Early Oscar predictions: 14 fall movies to watch

This time last year I was watching the trailer for Ridley Scott’s spicy meatball from a true crime saga House of Gucci on a loop, trying to analyze the nuances of Lady Gaga’s Italian(?) accent and searching online for a cheap one Replica of Adam Driver’s cable knit ski jumper. I wasn’t sure why Jared Leto played Jeffrey Tamborbut I was absolutely certain that Leto and Gaga and the film would all be celebrated at the 2022 Oscars.

Of course, none of that happened (although I found a great deal on the sweater), so it’s best to watch movies before making any predictions about awards season. But there’s no harm in offering a few thoughts on the fall movies hoping to resonate with Oscar voters in the coming months. (We’re looking at release dates through November 4th.)

Some of these movies could make their way into the best picture conversation; others are more performance-oriented. Some will be hard to remember in a few months.

It’s also worth noting that the year has been pushed back a bit with prestige titles from Steven Spielberg (“The Fablemans”), Damien Chazelle (“Babylon”), Sam Mendes (“Empire of Light”), Alejandro González Iñárritu (“Bardo”) appears. ), Darren Aronofsky (“The Whale”) and Noah Baumbach (“White Noise”) arrive around the holiday season. Plus “Avatar” and “Black Panther” sequels.

But there will be plenty of time to talk about these films. Let’s focus on the immediate future. Release dates are subject to change and dates shown are for theatrical release in Los Angeles unless otherwise noted.

16 Sep

“The Woman King”

Viola Davis and John Boyega present "The Woman King."

Viola Davis and John Boyega in The Woman King.

(Ilze Kitshoff/Sony Pictures)

Gina Prince-Bythewood directed this epic about the warrior women who protected the African kingdom of Dahomey in the 19th century. your leader? A general played by none other than Viola Davis, so you know the Reich – and the audience – are in good hands.

(Streaming on Netflix September 28)

Marilyn Monroe’s life is reimagined in this Andrew Dominik adaptation of the novel by Joyce Carol Oates. Ana de Armas plays the legend in an NC-17 rated film that’s sure to dissect, scrutinize and — who knows? — maybe even seen by a few people when it comes out on Netflix.

23 Sept

“Don’t worry darling”

Florence Pugh in "don't worry darling"

Florence Pugh in Don’t Worry Darling.

(Warner Bros. Entertainment)

Florence Pugh and Harry Styles and a bunch of beautiful people amuse themselves in the Palm Springs sun until they’re no longer in this psychological thriller directed by Olivia Wilde about a perfect world that might be a tad small to perfect, especially for the immaculately dressed wives waiting for their husbands to return home from their mysterious jobs. The working principle of the community comes directly from the screenplay by Michael Corleone: “Don’t ask me about my business!”

“The Greatest Beer Race Ever”
(Streaming on AppleTV+ Sept 30)

Russell Crowe and Zac Efron will be there "The biggest beer run of all time."

Russell Crowe and Zac Efron in The Greatest Beer Run Ever.

(Golf Thanaporn/Apple TV+)

Zac Efron plays a guy who brings some colds to his buddies in Vietnam in this friendship story from writer-director Peter Farrelly. Like Farrelly’s last film, the Oscar-winning Green Book, it is based on true events. Like its predecessor, will it connect with audiences — and awards season voters?

7 Oct


Cate Blanchett in "Tar."

Cate Blanchett in Tar.

(focus functions)

Todd Field directed and co-wrote two films – In the Bedroom and Little Children. He has remained busy since its release 16 years ago, although none of his projects, including collaborations with Joan Didion and Jonathan Franzen, have come to fruition. Finally, we have a new Todd Field film, “Tár,” centered around a fictional German composer and conductor played by Cate Blanchett.


John David Washington, Christian Bale and Margot Robbie were there "Amsterdam."

John David Washington, Christian Bale and Margot Robbie in Amsterdam.

