FilmSeptember 11, 2008 at 7:38 pm

Fall Movie Preview

With fall comes the start of classes, cooler temperatures and vicious competition at the box office for Academy Awards contention. Although this season presents plenty of commercial fluff (Beverly Hills Chihuahua, anyone?), most viewer-worthy fall films seem to be competing to out-intensify last year’s There Will Be Blood/No Country for Old Men/Atonement threesome. To help you distinguish the drab from the fab, here’s Street’s short guide to the fall movie season.

Burn After Reading
George Clooney + John Malkovich’s dirty mouth + the Coen Brothers + Brad Pitt’s hair and tight shorts = must-see. Even if Burn isn’t Oscar worthy, its outrageous kookiness from the duo that brought you The Big Lebowski is enough to pique our curiosity. 9/12

Characters with no names? An edited cut after mixed reviews at Cannes? Mark Ruffalo in a dramatic role? Sounds risky, but we will give this sci-fi film a chance just to see if it can match Children of Men for grim futuristic brilliance. 9/26

Bill Maher takes shots at the world’s religions in his attempt to be the next Michael Moore. With a trailer set to Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy,” it’s a sure bet that thousands of viewers will be offended. Cue the popcorn. 10/3

His second term isn’t even over, and George W. is already the subject of a comic, and most likely controversial, Oliver Stone biopic. Look for Penn grad Elizabeth Banks’s turn as First Lady Laura Bush. 10/17

Angelina Jolie stars in a Clint Eastwood-directed drama about a mother reunited with her missing son. When Jolie starts to question the identity of her child, she is institutionalized and uncovers a shocking conspiracy. Look for this Cannes darling to be the ticket to Jolie’s second Oscar. 10/24

Nothing Like the Holidays
John Leguizamo and Freddy Rodriguez star in this tale of a Puerto Rican family that reunites to celebrate Christmas and a relative’s safe return from war. Thankfully, there’s an alternative to mass-marketed holiday fare like Four Christmases. 11/21

Following the trend of Broadway-shows-gone-Hollywood, the Tony-winning play Doubt hits the big screen with an all-star cast led by Meryl Streep. Streep’s nun sets a Catholic school into turmoil when she accuses a priest (Philip Seymour Hoffman) of molesting a student. We’re guessing there won’t be many Mamma Mia! sing-alongs in this adaptation. 12/12

Revolutionary Road
The long-awaited Kate and Leo reunion is finally here. This time around, the Titanic duo acts against romantic type as an unhappily married suburban couple. And with Kate’s husband Sam Mendes directing, the film’s hot-and-heavy sex scenes are sure to have an Oscar-worthy level of awkwardness. 12/26

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