27 Fall 2019 Movies That You Should Already Be Planning To See

Roadside Attractions

Between Halloween horror movies, awards season creeping earlier and earlier, and the onslaught of holiday films, the period between Sept. 1 and Nov. 30 is the prime time to hit the theaters (or your Netflix account). Though the fall doesn't officially begin until September 22, we're starting our list of fall 2019 movies that should be on your radar at the top of the month, with the highly anticipated sequel to last year's remake of Stephen King's It.

The rest of September, formerly considered to be somewhat of a dump month for movies, will also bring us back to Downton Abbey with the hit show's first foray into feature film; into outer space with Brad Pit's delayed Ad Astra; and straight into Renée Zellweger's next Oscar campaign for her transformation into Hollywood legend Judy Garland in Judy.

October and November is where the rush to the Oscars really kicks off, with movies like A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Harriet, and other awards hopefuls hitting the big screen. A handful of other prestige dramas will probably be released around this time of year as well, but not all of them have officially announced release dates. For now, here are 27 standout movies hitting theaters this fall.

1. 'It Chapter Two' (Sept. 6)

Twenty-seven years after first encountering the killer clown Pennywise, most of the kids of the Losers Club have grown up, moved away, and moved on with their lives. Or so they thought.

Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, James McAvoy, and more step in as the adult versions of the group who fearlessly faced Pennywise and saved the town of Derry in the first film.

2. 'The Goldfinch' (Sept. 13)

Nicole Kidman, Ansel Elgort, Jeffrey Wright, Luke Wilson, and Sarah Paulson star in this adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Donna Tartt.

After a young boy loses his mother in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he zigzags between life with a wealthy couple in New York, his estranged father in Las Vegas, and an eccentric antiques dealer. This wide-ranging drama will likely be a huge topic of conversation once awards campaigning heats up.

3. 'Downton Abbey' (Sept. 20)

Everyone's favorite wealthy family and their equally dramatically entwined servants are hitting the big screen. Your favorites from the series cast have returned, including the formidable Maggie Smith, whose Dowager Countess must be inching toward 100 by now.

The king and queen are coming to Downton in this feature, and the movie's biggest conflict seems to stem from the fact that the family has to throw a huge event weekend after their butler Carson has retired. Ah, the simple problems of the rich.

4. 'Ad Astra' (Sept. 20)

Brad Pitt stars in this grand sci-fi journey as Astronaut Roy McBride, who learns the truth about his father's (Tommy Lee Jones) mission many years ago and voyages to the edges of the solar system in order to save the planet from total destruction. You know, your basic daddy issues in space movie.

5. 'Abominable' (Sept. 27)

Everest the abominable snowman, or "yeti" as they call him in the film's trailer, is about to be the next cute and cuddly stuffy that kids want for the holidays.

Written and co-directed by Jill Culton, the writer behind Monsters Inc., and from the same studio that brought us the How to Train Your Dragon movies, Abominable tells the story of a snow beast trying to get home to his icy mountain with the help of a violin-playing teenage girl.

6. '21 Bridges' (Sept. 27)

Chadwick Boseman stars in this action drama about an NYPD detective who specializes in tracking down cop killers.

When a massive conspiracy is discovered, a citywide, nightlong manhunt leads to the closing of all 21 bridges leading out of the island of Manhattan. We hope Boseman remembers to close the tunnels too.

7. 'Judy' (Sept. 27)

If Renée Zellweger doesn't earn all of the nominations — and perhaps even wins — for this portrayal of Judy Garland, then there's something really wrong with the film industry.

The film appears to be set later in Garland's life, when, after four husbands and a knockout career, her struggles with substance use disorder and mental illness begin to take their toll. Bring your tissues.

8. 'Joker' (Oct. 4)

Joaquin Phoenix is the latest actor to put on a happy face to play the infamous Batman villain. But rather than go deep into comic book territory, this origin story goes for a more psychological thriller angle.

Many fans of the Batman franchise have long considered Heath Ledger's Oscar-winning performance to be the best iteration of the Joker out there, but Phoenix looks like he's about to challenge that legacy.

9. 'Gemini Man' (Oct. 11)

Do not be alarmed by the presence of an extremely young looking Will Smith in this trailer. It's not a Fresh Prince reboot we're looking at, it's Ang Lee's Gemini Man, in which an assassin is targeted by a clone of his younger self.

