What to Watch Out For: 2017 Fall-Winter Movie Preview
Summer has finally packed its bags and fall has arrived. Which means winter's on its way and, the next thing you know, it's the holidaze. Aaand, now let's slow down and take a moment to enjoy autumn and relish what is arguably the year's cinematic high point.
First off, we've got you covered for this week, with Blade Runner 2049 and The Mountain Between Us coming out today, Friday, October 6.
Now sit back and enjoy our go-to movie guide for the months ahead:
1. Professor Marston and the Wonder Women (Oct. 13)
Gal Gadot knocked the socks off moviegoers in the title role of this year's Wonder Woman. But the story behind the iconic character is just as powerful. Professor Marston and the Wonder Women revolves around Wonder Woman creator, psychologist William Moulton Marston (Luke Evans), and how she came to be. Apparently the Amazonian hero was based on his mistress (Bella Heathcote). Marston and his wife (Rebecca Hall) were happily married, but both were intrigued by and attracted to a young woman they had come to know. The three began a polyamorous relationship. The woman's identity was kept a secret, but their relationship slipped into the pages of the comics Marston was writing.
2. Goodbye Christopher Robin (Oct. 13)
It doesn’t matter where or when you grew up, it seems like Winnie the Pooh and his pal Christopher Robin appeal endures. But, you may not know where the story itself came from. And, that’s all about to change with the live-action film Goodbye Christopher Robin. Christopher Robin isn’t just Winnie the Pooh’s friend – he’s the son of A.A. Milne, who wrote the story of a little boy, named after his son, and Pooh, Piglet, Tigger, Eeyore and the rest of the Hundred Acre Wood gang. Christopher reminded his parents — portrayed here by Domhnall Gleeson and Margot Robbie — and those around the family, what it was like to have fun and experience joy again post-wartime.
3. The Snowman (Oct. 20)
In the upcoming movie adaptation of Norwegian author Jo Nesbø‘s 2007 novel, The Snowman, Michael Fassbender takes on the role of Detective Harry Hole, who works to outsmart a mad man targeting women he “disapproves of.” His first victim’s scarf is found wrapped around a demented looking snowman, hence the pseudonym. The killer even taunts law enforcement with creepily child-like notes, signed off with a snowman drawing. We’re no forensic scientists, but we have watched enough Law and Order to know if a killer leaves clues, he may be looking for notoriety. And, possibly to be caught. Good thing we have Fassbender as Hole on the case.
4. The Killing of a Sacred Deer (Oct. 20)
Colin Farrell portrays a successful and respected cardiovascular surgeon in the psycho-thriller The Killing of a Sacred Deer, opposite his The Beguiled co-star Nicole Kidman. The happily married couple, and parents to two children, welcome a teenage boy, Martin (Barry Keoghan), into their lives. Martin warns the doctor, "They will all get sick and die," referring to his wife and children. We should mention, Martin's late father was a patient of the doctor's. This sounds like a bad case of quid pro quo. You can also look for Clueless star Alicia Silverstone as Martin’s mother, and she’s just as creepy. The film sees Farrell reunite with The Lobster director and co-writer Yorgos Lanthimos.
5. Thor: Ragnarok (Nov. 3)
Thor: Ragnarok is the third installment in the Marvel superhero franchise. In the first film, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) landed on Earth after being banned from his home planet Asgar by his father King Odin (Anthony Hopkins). The sequel reunited Thor with his jelly belly adopted brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) so they could save the world from the primeval villain Malekith (Christopher Eccleston). And now in Thor: Ragnarok, we meet up with Thor, who was about to take the throne, accepting his role as king. But, there has been a detour… He and the Hulk are being held captive on a foreign planet. The two friends are matched up gladiator-style to fight in an arena, with the victor winning freedom.
