2011 Fall Movie Season Preview

“And I can tell you
My love for you will still be strong
After the movies of summer have gone…”

God. I’ve GOT to stop doing that! Why anybody comes back to this blog when I keep doling out such HAM is beyond me.

It’s true though. The movies of summer have gone. This weekend brings “Don’t be Afraid of the Dark”, “Our Idiot Brother” and “Colombiana”, after which the summer season will be officially deemed closed.

BIG movies begin to come back during the “Holiday Movie Season”, which begins the week before Thanksgiving. This year the Holiday season will kick off with “Happy Feet Two”, “Twilight: Breaking Dawn” and (thankfully) “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” starring Gary Oldman. Once those movies hit, the ball is officially rolling, as Turkey Day weekend itself brings us “The Muppets” and Martin Scorsese’s “Hugo”.

The fall is pretty much the lowest profile time of the year for movies. Blockbusters come out in the Summer, the Holidays, and early March. Oscar contenders are typically released in January to stay fresh in voters minds. With the exception of Halloween, which often brings high-profile horror movies, the fall pretty much has a reputation for being a dumping ground.  

Still, there are movies on my radar (of course). Movies that I’m looking forward to to varying degrees. Click through to see the ten movies I’m looking forward to the most between now and the Holiday Movie Season.


“Apollo 18″

Release date: 9/2

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/weinstein/apollo18/

Official Site: http://apollo18movie.net/

Starring: No one. I swear to God, the IMDb page doesn’t have any cast listed. I think they’re taking this “found footage” B.S. a little too far.

Directed by Gonzalo López-Gallego

This is one of those movies with a “Found Footage” conceit. Why Hollywood can’t just utilize the first person hand-held camera style and then not worry about trying to explain it is beyond me. The Blair Witch Project was one thing… found footage from a moon landing, though? LOL

Anyways, I’m ready to forgive that nonsense and check it out. It looks like “The Blair Witch Project” meets “Apollo 13″ crossed with “Cabin Fever” and “Alien”. Count me in. :D 

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“Contagion”

Release Date: 9/9

Trailer: http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi3924270105/

Official Site: http://contagionmovie.warnerbros.com/index.html

Starring: Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Laurence Fishburne, Bryan Cranston, Marion Cotillard

Directed by Steven Soderbergh

The huge cast of this flick kind of reminds me of the “Airport”/”Towering Inferno” days when Hollywood would get a shit-ton of famous names, toss them all into a huge ensemble cast and put them all in the middle of a disaster. It pretty much looks like your standard “world in danger from plague” movie, except for the calibre of the director and cast, which elevate it to a flick I’m really looking forward to.

On a side note, who’s in charge of creating internet memes? Because I’m curious as to why Matt Damon’s “Your wife died”… “Can I talk to her?” exchange hasn’t become one. I can picture that going on for hours as the doctor just tries way after way of breaking it to him unsuccessfully. Too morbid? Probably I guess. Oh well, “Why Cookie Rocket” is safe for now.

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“Drive”

Release Date: 9/16

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/independent/drive/

Official Site: http://www.drive-movie.com/

Starring: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Christina Hendricks, Ron Perlman, Oscar Isaac, Albert Brooks

Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn

I’ll cop to it. I’ve never seen any of Refn’s films. But they’ve been getting really good buzz from bloggers whose buzz I trust.

The premise to this seems simple enough. A Hollywood stunt driver does getaway driving for heists and the like. He becomes entangled in a job that goes wrong, yada yada. Action ensues.

What draws me to this film, other than its awesome trailer is the fact that it won Refn the Best Director prize at Cannes. BLEEP. (That’s the sound of this movie appearing on my radar) BLEEP. BLEEP.

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“Moneyball”

Release Date: 9/23

Trailer: http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi363633689/

Official Site: http://www.moneyball-movie.com/

Starring: Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Robin Wright, and Philip Seymour Hoffman

Directed by Bennett Miller

I hope this movie ends with “the flip”.

Heh heh heh heh.

Ok, for those of you who don’t know anything about it. Brad Pitt stars as Billy Beane, the “upstart” GM of the Oakland A’s. Beane began his stewardship of the A’s in the late 90s, and in spite of having one of the smallest payrolls in Baseball, he employed cutting edge player evaluation techniques and turned the A’s (for a period) into perennial playoff contenders, where their hopes and dreams would then get crushed by the Evil Empire.

Heh heh heh heh.

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“Dream House”

Release Date: 9/30 

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/universal/dreamhouse/

Official Site: http://www.dreamhousemovie.net/

Starring: Daniel Craig, Naomi Watts, Rachel Weisz

Directed by Jim Sheridan

I have some hopes for this one. Aside from the talent in the cast, it’s being directed by Jim Sheridan, who’s been nominated for Best Director twice in his career (“My Left Foot” and “In the Name of the Father”).