The premise has a Looper quality to it, although instead of time travel, we're dealing with cloning, and instead of making one actor look like a younger version of another (ala Joseph Gordon Levitt and Bruce Willis), Gemini Man goes full de-aging CGI. The MCU has used this special effect for a few movies now, let's see if this film can sustain it as well.

10. 'The Addams Family' (Oct. 11)

I don't know if there will ever be a better Gomez and Morticia Addams than Raul Julia and Anjelica Huston from the live-action movies, but Oscar Isaac and Charlize Theron are certainly about to try their hand at the macabre couple in this animated version of their family saga.

This iteration certainly does resemble the original Charles Addams cartoons, and also arrives just in time for Halloween.

11. 'Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil' (Oct. 18)

Angelina Jolie is so engaging and deliciously evil in 2014's Maleficent that Disney just had to revisit the reimagined character.

After the first film twisted the story of Sleeping Beauty into one of feminist revenge, Maleficent 2: Mistress of Evil brings in Michelle Pfeiffer as a new opponent. Watching these two wicked royals spar would only be improved upon by bringing in Charlize Theron's evil queen from the live-action Snow White and the Huntsman movies, but hey, that's another franchise.

12. 'Zombieland: Double Tap' (Oct. 18)

Ten years later, Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin reprise their roles as Tallahassee, Columbus, Wichita, and Little Rock, respectively, in this sequel to 2009's Zombieland.

Bill Murray returns as himself, and this time Dan Aykroyd has joined him, also as an exaggerated, fictionalized version of himself. Prepare for Ghostbusters jokes.

13. 'Jojo Rabbit' (Oct. 18)

Taika Waititi plays Adolf Hitler — yes that Adolf Hitler — in this dark comedy written and directed by the Thor: Ragnarok helmer.

When a young, devoted German boy discovers that his single mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a little Jewish girl in their attic, he must face the reality of his Nazi nationalism with the help of his imaginary friend version of Hitler. Yes, this one sounds weird, and could go all sorts of wrong, but we'll give Waititi the benefit of the doubt for now.

Walt Disney Studios

14. 'The Current War' (Oct. 25)

Benedict Cumberbatch is Thomas Edison, Michael Shannon is George Westinghouse, and Nicholas Hoult is Nikola Tesla in this historical drama about the men who fought a war with each other to bring electricity to the masses.

The Current War first premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival back in 2017, but was delayed after The Weinstein Company declared bankruptcy, per Vanity Fair. It's making it to theaters, but we'll have to wait and see in October if the movie has any spark.

15. 'Terminator: Dark Fate' (Nov. 1)

It's hard to argue against the idea that Sarah Conner is one of science-fiction's most badass heroines. (Perhaps her only equal is Sigourney Weaver's Ripley.) And thankfully, Linda Hamilton is returning to play the iconic character in this next installment of the Terminator franchise. And with a trio of women in the lead (Mackenzie Davis and Natalia Reyes join Hamilton as the film's heroes), we're actually excited for this one.

It's unclear how Terminator: Dark Fate fits into the realm of the Terminator movies; the other films and TV series and reboots have sort of mucked up the timeline. But with James Cameron involved as well, this adventure is said to be a direct sequel to 1991's Terminator 2: Judgement Day, and even the Terminator himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger, is returning.

16. 'Harriet' (Nov. 1)

Cynthia Erivo stars as abolitionist Harriet Tubman in this drama that's bound to be an awards contender. Viola Davis was attached to a Tubman film back when it was an HBO project in 2015, but the project is now a theatrical release thanks to Focus Features.

Returning to the director's chair is Eve's Bayou helmer Kasi Lemmons. Janelle Monáe, Leslie Odom Jr., and Jennifer Nettles round out the cast.

Focus Features

17. 'Doctor Sleep' (Nov. 8)

Whatever happened to little Danny Torrance from The Shining?

Based on the Steven King novel of the same name, Doctor Sleep is also a sequel to Stanley Kubrick's 1977 horror classic The Shining. Dan (Ewan McGregor), now an adult, is dealing with the aftermath of the events at the Overlook Hotel by drowning his psychic powers in alcohol. But when a young girl with the same abilities seeks him out, Dan has no choice but to face the past.

