Flashforward: October’s Most Anticipated Films

Side note: This is Flashback/Backslide’s 200th Post! Thanks for reading everyone!


Missed Movie of Last Month: Sicario

Release date: September 18, 2015

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Starring: Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, Victor Garber

Synopsis: At the border between the United States and Mexico, idealistic FBI Special Weapons and Tactics Teams agent Kate Macer (Emily Blunt) is enlisted by a government official to aid in a joint task force tracking down an anonymous drug lord.

FB/BS’s take: So I missed this movie last month because of weird showtimes here in Boston (as far as I can tell it will be released here on October 1, 2015). Sicario has already generated Oscar buzz after its release at Cannes earlier this year and screening at TIFF just a few weeks ago. Emily Blunt continues her ascent in awesome roles and is the center of much of the movie’s hype heading into the awards season. This looks like the best movie of September or October with Steve Jobs coming in second (I haven’t seen either yet. Come on Boston!). That being said, I often miss the festival darlings given their staggered release dates.

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%

For a full review of the film, head over to the Digital Shortbread for a great read.

Movie of the Month: Scout’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse

Release date: October 30, 2015

Director: Christopher B. Landon

Starring: Tye Sheridan, David Koechner

Synopsis: While on the eve of their last camp out, scouts Ben, Carter, and Augie discover the true meaning of friendship when they attempt to save their town from a zombie outbreak.

FB/BS’s take: Okay, okay. So Steve Jobs or The Martian should be the Movie of the Month. But this movie looks awesome. Like Shaun of the Dead meets Kingsmen: The Secret Service. Watch the NSFW Red Band trailer for more.

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 50-90%


THE TOP TIER:

Steve Jobs

Release date: October 9, 2015

Director: Danny Boyle

Screenplay by: Aaron Sorkin

Starring: Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen, Jeff Daniels

Synopsis: According to the film’s official website: “Set backstage at three iconic product launches and ending in 1998 with the unveiling of the iMac, Steve Jobs takes us behind the scenes of the digital revolution to paint an intimate portrait of the brilliant man at its epicenter.”

FB/BS’s Take: The film world hasn’t heard from Danny Boyle since 2013’s Trance which most people missed. Most movie buffs will remember him for Trainspotting, 28 Days Later, The Beach, 127 Hours and Slumdog Millionaire. Michael Fassbender looks great here and should help the director rebound back to his glory days (Can you get a bigger jump from Ashton Kutcher to Michael Fassbender?).

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 91%

The Martian

Release date: October 2, 2015

Director: Ridley Scott

StarringMatt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Peña, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor

Synopsis: A human mission to Mars goes awry, and astronaut Mark Watney (Damon) is presumed dead and left behind on the planet by his crew. Watney fights to survive in the harsh environment and to signal to others that he is still alive. Upon discovering Watney’s signal, NASA, scientists all around Earth, and his crew members collaborate to find a way to rescue him.

FB/BS’s take: Ridley Scott joins Danny Boyle and Guillermo del Toro as another heavyweight director with blockbuster friendly October films. The Martian will defintely be the biggest movie of the month in terms of sheer spectacle and star power. For those keeping track, Kate Mara scores another point against her sister Rooney who stars in this month’s less appetizing Pan.

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%


THE NOSTALGIA MINERS:

Goosebumps

Release date: October 16, 2015

Director: Rob Letterman

Starring: Jack Black, Dylan Minnette, Odeya Rush, Amy Ryan, Ryan Lee, Jillian Bell

Synopsis: After moving into a small town, a teenage boy named Zach Cooper (Dylan Minnette) meets Hannah (Odeya Rush), his new neighbor. Hannah’s father, R. L. Stine (Jack Black) himself, writes the Goosebumps stories and keeps all the ghosts and monsters in the series locked up in his manuscripts like Slappy the Dummy, the Abominable Snowman, Will Blake’s werewolf form, the Giant Mantises, and the living lawn gnomes. Zach and his friend unintentionally open one of Stine’s books, leading to the release of every ghost and monster from the manuscripts. Now Zach, Hannah, and Stine team up in order to put the monsters back where they came from before they overrun the town and harm people.

