Fall is generally when studios roll out films they hope will garner awards nominations, and the 2018 fall season is full of movies earning early Oscar buzz. Beautiful Boy starring Steve Carell and Timothee Chalamet, Boy Erased with Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe, and the remake of A Star is Born are just a few of the upcoming theatrical releases that are likely to become major players during awards season.
The Conjuring spinoff The Nun kicks off the fall season, and horror fans also have Halloween starring Jamie Lee Curtis to look forward to in October. Smallfoot, Ralph Breaks the Internet, and The Grinch should play well to family audiences, while adults have plenty of dramas to choose from over the next few months. Aquaman and Venom get their own solo films, the second movie in the Fantastic Beasts series arrives, and moviegoers will experience Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the Moon as First Man heads to theaters as part of the fall movie season.
Here’s a preview of this fall’s most anticipated releases, listed in release date order.
The Nun (Sept 7) starring Demian Bichir, Taissa Farmiga, Jonas Bloquet, Charlotte Hope, Ingrid Bisu, and Bonnie Aarons
The Plot: When a young nun at a cloistered abbey in Romania takes her own life, a priest with a haunted past and a novitiate on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate. Together they uncover the order’s unholy secret. Risking not only their lives but their faith and their very souls, they confront a malevolent force in the form of the same demonic nun that first terrorized audiences in The Conjuring 2, as the abbey becomes a horrific battleground between the living and the damned.
Lizzie (Sept 14) starring Kristen Stewart, Chloe Sevigny, Kim Dickens, Denis O’Hare, Jeff Perry, Fiona Shaw, and Jamey Sheridan
The Plot: In 1892, Lizzie Borden, a seemingly proper young lady from an upstanding Massachusetts family, was accused of brutally murdering her father and stepmother. Although she was tried and acquitted by an all-male jury, no other suspect was ever located. More than a century later, the crime continues to fascinate, puzzle and repulse. Did Lizzie really kill her parents? If so, what drove her to commit such an unthinkable act? And if she didn’t, who did?
Lizzie delves deep into the circumstances surrounding the notorious unsolved murders, as Lizzie and her housemaid Bridget Sullivan inch their way into a forbidden romance that shocks the family and sparks an unthinkable act of violence. The film explodes some of the many myths that have grown up around Borden in a compelling snapshot of two passionate and unconventional women trapped in the constrained life of 19th-century New England.
The Predator (Sept 14) starring Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Sterling K. Brown, Alfie Allen, Thomas Jane, Augusto Aguilera, Jake Busey, and Yvonne Strahovski
The Plot: From the outer reaches of space to the to the backwoods of southern Georgia, the hunt comes home in Shane Black’s explosive reinvention of the Predator series. Now, the universe’s most lethal hunters are stronger, smarter and deadlier than ever before. And only a ragtag crew of ex-soldiers and an evolutionary biology professor can prevent the end of the human race.
A Simple Favor (Sept 14) starring Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, Henry Golding, Andrew Rannells, Linda Cardellini, Jean Smart, and Rupert Friend
The Plot: A Simple Favor, directed by Paul Feig, centers around Stephanie (Kendrick), a mommy vlogger who seeks to uncover the truth behind her best friend Emily’s (Lively) sudden disappearance from their small town. Stephanie is joined by Emily’s husband Sean (Golding) in this stylish thriller filled with twists and betrayals, secrets and revelations, love and loyalty, murder and revenge.
White Boy Rick (Sept 14) starring Matthew McConaughey, Richie Merritt, Bel Powley, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Brian Tyree Henry, Rory Cochrane, RJ Cyler, Jonathan Majors, Eddie Marsan, Bruce Dern, and Piper Laurie
The Plot: Set in 1980s Detroit at the height of the crack epidemic and the War on Drugs, White Boy Rick is based on the moving true story of a blue-collar father and his teenage son, Rick Wershe, who became an undercover police informant and later a drug dealer, before he was abandoned by his handlers and sentenced to life in prison.
