Monday, October 19, 2009

October movies I want to see

I'm still working on seeing movies from my September wish list, but here are some October highlights that I'm adding to my list of Must-See Fall Movies.

More Than a Game (now playing): This documentary follows the St. Vincent-St. Mary High School basketball team from Akron, Ohio. Current NBA star LeBron James was one of the "Fab Five" players on the team. Hoop Dreams, another documentary about basketball, is one of my favorite movies and I have read several reviews that put More Than a Game near that level of filmmaking. Shot by Kristopher Belman (also from Akron) when he was a college film student at Loyola-Maramount.

New York, I Love You (now playing): A little over two years ago I saw Paris, Je T'aime in the theater; made of short pieces by different directors it presented many points of view of Paris as the city of love. This film takes that same idea with the setting of New York City and features vignettes from directors including Mira Nair (The Namesake, Amelia), Brett Ratner (Rush Hour), Allen Hughes (Menace II Society, Dead Presidents), Joshua Marston (Maria Full of Grace), and Shekhar Kapur (Elizabeth). Bradley Cooper, Andy Garcia, Christina Ricci, Julie Christie, Shia LaBeouf, Robin Wright Penn, Cloris Leachman, Orlando Bloom, and Natalie Portman (who also directs) are among the stars in the film. And here's to hoping a future installment is named Chicago, I Love You!

Peter and Vandy (opened in limited release October 9; unsure when it will open in Chicago): The plot structure sounds similar to (500) Days of Summer in that the movies jumps back and forth over the course of the relationship between Manhattan couple Peter (Jason Ritter) and Vandy (Jess Wexler), contrasting the good with the bad. However, the movie doesn't sound to be as whimsical as Summer and is supposed to be more realistic.

Where the Wild Things Are (now playing): Based on the popular children's book by Maurice Sendak, director Spike Jonze spent years on this project to get his vision on the screen. The trailer for this movie, featuring the song "Wake Up" by Arcade Fire, makes my heart beat a little faster.

An Education (October 23): Set in London during the 1960s, teenager Jenny (Carey Mulligan) should be concentrating on school and getting into Oxford but instead develops a relationship with an older man (Peter Sarsgaard). I have been hearing about this movie, and Mulligan's star-making performance, for months.

Gentlemen Broncos (October 30 in limited release): After a teenager (Michael Angarano) enters his novel into a science fiction contest his ideas are stolen by slightly-off author Ronald Chevalier (Jemaine Clement). I read that Clement, from Flight of the Conchords, is wonderful in his crazy role. Directed by Jared Hess (Napoleon Dynamite), who co-wrote the script with his wife Jerusha Hess.

So have you seen anything particularly good in the theater lately? Which movies are you still itching to see? Or did you go into a movie with high expectations and come out disappointed?