September represents a change in the weather, in the return to school, and in the tone of the American movie industry. The summer blockbusters wind down, but that doesn’t mean that the month is a write-off for the box office. While there’s a modest slate of national releases this month, September’s return to a more regimented schedule and the start of cooler weather often bodes well for the cinema. And of course a lot of high schoolers and college students still like going out to the movies for a weekend date, too, so September always holds promise for the turnstiles. Steven James will provide some insight into what the month will bring to the silver screens across the USA.
Two films roll out across the country this first Friday of the month. Peppermint stars Jennifer Garner, John Ortiz, and Method Man. It’s a revenge thriller where Garner’s character is in a coma after a vicious attack that claims her husband and daughter. She methodically turns herself into well-oiled killer, all with the plan of avenging their deaths on the tenth anniversary of the tragedy. She goes after the gang, the lawyers, and corrupt cops involved. My, my, Jennifer. Scared to find out what’s in your wallet now! The second release this weekend will be The Nun with Ingrid Bisu, Demian Bichir, and Taissa Farmiga. This marks the return of the demonic nun who haunted audiences (and good-sized ones by the box-office receipts) in The Conjuring 2. A young priest and novitiate must battle Devil Nun this time around. Pray for their souls.
The Predator returns thirty-one years after the 1987 original!
Boyd Holbrook, Olivia Munn, and Thomas Jane star and director Shane Black comes back to helm the series that he created (and appeared as Hawkins in the original). It was going to be a reboot of the franchise, but Black jumped on and designated it a sequel. The hunters are back and — you guessed it — they are not weaker, dumber, and more mellow. Just the opposite in fact! A Simple Favor is the next coast-to-coast flick opening this weekend. It’s a suspense pic based on the book by Darcey Bell. Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, and Joshua Satine star. A vlogger played by Kendrick searches for answers when her best friend played by Blake L. mysteriously vanishes from their town. We’ll assume Kendrick searches for her friend in addition to searching for the answers.
White Boy Rick tells a story that is almost too implausible to believe, except it is well documented and has police records to verify it. Rick Wershe, Jr. was an underage teen when law enforcement recruited him to be an informant for a major drug ring out of Detroit at the height of the crack epidemic in the 1980s. His father was first targeted by the cops for weapons running, but then they realized that young Rick was welcomed in the inner-ring with the Curry Brothers, major drug runners. Perhaps they considered him a mascot or a novelty, but he was one who eventually took them down. Unfortunately, Rick stayed in the drug game and was cut loose by the cops. Later he was arrested as a major dealer himself and sentenced to life. There is much consternation around the question of whether or not he was entrapped to some degree because of his work with the FBI and Detroit PD. Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Jason Leigh and the great Bruce Dern lead an all-star cast. The fourth and final full release this week is Unbroken: Path to Redemption. It is a follow-up to Laura Hillenbrand’s book Unbroken that was made into a major motion picture that Angelina Jolie directed. This film continues the true story of Olympian and World War II hero Louis Zamperini and his love Cynthia. Louis was tormented and driven by a desire for revenge against his war enemies. Cynthia struggles to help him, fueled by her faith and love for the extraordinary American hero.
Two features hit the theaters this Friday. The first is The House with a Clock in its Walls. It has a supernatural twist as a 10-year old releases a torrent of witches and warlocks when he inadvertently stirs the dead of his town to life. It’s rated PG so clearly it will appeal to tweeners. Based on the series of novels by John Bellairs, it has a dynamite cast with Jack Black, Cate Blanchett, and Kyle MacLachlan, so expect high quality. The Sisters Brothers is the second release. It’s being billed as a western dark comedy and is an adaptation of the 2011 novel by Patrick Dewitt. Set in 1851, the story focuses on brothers named Sisters — Eli and Charlie to be precise. The pair are hired killers tracking a prospector who has stolen from their boss. With the great talents of John C. Reilly, Joaquin Phoenix, Jake Gyllenhaal, this film holds immense promise.
The last week of the month presents a nice mix of film flavors. Smallfoot is an animated film with the voice talents of Channing Tatum, Gina Rodriguez, and Zendaya. It has a clever inverse plot device: rather than humans searching for the mysterious creature, a precocious Yeti discovers a human being. The spotlight that his discovery brings him provides the Yeti with new opportunities, but it also throws his society into a tailspin.
Night School is a comedy that couples the established star Kevin Hart with the ascending star Tiffany Haddish. The story revolves around people who haven’t thrived in the mainstream and now have to go back to school with the hopes of passing their GED exam. Taran Killam portrays the principal of what must be quite the hilarious school! The third offering of the week is a family film, another rendition of the always popular Little Women. Big screen and mini-series adaptations have appeared in 1933, 1949, 1978, and 1994. The ’94 version with Winona Ryder and Claire Danes is generally regarded as the cream of the crop. This iteration features Lea Thompson, Ian Bohen, Lucas Grabeel, and has been receiving strong early reviews. It must fill big shoes of ‘little women’ who came before it! The last film of the month is a horror picture, Hellfest. It seems right on track to lead into autumn and October, always a prime season for some scary cinema! This film is set at an amusement park on Halloween. The park has all kinds of thrills and chills planned for its visitors. But one of the visitors has his own plans for the thrill-seekers — and they are definitely tricks not treats. Amy Forsyth, Reign Edwards, and Bex Taylor-Klaus bring the scares and screams to this frightening flicker.
Just like the variety of genres in this final week of September films, Steven James offers a wide variety of services to help tell your business’s or organization’s story! Contact us today and let’s find out how to meet your marketing needs!