Grab the popcorn and a pumpkin spice latte, it’s time for this year’s fall movie preview. Just like the leaves, the movies also begin to change as summer turns to fall. Fewer blockbusters make room for smaller films that are vying for Oscars attention helmed by big-named directors including Peter Farrelly, Gina Prince-Bythewood, Ruben Östlund, and Park Chan-wook. The most anticipated movies being released in theaters and on streaming services between Labor Day and Thanksgiving include the emotional Black Panther sequel, a kaleidoscopic David Bowie documentary, Steven Spielberg’s most personal film to date, a possibly NSFW look at Marilyn Monroe, Olivia Wilde’s much-discussed new thriller, and two very different takes on Pinocchio.
Honk For Jesus. Save Your Soul (Sept. 2)
Regina Hall plays the wife of a disgraced Southern Baptist pastor (This Is Us’ Sterling K. Brown) who decides to make an ill-advised documentary to chronicle his comeback, forcing her to reevaluate her faith and her marriage. The Jordan Peele-produced satire, which pokes fun at megachurch culture, will be released in theaters and available to stream on Peacock.
Disney’s Pinocchio (Sept. 8)
Robert Zemeckis’ live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1940 classic animated film about a wooden boy who comes to life (played by The Haunting of Bly Manor’s Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) stars Tom Hanks as Geppetto, Cynthia Erivo as the Blue Fairy, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the voice of Jiminy Cricket. The movie will be available to stream on Disney+.
End of the Road (Sept. 9)
Queen Latifah is a single mom willing to do whatever it takes to defend her family in this fast and furious Netflix thriller that will make you think twice before checking into a cheap motel.
Clerks III (Sept. 13-Sept. 18)
Quick Stop lifers Dante, Randal, Jay, and Silent Bob are all back for the surprisingly emotional third installment of director Kevin Smith’s seminal 1994 film that has the guys making their own low-budget movie to immortalize their convenience store days. Smith suggests fans “bring the tissues” to the limited theatrical run of the heartfelt comedy that features Rosario Dawson, Justin Long, and Ben Affleck.
Do Revenge (Sept. 16)
Riverdale’s Camila Mendes and Stranger Things’ Maya Hawke are two pretty little liars out for revenge against their exes in Netflix’s supremely stylish dark teen comedy from Someone Great’s Jennifer Kaytin Robinson, loosely inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s Strangers on a Train.
God’s Country (Sept. 16)
A grieving former police officer-turned-professor (played by Thandiwe Newton) finds herself feuding with two local hunters in this politically charged thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat until its violent end.
Moonage Daydream (Sept. 16)
Director Brett Morgen’s cosmic freakout of a documentary looks at David Bowie’s life on Mars, Earth, and every other astral plane he graced with his presence before his death in 2016.
See How They Run (Sept. 16)
The Knives Out-esque murder mystery stars Sam Rockwell and Saoirse Ronan as harried investigators tasked with nailing the killer of a much maligned American film producer (Adrien Brody) out to adapt a hit West End play. The ensemble of the 1950s London-set comedy includes David Oyelowo, Ruth Wilson, and Where the Crawdads Sing’s Harris Dickinson.
The Silent Twins (Sept. 16)
Letitia Wright and Tamara Lawrence star in this Charlie Kaufman-esque biopic, which tells the true story of June and Jennifer Gibbons, identical twin sisters who created their own form of communication to help make sense of the confusing world around them.
The Woman King (Sept. 16)
Bow down to Viola Davis in this historical epic, which tells the true story of the female warriors who defended the West African kingdom of Dahomey in the 18th and 19th centuries. Lashana Lynch, John Boyega, and The Underground Railroad’s Thuso Nokwanda Mbedu also star in the Gina Prince-Bythewood-directed film already drumming up Oscar buzz.
Escape From Kabul (Sept. 21)
The HBO documentary offers a harrowing minute-by-minute account of the United States military’s chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021, marking the end of America’s 20-year war with the Taliban. Using never-before-seen archival footage, director Jamie Roberts shows how the plan to airlift American citizens and “at risk” Afghan citizens out of Kabul turned deadly. The film then checks in with those who were unable to flee the country nearly one year later.
Meet Cute (Sept. 21)
Sheila (Kaley Cuoco) and Gary (Pete Davidson) fall in love at first sight again and again and again in this time-traveling Peacock rom-com. Sheila quickly learns that she can’t move forward in a relationship if she’s always stuck in the past.
Don’t Worry Darling (Sept. 23)
Alice (Florence Pugh) is the picture-perfect ‘50s housewife: adoring husband (played by Harry Styles), an impossibly clean home, and a burgeoning social life in her slightly off-putting new living community. Until Alice stops being a Stepford wife. That’s when things get weird in this mind-bending psychological thriller directed by Olivia Wilde.
