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Upcoming movie lineup full of promise

By: Ann Hornaday The Washington Post
September 13, 2017 Updated: September 13, 2017 at 4:05 am
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Olivia Colman, left, and Judi Dench star in "Murder on the Orient Express," based on the 1934 Agatha Christie novel. The murder-mystery's cast includes Johnny Depp, Daisy Ridley, Willem Dafoe, Michelle Pfeiffer and Penélope Cruz. MUST CREDIT: Nicola Dove, Twentieth Century Fox

Summer 2017 is going down as one of Hollywood's worst in recent memory, notwithstanding such standouts as "Wonder Woman," "Dunkirk" and the little-rom-com-that-could, "The Big Sick."

But who are we kidding? Filmgoers of discerning taste know Hollywood typically holds back the good stuff for cooler weather, and this year is no exception.

With such highly anticipated films as Guillermo del Toro's "The Shape of Water" and Alexander Payne's "Downsizing" already earning plaudits on the festival circuit, it's possible to dispense with cautious optimism and look forward to several titles with downright abandon.

What will George Clooney do with the Coen brothers' script for "Suburbicon"?

How will Joe Wright top Christopher Nolan in his Dunkirk movie, "Darkest Hour"?

And what is "Mother!" about, anyway?

All will be revealed in a fall schedule that's crammed with promising filmmakers, cast members, genres and subjects.

All eyes will be on Rian Johnson to see what he will bring to the "Star Wars" franchise with "The Last Jedi," a continuation of the "Force Awakens" story line.

Here are some recommendations for the coming months (release dates tentative):

Friday

- "Dolores" - A documentary about the labor and civil rights leader Dolores Huerta, who co-founded the first farm workers unions with César Chávez.

- "Mother!" - From filmmaker Darren Aronofsky comes a psychological thriller about a couple whose relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home.

Sept. 22

- "Battle of the Sexes" - The 1973 tennis match between women's world champion Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-men's champ Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell).

Sept. 29

- "American Made" - Tom Cruise reunites with his "Edge of Tomorrow" director, Doug Liman, for this story about the real exploits of a hustler and pilot recruited by the CIA.

Oct. 6

- "Loving Vincent" - More than 65,000 frames of hand-painted oil paintings piece together the story of Vincent van Gogh's life.

Oct. 13

- "Goodbye Christopher Robin" - An intimate look at the relationship between beloved children's author A.A. Milne (Domhnall Gleeson) and his son Christopher Robin, whose toys inspired "Winnie the Pooh."

- "The Florida Project" - Moonee, a precocious 6-year-old, and her mother live week to week in a budget motel managed by a stern owner (Willem Dafoe).

Oct. 20

- "Only the Brave" - The story of the "Granite Mountain Hotshots," a unit of elite Arizona firefighters that tackled one of the deadliest wildfires in history.

Oct. 27

- "Suburbicon" - An idyllic suburban community masks an underbelly of deceit and violence. With Matt Damon.

- "Thank You for Your Service" - U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq struggle to integrate back into civilian life. Based on the book by Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter David Finkel.

- "The Square" - A curator of a contemporary art museum launches a high-concept show that invites participants to live with altruistic ideals.

Nov. 10

- "Last Flag Flying" - Richard Linklater directs this comedy-drama starring Bryan Cranston and Steve Carell.

- "Murder on the Orient Express" - A passenger on a European train must solve a murder before the killer strikes again.

- "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" - A woman (Frances McDormand) ignites a town controversy when she paints public signs directed at the revered sheriff (Woody Harrelson).

Nov. 22

- "Molly's Game" - An Olympic-class skier ran the world's most exclusive high-stakes poker game for a decade before being arrested by FBI agents. Starring Jessica Chastain.

Nov. 24

- "The Current War" - Thomas Edison (Benedict Cumberbatch) and George Westinghouse (Michael Shannon) battle over the supply of electricity.

Dec. 1

- "Wonder Wheel" - This Woody Allen film takes place in an amusement park in the 1950s. It stars Justin Timberlake and Kate Winslet, among others.

Dec. 8

- "Darkest Hour" - The Winston Churchill biopic stars Gary Oldman as the prime minister during his time negotiating a peace treaty with Nazi Germany.

- "The Disaster Artist" - James Franco directs and stars in this movie about filmmaker Tommy Wiseau and his actor best friend, Greg Sestero (Dave Franco). Their friendship led to the beloved cult film "The Room."

- "The Shape of Water" - From Guillermo del Toro comes a tale set in the Cold War era, where two women discover a classified experiment.

Dec. 15

- "Call Me By Your Name" - Set in the summer of 1983 in Northern Italy, an American-Italian is enamored of a student who comes to study and live with his family.

- "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" - The Skywalker saga continues with stars Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, Lupita Nyong'o and Andy Serkis.

Dec. 22

- "Downsizing" - Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig star in this sci-fi comedy-drama about a couple that decides to shrink themselves.

- "Pitch Perfect 3" - The third installment about the a capella group that graduated from college and reunites for a world championship.

Dec. 25

- "The Greatest Showman" - A musical that tells the story of P.T. Barnum, starring Hugh Jackman with songs penned by Academy Award winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul ("La La Land").

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