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Coming Soon: A Moviegoer’s Guide to October

“MACHETE KILLS”

Who: Danny Trejo, Jessica Alba, Sofia Vergara, Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson
What: The U.S. government recruits Machete to battle his way through Mexico in order to take down an arms dealer who wants to launch a weapon into space.
When: October 11th
Why: The first “Machete” wasn’t nearly as entertaining as its gonzo premise suggested, but with Robert Rodriguez taking over full directing duties for the sequel, there’s a part of me that really wants “Machete Kills” to fulfill that potential, especially with a rumored third installment (“Machete Kills Again… In Space!”) already in the works. The sequel looks bigger and better than the original, with a cast that includes Antonio Banderas, Sofia Vergara, Cuba Gooding Jr., Demian Bichir and Charlie Sheen (credited here as Carlos Estevez). And if that wasn’t enough to get you on board, Rodriguez has even managed to enlist Mel Gibson to play the Big Bad. Why his character is dressed like a “Street Fighter” villain is beyond me, but it’s great to see that the actor still has a sense of humor, because it’ll go a long way in repairing his career.

“CARRIE”

Who: Chloë Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, Judy Greer and Ansel Elgort
What: A shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother unleashes telekinetic terror on her small town after being pushed too far.
When: October 18th
Why: Fans of the 1976 original will no doubt cry foul over this latest adaptation of the Stephen King novel, but purists will be pleased to learn that the 2013 edition reportedly sticks closer to the book. And if its R rating is any indication, the film won’t be skimping on the violence and gore either, despite the fact that it’s directed by Kimberly “Boys Don’t Cry” Peirce. She’s certainly a unique choice to helm a horror movie, but if nothing else, it proves that the studio is serious about creating the best version possible. That extends to its cast as well – particularly star Chloe Grace Moretz (one of Hollywood’s more exciting young talents, who’s never been afraid to dip her toes in the genre pool) and Julianne Moore as her ultra-religious mother.

“ESCAPE PLAN”

Who: Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel and Vincent D’Onofrio
What: When a structural-security authority finds himself incarcerated in a prison he designed, he must put his skills to escape and find out who framed him.
When: October 18th
Why: Before “The Expendables,” moviegoers had to wait decades for the chance to see action stars Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger side by side on the big screen, but these days, you can’t seem to keep the two apart. It’s a smart move by the actors to piggyback off each other’s popularity, because my interest level probably wouldn’t be quite as high if this was merely a Sly Stallone vehicle. The first two “Expendables” films were nothing more than elaborate teases, but “Escape Plan” feels like the actual dream team-up that action fans were hoping for when Schwarzenegger announced his retirement from politics. Though it looks like he’ll still play a much smaller role compared to Stallone (the part was reportedly beefed up when he signed on to the movie), without Arnie, no one would care.

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