OPENING DECEMBER 25

OK, men, listen up: I’m about to save your movie-goin’ asses. After your girlfriend or your sister or your Aunt Shirley has polished off the eggnog and is fighting the effects of cabin fever, she’ll probably start talking about a Christmas trip to the flicks. More than likely, your immediate choices will be feel-good pap like Patch Adams or Stepmom. But don’t panic: That’s when you subtly mention The Faculty, the high-octane thriller directed by Robert (Desperado) Rodriguez and penned by Scream scribe Kevin Williamson. Expect initial resistance, especially since The Faculty’s trailers make the movie look like The Breakfast Club with tentacles. But do yourself a favor and sell it this way: “No, no, baby, you got it all wrong. The director—a close personal friend of Antonio Banderas, I might add—is a master at making violence look like ballet. Plus, the guy who wrote the screenplay does Dawson’s Creek. And, uh, I think Pacey’s in this, too!” Feliz Navidad, boys. At area theaters; see Showtimes for details. (Sean Daly)