Colette (Sept 21) starring Keira Knightley, Dominic West, Denise Gough, Fiona Shaw, Robert Pugh, and Eleanor Tomlinson
The Plot: After marrying a successful Parisian writer known commonly as “Willy,” Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette is transplanted from her childhood home in rural France to the intellectual and artistic splendor of Paris. Soon after, Willy convinces Colette to ghostwrite for him. She pens a semi-autobiographical novel about a witty and brazen country girl named Claudine, sparking a bestseller and a cultural sensation.
After its success, Colette and Willy become the talk of Paris and their adventures inspire additional Claudine novels. Colette’s fight over creative ownership and gender roles drives her to overcome societal constraints, revolutionizing literature, fashion and sexual expression.
Life Itself (Sept 21) starring Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, Mandy Patinkin, Olivia Cooke, Laia Costa, Annette Bening, Antonio Banderas, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, and Alex Monner
The Plot: As a young New York couple goes from college romance to marriage and the birth of their first child, the unexpected twists of their journey create reverberations that echo over continents and through lifetimes in Life Itself. Director and writer Dan Fogelman examines the perils and rewards of everyday life in a multigenerational saga.
Set in New York City and Carmona, Spain, Life Itself celebrates the human condition and all of its complications with humor, poignancy and love.
The Sisters Brothers (Sept 21) starring Joaquin Phoenix, John C. Reilly, Jake Gyllenhaal, Riz Ahmed, Carol Kane, and Rutger Hauer
The Plot: From acclaimed director Jacques Audiard, and based on the novel by Patrick deWitt, The Sisters Brothers is a reimagining of the cinematic Western as a dangerous, witty, and emotionally cathartic exploration of what it means to be a man.
It is 1851, and Charlie and Eli Sisters are both brothers and assassins, boys grown to men in a savage and hostile world. They have blood on their hands: that of criminals, that of innocents…and they know no state of existence other than being gunmen. The older of the two, introspective Eli rides hard with his younger sibling yet dares to dream of a normal life. The younger of the two, hard-drinking Charlie has taken charge with gusto as lead man on the duo’s assignments. Each increasingly questions, and quibbles with, the other’s methods.
The Sisters brothers find themselves on a journey through the Northwest, bringing them to the mountains of Oregon, a dangerous brothel in the small town of Mayfield, and eventually, the Gold Rush land of California – a journey that will test the deadly family ties that bind. But, can it also be the path to rediscovering what remains of their humanity?
Night School (Sept 28) starring Kevin Hart, Tiffany Haddish, Rob Riggle, Taran Killam, Romany Malco, Anne Winters, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Megalyn Echikunwoke, and Al Madrigal
The Plot: Star Kevin Hart and producer Will Packer, who partnered for the hit Ride Along and Think Like a Man series, bring their signature style to Night School. The comedy from director Malcolm D. Lee follows a group of misfits who are forced to attend adult classes in the longshot chance they’ll pass the GED exam.
The Old Man and the Gun (Sept 28) starring Robert Redford, Casey Affleck, Tika Sumpter, Isiah Whitlock Jr, John David Washington, Tom Waits, and Sissy Spacek
The Plot: The Old Man and the Gun is based on the true story of Forrest Tucker, from his audacious escape from San Quentin at the age of 70 to an unprecedented string of heists that confounded authorities and enchanted the public. Wrapped up in the pursuit are detective John Hunt, who becomes captivated with Forrest’s commitment to his craft, and a woman who loves him in spite of his chosen profession.
Smallfoot (Sept 28) with voices by Channing Tatum, James Corden, Zendaya, Common, LeBron James, Gina Rodriguez, Danny DeVito, Yara Shahidi, Ely Henry, and Jimmy Tatro
The Plot: An animated adventure for all ages, with original music and an all-star cast, Smallfoot turns the Bigfoot legend upside down when a bright young Yeti finds something he thought didn’t exist—a human. News of this “Smallfoot” throws the simple Yeti community into an uproar over what else might be out there in the big world beyond their snowy village, in an all new story about friendship, courage and the joy of discovery.
