12 Films You Should Be Looking Forward To This Fall

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Some may find the autumn a bit of a cinematic waste land, standing between the summer blockbuster season and the press of releases vying for awards consideration during the holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Years. But over the next few months there are still a number of promising films being released that should command your interest until then. Here are a dozen films that we are looking forward to seeing…

Sully (September 9) On paper, this film looks Oscar worthy. It has a multipleĀ Oscar-winning director (Clint Eastwood) directing a multiple Oscar-winning actor (Tom Hanks) in a true story ripped from recent headlines (the emergency landing of US Airways Flight 1549 in the Husaon River, and its aftermath). However, early September is not necessarily Oscar season. This could be a sign of no confidence in the film, but with Eastwood and Hanks on board, it should be at least interesting. — William Gatevackes

The Magnificent Seven (September 23) Denzel Washington reuniting with his Training Day co-star Ethan Hawke and director Antoine Fuqua would be enough to create the buzz needed to propel this remake 0f a remake onto one’s radar. However, lucking into Chris Pratt becoming a international superstar between the time he was cast and the time shooting began makes this a film we really want to see. The trailer just confirmed this for us all. — WG

Masterminds (September 30) Back in 2004 when Napoleon Dynamite first hit theaters , I wondered if its director Jared Hess was going to be the next new major voice in comedy. Well, things did not work out quite that way with his subsequent films, the trailer for this Masterminds gives us hope that he could be getting back on track. With a cast that includes Kristen Wiig, Jason Sudeikis, Zack Galifianakis, Kate McKinnon, Owen Wilson, Leslie Jones and Ken Marino the deck is sure stacked for this comedic tale of an armored car heist to deliver the laughs. — Rich Drees

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (September 30) It might be easier to write this film off as a creepier version of the X-Men, or the latest lame attempt to bring a popular line of young adult novels to the big screen. However, the film is written by Jane Goldman, who has added pop to comic book films such as Stardust, the Kick-Ass films, and Matthew Vaughn’s X-Films. It is directed by Tim Burton, the master of the quirky, weird and macabre. Both are an excellent fit for the material. That rises it to the ranks of the “must see.” — WG

The Birth Of A Nation (October 7) The fact that this debut film from writer/actor/director Nate Parker won two awards at the Sundance Film Festival earlier in the year as well as landed the biggest distribution deal ever at the festival should have been enough to mark The Birth Of a Nation – with its subversive re-appropriation of the title of D.W. Griffith’s 1915 ode to the Klu Klux Klan for its story of the Nat Turner slave revolt of 1831 – as a must-see film once it hit theaters. However, some of the discussion around the film now is focused on rape allegations from 1999 that both Parker and co-writer Jean McGianni Celestin were acquitted, giving rise once again to the debate of whether it is appropriate to separate the art from the artist. Either way, this will probably one of the more talked about films as we head into awards season. — RD

The Girl on a Train (October 7) Turning buzz books into films has become a successful exercise in Hollywood. In 2014, Gone Girl was released to rave reviews, Oscar-nominations, and over $361 million in world wide grosses. Last year, Fifty Shades of Grey did worse with the critics but much better at the box office, setting the stage for two sequels. This year’s model is this film, adapted from 2015’s most talked about book. Can lightning strike three times? — WG

Tower (October 7) This summer marked the fiftieth anniversary of engineering student Charles Whitman climbing into the bell tower of the main building at the University of Texas at Austin and opened fire with a rifle. When he was done 96 minutes later there were 14 people dead, an additional 32 others wounded and a nation reeling, trying to come to grips with the first mass murder in its history. Director Keith Maitland takes eyewitness testimony from the fateful day and marries to a combination of archival footage and rotoscopic animation to explore that day whose repercussions still reverberate through our society today.

Tower

The Accountant (October 14) Ben Affleck has garnered a lot of respect for his directing as of late, but his acting talentĀ is still climbing out of the crater of public opinion that Gigli made for it. This film might put Affleck the actor back on the map. In it, he plays a forensic accountant who usually works for criminals but is trying to go straight. But his legit job turns out to be far more dangerous than wouking for the bad guys. With support from J.K. Simmons and Anna Kendrick, this might be a film that gets Affleck Oscar-notice. — WG

Miss Hokusai (October 16) This summer saw the release of Kubo And The Two Strings, an animated feature that many, including us, have been saying is a strong contender for Best Animated Feature at this year’s Academy Awards. If the film were to have any competition in that category, it could conceivably come from Miss Hokusai. An episodic examination of the relationship between Japanese painter Katsushika Hokusai and his daughter O-ei, the film has been getting strong reviews out of 2015’s Fantasia Film Festival and last July’s New York Asian Film Festival for its depiction of their complex relationship that often flew in the face of societal norms and artistic struggles. — RD

Certain Women Much like Woody Allen has New York City, Richard Linklater has Texas or Kevin Smith New Jersey, Kelly Reichardt (Meek’s Cutoff, Wendy And Lucy) has the Pacific Northwest as the milieu wherein she sets her films. Based on the short stories of Malie Meloy, Reichardt’s latest, Certain Women, interweaves the story of three women – Laura Dern, Michelle Williams and Kristen Stewart – and their struggles to define themselves in the modern world. But this is certainly story material that transcends the film’s regional setting. And with Reichardt behind the camera, except strong performances from all three leads as well as newcomer Lily Gladstone. — RD

Doctor Strange (November 4) The best thing about Marvel films is that they are comic book movies that hold up as other movies as well. Whether it be a tech thriller (Iron Man), space-faring romp (Guardians of the Galaxy) or political thriller (Captain America: The Winter Soldier), the films hold up as examples of great films in those genres as well as great comic book films. This one seems to be Marvel pushing boundaries as they appear to be delivering a trippy , psychedelic examination of the world of magic. Can’t wait to see what we get. — WG

Loving (November 4) If you are not familiar with Jeff Nichols’ previous films like Shotgun Stories, Mud, or Take Shelter, you know that the singular storyteller is at home exploring the South and its people, its complicated history and how that impacts life there today. It seems a natural fit to the true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple whose marriage was legally challenged by the state of Virginia citing a 1924 anti-miscegenation statute, and how they fought back all the way up to the Supreme Court. — RD

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