Ah yes, the Fall Movie Season — when studios file away their summer flings with big-budget blockbusters and concentrate on the autumnal pleasures of prestige pics and tony, based-on-a-true-story dramas. At least, that’s how things used to work. Now, you get big-name superhero epics and brand-tested I.P. spectacles all year round, even when the annual awards-circuit death march kicks in to high gear. In late 2018, you can literally walk out of a biopic of Neil Armstrong and right into a new Marvel antihero movie, or theater-hop from Aquaman to Alfonso Cuarón’s 135-minute black-and-white arthouse movie about Mexican domestic workers. You want a new Coen brothers project and a new Kevin Hart comedy? Outrageous Italian horror remakes and Oscar-friendly IRL handwringers? We have just the season for you.
Rather than try to cover what promises to be a packed few months of everything-under-the-sun programming — and really, is there anything else you need to know about something like Bumblebee (Dec. 21) besides “a Transformers flick by any other name smells just as rancid”? — we’ve narrowed down our Fall Movie Preview to a mere 50 titles. Some are exactly the kind of statue-courting films you expect to see in the pre-holiday months; others are the sort of multiplex fare that Hollywood pumps out to keep its bottom line humming along; still others are docs, defiantly left-of-center indies and a few decidedly unclassifiable gems. All of them, however, have us interested enough to get in line and buy tickets ASAP. Behold, your Fall Movies gallery — consider this your must-see checklist.