A Star is Born (Oct 5) starring Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, Andrew Dice Clay, Dave Chappelle, and Sam Elliott
The Plot: In this new take on the tragic love story, he plays seasoned musician Jackson Maine, who discovers—and falls in love with—struggling artist Ally. She has just about given up on her dream to make it big as a singer… until Jack coaxes her into the spotlight. But even as Ally’s career takes off, the personal side of their relationship is breaking down, as Jack fights an ongoing battle with his own internal demons.
Venom (Oct 5) starring Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed, Reid Scott, and Scott Haze
The Plot: One of Marvel’s most enigmatic, complex and badass characters comes to the big screen, starring Academy Award nominated actor Tom Hardy as the lethal protector Venom.
Bad Times at the El Royale (Oct 12) starring Chris Hemsworth, Jeff Bridges, Cynthia Erivo, Dakota Johnson, Jon Hamm, Cailee Spaeny, Lewis Pullman, and Nick Offerman
The Plot: Seven strangers, each with a secret to bury, meet at Lake Tahoe’s El Royale, a rundown hotel with a dark past. Over the course of one fateful night, everyone will have a last shot at redemption… before everything goes to hell.
Beautiful Boy (Oct 12) starring Steve Carell, Timothée Chalamet, Maura Tierney, and Amy Ryan
The Plot: Based on the best-selling pair of memoirs by David Sheff (author of Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction) and Nic Sheff (author of Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines), Beautiful Boy chronicles the heartbreaking and inspiring experience of survival, relapse, and recovery in a family coping with addiction over many years.
First Man (Oct 12) starring Ryan Gosling, Claire Foy, Jason Clarke, Kyle Chandler, Patrick Fugit, Ciaran Hinds, Ethan Embry, Shea Whigham, Corey Stoll, and Pablo Schreiber
The Plot: On the heels of their six-time Academy Award-winning smash, La La Land, Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle and star Ryan Gosling reteam for Universal Pictures’ First Man, the riveting story behind the first manned mission to the moon, focusing on Neil Armstrong and the decade leading to the historic Apollo 11 flight. A visceral and intimate account told from Armstrong’s perspective, based on the book by James R. Hansen, the film explores the triumphs and the cost — on Armstrong, his family, his colleagues and the nation itself — of one of the most dangerous missions in history.
Halloween (Oct 19) starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton, Virginia Gardner, and Nick Castle
The Plot: Jamie Lee Curtis returns to her iconic role as Laurie Strode, who comes to her final confrontation with Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night four decades ago. Inspired by Carpenter’s classic, filmmakers David Gordon Green and Danny McBride crafted a story that carves a new path from the events in the landmark 1978 film.
Serenity (Oct 19) starring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jason Clarke, Djimon Hounsou, Jeremy Strong, and Diane Lane
The Plot: From the creative mind of Oscar nominee Steven Knight comes a daringly original, sexy, stylized thriller. Baker Dill is a fishing boat captain leading tours off a tranquil, tropical enclave called Plymouth Island. His quiet life is shattered, however, when his ex-wife Karen tracks him down with a desperate plea for help. She begs Dill to save her – and their young son – from her new, violent husband by taking him out to sea on a fishing excursion, only to throw him to the sharks and leave him for dead. Karen’s appearance thrusts Dill back into a life he’d tried to forget, and as he struggles between right and wrong, his world is plunged into a new reality that may not be all that it seems.
Suspiria (Oct 26) starring Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton, Mia Goth, Lutz Ebersdorf, and Chloe Grace Moretz
The Plot: A darkness swirls at the center of a world-renowned dance company, one that will engulf the troupe’s artistic director, an ambitious young dancer, and a grieving psychotherapist. Some will succumb to the nightmare. Others will finally wake up.
