Even though it still feels like summer where we live, the calendar says it’s actually fall, the season for Good Movies (early winter, even moreso). So here goes a quick rundown of the ones I’m most curious about.
A Single Shot (9/20)
Sam Rockwell as a hunter who accidentally shoots a woman, then finds a stash of cash nearby and tries to keep it. I just watched and loved A Simple Plan, and though this sounds like more of the same, I’ll check it out on cable or streaming at least. Plus I’m eager for more of the versatile and magnetic Rockwell.
Dramatization of humorist David Sedaris’ trek as a young man to work at an Oregon apple farm. Sedaris’ view of life is always amusing, and it’ll be a treat to see his withering take on the folks in America’s heartland.
Romeo and Juliet 10/11
I’m on the fence about this one and looks like it’s getting middling reviews, but I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt. Halee Steinfeld’s brilliant as proven in True Grit, and I hear the screenwriter’s pretty good too… Bill Shake-something.
The Fifth Estate 10/18
Enigmatic actor plays enigmatic public figure: BBC’s Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch as Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. Unless this gets terrible reviews, I’m absolutely there with my popcorn.
I’ve been seeing trailers for this all year and can’t believe it’s only coming out this month, though it makes sense to time it for Halloween. Looks truly creepy and apparently they’ve given Carrie’s mom a bit (Julianne Moore) more character development. I worry it’ll be too great a spectacle and lose the quietly vengeful intimacy. But it’s always fun to watch the talented Chloe Moretz play the sweet/sinister duality.
Screenwriter Diablo Cody (Juno) in her directing debut; tale of a straitlaced midwestern gal who wins a huge cash settlement and decides to go to Vegas to live a little; she chooses Russell Brand to show her around. Could be a disaster but looks like Julianne Hough is giving just the right amount of naivete (eg not too much).
The Counselor 10/25
Ridley Scott (Prometheus) has been making sci-fi and action epics for so long, it’ll be interesting to see him delve into a more modestly scaled thriller, even if it is about Latin American drug dealing. Script by Cormac McCarthy, and a stellar cast (Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz, Javier Bardem, Michael Fassbender). Could be great (for me anyway).
How I Live Now 11/8
Saoirse Ronan as a teen trekking through the countryside during World War 3, based on a dystopian YA book by Meg Rosoff. A teen version of The Road, perhaps? Whatever, I’m on board, and it seems to be well-reviewed already.
The Book Thief 11/15
Another YA adaptation, sure to get in a theatrical train wreck with the above film since it’s out a week later. This is historical fiction about a German girl stealing, reading, and loving books during the Second World War (sounds just right for this blog!). The novel is much admired, as is the film thus far. Lucy suggested this and I’m certainly intrigued.
The Delivery Man 11/22
Vince Vaughan, that loveable man-child, arrogant yet vulnerable, the thinking man’s Will Ferrell, perhaps. Yet Vaughan has tended to underdeliver (!) since his debut in Swingers decades ago; he needs exactly the right vehicle to shine. Here he plays a sperm donor who discovers he’s the birth father of hundreds of kids—and sets out to secretly make life wonderful for each of them. If it works it’ll be a charmer, and looks like the studio’s confident in it with this Thanksgiving release window.
Hunger Games: Catching Fire 11/22
My least favorite of the original trilogy, though still brilliant. I recall it as Katniss thinking “Fame sucks… not sure about this Peeta guy… wait, we’re doing the Games again… on a beach?” But I also remember enjoying the portrayal of and affection for the other Tribute/competitors. Loved the first film to pieces, and even with a new director I hope this burns as brightly. (!)
Adaptation of a legendary South Korean action pic; Josh Brolin as a man held captive for decades and suddenly released who decides to track down his captors. Looks like a lotta revenge killing to me, but Spike Lee tends to shine when working with outside material, so I’ll give it a shot.
Check back soon to see Andrew’s December movie picks and the fall/winter movies he’s curiously indifferent towards.