Award season is officially underway with A Star Is Born, The Old Man & the Gun, First Man, Beautiful Boy, and more hitting theaters this month. But it’s also October, which means it’s time for the ghosts and ghouls to come out to play. To help you get a sense of whether the film you’re about to see is reaching for awards, terror, or both (looking at you Suspiria), here’s a list of 22 films to check out this month.
Director: Ruben Fleischer.
Cast: Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed, Scott Haze, and Reid Scott.
One of Marvel’s greatest and most complex characters takes center stage as Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) becomes the host for the alien symbiote Venom. As a journalist, Eddie has been trying to take down the notorious founder of the Life Foundation, genius Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed) – and that obsession ruined his career and his relationship with his girlfriend, Anne Weying (Michelle Williams). Upon investigating one of Drake’s experiments, the alien Venom merges with Eddie’s body, and he suddenly has incredible new superpowers, as well as the chance to do just about whatever he wants. Twisted, dark, unpredictable, and fueled by rage, Venom leaves Eddie wrestling to control dangerous abilities that he also finds empowering and intoxicating. As Eddie and Venom need each other to get what they’re looking for, they become more and more intertwined — where does Eddie end and Venom begin?
A Star Is Born
Director: Bradley Cooper.
Cast: Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, Sam Elliott, Dave Chappelle, Anthony Ramos, Andrew Dice Clay, and Rafi Gavron.
A Star Is Born stars four-time Oscar nominee Bradley Cooper and multiple award-winning, Oscar-nominated music superstar Lady Gaga, in her first leading role in a major motion picture. Cooper helms the drama, marking his directorial debut.
In this new take on the tragic love story, he plays seasoned musician Jackson Maine, who discovers—and falls in love with—struggling artist Ally (Gaga). She has just about given up on her dream to make it big as a singer… until Jack coaxes her into the spotlight. But even as Ally’s career takes off, the personal side of their relationship is breaking down, as Jack fights an ongoing battle with his own internal demons.
The Happy Prince (Limited)
Director: Rupert Everett.
Cast: Rupert Everett, Colin Firth, Colin Morgan, Edwin Thomas, and Emily Watson.
In a cheap Parisian hotel room Oscar Wilde lies on his death bed and the past floods back, transporting him to other times and places. Was he once the most famous man in London? The artist crucified by a society that once worshiped him? The lover imprisoned and freed, yet still running towards ruin in the final chapter of his life? Under the microscope of death he reviews the failed attempt to reconcile with his long suffering wife Constance, the ensuing reprisal of his fatal love affair with Lord Alfred Douglas and the warmth and devotion of Robbie Ross who tried and failed to save him from himself. From Dieppe to Naples to Paris freedom is elusive and Oscar is a penniless vagabond, always moving on, shunned by his old acquaintances, but revered by a strange group of outlaws and urchins to whom he tells the old stories – his incomparable wit still sharp. The Happy Prince is a portrait of the dark side of a genius who lived and died for love in the last days of the nineteenth century.
Director: Anthony Nardolillo.
Cast: Jorge Burgos, Gilbert Saldivar, David Zayas, and Jadi Collado.
Shine, winner of the audience award for best feature at the 2017 Urbanworld Film Festival, is a story about family, community, culture, and standing up for what you believe in. Shine is the story of brothers, Ralphi and Junior, celebrated Spanish Harlem salsa dancers. Once close, a devastating tragedy creates a deep divide between them that alters their relationship and futures. In the wake of the tragedy, Ralphi finds himself haunted by regret and guilt and attempts to flee his past, leaving behind everything he’s ever known including his brother, the girl he loves, and his culture.
Loving Pablo (Limited)
Director: Fernando Leon de Aranoa.
Cast: Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz.
Loving Pablo chronicles the rise and fall of the worlds most feared drug lord Pablo Escobar (Javier Bardem) and his volatile love affair with Colombia’s most famous journalist Virginia Vallejo (Penélope Cruz) throughout a reign of terror that tore a country apart.
The Old Man & the Gun
Director: David Lowery.
Cast: Robert Redford, Casey Affleck, Danny Glover, and Tika Sumpter, Keith Carradine, Isiah Whitlock, Jr., John David Washington with Tom Waits and Sissy Spacek.
The Old Man & the Gun is based on the true story of Forrest Tucker (Robert Redford), from his audacious escape from San Quentin at the age of 70 to an unprecedented string of heists that confounded authorities and enchanted the public. Wrapped up in the pursuit are detective John Hunt (Casey Affleck), who becomes captivated with Forrest’s commitment to his craft, and a woman (Sissy Spacek) who loves him in spite of his chosen profession.
Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween
Director: Ari Sandel.
Cast: Wendi McLendon-Covey, Madison Iseman, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Caleel Harris, Chris Parnell, and Ken Jeong.
Halloween comes to life in a brand-new comedy adventure based on R.L. Stine’s 400-million-selling series of books.
Director: Damien Chazelle.
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Claire Foy, Jason Clarke, Kyle Chandler, Corey Stoll, Claran Hinds, Christopher Abbott, Patrick Fugit, and Lukas Haas.
On the heels of their six-time Academy Award®-winning smash, La La Land, Oscar®-winning director Damien Chazelle and star Ryan Gosling reteam for Universal Pictures’ First Man, the riveting story behind the first manned mission to the moon, focusing on Neil Armstrong and the decade leading to the historic Apollo 11 flight. A visceral and intimate account told from Armstrong’s perspective, based on the book by James R. Hansen, the film explores the triumphs and the cost—on Armstrong, his family, his colleagues and the nation itself—of one of the most dangerous missions in history.
Director: Felix Van Groeningen.
Cast: Steve Carell, Maura Tierney, Timothée Chalamet, and Amy Ryan.
Beautiful Boy is a deeply moving portrait of a family’s unwavering love and commitment to each other in the face of their son’s addiction and his attempts at recovery. Based on two memoirs, one from acclaimed journalist David Sheff and one from his son, Nic Sheff. As Nic repeatedly relapses, the Sheffs are faced with the harsh reality that addiction is a disease that does not discriminate and can hit any family at any time.
Bad Times at the El Royale
Director: Drew Goddard.
Cast: Jeff Bridges, Cynthia Erivo, Dakota Johnson, Jon Hamm, Cailee Spaeny, and Chris Hemsworth.
Seven strangers, each with a secret to bury, meet at Lake Tahoe’s El Royale, a rundown hotel with a dark past. Over the course of one fateful night, everyone will have a last shot at redemption… before everything goes to hell.
The Oath (Limited)
Director: Ike Barinholtz.
Cast: Ike Barinholtz, Tiffany Haddish, Nora Dunn, Chris Ellis, Jon Barinholtz, Meredith Hagner, Carrie Brownstein, Billy Magnussen, and John Cho.
A controversial White House policy turns family member against family member in The Oath, a savagely funny dark comedy about surviving life and Thanksgiving in the age of political tribalism. When Chris (Ike Barinholtz), a high-strung 24-hour progressive news junkie, and his more levelheaded wife Kai (Tiffany Haddish) learn that citizens are being asked to sign a loyalty oath to the President, their reaction is disbelief, followed by idealistic refusal. But as the Thanksgiving deadline to sign approaches, the combination of sparring relatives, Chris’s own agitation and the unexpected arrival of two government agents (John Cho and Billy Magnussen) sends an already tense holiday dinner gathering completely off the rails. As timely as it is outrageous, The Oath is a gleefully wicked reinvention of the traditional holiday comedy for our divisive political times.
I Still See You
Director: Scott Speer.
Cast: Bella Thorne, Richard Harmon, Amy Price–Francis, Hugh Dillon, Shaun Benson, Dave Brown, Thomas Elms, with Louis Herthum, and Dermot Mulroney.
Bella Thorne stars in this spellbinding and romantic supernatural thriller. Ten years after an apocalyptic event left the world haunted by ghosts, Roni (Thorne) receives a threatening message from beyond the grave. Joining forces with a mysterious classmate, Kirk, Roni descends into a shadow world that blurs the bounds of the living and the dead-and begins a desperate race against time to stop a cunning killer.
Director: David Gordon Green.
Cast: Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton, Virginia Gardner, and Nick Castle.
Jamie Lee Curtis returns to her iconic role as Laurie Strode, who comes to her final confrontation with Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night four decades ago.
The Hate You Give
Director: George Tillman, Jr.
Cast: Amandla Stenberg, Regina Hall, Russell Hornsby, KJ Apa, Algee Smith, Lamar Johnson, Issa Rae, Sabrina Carpenter, with Common and Anthony Mackie.
Starr Carter is constantly switching between two worlds: the poor, mostly black, neighborhood where she lives and the rich, mostly white, prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Now, facing pressures from all sides of the community, Starr must find her voice and stand up for what’s right. The Hate You Give is based on the critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller by Angie Thomas.
Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Director: Marielle Heller.
Cast: Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant.
