VOD. Blue Fox Entertainment

The Christmas Chronicles: Part Two

Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn reprise their roles as Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus in this sequel to the 2018 holiday comedy. Directed by Chris Columbus. Streaming. Netflix

The Croods: A New Age

Nicolas Cage, Ryan Reynolds and Emma Stone reprise their voice roles in this sequel to the 2013 animated comedy about a prehistoric family. Directed by Joel Crawford. Theaters. Universal Pictures

Happiest Season

A young woman learns her girlfriend still hasn't come out to her conservative family in this holiday rom-com. With Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Davis, Alison Brie, Aubrey Plaza, Dan Levy, Mary Steenburgen, Victor Garber, Ana Gasteyer. Directed by Clea Duvall. Streaming. Hulu

Last Call

Rhys Ifans portrays Welsh poet Dylan Thomas in this biographical drama. With John Malkovich, Rodrigo Santoro, Romola Garai, Tony Hale, Zosia Mamet. Written and directed by Steven Bernstein. Theaters. K Street Pictures

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Viola Davis portrays the legendary blues singer in this musical drama costarring the late Chadwick Boseman and based on the August Wilson play. Directed by George C. Wolfe. Theaters; streaming, Dec. 18. Netflix

The Mystery of D.B. Cooper

Documentary investigates the case of the 1970s skyjacker who parachuted out of a plane midflight and then vanished without a trace. Directed by John Dower. Cable and streaming on HBO Max. HBO Documentary Films


Biographical drama recalls how rock icon David Bowie created his early-'70s alter ego Ziggy Stardust. With Johnny Flynn, Marc Maron, Jena Malone. Written by Gabriel Range and Christopher Bell. Directed by Range. Theaters and VOD. IFC Films

Uncle Frank

A Southern teen visits her gay uncle in 1970s NYC. With Paul Bettany, Sophia Lillis, Margo Martindale, Steve Zahn, Judy Greer. Written and directed by Alan Ball. Streaming. Amazon Prime


An ordinary woman is chosen to interact with a potentially malevolent form of artificial intelligence in this comedy. With Melissa McCarthy, Bobby Cannavale, Brian Tyree Henry, Jean Smart, James Corden. Written by Steve Mallory. Directed by Ben Falcone. Streaming. HBO Max

Dance Dreams: Hot Chocolate Nutcracker

Documentary spotlights choreographer Debbie Allen's reimagined version of the holiday favorite. Directed by Oliver Bokelberg. Streaming. Netflix


A New Jersey drug kingpin tries to hold on to his empire in this crime drama. With Lance Gross, Macy Gray, Jeremy Meeks. Written and directed by Preston A. Whitmore II; based on a novel by Teri Woods. Theaters. Imani Media Group

Kill It and Leave This Town

A traumatized man seeks solace in a fantasy world of his own imagination in this black-and-white animated fable from Poland. Directed by Mariusz Wilczynski. Virtual cinemas. Outsider Pictures


Local forces fight to free the Iraqi city from the grip of the terrorist organization Islamic State in this docudrama. Written and directed by Matthew Michael Carnahan. Streaming on Netflix. 101 Studios

Princess of the Row

A young girl runs away from foster care to live on L.A.'s skid row with her mentally unstable father in this drama. With Edi Gathegi, Martin Sheen, Tayler Buck, Ana Ortiz. Directed by Van Maximilian Carlson. Theaters, digital and VOD. Gravitas Ventures


Musical iconoclast Frank Zappa is profiled in this rock doc directed by Alex Winter. Featuring Gail Zappa, Mike Keneally, Ian Underwood, Steve Vai, Pamela Des Barres, Bunk Gardner, David Harrington, Scott Thunes, Ruth Underwood, Ray White and others. Theaters and VOD. Magnolia Pictures

Nov. 29

My Psychedelic Love Story

Director Errol Morris' documentary on LSD guru Timothy Leary is presented from the perspective of Leary's Swiss-born, Paris-raised lover, Joanna Harcourt-Smith. Cable and streaming. Showtime Documentary Films

Dec. 1

Doin' My Drugs

Documentary about an HIV-positive musician and activist in Zambia. Directed by Tyler Q. Rosen. Digital and VOD. Freestyle Digital Media

The Mystery of the Flamingo

Comic documentary directed by Javier Polo Gandia. Featuring John Waters, Eduardo Casanova, Allee Willis, Rigo Pex, Kero Kero Bonito. VOD. 1091


An immigrant couple falls in love against the backdrop of a labor strike in 1919 Canada in this musical drama based on the stage musical "Strike!" With Marshall Williams, Laura Slade Wiggins. Directed by Robert Adetuyi. Theaters, one-night event. Fathom Events

