Spoiler alert: The summer is over. This means that the popcorn confections are moved aside and in their stead the studios release big, award baiting movies. Some of these movies are bad and some of them are nice but too full of self-importance to really get a movie nerd like me all hot and bothered.
Then there are these movies.
SICARIO (September 25th)
The one-two punch of Denis Villeneuve’s PRISONERS and ENEMY was a spectacular introduction for me into one of the most interesting filmmakers currently working. The reviews for this film have been stellar, the cast is top-notch, and I’m excited to see what the director does with the word Sicario. It’s a great word. Don’t know what it means, but that hasn’t dampened my excitement for the film.
BRIDGE OF SPIES (October 16th)
It’s a new Steven Spielberg movie! What more is there to say? I mean, I could tell you that it has Tom Hanks in it. That is something I could tell you. But I won’t. I could also tell you that it has Amy Ryan and Alan Alda in it. I feel bad about not telling you about Tom Hanks, so I will give you that one. All in all this thing looks great and it’s always a joy to see the masters at work.
STEVE JOBS (October 9th)
Danny Boyle is directing the words of Aaron Sorkin out of the mouths of Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen, and Jeff Daniels. If that doesn’t get you a little riled up, I don’t know what to do for you. I think Netflix is releasing one of those Adam Sandler movies that they are making fifteen of this fall. Go watch that. You deserve it.
THE MARTIAN (October 2nd)
Andy Wier’s THE MARTIAN is easily the best book that I’ve read this year. Matt Damon as Mark Watney is what I would consider “perfect casting.” The rest of the cast is pretty (inter)stellar as well. Ridley Scott is a director who has some early classics under his belt, but most of his recent offerings have been incredibly sub-par. I’m excited to like a Ridley Scott movie again! Drew Goddard wrote it! That was a pretty great interstellar joke a sentence or two back, right?
CREED (November 25th)
That trailer is so good. This movie is going to be so awesome. Is Rocky going to die? I kind of weirdly hope so. Then we can get a bunch of Adonis Creed movies until Michael B. Jordan is super old and is the mentor to one of his opponent’s kids. Then Adonis Creed will die in that movie and we’ll have a series of movies about the boxer’s kid who he was training. This franchise could continue on forever! I hope Philadelphia lasts that long!
SPECTRE (November 6th)
There is a new James Bond movie coming out and it is from the same team that gave us SKYFALL. Let’s hope they can recapture the magic of that movie. Or get even more magic this time around! Why are we limiting our magic consumption? I’m also very curious about how Andrew Scott’s character is revealed to be evil. He’s already at the top of the list of great evil reveals with his evil reveal from SHERLOCK! How will he top himself? I guess I’ll have to see this movie to find out.
THE REVENANT (December 25th)
I really disliked Alejandro González Iñárritu’s BIRDMAN last year, but you can tell that it’s not personal because his new movie is on this list! Look at that trailer! How can you dislike it? That trailer looks like no other trailer out there. I’ve seen a lot of trailers, but this one just takes the cake. There is so much great footage! There aren’t that many title cards! There is no narrator telling me about “one man’s fight against nature is the same fight to find his inner hero”! Imagine this trailer will less footage, overuse of title cards, and some crummy narration. It just wouldn’t be the same and I’d be more likely to let my blood-boiling hatred of BIRDMAN affect my opinion of this new film.
SPOTLIGHT (November 13th)
This is a movie about reporters from the Boston Globe uncovering a string of child molestations by Catholic priests. That is very serious. The movie stars Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Mark Ruffalo, Stanley Tucci, Billy Crudup, Liev Schrieber, John Slattery, and Michael Cyril Creighton. I have no idea who that last guy is, but to be acting opposite the rest of that cast he has to be someone pretty impressive, right? I think that’s what the filmmakers are planning on. Come for the Keaton, McAdams, Ruffalo, Tucci, Crudup, Schreiber, Slattery. Stay for the Cyril Creighton. Genius.
THE HATEFUL EIGHT (December 25th)
I was extremely pleased when it was announced that Quentin Tarantino was going to be making a western. Then I saw DJANGO UNCHAINED and it was even better than I had hoped! Then I heard that Quentin Tarantino was going to be making another western. What do you think is the next step? I’m hoping that, like last time, it is even better than I had hoped. That would be a pretty great pattern to establish in your career. You announce something exciting and then follow it up with something that is better than expected. Listen, Tarantino is no Michael Cyril Creighton, but I’m pretty sure that he can make another western that is better than we expected.
STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS (December 18th)
J.J. Abrams takes us back to the stars with the next STAR WARS movie. This movie is actually a sequel to RETURN OF THE JEDI. There have been no sequels to that movie. They wrote some books, but those aren’t movies. I’m not even sure if they are called books anymore. I believe they are calling them “legends”. They also have made STAR WARS movies since RETURN OF THE JEDI… But those movies actually took place before the first STAR WARS. That means out of the six STAR WARS movies that they have made… Not a single one of them has been a sequel to RETURN OF THE JEDI. Up until this moment in time, RETURN OF THE JEDI has laid sequel-less. This is untouched ground we are traversing on. Exciting times, folks. Exciting times.