Bohemian Rhapsody (Nov 2) starring Rami Malek, Lucy Boynton, Gwilym Lee, Ben Hardy, Joseph Mazzello, Aidan Gillen, Tom Hollander, and Mike Myers
The Plot: Bohemian Rhapsody is a foot-stomping celebration of Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury. Freddie defied stereotypes and shattered convention to become one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet. The film traces the meteoric rise of the band through their iconic songs and revolutionary sound. They reach unparalleled success, but in an unexpected turn Freddie, surrounded by darker influences, shuns Queen in pursuit of his solo career.
Boy Erased (Nov 2) starring Nicole Kidman, Lucas Hedges, Russell Crowe, Cherry Jones, Michael “Flea” Balzary, Xavier Dolan, Troye Sivan, Emily Hinkler, Jesse LaTourette, David Joseph Craig, Théodore Pellerin, and Britton Sear
The Plot: The film will tell the story of Jared, the son of a Baptist pastor in a small American town, who is outed to his parents at age 19. Jared is faced with an ultimatum: attend a gay conversion therapy program – or be permanently exiled and shunned by his family, friends, and faith. Boy Erased is the true story of one young man’s struggle to find himself while being forced to question every aspect of his identity.
Having suffered greatly without the collaboration of Queen, Freddie manages to reunite with his bandmates just in time for Live Aid. While bravely facing a recent AIDS diagnosis, Freddie leads the band in one of the greatest performances in the history of rock music. Queen cements a legacy that continues to inspire outsiders, dreamers and music lovers to this day.
The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (Nov 2) starring Mackenzie Foy, Keira Knightley, Morgan Freeman, Jayden Fowora-Knight, and Helen Mirren
The Plot: All Clara wants is a key – a one-of-a-kind key that will unlock a box that holds a priceless gift from her late mother. A golden thread, presented to her at godfather Drosselmeyer’s annual holiday party, leads her to the coveted key—which promptly disappears into a strange and mysterious parallel world. It’s there that Clara encounters a soldier named Phillip, a gang of mice and the regents who preside over three Realms: Land of Snowflakes, Land of Flowers and Land of Sweets.
Clara and Phillip must brave the ominous Fourth Realm, home to the tyrant Mother Ginger, to retrieve Clara’s key and hopefully return harmony to the unstable world.
A Private War (Nov 2) starring Rosamund Pike, Jamie Dornan, Stanley Tucci, and Tom Hollander
The Plot: In a world where journalism is under attack, Marie Colvin is one of the most celebrated war correspondents of our time. Colvin is an utterly fearless and rebellious spirit, driven to the frontlines of conflicts across the globe to give voice to the voiceless, while constantly testing the limits between bravery and bravado. After being hit by a grenade in Sri Lanka, she wears a distinctive eye patch and is still as comfortable sipping martinis with London’s elite as she is confronting dictators.
Colvin sacrifices loving relationships, and over time, her personal life starts to unravel as the trauma she’s witnessed takes its toll. Yet, her mission to show the true cost of war leads her – along with renowned war photographer Paul Conroy – to embark on the most dangerous assignment of their lives in the besieged Syrian city of Homs.
The Front Runner (Nov 7) starring Hugh Jackman, Vera Farmiga, J.K. Simmons, and Alfred Molina
The Plot: The film follows the rise and fall of Senator Hart, who captured the imagination of young voters and was considered the overwhelming front runner for the 1988 Democratic presidential nomination when his campaign was sidelined by the story of an extramarital relationship with Donna Rice.
As tabloid journalism and political journalism merged for the first time, Senator Hart was forced to drop out of the race – events that left a profound and lasting impact on American politics and the world stage.
Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch (Nov 9) featuring the voice of Benedict Cumberbatch
The Plot: The Grinch tells the story of a cynical grump who goes on a mission to steal Christmas, only to have his heart changed by a young girl’s generous holiday spirit. Funny, heartwarming and visually stunning, it’s a universal story about the spirit of Christmas and the indomitable power of optimism.