FB/BS’s Take: Jack Black looks perfectly cast in what may be October’s best family friendly film.

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 75-95%

Pan

Release date: October 9, 2015

Director: Joe Wright

StarringLevi Miller, Hugh Jackman, Garrett Hedlund, Rooney Mara

Synopsis: The story of an orphan named Peter Pan (Levi Miller) who is spirited away to the magical Neverland. There, he finds the fun and dangers in this world where he meets James Hook (Garrett Hedlund) and helps to fight the evil pirate Blackbeard (Hugh Jackman).

FB/BS’s Take: On the plus side it uses modern special effects to recreate the beloved world of Peter Pan. On the down side it uses modern special effects as an excuse to rehash and possibly ruin the beloved world of Peter Pan.

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 47%


SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS (Great if you like Del Toro / Hiddleston / Cooper / Bill Murray):

Crimson Peak

Release date: October 16, 2015

Director: Guillermo del Toro

Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Tom Hiddleston, Jessica Chastain, Charlie Hunnam, and Jim Beaver.

Synopsis: Set in Cumbria, in a crumbling mansion in a largely rural and mountainous region of northern England in the late 19th century, young author Edith Cushing (Wasikowska) falls in love and marries Sir Thomas Sharpe (Hiddleston) but then discovers that her charming new husband is not who he appears to be. His home harbors ghostly, mysterious entities, which he and his sister, Lady Lucille Sharpe (Chastain), desperately and fiercely try to hide.

FB/BS’s Take: There have been plenty of reports about production problems for Del Toro’s newest film including multiple casting changes. The final cast seems solid (I’ll see anything with Chastain and Hiddleston). Plus Del Toro rarely leads us astray.

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 40-70%

Burnt

Release date: October 23, 2015

Director: John Wells

Starring: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Omar Sy, Daniel Brühl, Matthew Rhys, Alicia Vikander, Uma Thurman, Emma Thompson

Synopsis: Bradley Cooper plays Adam Jones, up and coming chef whose drug use and erratic behavior lead him to lose his restaurant. He attempts to rebuild his life and his career in London, in the hopes of returning to Paris to open a new restaurant that will gain three Michelin stars.

FB/BS’s Take: It’s been a while since we’ve seen good food focused film. This looks more like Hell’s Kitchen than Ratatouille or Julie & Julia.

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 50-80%

Rock the Kasbah

Release date: October 23, 2015

Director: Barry Levinson

Starring: Bill Murray, Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, Zooey Deschanel, Danny McBride, Scott Caan, Leem Lubany, Fahim Fazli, Taylor Kinney, Beejan Land, Arian Moayed

Synopsis: Richie Lanz (Bill Murray), a has-been rock manager takes his last remaining client on a USO tour of Afghanistan. When Richie finds himself in Kabul, abandoned, penniless and without his U.S. passport, he discovers a young Afghan girl with an extraordinary voice and manages her through Afghanistan’s version of American Idol.

FB/BS’s take: Percentage of die hard Bill Murray fans that will see this: 50%. Percentage of people who see this movie who are die hard Bill Murray fans: 90%

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 40-70%


DRAMAS FOR A CAUSE:

Freeheld

Release date: September 4, 2015

Director: Peter Sollett

Starring: Julianne Moore, Ellen Page, Michael Shannon, Steve Carell

Synopsis: The film is based on the true story of Laurel Hester (Moore), a police officer in Ocean County, New Jersey. Following her diagnosis with terminal lung cancer in 2005, Hester repeatedly appealed to the county’s board of chosen freeholders in an attempt to ensure her pension benefits could be passed on to her domestic partner, Stacie Andree (Page).

FB/BS’s take: While the ratings don’t look good so far, the cast and cause will be enough for many to get behind the film.

