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Our 25 Most-Anticipated Fall 2016 Films

Written by on August 25, 2016 

17. One More Time With Feeling (Andrew Dominik; Sept. 8)

One More Time With Feeling

Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Killing Them Softly) is back this year, although not with a narrative feature. Rather, he’s reunited with Jesse James composer Nick Cave for One More Time With Feeling, a feature on the making of the Bad Seeds‘ sixteenth album, Skeleton Tree. After premiering at the Venice International Film Festival, fans of Cave should note the the film will screen worldwide for only one night, so you’ll want to get tickets sooner rather than later. – Jordan R.

16. The 13th (Ava DuVernay; Oct. 7)

The 13th

For the first time ever, a non-fiction film will open the New York Film Festival, and the rest of us will thankfully be able to see it fairly soon after. Ava DuVernay‘s timely follow-up to Selma chronicles the history of racial inequality in the United States as it pertains to the prison system. It’ll arrive on Netflix and in limited theaters shortly after its premiere, where we imagine it will be a vital watch, particularly during this election year. – Jordan R.

15. Hacksaw Ridge (Mel Gibson; Nov. 4)

Hacksaw Ridge

At first glance, it seems ironic that a war movie about a soldier who refuses to kill is being helmed by Mel Gibson, someone who’s established himself as a creator of violent action cinema both in front of and behind the camera. Upon closer inspection, however, it becomes clear how the biographical Hacksaw Ridge aligns with Gibson’s directorial fascinations. The movie, like The Passion of the Christ, foregrounds one character’s faith-based commitment to nonviolence, and like both Passion and Braveheart, it appears to show how maintaining one’s principles in times of crisis can have tremendous and lasting impacts on the world. Of course, mawkishness is always a risk with films such as these, but with the supremely expressive Andrew Garfield playing the soldier and Gibson’s knack for shooting combat scenes guiding the film, Hacksaw Ridge radiates with promise. – Jonah J.

14. Fences (Denzel Washington; Dec. 25)

Fences 1

Coming together fairly quickly this year, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis have reprised roles that earned them Tony’s by leading a film adaptation of the Broadway play Fences. Washington directed the script from playwright August Wilson, which follows a former baseball player, now a garbageman in Pittsburgh, and the complicated relationships with his wife, son, and friends. If Washington and company can make the leap from stage to screen effectively, there’s little doubt this will be one of the year’s finest dramas. – Jordan R.

13. Gold (Stephen Gaghan; Dec. 25)


Syriana helmer Stephen Gaghan is finally back in the director’s chair with Gold. Led by Matthew McConaughey and Edgar Ramirez, the compelling story follows a geologist and prospector who venture into the Indonesian jungle where they start mining and a scandal erupts. The Weinstein Company curiously isn’t bringing this one to TIFF, but hopefully we see the first trailer soon for the film shot by none other than Robert Elswit and also starring Bryce Dallas Howard, Corey Stoll, Bruce Greenwood, and Toby Kebbell. – Jordan R.

12. Rules Don’t Apply (Warren Beatty; Nov. 23)

Rules Dont Apply 1

Warren Beatty is finally returning to the director’s chair for the first time since 1998 with Rules Don’t Apply, a romantic period piece that the legendary talent also penned. He has assembled quite a cast: Alden Ehrenreich, Lily Collins, Haley BennettTaissa FarmigaEd HarrisAlec BaldwinMatthew BroderickMartin SheenAnnette BeningLousie LintonOliver Platt, and Beatty in his first acting gig since 2001. The rub? An aspiring actress and her driver become entangled with the eccentric billionaire they both work for — who happens to be Howard Hughes. The trailer was a bit underwhelming, but let’s hope the legend continues his directorial streak here. – Mike M.

11. American Pastoral (Ewan McGregor; Oct. 21)

American Pastoral

To the untrained eye, American Pastoral has all the makings of an at-best-admirable, more-likely-than-not-disposable awards drama, its status as such only complicated by the curiosity that comes with Ewan McGregor making his directorial debut. If you know what he’s debuting with, however, the story changes: a many-headed, Pulitzer-winning masterpiece by perhaps our greatest living author – ripe material for a film, maybe, but more likely something that doesn’t fit into 126 minutes. Where will McGregor’s efforts fall? I really don’t know, and it’s largely for this reason that I can’t wait to find out. – Nick N.

10. Allied (Robert Zemeckis; Nov. 23)


While it’s unfortunate that Robert Zemeckis‘ thrilling drama The Walk didn’t get its due last year, we thankfully won’t have to wait long for his next feature, which stars Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard. The Steven Knight-scripted picture concerns a pair of killers whose mutual infatuation and eventual marriage — one that started on a mission to assassinate a Nazi — comes crumbling down when she’s revealed to be a German agent who he must kill. Boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl, girl ends up being a part of the Third Reich — a story as old as World War II itself. – Jordan R.

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