18th: Glass – Producer/ Writer/ Director M. Night Shyamalan made the biggest hit of his career (The Sixth Sense) before he was 30. He followed it up with Unbreakable before slowly dropping off into obscurity, reaching his critical nadir with the Will Smith bomb After Earth before rebuilding his career most recently with the smash hit Split. Now after a 20+ year career he completes his hidden trilogy that will either cement his comeback or send him back into obscurity. Early reviews are mixed to say the least, but Shyamalan is an interesting case where many of his critical failures (The Happening, The Last Airbender) find not only commercial success, but fascination among film fans and at the very least culturally embedded memes.
25th: Resident Evil 2: REmake – [PC, PS4, XBO] – The PlayStation One classic gets a sleek modern update with a new engine and third person controls.
The original Resident Evil 2 debuted in 1998 and was highly well received. It was however a game my mother would not allow us kids to play due to its darkly violent nature as told by other those around her. She was right, as I was five years old at the time. I got into the series when it debuted on Xbox 360 for RE5 and then went back to 4 following its PlayStation 3 remaster. I reviewed the recent VII installment on this site. When I approached visiting the early entries in the series (1-3) I was put off by the tank controls which were maintained for the Resident Evil 1 Remake. Fortunately, this re-do takes the third person shooter approach of Resident Evils 4-6. Having a modern gen-version of a game released on its 21st anniversary will hopefully be a slam dunk.
29th: Kingdom Hearts 3 – The month closes out with one of the most anticipated games in recent memory, Square Enix‘s long awaited follow-up to the 2005 game which takes a Final Fantasy-style Japanese-Role-Playing-Game (JRPG) approach to the Disney canon. I have never played the series, but between the first and second my friends in elementary school never shut up about it. Between the release of the second and now its presence has achieved a mythic white whale quality by the gaming community, at least until January 29th when the toy box opens back up again.