Dec. 2


Documentary profiles the mayor of the West Bank city of Ramallah. Directed by David Osit. Theaters. Film Movement

The Midnight Sky

George Clooney directs and stars in this postapocalyptic sci-fi drama about an Arctic scientist seeking to warn a team of returning astronauts of a global disaster. With Felicity Jones, Kyle Chandler, David Oyelowo. Theaters; streaming, Dec. 23 Netflix

Dec. 3

Anything for Jackson

A couple's scheme to resurrect their dead grandson has unforeseen consequences in this supernatural thriller. With Yannick Bisson, Josh Cruddas, Konstantina Mantelos, Sheila McCarthy, Julian Richings. Written by Keith Cooper. Directed by Justin G. Dyck. Streaming. Shudder

Tripping With Nils Frahm

The composer-performer gives a concert at Berlin Funkhaus in the German capital in this music documentary. Directed by Benoit Toulemonde. Streaming. Mubi

Dec. 4

All My Life

A couple's wedding plans are upended when the groom is diagnosed with cancer in this drama. With Jessica Rothe, Harry Shum Jr., Kyle Allen, Chrissie Fit, Jay Pharoah, Marielle Scott, Keala Settle. Written by Todd Rosenberg. Directed by Marc Meyers. Theaters. Universal Pictures

Another Round

Dark comedy with Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Magnus Millang, Lars Ranthe. Written by Thomas Vinterberg and Tobias Lindholm. Directed by Vinterberg. Theaters; VOD, Dec. 18. Samuel Goldwyn


Documentary profiles jazz singer Billie Holiday. Directed by James Erskine. Theaters and VOD. Greenwich Entertainment

Black Bear

An actress-filmmaker plays twisted games with a couple while at a retreat in the Adirondacks in this drama. With Aubrey Plaza, Christopher Abbott, Sarah Gadon. Written and directed by Lawrence Michael Levine. Theaters and VOD. Momentum Pictures

The Changin' Times of Ike White

Documentary follows the R&B musician, who recorded an acclaimed album while in prison in the 1970s, through life after his release. Directed by Dan Vernon. Theaters and virtual cinemas. Kino Lorber

Crock of Gold — A Few Rounds With Shane Macgowan

Documentary on the lead singer and songwriter of the Pogues directed by Julien Temple, with animation from illustrator Ralph Steadman. Digital and VOD. Magnolia Pictures

Dear Santa

Documentary salutes the United States Postal Service's century-old program that seeks to fulfill children's Christmas wishes. Directed by Dana Nachman. Theaters and PVOD. IFC Films

40 Years a Prisoner

Documentary follows one man's four-decade quest to free his parents following the police raid on the Black activist group MOVE in Philadelphia in 1978. Directed by Tommy Oliver. Theaters; cable and streaming on HBO Max, Dec. 8. HBO Documentary Films


An aspiring fairy godmother comes to the aid of a widowed single mom in Boston in this fantasy comedy. With Jillian Bell, Isla Fisher, Jane Curtin. Directed by Sharon Maguire. Streaming. Disney+

Half Brothers

A Mexican man learns he has an American half-brother in this Spanish-language comedy. With Luis Gerardo Mendez, Connor Del Rio, Vincent Spano. Directed by Luke Greenfield. Theaters. Focus Features

I'm Your Woman

Rachel Brosnahan stars as a woman who goes on the lam with her baby after her husband betrays his criminal partners in this thriller. Directed by Julia Hart. Theaters; Amazon Prime, Dec. 11. Amazon Studios

La Leyenda Negra

An undocumented Salvadoran teen living in Compton fights deportation in this drama. With Monica Betancourt, Kailei Lopez, Irlanda Moreno. Written and directed by Patricia Vidal Delgado. Theaters, HBO and HBO Max. HBO

Love, Weddings & Other Disasters

A caterer, a wedding planner and others find love in this romantic comedy. With Diane Keaton, Jeremy Irons, Maggie Grace, Jesse McCartney, Chandra West, Diego Boneta, Andrew Bachelor. Written and directed by Dennis Dugan. Theaters/VOD. Saban Films


Andrea Riseborough stars as a British aid worker who encounters an archaeologist — her former lover — when she returns to the ancient Egyptian city of Luxor. With Karim Saleh and Michael Landes. Written and directed by Zeina Durra. Virtual cinemas, digital and VOD. Samuel Goldwyn Films


Gary Oldman portrays "Citizen Kane" screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz in director David Fincher's black-and-white bio-drama. With Tom Burke, Amanda Seyfried, Lily Collins, Tuppence Middleton and Charles Dance. Streaming. Netflix

