You could be inclined to believe October is just like any other month, especially since there’s only one major horror movie set for wide release to scare your pants off on Halloween. Sadly this must-see slate of ten won’t sate your bloodlust, but it does feature awards-contenders, smart indies and survival thrillers that will have you grabbing the person closes to you. And moreover, these are ten good movies that we think are worthy of your time and money over the next thirty days. So let's dive right in....
Synopsis: Abby (Robin Weigert) is an upper-class lesbian enjoying life with her lover and child. When she receives a blow to the head, she gives it all up to lead a double life as a Manhattan escort.
What You Need to Know: Lesbian relationship dramas have come to the cinematic forefront with the reactionary response to “Blue is the Warmest Colour.” There’s no denying “Concussion” has an equally out-there premise, but I doubt it boasts a ten minute sex scene that many are calling gratuitous, nor are the actresses condemning the work they’ve done. The first trailer for “Concussion” is sexy, and will probably receive less vitriol than “Blue.” Either way, it’s another boost for same-sex relationships on-screen.
Release Date: October 4th in limited release
Synopsis: Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) and Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) are astronauts sent to work on a satellite; Kowalski is on his last mission while Stone is on her first. When the satellite explodes, the two must do whatever they can to stay alive.
What You Need to Know: The buzz on “Gravity” is intense, with many considering it a shoo-in for a plethora of Academy Award nominations, at least in the technical and effects departments where this should clean up. When the movie premiered at the Venice Film Festival our own Oliver Lyttelton called it “as visceral an experience as you can have in a cinema” and that’s high praise indeed! With director Alfonso Cuaron at the helm -- who directed the exemplary “Children of Men” -- “Gravity” could break out as an elegant science fiction film worthy of awards consideration which is a category continually marginalized come awards time.
Release Date: October 4th
Synopsis: The true story of Captain Richard Phillips (Tom Hanks) who defends his ship and crew from Somali pirates.
What You Need to Know: This is one of two films that could result in Hanks getting yet another Academy Award nomination (the other being “Saving Mr. Banks” in December). The Somali pirate saga happened back in 2009 and almost immediately, Phillips’ story was being shopped to movie studios. Cut to 2013 and “United 93” director Paul Greengrass has put out an intense and “breathtakingly harrowing story of survival and grueling desperation” according to writer Rodrigo Perez. There is some debate about the movie’s authenticity, or glorifying of Phillips’ story, and with Greengrass coming off the equally patriotic/historical “United 93,” it’ll be interesting to see how audiences react to reliving history that was only a few years ago. The buzz hasn’t dissipated, so expect this to win something in a few months time.
Release Date: October 11th