Moviegoers, rejoice! As theaters are opening their doors to the public once again, cinephiles can start marking their calendars in anticipation of the fall season’s most talked-about films all set to hit the big screen. Here is Artsweek’s selection of upcoming movie releases you should check out in the coming weeks!
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson
Villeneuve’s futuristic sci-fi film, the first installation of a two-part adaptation of American author Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel of the same name, has already been released internationally for three weeks. If its critical and commercial reception abroad is to be any indication, “Dune” is poised to make an impressive debut in the U.S. market. Timothée Chalamet (“Call Me By Your Name,” “Little Women”) takes some time off from the role of everyone’s internet boyfriend to star as Paul Atreides, a young man of the noble Atreides family who leads the fight to protect his family and the people of Arrakis, his desert planet, against enemy forces. “Dune,” which also features it-girl Zendaya (“Euphoria,” “The Greatest Showman”) as Chani, a native woman of Arrakis and Chalamet’s love interest, premieres on Oct. 22 in theaters and will stream exclusively on HBO Max.
“Last Night in Soho”
Director: Edgar Wright
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie, Matt Smith
Just in time for Halloween, English filmmaker Edgar Wright (“Baby Driver,” “Shaun of the Dead”) brings audiences a psychological horror flick that is lifted by the gripping performances of its two brilliant leading ladies. Thomasin McKenzie (“Jojo Rabbit,” “Leave No Trace”) takes on the starring role of Eloise, a burgeoning fashion designer who moves to London to pursue her studies in the field but is haunted by the ghostly memory of her deceased mother. Struggling to settle into her new life, Eloise mysteriously begins to dream that she travels back in time to 1966 and enters the body of the glamorous and fun-loving Sandy, portrayed by Anya Taylor-Joy (“The Queen’s Gambit,” “Split”), and her dreams soon take on a more horrific form. After premiering at the 78th annual Venice International Film Festival last month to mixed critical response, Wright’s flashy thriller is still making waves among moviegoers ahead of its exclusive theater rollout on Oct. 29.
“The Harder They Fall”
Director: Jeymes Samuel
Starring: Idris Elba, Jonathan Majors, Regina King
“The Harder They Fall,” a Western film from Netflix’s production studio — where vindictive outlaw Nat Love seeks to avenge the murder of his parents at the hands of rival gang member Rufus Buck — is already generating a lot of hype ahead of its Nov. 3 release on the streaming platform. Love, played by Jonathan Majors (“Lovecraft Country,” “Da 5 Bloods”) rounds up a group of cowboys and sets off in pursuit of Buck, portrayed by Idris Elba (“Luther,” “The Suicide Squad”), who has recently been freed from prison. With a star-studded, talented, all-Black cast and a soundtrack boasting production credits from hip-hop icon and business mogul Jay-Z, this action-packed, historical thriller is sure to promise lots of harrowing escapades and an unrelenting quest for revenge against the backdrop of the mythical Wild West.
Director: Pablo Larraín
Starring: Kristin Stewart, Jack Farthing, Sally Hawkins
As international interest and conversation surrounding the British royal family has ramped up in recent years, so has the number of cinematographic adaptations to enthrall viewers with the scandalous and intoxicating ins and outs of one of the most enduring monarchies of our time (Is anyone else counting down the days until season five of “The Crown” premieres?). Kristen Stewart (“Twilight,” “Charlie’s Angels”) masterfully brings the late Princess Diana to life and has already received rapturous reviews for her heartfelt and moving portrayal of the globally beloved princess. The drama biopic chronicles a three-day stay at Sandringham Estate during Christmas of 1991 and reflects on the dissolution of the marriage between Diana and Charles, Prince of Wales. The film then goes on to depict the princess’s subsequent withdrawal from the royal family. “Spencer” will hit theaters across the U.S. on Nov. 5.
Director: Chloé Zhao
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Kit Harington
Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) are about to be gifted with yet another chapter in the superhero universe franchise as Oscar-winning director Chloé Zhao (“Nomadland,” “The Rider”) unveils her cinematic adaptation of the “Eternals.” Hot on the heels of the blockbuster release of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” another addition to the MCU, “Eternals” features Angelina Jolie (“Maleficent,” “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider”) and Kit Harington (“Game of Thrones,” “Pompeii”) among the cast of the Eternals, an immortal alien race, as they fight to defend the planets from their adversaries, the Deviants. The inclusion of a gay couple (an Eternal named Phastos, played by Brian Tyree Henry, and his husband, played by Haaz Sleiman) among the lineup of superheroes has earned the film commendation from many fans and critics for its long-overdue representation of LGBTQ+ characters within the MCU. The eagerly awaited 26th installment of the franchise will premiere in theaters on Nov. 5.
“House of Gucci”
Director: Ridley Scott
Starring: Jared Leto, Lady Gaga, Adam Driver
From seasoned sci-fi director and producer Ridley Scott (“Alien,” “Prometheus”) comes “House of Gucci,” a biographical crime drama that follows Patrizia Reggiani, portrayed by pop star Lady Gaga (“A Star Is Born,” “American Horror Story”), as she is convicted of plotting to assassinate her ex-husband and fashion director Maurizio Gucci, played by Adam Driver (“Marriage Story,” “Annette”). Taking place in 1995, the film zooms in on Reggiani’s troubled personal life and her widely publicized trial that captivated the world. The controversial film, based on the 2001 book “The House of Gucci: A Sensational Story of Murder, Madness, Glamour, and Greed” by Sara Gay Forden, will hit theaters on Nov. 24 and will become available for streaming on Paramount+ shortly afterward.
A version of this article appeared on p. 11 of the Oct. 7, 2021 print edition of the Daily Nexus.