September Movie Releases

Hello everybody!

Another month has gone by and we’re on to another packed month full of great films. September seems like it’s going to be great by the end of the month, and may even have some early Academy Award nominees. I know, too early to think of that, but you know what? When you look at these films, you’ll be saying the same thing too. Let’s take a look at what’s coming out this month.

 

6th

It: Chapter 2 – Warner Bros., New Line Cinema, Vertigo Entertainment, Lin Pictures

Synopsis: Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise (Bill Skarsgard), the Losers Club have grown up (James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, Jay Ryan, James Ransone, and Isaiah Mustafa) and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back. Directed once again by Andy Muschietti, the film will co-star the original young cast of Jaeden Martell, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Jack Dylan Grazer, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Wyatt Oleff, and Chosen Jacobs.

Thoughts: I really liked the first It, so I was very eager to see what they would do with Chapter 2. So far, it looks DAMN good. Runtime aside – 2 hours and 49 minutes – which really doesn’t matter to me, so bring on the scary-ass clown!

 

 

13th

Hustlers – STX Entertainment

Based on the New York Magazine article by Jessica Pressler – a crew of strip club employees band together to turn the tables on their Wall Street clients. Directed by Lorene Scafaria (Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, The Meddler), Hustlers stars Jennifer Lopez, Constance Wu, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer, Madeline Brewer, Julia Stiles, Lizzo and Cardi B.

 

The Goldfinch – Warner Bros., Amazon Studios, Color Force

An adaptation of the acclaimed novel by Donna Tartt, a boy in New York is taken in by a wealthy Upper East Side family after his mother is killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Goldfinch’s impressive cast stars Ansel Elgort, Jeffrey Wright, Ashleigh Cummings, Willa Fitzgerald, Oakes Fegley, Aneurin Barnard, Finn Wolfhard, Luke Wilson, Sarah Paulson and Nicole Kidman.

 

 

20th

Downton Abbey – Focus Features, Perfect World Pictures, Carnival Film & Television

The continuing story of the Crawley family, wealthy owners of a large estate in the English countryside in the early 20th century.

 

Rambo: Last Blood – Lionsgate, Millennium Films, Balboa Productions

Synopsis: Rambo (Sylvester Stallone) must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills to exact revenge in a final mission. Rambo co-stars Oscar Jaenada, Paz Vega, Yvette Monreal and Adriana Barraza.

Thoughts: Stallone’s last (maybe) time out as John Rambo has him fighting the cartel, and it looks like it’s going to be down-and-dirty. I’ll be honest; I don’t have quite the connection to the Rambo movies like I thought I did. I might have to do a quick re-watch of the movies before Last Blood to get a better feel. Either way, I enjoyed the last Rambo movie, which of course features Rambo mowing down an entire army with a truck-planted machine gun, and cutting people in half with a machete.

 

Ad Astra – 20th Century Fox, New Regency Pictures, Plan B Entertainment, Bona Film Group

Synopsis: Co-written and directed by James Gray (We Own the Night, The Immigrant, The Lost City of Z), an astronaut (Brad Pitt) travels to the outer edges of the solar system to find his father (Tommy Lee Jones) and unravel a mystery that threatens the survival of our planet. He uncovers secrets which challenge the nature of human existence and our place in the cosmos. Ad Astra co-stars Liv Tyler, Ruth Negga and Donald Sutherland.

Thoughts: Ad Astra seems like it’s going to be one of those movies that people are expecting one thing, and will get another, and hopefully it will be for the better. I mean you got Pitt, Jones and Sutherland in a sci-fi space movie! What more do you want!?

 

 

27th

Limited Release: Judy

Based on the stageplay “End of the Rainbow” by Peter Quilter, legendary performer Judy Garland (played by Renee Zellweger) arrives in London in the winter of 1968 to perform a series of sold-out concerts. Judy co-stars Jessie Buckley, Finn Wittrock, Bella Ramsey, Rufus Sewell and Michael Gambon.

 

Abominable – Universal Pictures, DreamWorks Animation, Pearl Studio

A magical Yeti must return to his family. The voice cast includes Chloe Bennet, Tenzing Norgay Trainor, Eddie Izzard, Albert Tsai and Sarah Paulson.

 

So, what are you looking forward to?

‘Gravity’ Review

gravity

Dir: Alfonso Cuaron (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Children of Men)

Cast: Sandra Bullock and George Clooney

Synopsis: A medical engineer and an astronaut work together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space.

 

*Reviewer Note: This is a non-spoiler review*   

 

Before I get started I would like to tell you, everything we’ve seen in the trailers and commercials is all in the first twenty minutes of the movie! I know you’re probably wondering why I’m excited about that or even telling you but it is a rare thing in Hollywood when they do it. Onward we go…

Dr. Ryan Stone (Bullock), a medical engineer on her first mission in space, and veteran astronaut Matt Kowalski (Clooney), fight to survive after debris from a destroyed satellite speeds towards them and destroys their shuttle and sets Stone adrift.  And if you wondering that you are about to watch a “floating around in space” movie, you’ll be surprised. But that’s as far as I’ll go with that

Early on we get to know a bit about how Kowalski and Stone deal with stressful situations. When the debris hit, Kowalski does his best to make sure Stone doesn’t freak out and lose her oxygen. Stone, on the other hand, does freak out but there is a lot more under the surface (that we do find out) that changes her character and plays a major role later on.

However, don’t be fooled, this is a Sandra Bullock movie. Her performance carries the movie and she does a tremendous job and for me one scene stands out in particular (it’s near the end). Clooney’s Kowalski is this charming and maybe somewhat cocky but he knows what he’s doing so you can’t blame him. But, as much as Bullock carries the movie you can’t forget about the people behind the camera. And I’m not just talking about director Alfonso Cuaron, I’m also talking about Steven Price’s score that fits so perfectly with the movie, Emmaanuel Lubezki’s cinematography and the whole Special Effects crew.

The whole movie takes place in space and with zero gravity. You might be thinking “how the hell did they pull this off?” The answer to that is “Don’t think about it.” And you won’t because you’ll be drawn into the action. The special effects are done so well and with Cuaron’s long one takes you hardly notice.

Cuaron also knows what he’s doing and nothing is done just to fill up time, everything has a purpose. Even the casting of Ed Harris (although it’s just his voice) as Houston Mission Control and, again, those long takes are just fantastic. Cuaron even puts us in the “driver’s seat” by giving us many POV shots of Stone as she’s drifting but also when everything goes wrong. But one of the things that make this movie a little more stressful is the fact the Cuaron goes with decision that many Hollywood movies don’t do, Cuaron takes away the sound in space.

All in all, Gravity is an ambitious movie that somehow was pulled off. Despite its “flaws” (I’d be lying if I said there were none but they’re very, very minor) Gravity is more than just a survivor drama or thriller. It’s a lot more than I thought it would be. It asks a question that will leave you thinking after you leave the theater. More importantly it is mostly a nonstop ride and a damn great movie.

 

Gravity

5 out of 5