In Can You Ever Forgive Me? Melissa McCarthy stars as Lee Israel, the best-selling celebrity biographer (and cat lover) who made her living in the 1970’s and 80’s profiling the likes of Katharine Hepburn, Tallulah Bankhead, Estee Lauder and journalist Dorothy Kilgallen. When Lee found herself unable to get published because she had fallen out of step with the marketplace, she turned her art form to deception, abetted by her loyal friend Jack (Richard E. Grant).
Director: Jonah Hill.
Cast: Sunny Suljic, Lucas Hedges, Na-kel Smith, Olan Prenatt, Glo Gallicia, Ryder McLaughlin, Alexa Demie, and Katherine Waterston.
Written and directed by Jonah Hill, Mid90s follows Stevie, a thirteen-year-old in 90s-era LA who spends his summer navigating between his troubled home life and a group of new friends that he meets at a Motor Avenue skate shop.
What They Had
Director: Elizabeth Chomko.
Cast: Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, Blythe Danner, Robert Forster, Taissa Farmiga, and Josh Lucas.
From first-time writer/director Elizabeth Chomko, What They Had centers on a family in crisis. Bridget (Hilary Swank) returns home to Chicago at her brother’s (Michael Shannon) urging to deal with her ailing mother (Blythe Danner) and her father’s (Robert Forster) reluctance to let go of their life together.
Director: Donovan Marsh.
Cast: Gerard Butler, Toby Stephens, Gary Oldman, Linda Cardellini, Common, and Michael Nyovist.
Deep under the Arctic Ocean, American submarine Captain Joe Glass (Gerard Butler) is on the hunt for a U.S. sub in distress when he discovers a secret Russian coup is in the offing, threatening to dismantle the world order. With crew and country on the line, Captain Glass must now assemble an elite group of Navy SEALs to rescue the kidnapped Russian president and sneak through enemy waters to stop WWIII.
Director: David Evans.
Cast: Sarah Drew, Justin Bruening, Jason George, Tia Mowry, Madeline Carroll, Skye P. Marshall, Tanner Stine, Michael O’Neill, and Eric Close.
Indivisble is based on the extraordinary true story of Army Chaplain Darren Turner and his wife Heather. With a strong, faith-filled marriage, the Turners are ready to follow their calling: serving God, family, and country. Fresh from seminary and basic training, Chaplain Turner and his family arrive at Fort Stewart. Yet before the Turners can even unpack their new house, Darren is deployed to Iraq. Heather is left taking care of their three young children alone … as well as serving the families of the other deployed soldiers. Despite a desire to stay connected with their loved ones, the harsh realities of war take a daily toll over the course of the Battalion’s extended deployment. Meanwhile back home, babies are born, kids keep growing, and nerves are frayed with every late-night knock on the door. With deeply etched battle scars, the soldiers’ long-awaited homecoming is much different than any of their families anticipated. Carrying burdens the other can’t comprehend, the Turners must decide if they’re willing to face one more battle: the fight to save their marriage.
Director: Lee Chang-dong.
Cast: Ah-in Yoo, Steven Yeun, and Jong-seo Jun.
Burning is the searing examination of an alienated young man, Jongsu (Ah-in Yoo), a frustrated introvert whose already difficult life is complicated by the appearance of two people into his orbit: first, Haemi (newcomer Jong-seo Jun), a spirited woman who offers romantic possibility, and then, Ben (Steven Yeun), a wealthy and sophisticated young man she returns from a trip with. When Jongsu learns of Ben’s mysterious hobby and Haemi suddenly disappears, his confusion and obsessions begin to mount, culminating in a stunning finale.
Director: Luca Guadagnino.
Cast: Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton, Mia Goth, Sylvie Testud, Lutz Ebersdorf, with Jessica Harper and Chloë Grace Moretz.
A darkness swirls at the center of a world-renowned dance company, one that will engulf the troupe’s artistic director (Tilda Swinton), an ambitious young dancer (Dakota Johnson), and a grieving psychotherapist (Lutz Ebersdorf). Some will succumb to the nightmare. Others will finally wake up.
Viper Club (Limited)
Director: Maryam Keshavarz.
Cast: Susan Sarandon, Edie Falco, Matt Bomer, Lola Kirke, Adepero Oduye, Sheila Vand, and Julian Morris.
ER nurse Helen Sterling (Susan Sarandon) struggles to free her grown son, a journalist captured by terrorists in the Middle East. After hitting walls with the FBI and state agencies, she discovers a clandestine community of journalists, advocates, and philanthropist who might be able to help.