A Jazzman’s Blues (Sept. 23)
Tyler Perry’s latest for Netflix is actually the first screenplay he ever wrote, way back in 1995. It’s a star-crossed tale that spans 40 years in the life and love of an aspiring jazz musician, played by Joshua Boone.
Catherine Called Birdy (Sept. 23)
Lena Dunham tackles medieval times in this historical comedy based on the 1994 children’s book of the same name. Game of Thrones’ Bella Ramsey plays a cunning 14-year-old girl who does all she can—burning down a house, pretending she has a third ear—to stop her destitute dad (Fleabag’s Andrew Scott) from marrying her off. The film, which also stars Billie Piper and Joe Alwyn, will be available to stream Oct. 7 on Amazon Prime Video.
On The Come Up (Sept. 23)
Sanaa Lathan makes her full-length directorial debut with the Paramount+ film based on the Angie Thomas novel of the same name, which follows talented 16-year-old rapper Bri (newcomer Jamila C. Gray) as she fights to make a name for herself as a hip-hop artist.
Sidney (Sept. 23)
The Apple TV+ documentary, which will also play in theaters, offers a revealing look at Sidney Poitier—the man, the activist, the late acting legend—through the eyes of those who knew and admired him most. The film’s list of interviewees includes Spike Lee, Robert Redford, Denzel Washington, Barbra Streisand, and Oprah Winfrey, who is a producer on the film.
Blonde (Sept. 28)
Bros (Sept. 30)
Billy Eichner stars in the rom-com he also co-wrote, about a man who isn’t looking for love until he meets the “gay Tom Brady” (played by Luke Macfarlane), sending him into a tailspin.
The Greatest Beer Run Ever (Sept. 30)
Director Peter Farrelly’s follow-up to 2019 Best Picture winner Green Book is based on the unbelievable true story of John Donohue (Zac Efron), a Marine Corps. vet who, on a drunken dare, goes to Vietnam to deliver beer and well wishes to his friends in combat. The Apple TV+ action comedy that dads are sure to love also stars Russell Crowe and Bill Murray.
Hocus Pocus 2 (Sept. 30)
Double, double, toil and trouble, Disney+ revives the Sanderson sisters for a sequel, which, for the last 30 years, has been on the bubble. Now, finally, Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy are back to spend another Halloween running amuck, amuck, amuck among a new batch of Salem teens who made the mistake of waking them up.
Mr. Harrigan’s Phone (Oct. 5)
Stephen King isn’t always a fan of the movies based on his work, but he gave the Netflix adaptation of his short story about a young boy (played by It’s Jaeden Martell) who communicates with his deceased neighbor (Donald Sutherland) through a disconnected cell phone two thumbs up.
Luckiest Girl Alive (Oct. 7, opening in select theaters Sept. 30)
The Netflix film based on Jessica Knoll’s 2015 best-selling novel stars Mila Kunis as a woman whose dark past catches up with her after a true-crime documentary delves into a shocking incident that took place at her high school.
TÁR (Oct. 7)
Cate Blanchett plays a renowned conductor and composer on the verge of hitting her creative peak, but not without the help of her 6-year-old adopted daughter in Todd Field’s anxiety-ridden first feature since 2006’s Little Children.
Triangle of Sadness (Oct. 7)
Let Ruben Östlund’s wickedly funny satire of the grossly rich and famous fill the Succession–sized hole in your heart. When a yacht captained by a deranged American (played by Woody Harrelson) ends up shipwrecked on a remote island, its privileged passengers are forced to fend for their lives without food, water or wi-fi.
Till (Oct. 14 in select theaters, Oct. 28 nationwide)
This much anticipated biopic from director Chinonye Chukwu doesn’t just tell the story of Emmett Till’s lynching. It shows how his mother Mamie Till-Mobley (played by Danielle Deadwyler) fought to make sure the senseless murder of her 14-year-old son wasn’t in vain.
Decision to Leave (Oct. 14)
South Korean auteur Park Chan-wook’s first film since 2016’s The Handmaiden is a sultry mystery in which a detective finds himself falling for the lead suspect in a murder investigation.
Halloween Ends (Oct. 14)
It’s Jamie Lee Curtis’ OG final girl Laurie Strode vs. Michael Myers in the third and presumed final installment of David Gordon Green’s take on John Carpenter’s classic slasher saga. Let’s assume it will be a bloody battle to the very end.
Stars at Noon (Oct. 14)
Maid’s Margaret Qualley plays an American journalist stranded in Nicaragua during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Claire Denis-directed update on Denis Johnson’s 1986 novel of the same name.
The School for Good & Evil (Oct. 19)
Where do fairy tale heroes and villains come from? Director Paul Feig has all the answers in his Netflix adaptation of Soman Chainani’s 2013 fantasy novel, which stars Kerry Washington as the ultimate fairy godmother and Charlize Theron as her evil counterpart.
The Banshees of Inisherin (Oct. 21)
Writer and director Martin McDonagh’s big-screen follow-up to Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as lifelong friends whose relationship comes to an abrupt and bitter end.
