September! The prestige of fall begins! The first volley of the Oscar blitz fires overhead! Also, some pretty bad movies come out. Good times! Let’s bust ‘em out.
- BLACK MASS – Sept 18. Ah, Johnny Depp. You’ve more or less lost us, but just when we’ve written you off you go and win us back with a badass portrait of a legendary gangster! You sly dog. Whitey Bulger is one of Boston’s most terrifying figures, a mob enforcer who decided to take them down from the inside. Though director Scott Cooper’s CRAZY HEART was fantastic, the followup OUT OF THE FURNACE was a bit of a non-starter, but I think the source material will bring the quality, as will supporting actors Benedict Cumberbatch, Joel Edgerton, Corey Stoll, Dakota Johnson, even Kevin friggin’ Bacon. Good stuff.
- EVEREST – Sept 18 in IMAX3D, all others Sept 25. Test your fear of heights with this nightmare-inducing thrill ride. An all-star cast gets trapped on the legendary peak and we get to feel like we’re right there thanks to the IMAX3D version, which has an exclusive opening the week of the 18th. Jake Gyllenhall, Josh Brolin, and Keira Knightley topline this bad boy. It’s also got some nice character beats, and the early reviews are comparing it to GRAVITY, so there’s that.
- SICARIO – Sept 18 limited, Sept 25 wide. Canadian director Denis Villeneuve has been on the edge of the upper tier, and this should bust him into the stratosphere. Emily Blunt is an FBI agent drawn into the chaos of the drug war on the Mexican border. Stylish as hell, super intense, with some killer co-stars in Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro.
- MAZE RUNNER: THE SCORCH TRIALS – Sept 18. He’s out of the maze and into the open! Can the survivors make a go of it in what remains of the world? Will they escape the clutches of the puppet masters? Is the third film already greenlit? You bet your sweet ass it is. The first one was dumb but good-natured, so I’m interested to see how things go.
- THE VISIT – Sept 11. M Night is back! He’s going to grandma’s house! She’s insane! Grandpa’s not much better. Since kids today have their phones attached to their heads, it’s a found footage film, documenting the kids’ ill fated trip to grammie and grampa’s house. Thankfully it’s more of a horror comedy, but I’m sure there’s a twist in there. Have audiences forgiven the auteur? We shall see.
- HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2 – Sept 25, RealD3D. The first one was cute, largely thanks to visionary director Genndy Tartakovsky. Luckily he’s back, and hopefully he’ll reign in Adam Sandler’s style and get a good story out of him. Can Drac’s grandson be taught to be a proper monster, or is he a mere human? Mel Brooks play’s Drac’s dad Vlad, so I’m sure that’ll be a nuanced, measured performance.
- A WALK IN THE WOODS – Sept 3. Nick Nolte and Robert Redford are old buddies who decide to follow through on an ancient promise to walk the entire Appalachian Trail. It looks harmless enough, and largely forgettable.
- THE GREEN INFERNO – Sept 25. Eli Roth (CABIN FEVER, HOSTEL) has always loved CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST so he made his own version. A plane full of pretty Americans bound for Peru to Make A Difference crashes, and they’re tormented by a lost tribe of cannibals. If you’re a fan of being flayed alive, you’re in for a treat!
- THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED – Sept 3, IMAX. Hooray, a rebooted franchise! On the plus side, it’s being presented in IMAX, so they must have done something right. Starring Guy Who’s Not Jason Statham. It just looks dumb. Pretty, but dumb.
- THE PERFECT GUY – Sept 11. A woman’s new love interest may not be the man she hoped he’d be, or is her ex the bad guy? Who the hell knows. They used to just make films like this for Lifetime.
- THE INTERN – Sept 25. Robert De Niro tries to start over by interning for Anna Hathaway in a world that’s left people like him behind. But maybe that old white dude can teach us young folks somethin’ about the world after all. I just threw up a little in my mouth.
- CAPTIVE – Sept 18. I have no idea how Christian film producers got Oscar nominee David Oyelowo to star in what’s basically an infomercial for a terrible book, but there you go. Can a young man on the run from the law be forgiven for his crimes by the woman he’s held hostage? Will A Powerful Book That’s Not The Bible But Uses It Extensively give her the strength she needs to save him, and herself? Maybe I’m just jaded and broken. Maybe I’m… oh god, what’s this at number thirteen?
- 90 MINUTES IN HEAVEN – Sept 11. MORE GLURGE? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? It’s cool everybody, we know heaven is real now, thanks to this miraculous tale. Hayden Christensen, who you HAVE to see in this trailer, plays Don Piper (as Ned Flanders on Quaaludes), a dude who almost dies in a car accident but is brought back ENTIRELY THROUGH THE POWER OF PRAYER, or so it seems. There’s basically no plot, just a guy who’s ready to die but his church says they’re going to pray for him and whammo. Lots of sun-kissed moments and oh god there’s the vomit again
So yeah, September’s got some winners and losers. But isn’t that the case every month? Why should September be any different? Will October break the trend? Of course not, but there are some incredible films coming, so stay tuned.