Fall Movies Preview | The New Yorker


Historical events figure prominently in this season’s releases, including “Moonage Daydream” (Sept. 16), a documentary portrait of David Bowie, centered on his audiovisual archive, directed by Brett Morgen. Phyllis Nagy directed “Call Jane” (Oct. 14), a drama based on the real-life Jane Collective, a Chicago group that provided abortions at a time when the procedure was illegal. The story, set in 1968, follows a housewife (Elizabeth Banks) who, after having an abortion, joins the group. “till” (Oct. 14), directed by Chinonye Chukwu, dramatizes the effort of Emmett Till’s mother, Mamie Till-Mobley (Danielle Deadwyler), to seek justice for her son’s lynching and to publicize the facts of his murder.

Family stories are being told with a wide variety of approaches, starting with “The Cathedral” (Sept. 2), the daringly original second feature by Ricky D’Ambrose, a quasi-autobiographical coming-of-age story about a young man from the New York suburbs who, growing up amid conflicts and secrets, develops a unique aesthetic sensibility —which reflects the movie’s own style. Lena Dunham wrote and directed “Catherine, Called Birdy” (Sept. 23), based on a novel by Karen Cushman, about the life of a teen-age girl (Bella Ramsey) in medieval England. The Queens native James Gray fuses personal reminiscences and political drama in “Armageddon Time” (Oct. 28); it’s set in 1980 and is centered on a white sixth-grader (Banks Repeta) who becomes friends with a Black classmate (Jaylin Webb) in public school and discovers the grim power of privilege—and then, in a private school, crosses paths with the Trump family. Anne Hathaway, Jeremy Strong, and Anthony Hopkins co-stars.

The risks of life in the public eye are portrayed in a number of movies this season. “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.” (Sept. 2), the first feature directed by Adamma Ebo, is a serious comedy about a pastor of a megachurch (Sterling K. Brown) who, after a sex scandal, attempts to rebuild the congregation with the help of his wife (Regina hall). “Blonde” (Sept. 28), adapted from the novel by Joyce Carol Oates, is the director Andrew Dominik’s bio-pic about Marilyn Monroe (Ana de Armas), which delves into the crises of celebrity. Cate Blanchett plays an orchestra conductor in “TÁR” (Oct. 7), a drama set in the world of classical music, written and directed by Todd Field.

It wouldn’t be Hollywood without fantasy, as in “Don’t Worry, Darling” (Sept. 23), Olivia Wilde’s second feature as director, a dystopian thriller, set in the nineteen-fifties, about a planned community that harbors mysteries. She co-stars in it with Florence Pugh and Harry Styles. “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile” (Oct. 7), Will Speck and Josh Gordon’s live-action adaptation of the children’s-book series by Bernard Waber, presents a New York family (Constance Wu, Scoot McNairy, and Winslow Fegley) that adopts the titular reptile (Shawn Mendes) . In “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (Nov. 11), the sequel to the 2018 Marvel adventure, the residents of Wakanda defend their country after the death of their king, T’Challa; the director Ryan Coogler and the actors Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, and Winston Duke return from the earlier installment.

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