By Michael O'Sullivan
If you are a movie buff, these are the must-see movies in the coming weeks. Aside from the star clout of the cast, some of them are helmed by some of the most legendary filmmakers.
Killers of the Flower Moon
Martin Scorsese directs this fact-based Apple TV Plus original drama from a script he wrote with Eric Roth, a seven-time Oscar-nominated screenwriter (and winner for ‘’Forrest Gump’’).
Starring Robert De Niro, Leonardo DiCaprio, Lily Gladstone and Jesse Plemons, the film is based on David Grann's best-selling 2017 non-fiction book by the same name, about the FBI's investigation into a series of early-20th-century killings of Osage people, whose oil-rich lands in Oklahoma led to acts of violence by white interlopers.
After an emotional screening at this year's Cannes Film Festival, the director was given a 10-minute standing ovation.
(Releasing in cinemas on October 20)
“The Pigeon Tunnel”
Documentarian Errol Morris's latest film may have the most intriguing title on this list.
Borrowing its name from best-selling spy novelist John le Carré's 2016 memoir - a reference to the author's childhood memory of a seaside shooting range that used real pigeons as targets - the film is structured around a conversation between le Carré, who died in 2020, and the director, interspersed with archival footage and dramatised vignettes that illuminate the life and career of the former MI5 officer born David Cornwell.
(Available on Apple TV+)
Based on the 1985 memoir ‘’Elvis and Me’’ by Priscilla Presley and Sandra Harmon, Sofia Coppola's biopic stars Cailee Spaeny as Priscilla Beaulieu, who met Elvis Presley (Jacob Elordi) at age 14 and became his bride at 21. From the director of ‘’Marie Antoinette,’’ this counterpoint to Baz Luhrmann's ‘’Elvis’’ offers another look at rock-and-roll royalty - from the perspective of the King's queen.
(Releasing on the big screen later this month)
Actor Colman Domingo reunites with George C. Wolfe, his director on the double-Oscar-winning ‘’Ma Rainey's Black Bottom’’, to tell the story of Bayard Rustin, the gay black socialist pacifist best known as the organiser of the1963 march on Washington.
Written by Dustin Lance Black (’’Under the Banner of Heaven’’) and Julian Breece (’’When They See Us’’), the film - which premièred at the Toronto Film Festival - focuses on how Rustin was pushed out of the limelight of a civil rights movement because of his sexuality.
(Available on Netflix on November 17)
In this next chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the powers of Brie Larson's Carol Danvers, a.k.a. superhero Captain Marvel, become intertwined with those of two other characters from comics lore: Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) - who became the comics' first female Captain Marvel in 1982, before even Danvers - and Iman Vellani's Kamala Khan, appearing as Ms. Marvel, Marvel's first Muslim superhero, on Disney+.
Yes, it's all very complicated and metaverse-y, but if you've come this far without throwing up your hands in frustration, why quit now?
(Releasing in cinemas on November 10)
“Next Goal Wins”
After making two muscle-bound Thor movies for Marvel - ‘’Ragnarok’’ and ‘’Love and Thunder’’ - not to mention the prestige Holocaust dramedy ‘’Jojo Rabbit,’’ for which he won a screenwriting Oscar, Taika Waititi returns to his roots in quirky indie filmmaking.
This modest film is based on the true story of Thomas Rongen (Michael Fassbender), the soccer coach who took the American Samoa national football team, one of the lousiest teams in the world, and tried to get them into shape to qualify for the 2014 World Cup.
Based on the 2014 documentary by the same name, ‘’Next Goal Wins’’ has a bit of an underdog back story of its own: The movie, completed in early 2020, first encountered release delays because of Covid and then had to be recast in 2021, with Will Arnett in a supporting role after Armie Hammer was accused of sexual abuse.
(Releasing in cinemas on December 22)
“The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes”
This fifth instalment of the “Hunger Games” saga is set 64 years before the action of the first film.
It centres on teenage Coriolanus Snow (Tom Blyth), well before that character would grow up to become the tyrannical president of Panem, played by Donald Sutherland, who would preside over the torment of Jennifer Lawrence's Katniss Everdeen.
The fifth film in the series is based on a 2020 book by franchise creator Suzanne Collins - a prequel that The Washington Post described as dark yet offering satisfying answers to fans' questions.
‘’One of the delicious qualities of a prequel is that it fills in the blanks,’’ Karin Tanabe wrote.
‘’For those who lapped up the trilogy and have been waiting 10 long years for answers - to questions like 'Which unhinged savage came up with kids killing kids?' or 'What's the meaning behind the song ‘’The Hanging Tree?’’' - Collins has them.’’
(Releasing in cinemas on November 17)