Coming Soon: A Moviegoer’s Guide to October

october

The awards season machine continues to chug along this month, with several high-profile contenders making their debut, including the latest from Ridley Scott, Steven Spielberg and Danny Boyle. Of course, if prestige films aren’t your thing, there are still plenty of options for those who simply want to be entertained, whether it’s Guillermo del Toro’s new gothic horror flick, Vin Diesel hunting witches or the origin story of Peter Pan. This is shaping up to be the best October in recent history, and moviegoers won’t want to miss it.

“The Martian”

Who: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Jeff Daniels and Kristen Wiig
What: When he’s stranded on Mars, astronaut Mark Watney must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive.
When: October 2nd
Why: Andy Weir’s 2011 science fiction novel, “The Martian,” was one of the most talked about books of that year, so it’s not surprising that producer Simon Kinberg was so quick to nab the rights to adapt it for the big screen. Though director Ridley Scott has been in a bit of a rut lately, the premise for this movie is almost too good to mess up. Matt Damon is the perfect choice to play the stranded astronaut (even if it’s oddly similar to his cameo in “Interstellar”), while the supporting cast is comprised of A-list talent that should be headlining their own films.

“Steve Jobs”

Who: Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Jeff Daniels and Seth Rogen
What: The true story of the life of visionary Apple CEO Steve Jobs.
When: October 9th
Why: Do we really need another movie about Steve Jobs so soon after the 2013 version starring Ashton Kutcher? Probably not, but the fact that it’s written by Aaron Sorkin and directed by Danny Boyle makes it awfully difficult to come up with reasons why you shouldn’t see it, even if the film appears to cover much of the same ground as “Jobs.” Michael Fassbender may not be the first person you’d think of to play the Apple co-founder (Christian Bale was originally attached to the project before dropping out), but he’s an incredible actor who will undoubtedly make up for his lack of physical similarity with yet another top-notch performance.

“Pan”

Who: Levi Miller, Hugh Jackman, Garrett Hedlund and Rooney Mara
What: The story of an orphan who is spirited away to the magical Neverland, where he discovers his destiny: to become the hero who will be forever known as Peter Pan.
When: October 9th
Why: Joe Wright has made some great movies over the past decade, but it’s hard to get even remotely excited about this Peter Pan origin story, which is about as pointless as every other movies about the untold beginnings of your favorite literary characters. Though it’s great to see that Wright has found a project that matches his ambition as a filmmaker, this looks too silly for its own good. Hugh Jackman seems to be having a lot of fun as the villainous Blackbeard, but apart from that, “Pan” is shaping up to be one of the biggest (and dumbest) flops of the year.

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