Coming Soon: A Moviegoer’s Guide to October

“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”

Who: Steve Carrell, Jennifer Garner, Bella Thorne and Ed Oxenbould
What: Alexander wakes up with gum in his hair and things just get worse as his day progresses.
When: October 10th
Why: Though I’m not very familiar with the popular children’s book on which it’s based, Disney’s Part of the problem with screen adaptation of “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” looks exactly like the kind of family movie that would have been better off being released during the long Thanksgiving weekend. The source material is beloved by a lot of people, and so it’s important that they get it right, but based on early reactions to the first trailer, director Miguel Arteta doesn’t have too much to worry about. Arteta himself is a fairly underrated comedy director, and the fact that he’s surrounded himself with actors like Steve Carrell and Jennifer Garner shows that he isn’t messing around when it comes to bringing the story to life.

“Dracula Untold”

Who: Luke Evans, Dominic Cooper, Samantha Barks and Sarah Godon
What: The origin story of the man who becomes Dracula.
When: October 10th
Why: It seems like everyone is getting an origin story these days, so it was only a matter of time before Hollywood treated its original bad boy to one of his own. Unfortunately, the last thing that anyone needs is another movie that tries to humanize an iconic villain like Dracula. That didn’t work out too well for Maleficent and the Evil Queen, and there’s not much evidence that it will fare any better for the Prince of Darkness. Though director Alex Proyas was attached to the project for years when it was still called “Dracula: Year One,” he’s since bailed and been replaced by relative unknown Gary Shore, which is a shame, because Proyas’ involvement was the only exciting element about the film.

“Whiplash”

Who: Miles Teller, J.K. Simmons, Melissa Benoist and Paul Reiser
What: A young musician’s passion to achieve perfection spirals into obsession as his ruthless teacher pushes him to brink of both his ability and his sanity.
When: October 10th
Why: There’s always one movie that emerges from Sundance riding a wave of buzz, and this year, that movie was Damien Chazelle’s “Whiplash,” which isn’t much of surprise considering it won the festival’s Grand Jury Prize as well as the Audience Award. Adapted from Chazelle’s short film of the same name, the drama looks like a pretty intense character study about the lengths someone is willing to go to achieve greatness that’s fueled by a pair of outstanding performances. Though Miles Teller has already had his breakout moment in movies like “Rabbit Hole” and “The Spectacular Now,” “Whiplash” could be his best work to date, while J.K. Simmons is already garnering talk of an Oscar nomination for his no-holds-barred performance.

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