6. Justice League (Nov. 17)
Speaking of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman (see item #1 on our list), she's back on the big screen along with some other superhero pals, Batman (Ben Affleck), Superman (Henry Cavill), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and The Flash (Ezra Miller). This gaggle of crime fighters goes by the title Justice League. You can also look for Jesse Eisenberg reprising his role as Lex Luther and Ciarán Hinds as Steppenwolf, who we'll see lifted off the comics for the first time. Zack Snyder co-wrote the story with Chris Terrio (Star Wars: Episode IX, Batman v Superman), based on the DC Comics series, and also directed. The screenplay, meanwhile, was co-written by Terrio and Joss Whedon (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Buffy the Vampire Slayer).
7. Murder on the Orient Express (Nov. 22)
Kenneth Branagh has taken on the challenge of adapting Agatha Christie's well-known story Murder on the Orient Express into a feature film. Branagh has signed on to direct and star in the lead as Detective Poirot. And he's recruited quite a cast to help tell the story, including Willem Dafoe (The Professor), Derek Jacobi (The Butler), Josh Gad (The Assistant), Sergei Polunin (The Count), Daisy Ridley (The Governess), Penélope Cruz (The Missionary), Michelle Pfeiffer (The Widow), Manuel Garcia-Rulfo (The Salesman), Olivia Colman (The Maid), Leslie Odom Jr. (The Doctor), Dame Judi Dench (The Princess), and Johnny Depp (The Gangster). Someone was killed on the long-distance train ride, and the murderer is still aboard...
8. Darkest Hour (Nov. 22)
Director Joe Wright‘s film, Darkest Hour, explores what Prime Minister Winston Churchill went through on the eve of WWII. When we meet Gary Oldman as Churchill, he’s only been in office a few days, yet he’s tasked with a history-making decision: should GB negotiate a peace treaty with Nazi Germany… or, fight? Whatever route he’d choose would not only impact him, but a nation, and ultimately, the world. In the above trailer, Churchill is advised to work things out with Germany. He explodes, declaring, “You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth.” He further shows off his trademark fury and wit when he yells back at a gentleman in the room, “Will you stop interrupting me, when I’m interrupting you!”
9. The Man Who Invented Christmas (Nov. 22)
If you've ever wondered what inspired Charles Dickens to write A Christmas Carol, published in 1843 as a novella, then here's your chance to find out. Dan Stevens, who just starred in this year's blockbuster Beauty and the Beast, portrays the famed author in this whimsical telling of how the ghostly story of past, present and yet to come, came to be. At this point in his life, Dickens was struggling to get pen to paper after publishing a couple of "flops." But, he wasn't in it alone — he had a support team. Stevens is joined by Jonathan Pryce as Dickens' father John, Simon Callow (who you may remember played Dickens on numerous occasions, including on Doctor Who), Justin Edwards (The Thick of It) as the author's friend and critic John Forster. Miriam Margoyles (The Age of Innocence) rounds out the cast, taking on the role of Mrs. Fisk. We also meet Ebeneezer Scrooge himself (Christopher Plummer).
10. Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi (Dec. 15)
The details on the next installment of the Star Wars franchise, The Last Jedi, are so tightly guarded that we don't know much about the storylines... which, kind of adds to the anticipation, really. What we do know is Daisy Ridley will be returning as Rey, with the desert warrior reuniting with her friends Finn (John Boyega) and Poe (Oscar Isaac), who we were introduced to in 2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens. We're set to see Mark Hamill reprise his role as Luke Skywalker and Adam Driver will return as Kylo Ren. Even Dame Judi Dench, clad in an Obi-Wan Kenobi style robe, can't force any deets out of Ridley, as seen in the above clip.
11. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (Dec. 20)
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle kicks off with a group of teenagers sent to detention. Actually, they’re tasked with cleaning the school’s basement where they find a vintage video game set. The teens are sucked into the TV, and transformed into their avatar of choice, resulting in over-the-top archetypes with names like Franklin “Moose” Finbar (Kevin Hart), Professor Shelly Oberon (Jack Black), Dr. Smolder Braveston (Dwayne Johnson), and, finally, Ruby Roundhouse (Gillan). The original Jumanji premiered in 1995, starring Robin Williams, Kirsten Dunst, and Bradley Pierce. The story revolved around an ancient board game that when opened released dangers into the real world, which couldn’t be undone until the game was completed. We're curious to see how this installment pans out.
Which film has your name written all over it?