I don’t think this is the first you’re hearing about the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; I’d be concerned if it was. This third Thor film is leaving all its human characters, and Earth for that matter, behind, telling a story which takes place completely on Asgard. Thor, Hulk, Loki, and the new Valkyrie (played by Tessa Thompson) are teaming up against Hela the Goddess of Death (played by Cate Blanchette.) Also, Doctor Strange somehow fits into this movie, so we’ll see how that works. New Zealander Taika Waititi directs, meaning this movie is in good (and probably very funny) hands. Early reviews for the film are very positive, and frankly, I couldn’t be more excited.
Bad Mom’s Christmas
The only box office competition Thor: Ragnarok has is going to be the sequel to the R-rated comedy, Bad Moms. The first one hit theaters last summer, meaning this sequel was cranked out really quickly. The film takes place during the Christmas season, meaning this is our first holiday movie of the year. Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines, and Susan Sarandon join the cast, playing the Bad Moms’ moms, so we’ll see what that adds. The first film was pretty funny, mostly thanks to Kathryn Hahn and Kristen Bell, but was it funny enough to warrant a sequel? I guess we’ll find out.
Lady Bird – Limited
Lady Bird is only receiving a limited release this weekend, but if it’s received well enough, you can expect a larger expansion later in the month. The film is a coming-of-age story about a young woman, self-named Lady Bird, living in Northern California. Lady Bird serves as Greta Gerwig’s solo directorial debut, and she also pens the screenplay. If you’re familiar with the indie-comedy scene, this should excite you, as Gerwig is one of the brightest talents we’ve seen for years. The film stars Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf, who are both in the running for Oscar nominations for their performances in this film. This is one I’m extremely excited for.
Last Flag Flying
My Friend Dahmer
The Light of the Moon
Blade of the Immortal
Murder on the Orient Express
Agatha Christie’s most famous story is getting yet another big-screen adaptation, this time coming from Kenneth Branagh. Branagh directs and stars, with Michael Green (who this year has given us Logan, Alien: Covenant, and Blade Runner 2049) writing the adaptation. The main marketing for the film, and probably the thing to be most excited about, is the cast. Daisy Ridley, Judi Dench, Penelope Cruz, Leslie Odem Jr., Josh Gad, Willem Dafoe, Michelle Pfieffer, Olivia Coleman, Lucy Boynton, Derek Jacobi, and Johnny Depp comprise the supporting cast, with Kenneth Branagh starring as the famous Hercule Poirot. With Branagh directing, this is a film that could either be great or terrible, but I for one know that I want to be one of the first ones to find out.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
This film is currently the frontrunner for Best Picture at the upcoming Oscars. It won the People’s Choice at the Toronto Film Festival, the first major precursor to the Oscars, along with winning Best Screenplay at the Venice Film Festival. It comes from writer/director Martin McDonagh whose two previous films include In Bruges and Seven Psychopaths. The trailers for the film look great, telling a story of a mother who puts up some controversial billboards after the police in her town do nothing about her daughter’s disappearance. Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, and Woody Harrelson star in this film which I’m more excited for than any other this month.
Daddy’s Home 2
Ugh. Wonder Woman was good, I’ll say that, but otherwise anything the new DC has given us has been less than spectacular. The biggest reason for that is director Zack Snyder, who proudly gave us Man of Steel and the atrocious Batman v. Superman. Snyder is back directing Justice League, though Avengers director Joss Whedon stepped in to finish directing after some tragic circumstances in Snyder’s personal life. Because of Whedon’s involvement, it’s very possible he’ll be able to undo Snyder’s work, and the film will be halfway decent, but I’m not overly optimistic.
Stephen Chbosky wrote the novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower, before becoming a filmmaker and adapting and directing his book into the movie. Wonder is Chbosky’s first directorial project since Perks, adapting a novel he didn’t write. The film tells the story of a boy with facial deformities as he attends school for the first time in fifth grade. The film has a great cast with Room’s Jacob Tremblay in the lead role, and Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson playing his parents. With a story like this and Chbosky directing, this film has the potential to be either really great, or really cheesy. We’ll have to wait and see.
Netflix Original – Mudbound
If Netflix is going to break into Oscar territory this year, this will be the film it does it with. Mudbound tells a complicated story of two WWII soldiers returning from war to their homes in the American south, one white and the other black, forcing the second to deal with racial prejudice along with PTSD. Dee Rees directs; her previous biggest work was the Emmy-winning TV movie Bessie, so it’s unclear what to expect. The film stars Carey Mulligan, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Jason Clarke, and Mary J. Blige, with Mulligan especially getting a lot of praise. The early reviews for the film have been very positive, and I’m personally very excited to curl up in bed on November 17 and watch this on Netflix.
Roman J. Israel Esq.
I Love You, Daddy
Pixar’s latest looks to be what Pixar does best. Coco tells the story of a young boy who accidentally crosses over to the Land of the Dead during his town’s annual celebration of the Day of the Dead. Lee Unkrich serves as the priamary director for the film, his previous project being Toy Story 3, as well as serving as co-director on Toy Story 2, Monster’s Inc., and Finding Nemo. From the trailers, we can expect the movie to be visually spectacular. The trailers also tell us that music is going to be a major theme, and with Up‘s Michael Giacchino composing the score, you can expect that to be great too. This movie is pretty much guaranteed the Animated Film Oscar this year, and I am very, very excited to watch it.
Darkest Hour is the latest film to have Winston Churchill in it, this time pitting him as the protagonist. The film is directed by Joe Wright, who has previously given us fantastic films like Pride and Prejudice and Atonement. But the main reason to be excited for this movie is the guy who’s playing the legendary Prime Minister: Gary Oldman. Oldman has already received insane amounts of praise for his performance, and the trailers promise us that praise is likely deserved. Couple that with the fact that he’s got some really good, totally transformative makeup on to make him look almost exactly like Churchill and this could be a performance for the ages. If the film is halfway decent, you can expect it to be a major Oscar player this year.
Call Me By Your Name
The Man Who Invented Christmas