October Movie Guide
Your monthly collection of cinematic selections…
The season has changed and so have the offerings at the box office. Unlike the summer weather, the season’s blockbusters don’t seem to be sticking around. Instead we’ll be treated to some more seasonable hard sci-fi, Oscar bait and the token horror releases.
“Blade Runner 2049”
The sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 cyberpunk classic, “Blade Runner,” comes to us 35 years later from director Denis Villeneuve (“Sicario,” “Prisoners”).
The film follows Officer K. K is an LAPD Blade Runner, a cop assigned to hunt and kill replicants or bioengineered androids made to look human and serve society. Played by Ryan “The Goose” Gosling, K stumbles upon a case that leads him to Niander Wallace, a genuine weirdo and replicant manufacturer portrayed by Jared Leto doing some capital “A” acting.
Making his return to the franchise is professional mumbler, grumpy grandpa Harrison Ford, who starred in the original as Rick Deckard, a now-retired Blade Runner. Ford can’t seem to escape his past-roles in recent years, returning for “Star Wars: Episode VII” in 2015 and “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” in 2008 where he passed on the franchise torch to Daisy Ridley and Shia LaBeouf respectively. One of those worked out better than the other. Here’s hoping The Goose proves a worthy heir.
“Happy Death Day”
Christopher B. Landon, the writer of the last four “Paranormal Activity” films, would like to wish audiences a “Happy Death Day” with his horrific twist on the classic Bill Murray film “Groundhog Day.”
It’s Tree Gelbman’s (Jessica Rothe) birthday. Her birthday gift? Murder at the hands of some creep in a baby mask, again and again. At the moment of her death, Tree wakes up again on the morning of her birthday with full knowledge of what happened leading up to her awakening.
She decides the only way to break the cycle is to stop her serial killer and uncover his identity.
The script was written by Scott Lobdell, the man who spearheaded the X-Men comic books in the late ‘90s. This is not his first foray into the world of film. He wrote several episodes of the “X-Men” and “Godzilla” animated series along with receiving a story credit for the 2005 film “Man of the House” starring Tommy Lee Jones.
“Marshall” may seem like your standard biopic play for an Oscar, but there’s more. It is your standard biopic play for an Oscar film, filmed right here in Buffalo, NY.
Chadwick Boseman stars as a young Thurgood Marshall, the first black US Supreme Court Justice along with Josh Gad as Sam Friedman, an insurance lawyer whom Marshall chooses to work with him in order to win over white jurors.
The film follows Marshall on one of his earliest cases in which he defended a black man (Sterling K. Brown) after he was accused of raping and attempting to murder a white woman in the year 1940.
After beginning principal photography in LA, production on “Marshall” moved to Buffalo in the spring of 2016 where it was filmed at Buffalo City Hall, Buffalo Central Terminal, Daemen College and Niagara Falls.
George Clooney is very hit or miss as a director. When he misses we get lethargically nostalgic snooze-fests like “The Monuments Men.” But when he hits we get farcical crime films like “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,” which is up there with any of the entries the masters of the farcical crime film, the Coen Brothers, have made into the genre.
Luckily, Joel and Ethan Coen co-wrote “Suburbicon” along with Clooney and Grant Heslov, a frequent Clooney collaborator.
The film stars Matt Damon as a resident of the titular town. Suburbicon is a peaceful community, like something out of a ‘50s sitcom. That is until Damon’s wife is killed by a loan shark. Damon soon finds himself and his son entangled with the mob. Complicating matters further is the arrival of Roger, an insurance investigator played by Oscar Isaac, who is looking into the death of Damon’s wife.
Obvious suburban satire aside, the film looks to be an exciting return to the over-the-top comic violent romps that the Coen’s and Clooney do so well.
David Tunis-Garcia is a senior arts editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.