Academy Award nominee Benedict Cumberbatch lends his voice to the infamous Grinch, who lives a solitary life inside a cave on Mt. Crumpet with only his loyal dog, Max, for company. With a cave rigged with inventions and contraptions for his day-to-day needs, the Grinch only sees his neighbors in Who-ville when he runs out of food. Each year at Christmas they disrupt his tranquil solitude with their increasingly bigger, brighter and louder celebrations. When the Whos declare they are going to make Christmas three times bigger this year, the Grinch realizes there is only one way for him to gain some peace and quiet: he must steal Christmas. To do so, he decides he will pose as Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, even going so far as to trap a lackadaisical misfit reindeer to pull his sleigh.
Meanwhile, down in Who-ville, Cindy-Lou Who—a young girl overflowing with holiday cheer—plots with her gang of friends to trap Santa Claus as he makes his Christmas Eve rounds so that she can thank him for help for her overworked single mother. As Christmas approaches, however, her good-natured scheme threatens to collide with the Grinch’s more nefarious one. Will Cindy-Lou achieve her goal of finally meeting Santa Claus? Will the Grinch succeed in silencing the Whos’ holiday cheer once and for all?
The Girl in the Spider’s Web (Nov 9) starring Claire Foy, Sverrir Gudnason, Lakeith Stanfield, Sylvia Hoeks, Stephen Merchant, Claes Bang, Christopher Convery, Synnøve Macody Lund, and Vicky Krieps
The Book’s Plot: A genius hacker who has always been an outsider. A journalist with a penchant for danger. She is Lisbeth Salander, the girl with the dragon tattoo. He is Mikael Blomkvist, crusading editor of Millennium. One night, Blomkvist receives a call from a source who claims to have been given information vital to the United States by a young female hacker.
Blomkvist, always on the lookout for a story, reaches out to Salander for help. She, as usual, has plans of her own. Together they are drawn into a ruthless underworld of spies, cybercriminals, and government operatives—some willing to kill to protect their secrets.
Outlaw King (Nov 9) starring Chris Pine, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Florence Pugh, Tony Curran, Stephen Dillane, Billy Howle, James Cosmo, and Sam Spruell
The Plot: Outlaw King tells the untold, true story of Robert the Bruce who transforms from defeated nobleman to outlaw hero during the oppressive occupation of medieval Scotland by Edward I of England. Despite grave consequences, Robert seizes the Scottish crown and rallies an impassioned group of men to fight back against the mighty army of the tyrannical King and his volatile son, the Prince of Wales.
Overlord (Nov 9) starring Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, John Magaro, Mathilde Ollivier, Pilou Asbæk, Bokeem Woodbine, Iain De Caestecker, and Jacob Anderson
The Plot: The R-rated horror film is set on the eve of D-Day and follows a group of American paratroopers who take heavy fire as they’re dropped behind enemy lines. Their mission is critical to the invasion’s success. However, as they approach their target, they are shocked to realize there is something incredibly evil going on in the Nazi-occupied village. They soon realize there’s something much more going on than just a simple military operation.
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (Nov 16) starring Eddie Redmayne, Zoe Kravitz, Jude Law, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Ezra Miller, Callum Turner, Claudia Kim, William Nadylam, Kevin Guthrie, Carmen Ejogo, Poppy Corby-Tuech, and Johnny Depp
The Plot: At the end of the first film, the powerful Dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald was captured by MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America), with the help of Newt Scamander. But, making good on his threat, Grindelwald escaped custody and has set about gathering followers, most unsuspecting of his true agenda: to raise pure-blood wizards up to rule over all non-magical beings.
In an effort to thwart Grindelwald’s plans, Albus Dumbledore enlists his former student Newt Scamander, who agrees to help, unaware of the dangers that lie ahead. Lines are drawn as love and loyalty are tested, even among the truest friends and family, in an increasingly divided wizarding world.
Widows (Nov 16) starring Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki, Cynthia Erivo, Colin Farrell, Brian Tyree Henry, Daniel Kaluuya, Garret Dillahunt, Carrie Coon, Jacki Weaver, Jon Bernthal, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Robert Duvall, Lukas Haas, and Liam Neeson
The Plot: From Academy Award-winning director Steve McQueen and co-writer and bestselling author Gillian Flynn comes a blistering, modern-day thriller set against the backdrop of crime, passion and corruption. Widows is the story of four women with nothing in common except a debt left behind by their dead husbands’ criminal activities.
