Considering it’s about to be October, i.e. the unofficial month of horror, there are surprisingly few horrors being released. Perhaps that is partly to do with the fact we have been rather inundated with horror movies this year (A Quiet Place, Ghost Stories, Hereditary, The Nun, to name a few). Outside of that genre however there’s quite a lot to choose from this month, and definitely a few that already have a lot of hype behind them, so much so that picking a top three was especially difficult. As a result, besides the three highlighted below as usual, there are four extra I’d like to give a special shout out to afterward (there are a good few in the ‘Other October Releases’ section I highly recommend taking a minute to check out also, including Columbus, Dogman and Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot).
Bohemian Rhapsody (UK- 26th)
With the potential to be a real tear-jerker, this Bryan Singer-directed (yes, he of X-Men, The Usual Suspects and general fantasy/sci-fis) biopic follows Freddie Mercury (played by the wonderful Rami Malek) and Queen in their formative years leading up to their famous performance at Live Aid in 1985. This film will be toeing a fine line for Queen fans, particularly those who feel especially protective of Mercury and his memory, but if Malek’s performance in the trailer alone is anything to go by, it’s very possible this could be a wonderful tribute to one of the world’s most successful and beloved bands and musicians in history.
A Star is Born (3rd)
Bradley Cooper’s passion project is the third remake of the 1937 original, with the 1954 Judy Garland-fronted and 1976 Barbra Streisand-starring versions perhaps the most famous of the three. Directed by Cooper, he also co-stars with Lady Gaga, following in the footsteps of Garland and Streisand in casting a very talented popular music artist as Ally (previously known as Esther or Vicki in other versions). It’s something new for Cooper, this being his directorial debut, but nothing new for Gaga (real name Stefani Germanotta) who has popped up in films in the past but refined her acting chops in T.V’s American Horror Story. It’s a film that boasts strong talent and is already reviewing extremely well in the States, so here’s hoping it’s not another Crazy Rich Asians and is actually worthy of the American hype.
Bad Times at the El Royale (12th)
Ever since the first teaser trailer dropped, Bad Times has been surrounded by some serious, serious hype, and rightly so. From the prodigious cast and director/writer Drew Goddard (The Martian, The Cabin in the Woods, Cloverfield) to cinematographer Seamus McGarvey (The Greatest Showman, Nocturnal Animals, Avengers Assemble) and composer Michael Giacchino (The Incredibles, Star Trek [reboot films], Jurassic World, Rogue One), the film boasts some of the strongest talents in filmmaking today. It’s being hailed as one of the most original films to come out of Hollywood in a long, long time, and it has to be at the top of to-see lists for any film fan (or even the casual cinemagoer).
First Man (12th), a Damien Chazelle-directed biopic of the years following up to Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon (featuring precisely zero original tunes and/or dance numbers, I’m afraid to report); Halloween (19th), a Blumhouse production (Paranormal Activity, Insidious, Sinister, The Purge, Get Out, and many, many more great horrors) that is really the only mainstream horror movie release that’s close to the 31st of October, unless you’re under 12-years-old (Goosebumps 2) or a fan of Simon Pegg horror-comedies (Slaughterhouse Rulez). Technically the eleventh movie in the franchise but set after the events of John Carpenter’s original 1978 Halloween, it effectively ignores all other Michael Myers-based movies, which is probably for the best; The Hate U Give (22nd), based on the novel by Angie Thomas. It’s another story for our times as a young African-American girl, who goes to a prep school that is predominantly white, witnesses the shooting of her best friend by a white officer and tries to find her voice in standing against what was a thoroughly wrongful killing; and Mandy (12th), a very strange horror that is being hailed as possibly a career-best from the unpredictable Nicholas Cage, in which he hunts a cult who murdered his wife. If you want something not as mainstream as Halloween with somewhat of a unique style then it could be worth tracking this one down instead.
Other October Releases: