Neurologist

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Fall Movie Preview2009

 

The hot summer months are behind us, signaling the time of year when studios get serious and unleash their dramas. The closer we draw to December, the more potential award-winners hit theaters. But unlike years past, this fall movie season doesn’t contain many clear-cut Oscar nominees and has more than the usual number of comedies. As of the end of August, no one film has broken out and generated any real Oscar buzz. Of course that’s likely to change, and undoubtedly some unexpected film will sneak up on us the way Slumdog Millionaire did in ’08.

Here’s the scoop on 2009’s fall releases, listed in release date order.

1. ‘9’

9© Focus Features
Release Date: September 9, 2009

The Story: Elijah Wood heads the voice cast of this visually stunning animated film from first time feature film director Shane Acker. 9 is set in a post-apocalyptic world in which humans no longer exist. Unusual-looking rag dolls must band together in this treacherous new world to take down the machines that want to destroy everything.

Featuring the Voices of Elijah Wood, Jennifer Connelly and Christopher Plummer

2. ‘Whiteout’

Whiteout© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: September 11, 2009

The Story: Whiteout is – finally – getting its theatrical release, after being pushed back a couple of times. Based on the comic book by Greg Rucka, Whiteout finds Kate Beckinsale up to her ears in trouble (and snow) as the only US Marshal covering Antarctica. Beckinsale battles the elements, and the impending extended period of darkness, to find a murderer.

Starring Kate Beckinsale and Gabriel Macht

3. ‘Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs’

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs© Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Animation
Release Date: September 18, 2009

The Story: What if cheeseburgers and fries and other assorted food items fell from the sky instead of rain? That’s the premise of this animated family-friendly film based on the best-selling children’s book written by Judi Barrett and illustrated by Ron Barrett.

Starring Anna Faris and Andy Samberg

4. ‘The Informant!’

The Informant© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: September 18, 2009

The Story: Matt Damon reunites with Steven Soderbergh (the Ocean’s film franchise) for this tale of an unstable whistleblower who worked with the FBI to take down agri-industry power player Archer Daniels Midland (ADM). Based on a true story, The Informant! focuses on ADM executive Mark Whitacre (Damon) and his bizarre behavior as he imagines himself a hero while spying on his company for the government.

Starring Matt Damon and Scott Bakula

5. ‘Jennifer’s Body’

Jennifer's Body© 20th Century Fox
Release Date: September 18, 2009

The Story: Megan Fox of Transformers fame is the ‘body’ in this horror comedy from Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody. Fox plays a cheerleader who starts killing off boys after being possessed by a demon.

Cody had this to say about the film: “I was simultaneously trying to pay tribute to some of the conventions that we’ve already seen in horror, yet, at the same time, kind of turn them on their ear. So it was truly like a post-modern thriller in that, on the one hand, I grew up watching these amazing ’80s genre movies like The Lost Boys and this and that, and I wanted to honor that and, at the same time, I had never really seen this particular subgenre done with girls.”

Starring Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfried

6. ‘Love Happens’

Love Happens© Universal Pictures
Release Date: September 18, 2009

The Story: It’s not a romantic comedy, but it is a story about love. That’s stating the obvious, right, given that the title of this Universal Pictures drama is Love Happens? Two actors who are no strangers to falling in love on screen pair up for the first time in this love story from first-time director Brandon Camp.

Starring Jennifer Aniston and Aaron Eckhart

7. ‘Fame’

Fame© MGM
Release Date: September 25, 2009

The Story: Everyone hum along: “I’m gonna live forever. Baby remember my name…” Fame is back with a new cast but the same basic storyline as the 1980 musical starring Irene Cara and Debbie Allen. Talented kids sing, dance, and come of age while enrolled in a school for the performing arts.

Starring Kay Panabaker and Kherington Payne

8. ‘Surrogates’

Surrogates© Touchstone Pictures
Release Date: September 25, 2009

The Story: Bruce Willis is back in action with Surrogates, a sci-fi thriller from Jonathan Mostow (Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines). In this weird new world of the future, people no longer leave their homes. Instead, their robotic surrogates take on all the day-to-day tasks we would normally perform. Willis plays an FBI agent charged with investigating a murder in this relatively crime-free world.

Starring Bruce Willis and Radha Mitchell

9. ‘The Invention of Lying’

The Invention of Lying© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: October 2, 2009

The Story: How long would you last in a world in which everyone told the truth all the time, no matter what the circumstances, no matter who it hurt? Ricky Gervais co-wrote, co-directed and co-stars in a film where no one lies…until one day ‘Mark’ (Gervais) develops the ability to lie and discovers he can use this newfound ability to get what he wants.

Starring Jennifer Garner and Ricky Gervais

10. ‘A Serious Man’

A Serious Man© Focus Features
Release Date: October 2, 2009

The Story: Described as a black comedy, A Serious Man is the latest brainchild of writer/director/producers Ethan and Joel Coen (Burn After Reading, No Country for Old Men). Set in 1976, the film tells the story of a physics professor with a hapless brother, a son who’s a discipline problem, a daughter who steals, and a wife who’s leaving him for one of his fellow professors.