Set in contemporary Chicago, amid a time of turmoil, tensions build when Veronica, Alice, Linda and Belle take their fate into their own hands and conspire to forge a future on their own terms.
Creed 2 (Nov 21) starring Michael B Jordan, Sylvester Stallone, Tessa Thompson, Wood Harris, Russell Hornsby, Florian “Big Nasty” Munteanu, Andre Ward, Phylicia Rashad, and Dolph Lundgren
The Plot: Life has become a balancing act for Adonis Creed. Between personal obligations and training for his next big fight, he is up against the challenge of his life. Facing an opponent with ties to his family’s past only intensifies his impending battle in the ring. Rocky Balboa is there by his side through it all and, together, Rocky and Adonis will confront their shared legacy, question what’s worth fighting for, and discover that nothing’s more important than family.
Creed II is about going back to basics to rediscover what made you a champion in the first place, and remembering that, no matter where you go, you can’t escape your history.
Green Book (Nov 21) starring Viggo Mortensen, Linda Cardellini, Sebastian Maniscalco, Dimiter D. Marinov, and P.J. Byrne
The Plot: When Tony Lip, a bouncer from an Italian-American neighborhood in the Bronx, is hired to drive Dr. Don Shirley, a world-class Black pianist, on a concert tour from Manhattan to the Deep South, they must rely on “The Green Book” to guide them to the few establishments that were then safe for African-Americans. Confronted with racism, danger-as well as unexpected humanity and humor-they are forced to set aside differences to survive and thrive on the journey of a lifetime.
Ralph Breaks the Internet (Nov 21) featuring the voices of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Gal Gadot, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch, Alan Tudyk, Ed O’Neill, and Taraji P. Henson
The Plot: Ralph Breaks the Internet leaves Litwak’s video arcade behind, venturing into the uncharted, expansive and thrilling world of the internet—which may or may not survive Ralph’s wrecking. Video game bad guy Ralph and fellow misfit Vanellope von Schweetz must risk it all by traveling to the world wide web in search of a replacement part to save Vanellope’s video game, Sugar Rush.
In way over their heads, Ralph and Vanellope rely on the citizens of the internet—the Netizens—to help navigate their way, including Yesss, who is the head algorithm and the heart and soul of the trend-making site “BuzzzTube,” and Shank, a tough-as-nails driver from a gritty online auto-racing game called Slaughter Race.
Robin Hood (Nov 21) starring Taron Egerton, Jamie Foxx, Ben Mendelsohn, Eve Hewson, Tim Minchin, and Jamie Dornan
The Plot: Robin of Loxley a war-hardened Crusader and his Moorish commander mount an audacious revolt against the corrupt English crown in a thrilling action-adventure packed with gritty battlefield exploits, mind-blowing fight choreography, and a timeless romance.
The Favourite (Nov 23) starring Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz, Emma Stone, and Nicholas Hoult
The Plot: Early 18th century. England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. A frail Queen Anne occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots.
As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfil her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.
Ben is Back (Dec 7) starring Julia Roberts, Lucas Hedges, Courtney B. Vance, and Kathryn Newton
The Plot: Ben is Back is a drama that follows the charming, yet troubled, Ben Burns who returns home to his unsuspecting family one fateful Christmas Eve. Ben’s wary mother, Holly Burns welcomes her beloved son’s return, but soon learns that he is still very much in harm’s way. During the 24-hours that may change their lives forever, Holly must do everything in her power to avoid the family’s downfall.
Mary Queen of Scots (Dec 7) starring Saoirse Ronan, Margot Robbie, Jack Lowden, Joe Alwyn, Gemma Chan, Martin Compston, Ismael Cordova, Brendan Coyle, Ian Hart, Adrian Lester, James McArdle, David Tennant, and Guy Pearce
The Plot: Mary Queen of Scots explores the turbulent life of the charismatic Mary Stuart. Queen of France at 16 and widowed at 18, Mary defies pressure to remarry. Instead, she returns to her native Scotland to reclaim her rightful throne. But Scotland and England fall under the rule of the compelling Elizabeth I.