It’s not a guarantee of anything of course, but I’m picking up a real “Shutter Island” vibe from the trailer, and I loved that flick. So I’m in.

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“The Ides of March”

Release Date: 10/7

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/sony_pictures/theidesofmarch/

No Official Site at this time

Starring: Ryan Gosling, George Clooney, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Paul Giamatti

Directed by George Clooney

This heavyweight cast has assembled to deliver us a tale of political intrigue. Secrets are revealed on the campaign trail that test loyalty, integrity, etc. How far would you go for power, that sort of thing.

“Good Night and Good Luck” is the only one of Clooney’s directorial efforts I’ve seen to this point. Not a lot of interest in Leatherheads, and I’ve just missed “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind” to now. I basically think though that with a cast like this? You can’t lose. Right? Its gotta be good…

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“Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots” “Real Steel”

Release Date: 10/7

Trailer: http://www.imdb.com/video/imdb/vi3446840601/

Official Site: http://www.steelgetsreal.com/

Starring: Hugh Jackman, Evangeline Lilly

Directed by Shawn Levy

“Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots” “Real Steel” stars Hugh Jackman as a down on his luck ex-boxer who gets involved with the sport of Robot fighting. Somehow he and a kid (I’m unclear if it’s his son or not) discover a “sparring robot” and fix it up to the point where it becomes an improbable contender.

Picture “Rocky” with Robots and plucky kid. Not that I’m seeing any academy awards in this movie’s future, but hell, it looks decent enough to check out.

I’ve embedded a promo clip for the movie below.

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“The Thing”

Release Date: 10/14

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/universal/thething/

Official Site: http://www.thethingmovie.net/

Starring: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Joel Edgerton, Eric Christian Olsen

Directed by Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.

The prequel to the remake. LOL. Lots of buzz and uproar on the interwebs over this one, as Carpenter’s “The Thing” from 1982 is widely and rightfully considered a classic.

Although on the highest level I’d prefer if Hollywood focused on original properties again, and I certainly get outraged when truly classic properties (and or movies that are personal to me somehow) are reopened (See my Blade Runner and Say Anything rants), I logically have to concede that if your film is a remake itself you lose all future protest rights to being revisited. It is what it is.

I just hope the film sticks to the spirit of the Carpenter film, which was to build on the suspicion, paranoia and isolation… as opposed to jump scares and action scenes. If it does, it stands a chance of being good.

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“Tower Heist”

Release Date: 11/4

Trailer: http://trailers.apple.com/trailers/universal/towerheist/

Official Site: http://www.towerheist.net/

Starring: Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Matthew Broderick, Alan Alda, Casey Affleck

Directed by Brett Ratner

The premise of “Tower Heist” is that the employees of a residential high-rise discover that their savings have been defrauded by the resident of the penthouse. They make up their minds to rob him.

I know, I know. I’m looking forward to a comedy directed by Brett Ratner, released in November. It’s like dating a girl that everyone tells you is crazy… She looks good, but you know there’s disaster impending.

Still… the concept has potential, and I can’t past the talent of the cast. Each of these big names have the potential to be very funny. Whether it’s all going to add up or not, I don’t know, but I’m definitely willing to give it a shot.

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“J Edgar”

(No Official Poster, Trailer or Site at this time)

Starring: Leonardo Dicaprio, Josh Lucas, Naomi Watts, Armie Hammer, Lea Thompson, Dermot Mulroney, Judi Dench, Stephen Root

Directed by Clint Eastwood

Release Date: 11/9

Clint Eastwood directing Leonardo Dicaprio in a biopic about everybody’s favorite cross dressing crime fighter? Hell yes.

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So there you have it! The movies I’m looking forward to the most in this upcoming Fall movie season. I’ll be sure to share my reviews of them with you once I check them out!

What do you think folks? Any movies above look appealing to you? Any coming out that didn’t make my list, but are on yours? Post ‘em up! Let me hear it!

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4 thoughts on “2011 Fall Movie Season Preview

  1. Pingback: Film Bits: What Others Are Saying. « The Cineaste's Lament.

  2. Is there any hope for the Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol? Saw the preview and thought it might be good if nothing better comes out by Dec. 21st.

    And when is that Avengers movie scheduled for?

    • Still @ my fantasy draft, but yeah I think MI 4 looks good… Holiday movie though, so I didn’t put it here. But yeah, that’s a good trailer, MI4 looks good!

      Avengers is next summer – 2012. Not sure exactly when without looking it up, but I assume May…

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