2011 Fall Movie Preview

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A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas – November 4th


They made it to White Castle and Escaped from Guantanamo Bay and now they are ready to celebrate with Santa. Harold & Kumar, the modern Cheech & Chong, are back and no doubt have their one hitters at the ready.

Neil Patrick Harris is back as well once again in the role of, well, Neil Patrick Harris. If you’re thinking to yourself that NPH was killed off in Escape from Guantanamo Bay, congratulations for retaining a few brain cells but you’re asking a little too much continuity from a film directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson, whose resume includes a short called Sorority Pillow Fight and a TV series called Gaytown. – Sean Kernan

Puss in Boots – November 4th


Since Mike Myers has far too much integrity to keep treating the Shrek series as an ATM machine, Dreamworks talked Antonio Banderas into doing it for them by spinning off his Puss in Boots character for an origin story. Few people asked for it but we may not regret seeing the film, at least not if the surprisingly cute trailer is to be believed.

Shrek the Third director Chris Miller is at the helm of Puss in Boots and landed Hangover star Zach Galifianakis for the supporting role of Humpty Dumpty. More importantly, Puss in Boots offers a vocal reunion of the Desperado duo Salma Hayek and Antonio Banderas. – Sean Kernan

Tower Heist – November 4th


Eat your heart out Bernie Madoff. This is comedy ripped from the headlines as Ben Stiller leads a band of ticked off working stiffs who aim to rob the hedge fund manager (Alan Alda) who stole their pensions. Needing a criminal mastermind to lead the way, Stiller turns to a former classmate turned criminal played by Eddie Murphy.

Brett Ratner directs Tower Heist from a screenplay that features a polish from Noah Baumbach, Ted Griffin (Matchstick Men), Leslie Dixon (Limitless) and Rawson Thurber Marshall (Dodgeball). On the bright side, the supporting cast includes Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck and Gabourey Sidibe. That is a bright side, right? – Sean Kernan

Immortals – November 11th


If you thought the Starz cable network had cornered the market on Greek drama you would be mistaken. Artsy fartsy director Tarsem Singh is taking a swing at Greek stuff in Immortals, with future Superman Henry Cavill leading a cast that includes John Hurt, Mickey Rourke and Freida Pinto.

The story involves a shirtless ab model named Theseus (Cavill) who attempts to reclaim the throne of Athens, once held by his late father. To do this he must battle the guardians of the underworld, take their weapons and deliver his father’s arms, weapons not actual arms, to the King in order to claim his birthright. Go in expecting 300 on crack and you’ll come out pleased. – Sean Kernan

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – November 18th


Bella is pregnant and Edward is in for a shotgun wedding as we return to The Twilight Saga in Breaking Dawn Part 1. Bill Condon is at the helm this time around picking up where David Slade left off, though how he will work a Dreamgirls style music montage in between all of the Vampire and Werewolf stuff is unclear.

Fans of Taylor Lautner’s shirtlessness need not worry; Jacob and the Wolfpack are back for Breaking Dawn Part 1, though don’t expect Jacob to be hitting up Bella and Edward’s wedding registry for a ladle or some dust ruffles. And then there is the matter of the Vampire bundle of joy. The scene in the book was said to be bloody, yet sexy. Eww. – Sean Kernan

Happy Feet 2 – November 18th


You’re right; the original Happy Feet did leave far too many questions unanswered. Thankfully, there is Happy Feet 2 to answer all of those questions you had about singing and dancing penguins. Questions such as which pop songs can Robin Williams really, really ruin or just how much more damage can LL Cool J’s street cred take before it dissolves completely?

Did you know that Happy Feet and Happy Feet 2 were directed by George Miller? Mad Max creator George Miller? Lorenzo’s Oil auteur, George Miller?

I’m not making this up; George Miller, director of Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome directed both Happy Feet movies. Are we in some kind of crazy, backwards upside down universe? Why didn’t someone tell me? – Sean Kernan

The Muppets – November 23rd


Fans of Forgetting Sarah Marshall (I know I’m not the only one), know that star Jason Segal has a way with Muppets. So, it can only be good news that Segal took time away from his terrific sitcom How I Met Your Mother to bring the actual Muppets out of moth balls and back to the big screen.

Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzy and the whole gang are back and looking to rebuild their showbiz careers after years away. Segal is out to help along with the cute as a button Amy Adams and guest stars galore including Katy Perry, Zach Galifianakis, Emily Blunt and Neil Patrick Harris. – Sean Kernan

Tinker, Tailor, Solider, Spy – November 18th

Despite already being immortalized on television by Alec Guinness in a BBC miniseries, Tomas Alfredson and Gary Oldman are bringing something wholly new to Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and the iconic spy George Smiley. The film is based on John le Carre’s intense, deeply complex surveillance novel about ex-agent Smiley who is hired back out of retirement into the service to hunt down a Russian mole in MI6.

With a late fall release date, the distributors are hoping for it to pick up some awards momentum and all eyes will hopefully be drawn to Gary Oldman. Smiley as a character is classic Oscar bait, a troubled figure with a disturbed past, a stoic and unpretentious man who is way past his best days.

After being under appreciated for most of his career, mainly due to his chameleon like nature really hiding him in roles, the various circles and academies will finally realize what a great actor they have in Oldman.

From the evocative trailer and stills, we can see that Alfredson really has captured the paranoia of the post Cold War world as well as the smoke infused grain of 1970’s office space. The supporting cast is also very impressive with Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth, Tom Hardy, John Hurt and many more. – Will Chadwick

Hugo – November 23rd

Martin Scorsese is a legendary director, creating many films that are now considered classics. He’s made some of the most violent, plot-twisted, and dramatic films in American cinema, and now he’s making a kids’ film. And you know what, already this movie has won me over.

As if I needed more reason to look forward to Hugo, the films’ leads are my two favorite young actors, Asa Butterfield and Chloe Moretz. Butterfield broke my heart in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, and then when it had finally mended itself, he stole it in Nanny McPhee 2. His giant green eyes and stark, black hair make him a more adorable version of Harry Potter and he has the talent to back up this doppelganger status.

Moretz needn’t even be mentioned, as the entire movie-seeing world has fallen for her, thanks to her killer role as “Hit Girl” in Kick-Ass. With each foul world and brutal vigilante murder, she inched her way slowly into our hearts. She even popped up on 30 Rock, proving to be an equal match to the likes of Alec Baldwin.

Who better to advance the careers of these lovable young’uns than the man himself, Martin Scorsese? – Emily Estep

The Descendants – November 23rd

Sideways was one of my favorite comedies of the last decade and I couldn’t be more excited to see Alexander Payne return to the director’s chair with The Descendants, starring George Clooney. This seems to be in the same realm as the former film with it being a comedy and a drama.

Payne is great with his screenplays and direction so I expect him to do well here. Plus, with leading man George Clooney taking charge on screen, I can’t see much going wrong with this one. – David Wangberg

That does it for our Fall Movie Preview, we hope you enjoyed it. Let us know in the comments which films you’re looking forward to this Fall.

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