Each young Queen beholds her “sister” in fear and fascination. Rivals in power and in love, and female regents in a masculine world, the two must decide how to play the game of marriage versus independence. Determined to rule as much more than a figurehead, Mary asserts her claim to the English throne, threatening Elizabeth’s sovereignty. Betrayal, rebellion, and conspiracies within each court imperil both thrones – and change the course of history.
Under the Silver Lake (Dec 7) starring Andrew Garfield and Riley Keough
The Plot: From the dazzling imagination that brought you It Follows comes a delirious neo-noir fever dream about one man’s search for the truth behind the mysterious crimes, murders, and disappearances in his East L.A. neighborhood.
Sam is a disenchanted 33-year-old who discovers a mysterious woman, Sarah, frolicking in his apartment’s swimming pool. When she vanishes, Sam embarks on a surreal quest across Los Angeles to decode the secret behind her disappearance, leading him into the murkiest depths of mystery, scandal, and conspiracy in the City of Angels.
From writer-director David Robert Mitchell comes a sprawling, playful and unexpected mystery-comedy detective thriller about the Dream Factory and its denizens—dog killers, aspiring actors, glitter-pop groups, nightlife personalities, It girls, memorabilia hoarders, masked seductresses, homeless gurus, reclusive songwriters, sex workers, wealthy socialites, topless neighbors, and the shadowy billionaires floating above (and underneath) it all.
Mining a noir tradition extending from Kiss Me Deadly and The Long Goodbye to Chinatown and Mulholland Drive, Mitchell uses the topography of Los Angeles as a backdrop for a deeper exploration into the hidden meaning and secret codes buried within the things we love.
Mortal Engines (Dec 14) starring Robert Sheehan, Hugo Weaving, Hera Hilmar, and Stephen Lang
The Plot: Following the conclusion of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogies, three-time Academy Award-winning filmmakers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh return to the screen with a startling and sweeping new vision of a future where Earth’s cities now roam the globe on huge wheels, battling each other in a struggle for ever-diminishing resources.
This is the world of Mortal Engines, the story of how two unlikely heroes come together and change the course of the future.
Roma (Dec 14) starring Marina de Tavira and Yalitza Aparicio
The Plot: Roma follows Cleo, a young domestic worker for a family in the middle-class neighborhood of Roma in Mexico City. Delivering an artful love letter to the women who raised him, Cuarón draws on his own childhood to create a vivid and emotional portrait of domestic strife and social hierarchy amidst political turmoil of the 1970s.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Dec 14) featuring the voices of Shameik Moore, Jake Johnson, Liev Schreiber, Hailee Steinfeld, Mahershala Ali, Brian Tyree Henry, Luna Lauren Velez, and Lily Tomlin
The Plot: Phil Lord and Christopher Miller bring their unique talents to a fresh vision of a different Spider-Man Universe, with a groundbreaking visual style that’s the first of its kind. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse introduces Brooklyn teen Miles Morales, and the limitless possibilities of the Spider-Verse, where more than one can wear the mask.
Mary Poppins Returns (Dec 19) starring Emily Blunt, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Whishaw, Emily Mortimer, Julie Walters, Colin Firth, Meryl Streep, and Dick Van Dyke
The Plot: The film is set in 1930s depression-era London (the time period of the original novels) and is drawn from the wealth of material in PL Travers’ additional seven books. In the story, Michael and Jane are now grown up, with Michael, his three children and their housekeeper, Ellen, living on Cherry Tree Lane. After Michael suffers a personal loss, the enigmatic nanny Mary Poppins re-enters the lives of the Banks family, and, along with the optimistic street lamplighter Jack, uses her unique magical skills to help the family rediscover the joy and wonder missing in their lives. Mary Poppins also introduces the children to a new assortment of colorful and whimsical characters, including her eccentric cousin, Topsy.