Starring Michael Stuhlberg and Adam Arkin

 

The hot summer months are behind us, signaling the time of year when studios get serious and unleash their dramas. The closer we draw to December, the more potential award-winners hit theaters. But unlike years past, this fall movie season doesn’t contain many clear-cut Oscar nominees and has more than the usual number of comedies. As of the end of August, no one film has broken out and generated any real Oscar buzz. Of course that’s likely to change, and undoubtedly some unexpected film will sneak up on us the way Slumdog Millionaire did in ’08.

Here’s the scoop on 2009’s fall releases, listed in release date order.

11. ‘Zombieland’

Zombieland© Columbia Pictures
Release Date: October 2, 2009

The Story: It’s happened, zombies have taken over the world. Now what? Well for the last surviving humans, there are really only two options: run and hide or take a stand and kill some zombies. Woody Harrelson prefers the kill option while Jesse Eisenberg is more into fleeing from the walking dead. But despite the difference in their approach to handling the situation, they find themselves having to work together in this strange, new zombie-centric world.

Starring Jesse Eisenberg and Woody Harrelson

12. ‘Couples Retreat’

Couples Retreat© Universal Pictures
Release Date: October 9, 2009

The Story: The cast list of Couples Retreat reads like a Who’s Who of the brighest stars in comedy movies today. Vince Vaughn, Jon Favreau, Kristen Bell, Malin Akerman, Ken Jeong, Jason Bateman… Hopefully this relationship comedy will put the talents of all these funny people to good use. Actor/producer Peter Billingsley (remember him as ‘Ralphie’ in A Christmas Story?) steps behind the camera to helm this comedy about four couples who think they’re going to have time to rest and relax at a tropical island resort but instead are forced into participating in couples therapy.

Starring Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau

13. ‘Law Abiding Citizen’

Law Abiding Citizen© Overture Films
Release Date: October 16, 2009

The Story: Gerard Butler stars as Clyde Shelton, a husband and father whose family is brutally murdered in a home invasion. The men responsible are caught, but one is offered a deal to testify against his cohort in crime. That doesn’t sit well with Clyde, and he decides to take the law into his own hands since the court system has, in his opinion, failed to deal appropriately with the killers. Jamie Foxx co-stars as a prosecutor who has to figure out a way to stop Clyde from exacting revenge.

Starring Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx

14. ‘The Road’

The Road© Dimension Films/2929
Release Date: October 16, 2009

The Story: Viggo Mortensen, who has since announced his retirement from acting, takes on the lead role in this sci-fi thriller set in a post-apocalyptic world. And if you think we’ve been talking about The Road for a long time, you’re absolutely correct. It’s been a long and winding road for this big screen adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s popular book, but it looks as though The Weinstein Company is finally sending The Road out into theaters.

Starring Viggo Mortensen and Charlize Theron

15. ‘Where the Wild Things Are’

Where the Wild Things Are© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: October 16, 2009

The Story: Writer/director Spike Jonze’s vision of Where the Wild Things Are is fully supported by the author of the book, Maurice Sendak. And all you have to do is look at one photo or watch the trailer to understand why Sendak is firmly behind this film adapation of his popular book. Where the Wild Things Are the movie brings the pages of the book to life and is one of the real must-see movies of 2009.

Starring Max Records and Catherine Keener

16. ‘Amelia’

Amelia© Fox Searchlight
Release Date: October 23, 2009

The Story: Amy Adams played her as a sassy gal with a can-do attitude in Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. But this Amelia Earhart project is much more serious, focusing on her accomplishments, her personal relationships, and her zest for life.

Starring Hilary Swank and Ewan McGregor

17. ‘Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant’

The Vampire's Assistant© Universal Pictures
Release Date: October 23, 2009

The Story: Initially, Universal Pictures was referring to this film simply as Cirque du Freak in early promotional materials. The Vampire’s Assistant portion of the title was tacked on later, and it’s a smart marketing move as anything ‘vampire’ is hot right now. Plus, the source material for this PG-13 film is the Cirque du Freak book series, and the second book of the franchise is The Vampire’s Assistant. Anyway, the Cirque du Freak books tell the story of Darren Shan, a boy who becomes a vampire’s assistant after a freak accident involving a spider stolen from a freak show.

Starring Chris Massoglia and John C Reilly

18. ‘Disney’s A Christmas Carol’

A Christmas Carol© ImageMovers Digital LLC
Release Date: November 6, 2009

The Story: Truth told, I wasn’t a fan of performance capture films at first. However, as the technology has improved (and the characters’ eyes have become less flat and dead looking), performance capture movies have grown on me. Now Disney, Robert Zemeckis and Jim Carrey are breathing new life into Dickens’ classic holiday tale, with Carrey tackling just about every main character in the film. That’s either a good thing or a bad thing, depending on whether you’re a fan of the comedian-turned-actor…

Starring Jim Carrey, Jim Carrey, Jim Carrey, Jim Carrey, Jim Carrey, and Jim Carrey

19. ‘The Box’

The Box© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: November 6, 2009

The Story: The Box is another one of those films that’s seen its release date bounced around. Writer/director Richard Kelly says the reason for the delay is due to the need to work on special effects, and we’ve no reason to doubt that’s why the movie has been postponed a few times. When it does hit theaters, we’ll see Cameron Diaz and James Marsden faced with an interesting moral dilemma. Push a button on this special box and receive a million dollars. The catch? If they do it, someone somewhere will immediately die as the result of their action.

Starring Cameron Diaz and James Marsden

20. ‘The Fourth Kind’

The Fourth Kind© Universal Pictures
Release Date: November 6, 2009

The Story: The Fourth Kind‘s trailer looks creepy, and all the more so when you consider the film’s supposedly based on real facts. Milla Jovovich (the Resident Evil films, A Perfect Getaway) plays a psychologist treating people who could quite possibly be victims of alien abductions. Watching these people freak out in the trailer gives me hope this will be worth checking out in theaters.

Starring Milla Jovovich and Elias Koteas

 

The hot summer months are behind us, signaling the time of year when studios get serious and unleash their dramas. The closer we draw to December, the more potential award-winners hit theaters. But unlike years past, this fall movie season doesn’t contain many clear-cut Oscar nominees and has more than the usual number of comedies. As of the end of August, no one film has broken out and generated any real Oscar buzz. Of course that’s likely to change, and undoubtedly some unexpected film will sneak up on us the way Slumdog Millionaire did in ’08.

Here’s the scoop on 2009’s fall releases, listed in release date order.

21. ‘The Men Who Stare at Goats’

The Men Who Stare at GoatsBook Cover © Simon & Schuster
Release Date: November 6, 2009

The Story: Why are men staring at goats? Would you believe me if I told you it’s because they’re part of a strange, top secret military unit who use their psychic abilities in order to combat their enemies? And they stare at goats to try and kill them using nothing more than their thoughts. This could be one bizarre, entertaining film…

Starring George Clooney and Ewan McGregor

22. ‘2012’

2012© Columbia Pictures
Release Date: November 13, 2009

The Story: Roland Emmerich, the filmmaker behind such big-budget, special effects-heavy disaster movies as Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow, is back with another end-of-the-world film. This time around Emmerich uses the doomsday prediction that there will be a cataclysmic event causing an end to civilization in 2012 as the jumping off point for a feature film. Good thing it’s hitting theaters in 2009.

Starring John Cusack and Amanda Peet

23. ‘New Moon’

New Moon© Summit Entertainment
Release Date: November 13, 2009

The Story: Here’s a little film that will slip into theaters without any fanfare. Not. New Moon is the second installment of the Twilight franchise and one of the most anticipated movies of 2009 (at least in certain demographics). Stephenie Meyer’s book focuses on the growing friendship between Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner) and Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), with Bella’s vampire boyfriend, Edward (Robert Pattinson), missing for the majority of the story. But given the popularity of Pattinson, it’s likely the film will find many, many ways to work him back into the story.

Starring Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner and Kristen Stewart

24. ‘The Blind Side’

The Blind Side© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: November 20, 2009

The Story: Truthfully, I haven’t heard much about this film, but the little I do know sounds intriguing. The Blind Side is based on the true story of Michael Oher, recently drafted by the Baltimore Ravens. Oher came from a dysfunctional family and grew up in many different foster homes throughout his childhood. A poor student but an outstanding football player, Oher’s life turned around at age 16 when he was admitted to a private school and taken into the home of the Tuohys who provided a stable environment and helped him academically.

Starring Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw

25. ‘Planet 51’

Planet 51© TriStar Pictures
Release Date: November 20, 2009

The Story: Planet 51 is an animated alien adventure movie with a twist. Instead of the little green guys coming to Earth and embarking on a series of misadventures, an American astronaut lands on a planet populated by the green guys – a planet that’s eerily reminiscent of America in the 1950s.

Starring Dwayne Johnson and Jessica Biel

26. ‘Nine’

Nine© The Weinstein Company
Release Date: November 25, 2009

The Story: Not to be confused with 9 or District 9, this Nine is a musical loosely based on Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2. Director/choreographer Rob Marshall returns to his favorite genre in a star-studded production about a famous film director and the numerous women in his life.

Starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Penelope Cruz

27. ‘Ninja Assassin’

Ninja Assassin© Warner Bros Pictures
Release Date: November 25, 2009

The Story: Korean dancer/pop singer/actor Rain takes on his first starring role as one of the deadliest assassins in the world in this action pic produced by the Wachowski Brothers (the guys behind The Matrix movies). Rain had a lot to handle playing a dangerous killer, and he trained extensively in order to pull off the part. In our exclusive interview back in 2008, he talked about what he went through to prepare for the physically demanding role. “I learned Tae Kwon Do, it’s Korean martial arts, and I learned for this movie I learned so many martial arts and ninja expressions and ninja techniques and ninja martial arts,” said Rain, adding, “You’re going to like it.”

Starring Rain and Naomie Harris

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August 28, 2009 - Posted by | 1

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