Minor Premise

Sci-fi with Sathya Sridharan, Paton Ashbrook and Dana Ashbrook. Directed by Eric Schultz. Theaters, virtual cinemas, digital and VOD. Utopia

Museum Town

Documentary about an economically depressed former mill town in Massachusetts reborn as a venue for contemporary art. Narrated by Meryl Streep. With Nick Cave, David Byrne, James Turrell. Directed by Jennifer Trainer. Virtual cinemas. Kino Lorber

Music Got Me Here

Documentary about a dedicated music therapist who bonds with a teen who has a traumatic brain injury. Directed by Susan Koch. Virtual cinemas. First Run Features


Frances McDormand stars as a down-on-her-luck Nevada woman who hits the road in her van in this drama. Written and directed by Chloe Zhao, based on the nonfiction book by Jessica Bruder. Theaters. Searchlight Pictures

The Prom

Broadway types assemble in support of an Indiana teen who wants to take her girlfriend to the prom in this star-studded LGBTQ-themed musical comedy directed by Ryan Murphy. With Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Jo Ellen Pellman, James Corden, Kerry Washington, Andrew Rannells, Keegan-Michael Key. Theaters; streaming, Dec. 11. Netflix

76 Days

Documentary examines the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in Wuhan, China. Directed by Weixi Chen, Hao Wu. Virtual cinemas. MTV Documentary Films

Smiley Face Killers

A young man is menaced by a hooded stranger in this thriller written by Bret Easton Ellis. With Crispin Glover, Ronen Rubinstein, Mia Serafino. Directed by Tim Hunter. Theaters and VOD. Lionsgate


A mentally disturbed detective sees parallels between his latest case and the death of his daughter years earlier in this mystery thriller. With Aaron Eckhart, Katheryn Winnick, Heather Graham, Tommy Lee Jones. Written by Tim Doiron. Directed by April Mullen. Theaters, digital and VOD. Saban Films

What Lies Below

A teen suspects something is off about her mother's seemingly perfect fiance in this sci-fi thriller. With Ema Horvath, Trey Tucker, Mena Suvari. Written and directed by Braden R. Duemmler. Digital and VOD. Vertical Entertainment

Dec. 8


A geologist warns of an impending volcanic eruption on a tropical island in this disaster thriller. With Jason Isaacs, Hannah Quinlivan, Xueqi Wang, Shawn Dou. Directed by Simon West. Theaters and VOD. Screen Media

Dec. 9

Alabama Snake

Documentary directed by Theo Love. Cable and streaming on HBO Max. HBO Documentary Films

The Incredible Story of Rose Island

Comedy directed by Sydney Sibilia. Streaming. Netflix

Dec. 10

Funny Boy

A gay teen comes of age in Sri Lanka in the 1970s and '80s in this Canadian drama based on Shyam Selvadurai's novel. Directed by Deepa Mehta. Streaming on Netflix. Array

Dec. 11


Action thriller with Joe Manganiello, Skylan Brooks, Zolee Griggs, Amy Seimetz, Glenn Howerton. Written and directed by Adam Egypt Mortimer. Theaters, digital and VOD. RLJE Films


Documentary examines the assassination of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un's half-brother in Malaysia in 2017. Directed by Ryan White. Theaters and virtual cinemas; VOD, Jan. 15. Greenwich Entertainment


A French woman explores her Algerian heritage in this drama written, directed by and starring Maiwenn. With Fanny Ardant, Louis Garrel, Dylan Robert, Florent Lacger, Marine Vacth, Henri-Noel Tabary. Streaming. Netflix

Farewell Amor

After many years apart, an Angolan immigrant is joined in the U.S. by his wife and daughter in this drama. With Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine, Zainab Jah, Jayme Lawson, Joie Lee. Written and directed by Ekwa Msangi. Theaters, digital and VOD. IFC Films

Finding Yingying

Documentary about a student from China who disappeared after coming to the U.S. to attend college. Directed by Jiayan Shi. Virtual cinemas. MTV Documentary Films

Giving Voice

Documentary visits the annual August Wilson Monologue Competition. With Viola Davis. Directed by James D. Stern, Fernando Villena. Streaming. Netflix


Experimental documentary set on a farm. Directed by Victor Kossakovsky. Virtual cinemas, qualifying run; full release, 2021. Neon

Ip Man: Kung Fu Master

Prequel to the action film franchise about the famed martial arts instructor. With Yu-Hang To. Directed by Li Liming. Theaters and VOD. Magnet Releasing


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