Summer is coming to an end, and while it is a tough pill to swallow, we have the fall season to fall back into (yes that pun is intentional). The leaves are changing, we get sweater weather, and everything comes with pumpkin spice. Also, there’s a great selection of movies to look forward to. The misconception is that once the summer movie season ends, there isn’t a lot going on – that couldn’t be further from the truth. So here’s a list of the top ten movies to get you excited for the fall season this year.
10. Lucy in the Sky | 4th October 2019
Natalie Portman stars as Lucy, an astronaut who finds that being in space is transcendental but has a hard time adjusting to reality back on the ground.
This will be the first film from Noah Hawley, the creator of the critically acclaimed shows like Fargo and Legion. Hawley has an amazing eye for translating a character’s mental state into beautiful visions, and we get a tiny glimpse of this in the trailer. Lucy’s view of the world as small and constricting is accomplished through Hawley’s playing around with aspect ratio. This style, combined with Portman’s performance, makes this movie a must-see.
9. Doctor Sleep | 8th November 2019
Originally, this movie wasn’t on my radar as a sequel to The Shining didn’t seem that interesting. Then they announced that Mike Flanagan would be directing. Getting the same guy who’s done Hush and Gerald’s Game can only mean good things as he’s fantastic in psychological horror. Then the trailer dropped and it forced this film on my radar.
Doctor Sleep just oozes a sublime feeling about it. The horror seemingly comes from the psychological toll that Danny deals with, leaving you with feelings of unease. Maybe not the best movie to watch if you want to fall asleep after.
8. Zombieland: Double Tap | 18th October 2019
It’s been ten years since the first Zombieland movie, and we never thought we would get a sequel after having to wait so long. I guess good things come to those who wait. There’s always a worry that comedy sequels try too hard and miss what made the original film fun in the first place.
From the trailer, it looks like Zombieland: Double Tap hasn’t missed a beat with the characters that we love, especially when they explore the world while having fun. I can watch a whole movie of them hanging out at the White House and be satisfied. It has the potential to not only live up to the original film, it could also surpass it.
7. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood | 22nd November 2019
Admittedly, the movie does seem a little cliché with the whole “based on a true story” angle. The story is set around the friendship of Mister Rodgers (Tom Hanks) and Lloyd Vogel (Matthew Rhys), a journalist writing a profile on him.
Tom Hanks as Mister Rodgers is perfect casting; Hollywood’s most lovable actor cast as America’s most lovable person just makes sense. There’s a good chance that Hanks is going to get an Oscar nomination and, if we’re going off the trailer, he deserves it.
6. Knives Out | 27th November 2019
This might be the closest Thanksgiving movie we get this year. At a big family gathering hosted by Harlan Thrombrey (Christopher Plummer), things take a turn when the host is murdered. Now the gathering becomes a whodunit as Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) tries to solve the case.
This is very much director Rian Johnson’s version of an Agatha Christie novel. Just like a Christie story, it has an amazing ensemble like Chris Evans, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Toni Collette, Lakeith Stanfield, and many more. The tone is just right with the classic whodunit mixed with lots of black comedy. Sounds like the right movie to see on Thanksgiving weekend.
5. Jojo Rabbit | 18th October 2019
Directed by Taika Waititi, the movie is about Jojo, a boy in the Hitler Youth that discovers his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in their attic. Oh, and Jojo’s imaginary friend is Adolf Hitler (Taika Waititi), who is simply idiotic.
Waititi possesses the ability to balance quirky humor and drama that brings out a lot of heart which it looks like JoJo Rabbit will have. This is destined to become another great film of his.
4. Frozen 2 | 22nd November 2019
Talk about big expectations for just one movie. When Frozen came out, it broke the world. It broke records too, with songs like “Let it Go” and “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” put on repeat and according to made $1.2 billion.
Disney took 6 years to bring the sequel to screen. They could have rushed out a sequel to make a quick buck but instead took the time to develop something families and fans of the first movie could enjoy. The animation looks stunning, especially how they animate fall. The colors are visually stirring and make a great contrast from the harsh winter aesthetic. While it’s a continuation of the first movie, it seems that the filmmakers are trying to make this sequel stand on its own.
3. The Lighthouse | 18th October 2019
Not much is known about the story, but we do know that it stars Robert Pattinson and William Dafoe as lighthouse keepers who slowly start losing their sanity. The movie is in black and white and just from the little glimpse we’ve seen from the trailer, the cinematography is going to be gorgeous. Also, the aspect ratio is 1.19 to 1 and it’s such a great visual choice as the film looks like it’s been pulled from the 20s with the picture being small and tight.
While captivating, the aspect ratio also helps to set this claustrophobic mood about the movie, amplifying the stress and anxiety. The Lighthouse looks like it’ll be a great art-house horror film just in time for Halloween.
2. IT Chapter Two | 6th September 2019
When IT came out in 2017, it became one of my favorite horror films of recent years. My anticipation for its sequel is sky-high as I eagerly jump on every single piece of footage that comes out. The casting for the adult versions of the kids is just perfect, with stars like James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, and Bill Hader to round out this exciting ensemble.
While some might be disappointed that the kids aren’t the focus, it does set up an interesting look at trauma instead of a coming of age story. Of course, they must stand against Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård), who already looks even more entertaining than before. It looks like this will have the scares, humor, and heart that we all loved in the first movie.
1. Joker | 4th October 2019
It looks like clowns are dominating this fall, with Joker being the most anticipated movie for the season. Joker initially met with a lot of backlash as fans of the character argued that knowing too much about him ruins the appeal of the character. In hindsight, that makes this movie more interesting. They’re not adapting any specific story and they get the opportunity to create their own version. Fans started to change their tune with the casting of Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker.
To get someone as eccentric and out there as Joaquin Phoenix is genius casting, especially with his enthusiasm as he wanted to do a comic book movie that had an independent feel. It does feel like this movie takes a lot of influence from Martin Scorsese, with films like Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy coming to mind. They even got Robert De Niro for this movie.
Usually, this kind of movie wouldn’t be considered for the mainstream, but Warner Bros is smart to make it distinct from the DCEU. It looks like that decision will pay off as Joker is receiving critical acclaim and even received an eight-minute standing ovation at the Venice Film Festival. The praise has arrived at the point where Joker is starting to get major award buzz with critics saying that Phoenix is in contention for an Oscar nomination. Even if it doesn’t get any nominations, I’m sure Joker will be fondly remembered as a game-changer for years to come.
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