As my sister drove us by the movie theater the other day, I remembered suddenly that I hadn’t seen a movie in theaters in eight months. The last one I saw was Greta Gerwig’s Little Women, for the second time in January. It was a weird thought.
I love movies. I have deeply fond memories of going to midnight showings as a kid — I saw every Twilight at midnight, and all the Pirates of the Caribbean movies from the second installation to the final (ugh, let’s not go there today!). In the past few years, we’ve been overloaded with Marvel movies and book adaptations and women-lead films so going to movies was so much more regular than I realized until I couldn’t go any more.
There’s something so special about sitting back in the cool dark theater and letting the big screen whisk you away. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad we’ve got streaming services to watch new releases safely at home, but I sure miss the ritual of the theater.
In honor of the movies, I want to talk about my most highly anticipated releases for the rest of this year, with a wish and a hope that we’ll get to see one of them in the magic of the theater, and grateful that some of these will come straight to my house without me having to put myself or others at risk. If you had to pick one of these to see in theaters, which would you pick? Let me know in the comments below!
Rebecca (Netflix) based on Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
I read Rebecca last autumn and immediately fell in love with du Maurier’s lush prose and thrilling storyline. When I heard that a film adaptation was coming with Lily James in the starring role, I was over the moon. I can’t think of anyone that carries the narrator’s charm and innocence better than James. I’m not a huge fan of Armie Hammer, starring as Max de Winter, so I’m interested to see if I decide which side of the fence I fall on with his character. I was unsure how I felt about the mysterious love interest in the novel, so we’ll see if my aversion to Hammer and my skepticism about Max pans out! This film will be released by Netflix on October 21.
Dune (Theatrical Release) based on Dune by Frank Herbert
Last year, I was haphazardly making my way through the PBS Great American Read list and after I finished Rebecca, I took a huge leap and moved into Dune, a sci-fi epic that inspired Star Wars. I hadn’t done much sci-fi reading at that point, not even in YA, and I was apprehensive about the size and scope of this series. While this novel wasn’t as big a winner for me as Rebecca was, I did end up really enjoying this novel and savoring it over my beach vacation. At once fast paced, philosophical, scientific, and environmental, this novel was truly something new for me and encouraged me to branch out in my reading. I am so, so, SO thrilled about this film adaptation. The cast is STELLAR, but I am most excited to see Zendaya perform the powerful and spirited Chani. No word yet if we can expect this film in theaters or in our homes this December, but hopefully we won’t have to wait until next year!
Death on the Nile (Theatrical Release) based on Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie
Somehow Armie Hammer, the star I trust least (for inexplicable reasons) in Hollywood has managed to infiltrate my list twice! Alas, I will never turn down a Christie film. I really enjoyed Murder on the Orient Express so I was quite pleased to hear they were doing this one next. I like this story of Christie’s better than Orient Express — it had a little more drama and overall feels more intimate than the train mystery did. Like Orient Express, this film has a really good cast, and I’m especially excited to see Letitia Wright and Gal Godot. I also have to say that I’m intrigued about the casting of Russell Brand. This movie was originally slated for theatrical release this fall, and will be released in the UK on schedule, but no word yet if we will be able to see this one on streaming, in limited release, or if the date will be pushed back to next year.
Shadow and Bone (Netflix) based on The Grishaverse and Six of Crows series by Leigh Bardugo
Though not technically a film, this one I must say is my most highly anticipated release of the year (hopefully we will get it this year!). I’ve been salivating for a screen adaptation of these novels since I read the books in college over five years ago. When the news dropped that both Grishaverse series were moving forward and would be aired as a series on Netflix, I was checking Bardugo’s social feed twice a day for news, and I was not disappointed with the casting! While I was originally imagining a Cillian Murphy type in the role of the Darkling (one of my top three book characters of all time), I am so over the moon about the casting of Ben Barnes, aka, Tall Dark and Handsome Crush since Prince Caspian. The rest of the casting is beyond perfect — the casting of the Crows is exactly how I imagined them. I’m crossing all my fingers that this series gets released soon!
So there you have it! These are my most anticipated releases for this autumn. If I had to pick one to see in theaters, I’d pick Dune because sci-fi epics and Zendaya deserve the big screen! Did I miss anything? If you could see a book adapted to film, which would it be and who are you casting in the lead roles?