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 47%

Suffragette

Release date: October 30, 2015

Director: Sarah Gavron

Starring: Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter, Brendan Gleeson, Anne-Marie Duff, Ben Whishaw, Meryl Streep

Synopsis: Suffragette is a powerful drama about the women who were willing to lose everything in their fight for equality in early-20th-century Britain. The story centers on Maud (played by Carey Mulligan), a working wife and mother whose life is forever changed when she is secretly recruited to join the U.K.’s growing suffragette movement. Galvanized by the outlaw fugitive Emmeline Pankhurst (Meryl Streep), Maud becomes an activist for the cause alongside women from all walks of life.

FB/BS’s Take: Like Freeheld, this movie benefits from a strong cast and underlying cause. Plus it’s a British Biopic which always helps.

Current Rotten Tomatoes Score: 69%

Bridge of Spies

Release date: October 16, 2015

Director: Steven Spielberg

Written by: Matt Charman, Ethan Coen, Joel Coen

Starring: Tom Hanks, Mark Rylance, Amy Ryan, Alan Alda

Synopsis: An American lawyer is recruited by the CIA during the Cold War to help rescue a pilot detained in the Soviet Union.

FB/BS’s take: Looks a little heavy-handed but you can’t go wrong with Spielberg, Hanks, and the Coen brothers. And trailers can look more clumsy than the film if they distill all the cheese.

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 70-90%


THE GUILTY PLEASURES:

The Last Witch Hunter

Release date: October 23, 2015

Director: Breck Eisner

Starring: Vin Diesel, Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Julie Engelbrecht, Michael Caine

Synopsis: The last witch hunter is all that stands between humanity and the combined forces of the most horrifying witches in history.

FB/BS’s take: Will we get I, Frankenstein or Lord of the Rings? Well… it definitely won’t be Lord of the Rings but hopefully this movie doesn’t fall into the same genre traps we usually see. I’m hoping for at least “You know nothing Vin Diesel.”

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 25-70%

Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension

Release date: October 23, 2015

Director: Gregory Plotkin

Starring: Jason Pagan, Andrew Deutschman, Adam Robitel, Gavin Heffernan

Synopsis: The film will follow supernatural occurrences that take place in a newly moved family’s home in Palo Alto, California. The family finds tapes of young girls being taught supernatural abilities by their grandmother. Despite the video being filmed 20 years ago, one of the girls breaks the fourth wall by noticing the brothers’ presence. They also find a camera which can see paranormal phenomena that the human eye can’t see.

FB/BS’s take: Okay so this is the sixth and supposedly final Paranormal Activity movie. I’ve only seen one of the other movies and I know I should hate this franchise. But this movie actually looks kind of fun. Sure it will be terrible and cheesy and the acting looks shaky. Isn’t that what we all expect anyway?

Projected Rotten Tomatoes Score: 10-60%


2015 Overall List:

Most Anticipated Film of 2015: Mad Max: Fury Road

Least Anticipated Film of 2015: Pixels

Thanks for reading!

Damien from Flashback/Backslide

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12 thoughts on “Flashforward: October’s Most Anticipated Films

    • Forgot to add to that: I cannot WAIT to see Bridge of Spies. It could be a bit heavy-handed I suppose, but man — what a freaking triple threat in director, writers and cast. Should be good stuff, even if it’s stuff we’ve seen umpteen times before.

      Like

      • I needed to add the link! People need to get out and see that movie and you wrote a great review. For Bridge of Spies I remember finding out Hanks was involved and though “oh, looks like another big ‘actor-saves-the-day’ flick” and being mildly excited. Then I found out Spielberg was involved and I was pretty excited and hoping for a better all around movie (not just a Tom Hanks tear-jerker). Then I found out the Coens were involved, capping off that triple threat. So you’re right, it’s almost guaranteed to be at least good and hopefully/potentially amazing. Imagine the movie with Vin Diesel starring, Zack Snyder directing, and Jonathan Nolan writing. That would be insane.

        Liked by 1 person

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