Alita: Battle Angel (Dec 21) starring Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, Jackie Earle Haley, and Keean Johnson
The Plot: Set several centuries in the future, the abandoned Alita is found in the scrapyard of Iron City by Ido, a compassionate cyber-doctor who takes the unconscious cyborg Alita to his clinic. When Alita awakens she has no memory of who she is, nor does she have any recognition of the world she finds herself in. Everything is new to Alita, every experience a first. As she learns to navigate her new life and the treacherous streets of Iron City, Ido tries to shield Alita from her mysterious past while her street-smart new friend, Hugo, offers instead to help trigger her memories.
A growing affection develops between the two until deadly forces come after Alita and threaten her newfound relationships. It is then that Alita discovers she has extraordinary fighting abilities that could be used to save the friends and family she’s grown to love. Determined to uncover the truth behind her origin, Alita sets out on a journey that will lead her to take on the injustices of this dark, corrupt world, and discover that one young woman can change the world in which she lives.
Aquaman (Dec 21) starring Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Nicole Kidman, Ludi Lin, and Temuera Morrison
The Plot: From Warner Bros. Pictures and director James Wan comes an action-packed adventure that spans the vast, visually breathtaking underwater world of the seven seas, Aquaman, starring Jason Momoa in the title role. The film reveals the origin story of half-human, half-Atlantean Arthur Curry and takes him on the journey of his lifetime—one that will not only force him to face who he really is, but to discover if he is worthy of who he was born to be…a king.
Bumblebee (Dec 21) starring Hailee Steinfeld, Pamela Adlon, John Cena, Stephen Schneider, Jorge Lendeborg Jr, Jason Drucker, John Ortiz, Kenneth Choi, Ricardo Hoyos, Abby Quinn, Rachel Crow, and Grace Dzienny
The Plot: On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian beach town. Charlie, on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary, yellow VW bug.
Welcome to Marwen (Dec 21) starring Steve Carell, Leslie Mann, Diane Kruger, Merritt Wever, Janelle Monáe, Eiza González, Gwendolyn Christie, Leslie Zemeckis, and Neil Jackson
The Plot: Welcome to Marwen tells the miraculous true story of one broken man’s fight as he discovers how artistic imagination can restore the human spirit.
When a devastating attack shatters Mark Hogancamp and wipes away all memories, no one expected recovery. Putting together pieces from his old and new life, Mark meticulously creates a wondrous town where he can heal and be heroic. As he builds an astonishing art installation—a testament to the most powerful women he knows—through his fantasy world, he draws strength to triumph in the real one.
In a bold, wondrous and timely film from this revolutionary pioneer of contemporary cinema, Welcome to Marwen shows that when your only weapon is your imagination…you’ll find courage in the most unexpected place.
On the Basis of Sex (Dec 25) starring Felicity Jones, Armie Hammer, Justin Theroux, Kathy Bates, Sam Waterston, Erwin Griswold, and Cailee Spaeny
The Plot: The film tells an inspiring and spirited true story that follows young lawyer Ruth Bader Ginsburg as she teams with her husband Marty to bring a groundbreaking case before the U.S. Court of Appeals and overturn a century of gender discrimination. The feature will premiere in 2018 in line with Justice Ginsburg’s 25th anniversary on the Supreme Court.
Destroyer (Dec 25) starring Nicole Kidman, Sebastian Stan, Toby Kebbell, and Bradley Whitford
The Plot: In Karyn Kusama’s riveting new crime thriller Destroyer, the receipt of an ink-marked bill in the office mail propels veteran LAPD detective Erin Bell on a perilous journey to find the murderer and gang leader, Silas, and perhaps to finally make peace with her tortured past.
Written by Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi who also produced the film alongside Fred Berger, the epic odyssey through the underbelly of Los Angeles and nearby desert communities reunites Bell with members of the criminal gang she once joined as an undercover FBI agent; an assignment which ended disastrously and has taken a heavy psychological and physical toll on her life.
Also of Interest: Fall 2018 New TV Shows