October movies: As weather cools, screens heat up

05:00 AM, Aug 30, 2013

George Clooney in 'Gravity.' Warner Bros. Pictures/


Written By by Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY

Oct. 4

Gravity

Director: Alfonso Cuaron

Stars: Sandra Bullock, George Clooney

Plot: A routine mission turns into a fight for survival for two astronauts who are stranded in space and have to find a way back to Earth.

Runner Runner

Director: Brad Furman

Stars: Ben Affleck, Justin Timberlake, Gemma Arterton

Plot: A grad student paying his way through Princeton by online gambling (Timberlake) starts to work for a gambling tycoon (Affleck) until he finds disturbing truths about his benefactor.

Parkland

Director: Peter Landesman

Stars: Zac Efron, Billy Bob Thornton, Paul Giamatti

Plot: The moments and days after the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963 are told through the eyes of the smaller players, including the emergency room surgeon (Efron), the regional head of the Secret Service (Thornton) and a memorable witness, Abraham Zapruder (Paul Giamatti).

A.C.O.D.

Director: Stu Zicherman

Stars: Adam Scott, Richard Jenkins, Jane Lynch

Plot: A seemingly well-adjusted A.C.O.D.— adult child of divorce — (Scott) lapses into chaos after finding out his former “therapist” (Lynch) has written a book about him while reuniting his bitterly divorced parents for his brother’s wedding.

Linsanity

Director: Evan Leong

Plot: The documentary, a hit at Sundance, follows the spectacular streak of the New York Knicks’ Jeremy Lin, who went from benchwarmer to international sensation in February 2012. Filmmaker Leong already had been working on a Lin documentary when the madness hit.

The Summit

Director: Nick Ryan

Plot: This documentary explores the deadliest day on K2 (The Savage Mountain), on the border of China and Pakistan, when 22 climbers converged on High Camp in August 2008. Just 48 hours later, 11 had vanished or been killed.

Concussion

Director: Stacie Passon

Stars: Robin Weigert, Maggie Siff

Plot: After a blow to the head, a lesbian housewife has a mental crisis and becomes a high-class call girl.

Grace Unplugged

Director: Brad J. Silverman

Stars: A.J. Michalka, James Denton, Kevin Pollak

Plot: In this faith-based movie, Michalka plays a talented Christian singer whose faith is tested when she pursues a career in pop music.

A.K.A. Doc Pomus

Directors: Will Hechter and Peter Miller

Plot: This musical documentary profiles Doc Pomus, who overcame polio to write some of the most beloved songs of the century, including This Magic Moment and Viva Las Vegas.

Vikingdom

Director: Yusry Abd Halim

Stars: Conan Stevens, Craig Fairbrass, Dominic Purcell

Plot: Wait, Thor’s a bad guy? Hero Eirick (Purcell) must retrieve Odin’s horn before Thor and his army use it to conquer the world.

Oct. 11

Captain Phillips

Director: Paul Greengrass

Stars: Tom Hanks, Catherine Keener, Barkhad Abdi

Plot: Hanks stars as real-life cargo ship captain Richard Phillips, whose heroic actions in the face of armed Somali pirates in 2009 captivated the nation.

Machete Kills

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Stars: Danny Trejo, Michelle Rodriguez, Sofia Vergara

Plot: Trejo returns after the 2010 bloodbath Machete. This time the ex-federal agent has to take down a madman revolutionary/arms dealer who wants to start a worldwide war.

The Fifth Estate

Director: Bill Condon

Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch, Daniel Bruhl, Laura Linney

Plot:Cumberbatch portrays Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and Bruhl his colleague Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Bruhl) as they turn an Internet upstart into the 21st century’s most fiercely contested organization.

CBGB

Director: Randall Miller

Stars: Alan Rickman, Malin Akerman, Rupert Grint

Plot: This feature film tells the three-chord true story of Hilly Kristal (Rickman), who opened a New York club for country, bluegrass and blues artists but instead, thanks to the bands that came through his doors such as Blondie and Talking Heads, became a godfather for the nascent punk-rock movement of the 1970s.

Romeo and Juliet

Director: Carlo Carlei

Stars: Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, Damian Lewis

Plot: Shakespeare’s classic forbidden-love story comes to life in an adaptation by Downton Abbey’s Julian Fellowes with True Grit standout Steinfeld getting hot and heavy with Booth.

I Will Follow You into the Dark

Director: Mark Edwin Robinson

Stars: Mischa Barton, Ryan Eggold, Leah Pipes

Plot: A young woman (Barton) fights to find her beloved boyfriend (Eggold) who has been taken by paranormal forces.

McConkey

Directors: Murray Wais, Steve Winter, Scott Gaffney, David Zieff, Rob Bruce

Plot: The adventurous life of extreme skiier Shane McConkey is explored in a documentary.

All the Boys Love Mandy Lane

Director: Jonathan Levine

Stars: Amber Heard, Michael Welch, Anson Mount

Plot: The 2006 horror flick finally getting a release stars Heard as a shy outsider invited to spend the weekend at a secluded ranch house targeted by a killer stalker.

Oct. 16

Kill Your Darlings

Director: John Krokidas

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Dane DeHaan, Michael C. Hall

Plot: Columbia University is the hot spot for up-and-coming poets Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Lucien Carr and William Burroughs and a scandalous murder. The story is based on true events and characters.

Oct. 18

Escape Plan

Director: Mikael Hafstrom

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel

Plot: Stallone and Schwarzenegger come together — for the first time as leading men — as inmates escaping from the most protected and fortified prisons ever built.

Carrie

Director: Kimberly Peirce

Stars: Julianne Moore, Chloë Grace Moretz

Plot: The 1976 horror classic featuring the worst prom disaster story ever returns with Moretz taking on the Sissy Spacek role of a outcast girl with the overbearing, religious mother (Moore). Carrie unleashes her telekinetic terror after being pushed too far at the school dance.

12 Years a Slave

Director: Steve McQueen

Stars: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt

Plot: A free black man (Ejiofor) in pre-Civil War America is abducted and sold into slavery, then comes across cruel plantation owner (Fassbender) and a kind carpenter (Pitt).

All Is Lost

Director: J.C. Chandor

Star: Robert Redford

Plot: It’s just Redford facing the elements and his own mortality at sea after his yacht is struck by a floating shipping container.

Hellbenders

Director: J.T. Petty

Stars: Clifton Collins Jr., Clancy Brown, Andre Royo

Plot: The Augustine Interfaith Order of Hellbound Saints might live in a constant state of debauchery, but they are tasked with dragging the worst demons back to hell.

Big Ass Spider

Director: Mike Mendez

Stars: Greg Grunberg, Lombardo Boyar, Ray Wise

Plot: A 50-foot-tall alien spider escapes from a military lab and rampages through Los Angeles. It’s up to a team of scientists, soldiers and one exterminator to kill the creature.

Oct. 25

Blue is the Warmest Color

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche

Stars: Lea Seydoux, Adele Exarchopoulos, Salim Kechiouche

Plot: The winner of the Cannes Film Festival Palme D’Or centers on a 15-year-old girl entering a lesbian relationship.

The Counselor

Director: Ridley Scott

Stars: Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Javier Bardem

Plot: A lawyer (Fassbender) finds himself up to his neck after entering the drug trade. Cormac McCarthy wrote the screenplay.

Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa

Director: Jeff Tremaine

Stars: Johnny Knoxville, Jackson Nicholl

Plot: Knoxville dons makeup and prosthetics to star as 86-year-old Irving Zisman, who travels cross-country with his 8-year-old grandson, Bill (Nicholl). Mayhem follows.