(Merie Weismiller Wallace, SMPSP/20th Century Studios)

Filmmaker David O. Russell had a good run from 2010 to 2013 with The Fighter, Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle. But we haven’t heard from him since the uninspired “Joy” seven years ago, making this film – a period crime thriller with a rambling cast that includes Margot Robbie, Christian Bale, John David Washington and Taylor Swift – an expected title power. It doesn’t play any of the fall festivals, though, meaning it’s likely not a contender for awards. Can it still be fun? Maaaaaybe.

“Triangle of Sadness”

Ruben Ostlund’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner takes aim at the wealthy (and the luxury cruise industry) in a satire of moral revulsion and vomit. Glib or glorious? Opinions differ. Woody Harrelson plays a Marxist ship captain, maybe we can all agree it’s perfect.

14 Oct


Clemency director Chinonye Chukwu’s latest film explores the short life of Emmett Till (Jalyn Hall), his brutal lynching after a baseless accusation, and his mother Mamie’s (Danielle Deadwyler) subsequent quest for justice.

“decision to go”

Park Chan-wook won the Cannes Film Director’s Award for this ravishing crime thriller about a detective (Park Hae-il) who becomes obsessed with a woman (Tang Wei) whom he suspects killed her husband. South Korea has already chosen it to enter the Oscars international feature race.

21 Oct

“My Cop”
(Streaming on Prime Video Nov 4)

David Dawson, Emma Corrin and Harry Styles will be there "my cop"

David Dawson, Emma Corrin and Harry Styles in My Cop.

(Parisa Taghizadeh/Prime Video)

This drama about a police officer (Harry Styles) who begins a romance with a teacher (Emma Corrin) while pursuing a secret affair with a museum curator (David Dawson) in 1950s England has already won an award – the Tribute Award for Performance of the Toronto Film Festival. Previous tribute winners include Jessica Chastain (“The Eyes of Tammy Faye”), Joaquin Phoenix (“Joker”) and Anthony Hopkins (“The Father”), all of whom went on to win Oscars. This is the first time TIFF has honored an ensemble. Maybe this Harry Styles guy is a rising star?

‘The Banshees of Inisherin’

Martin McDonagh’s last feature film, 2017’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, was a critical and promotional hit, winning Oscars for Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell. This sequel tells the story of lifelong friends (Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson) who have a falling out with chilling consequences.

‘After Sun’

A divorced, sad father (Paul Mescal) takes his precocious tween daughter (newcomer Frankie Corio) on a vacation to a Turkish seaside resort in Charlotte Well’s tender coming-of-age drama (for parent and child), which is set in Cannes for enthusiasm.

‘Wendell & Wild’
(Streaming on Netflix Oct. 28)

Wendell (voiced by Keegan-Michael Key) and Wild (voiced by Jordan Peele). "Wendel & Wild."

Wendell (voiced by Keegan-Michael Key) and Wild (voiced by Jordan Peele) in Wendell & Wild.


An animated fantasy about a couple of demon brothers who want to join the land of the living, from stop-motion master Henry Selick (“The Nightmare Before Christmas”, “Coraline”) and Jordan Peele? Sounds good. Even better – Peele and Keegan-Michael Key voice the demons.

28 Oct

“Armageddon Period”

James Gray’s thoughtful, self-critical coming-of-age story earned a seven-minute ovation at its Cannes premiere earlier this year. With a cast that includes Anthony Hopkins, Anne Hathaway and Jeremy Strong, the film centers on a friendship between two misfits in 1980 Queens – one Jewish, the other black – and the societal injustices that complicate their relationship. In a Cannes review, Times film critic Justin Chang praised the screenplay’s “multi-layered understanding of hypocrisy and privilege.”

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/movies/story/2022-08-30/oscars-awards-contenders-fall-arts-preview Early Oscar predictions: 14 fall movies to watch

Sarah Ridley

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