Black Adam (Oct. 21)
Is Dwayne Johnson’s titular superhero the destroyer of this world or its savior? That’s the question at the heart of the DC Universe’s latest blockbuster about a former slave from the ancient city of Kahndaq who is reborn a god with a taste for wickedness.
My Policeman (Oct. 21)
In this romantic drama set in 1950s England, Harry Styles plays a policeman caught in a forbidden love triangle between his wife (The Crown’s Emma Corrin) and a male museum curator (David Dawson). The film, based on the 2012 novel of the same name, will be available to stream Nov. 4 on Amazon Prime Video.
Ticket to Paradise (Oct. 21)
The Good Nurse (Oct. 26, opening in select theaters Oct. 19)
When a nurse (played by Jessica Chastain) becomes suspicious that her colleague (Eddie Redmayne) might be behind a series of mysterious patient deaths, she sets out on a search for the truth. Scarier might be that the Netflix thriller is based on true events.
Armageddon Time (Oct. 28)
Ad Astra director James Gray’s semi-autobiographical film follows a young boy growing up in Queens, NY in the 1980s. The coming-of-age story stars Anne Hathaway, Anthony Hopkins, and Succession’s Jeremy Strong.
Call Jane (Oct. 28)
After struggling to get an abortion, ‘60s housewife Joy (Elizabeth Banks) joins the Jane Collective, an underground abortion counseling service, to help fight for women’s rights. The timely film set before Roe v. Wade marks the directorial debut of Carol screenwriter Phyllis Nagy.
Wendell & Wild (Oct. 28, opening in select theaters Oct. 21)
What’s this? The Nightmare Before Christmas director Henry Selick’s first movie since 2009’s Coraline reunites Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele (who co-wrote the animated Netflix film) as the titular demon brothers who escape from the Underworld.
Falling For Christmas (Nov. 10)
’Tis the season for a Netflix holiday rom-com starring Lindsay Lohan as a spoiled heiress suffering from amnesia.
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Nov. 11)
King T’Challa is gone and the women of Wakanda (played by Angela Bassett, Letitia Wright, and Lupita Nyong’o) must figure out how to move forward in this emotional sequel to Black Panther, which comes two years after Chadwick Boseman’s death.
The Fabelmans (Nov. 11)
The Son (Nov. 11)
Florian Zeller’s follow-up to 2020’s The Father casts Hugh Jackman as a dad who, after unexpectedly reuniting with his teenage son, finds himself contemplating his own relationship with his father.
The Menu (Nov. 18)
Anya Taylor-Joy and Nicholas Hoult play a couple who travel to an exclusive restaurant run by a celebrity chef (played by Ralph Fiennes) whose tasting menu is full of surprises in the deliciously dark comedy where the rich might actually get eaten.
The People We Hate at the Wedding (Nov. 18)
From Claire Scanlon, the director of Set It Up, comes the Amazon Prime Video comedy about two struggling siblings (Kristen Bell and Ben Platt) who don’t quite fit in at the lavish European wedding of their über-wealthy half-sister.
She Said (Nov. 18)
For fans of Spotlight, a tense drama that looks at how New York Times investigative reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey (played by Zoe Kazan and Carey Mulligan) broke the Harvey Weinstein sexual misconduct story that fueled the #MeToo movement.
Bones and All (Nov. 23)
Devotion (Nov. 23)
Nanny (Nov. 23)
An undocumented Sengalese woman (played by Anna Diop) takes a job as the caregiver for a wealthy Manhattan family in hopes of reuniting with her own child, but soon finds herself trapped in a living nightmare. Nikyatu Jusu’s surreal directorial debut is available to stream Dec. 16 on Amazon Prime Video.
Strange World (Nov. 23)
The neon-soaked Disney animated adventure focuses on a family of explorers who unearth a mystical world full of unknown creatures that can only be saved if they put their differences aside. Jake Gyllenhaal, Lucy Liu, Gabrielle Union, and Jaboukie Young-White lend their voices to the sci-fi feature.
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Dec. 9)
Expect del Toro’s stop-motion animated version of the classic children’s fairy tale to be more Brothers Grimm than Walt Disney. Also, expect to hear a lot of familiar voices in the Netflix film; Ewan MacGregor, Tilda Swinton, Christoph Waltz, Cate Blanchett, and Stranger Things’ Finn Wolfhard all play a role.
This 1930s-set crime caper loosely inspired by real events stars Christian Bale, Margot Robbie, and John David Washington as three friends who become the prime suspects in a murder. Chris Rock, Anya Taylor-Joy, Robert De Niro, Zoe Saldaña, and Taylor Swift round out the cast of David O’Russell’s follow-up to 2015’s Joy.
Ryan Reynolds puts his own spin on Ebenezer Scrooge in this modern musical take of A Christmas Carol for Apple TV+ that also stars Will Ferrell and Octavia Spencer.
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