18. 'Midway' (Nov. 8)

Step aside Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett, a new set of heartthrobs are heading to Pearl Harbor. Patrick Wilson, Ed Skrein, Nick Jonas, Woody Harrelson, Luke Evans, and Mandy Moore star in this Roland Emmerich-directed movie about the Battle of Midway.

The battle took place only six months after the attack on Pearl Harbor and was considered a turning point in the fight for Pacific dominancy during World War II. The film will open in theaters on Veteran's Day weekend.

19. 'Last Christmas' (Nov. 8)

Emilia Clarke is leaving Daenerys Targaryen behind to embrace the romantic comedy. (Which is a great idea, since she was really charming and hilarious in Me Before You.)

Directed by Paul Feig with a script written by Emma Thompson, the story was inspired by the George Michael song of the same name, Deadline writes. Per the publications, Clarke "plays a slacker who works in a Christmas shop which she so hates. She meets her opposite in the suave Henry Golding, and fireworks happen."

20. 'Charlie's Angels' (Nov. 15)

Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, and Drew Barrymore made a great team, but a new set of Charlie's Angels are hitting the big screen, and this time they've got a female Bosley.

Written and directed by Elizabeth Banks, who plays the aforementioned Bos, the new iteration stars Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, and Ella Balinska as the angels. But there are also three Bosleys, with Djimon Hounsou and Patrick Stewart alongside Banks.

21. 'Ford V. Ferrari' (Nov. 15)

Matt Damon and Christian Bale star in this biographical drama about the team of Ford designers, racers, and businessmen who set out to make a Ford race car that would beat a Ferrari.

The film's trailer showcases Bale's natural Welsh accent and Damon's seemingly expert gun-chewing skills. It has "awards season prestige drama" written all over it, so don't be surprised if it pops up on nominations lists.

22. 'The Good Liar' (Nov. 15)

Sir Ian McKellen and Dame Helen Mirren walk into a restaurant on what appears to be a blind date. These two expert actors are charming, for sure. But there's a sinister plot lurking beneath their romantic encounter.

From the look of the trailer, it feels like McKellen's character is trying to scam his way to some millions. But let's hope Mirren's also has a few tricks up her sleeve, because we're just not into movies where women are taken advantage of anymore.

23. 'The Lodge' (Nov. 15)

One of the most popular movies out of Sundance 2019 was the horror film The Lodge, which traps a potential step-mom played by Riley Keough and her boyfriend's two kids in a cabin during a blizzard. The kids discover that she was the sole survivor of a cult's mass-suicide years before, and while she may have moved on, the cult, it seems, has not.

24. 'Frozen 2' (Nov. 22)

When Frozen hit theaters back in 2013, it was such a hit that there was practically a 100% chance that it would get a sequel. Six years later, Elsa, Ana, Kristoff, Olaf, and Sven are back and leaving the frozen tundras of Arendelle behind to travel into unknown lands.

The secretive plot reportedly revolves around Elsa and Ana learning the truth about what happened to their parents when they were just children. Don't they know the theory that their parents are actually the shipwrecked parents from Tarzan?

25. 'A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood' (Nov. 22)

Last year's documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor? explored the creation of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood and the impact that Fred Rogers had on millions of children.

Tom Hanks and Disney are attempting to recreate that magic with A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, a biopic about Rogers in which Hanks stars as the iconic children's television educator. As director Marielle Heller told EW, "Its a story for our times, a story about kindness and family connection and trying to tap into our better self. God knows we need that right now!"

Walt Disney Studios

26. 'The Rhythm Section' (Nov. 22)

This spy thriller starring Blake Lively comes from Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, the producers of several Bond movies, and director Reed Morano.

Lively’s Drake, Variety reports, "is a heroine who adopts the identity of an assassin to get to the bottom of her family’s death in a plane crash. She discovers it may not have been an accident at all." Jude Law and Sterling K. Brown co-star.

Paramount Pictures

27. 'Knives Out' (Nov. 29)

A huge ensemble cast comes together for Rian Johnson's Knives Out, a tribute to Agatha Christi's "whodunnit" mysteries.

"When renowned crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) is found dead at his estate just after his 85th birthday," the film's official synopsis reads, "the inquisitive and debonair Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is mysteriously enlisted to investigate. From Harlan’s dysfunctional family to his devoted staff, Blanc sifts through a web of red herrings and self-serving lies to uncover the truth behind Harlan’s untimely death." Chris Evans, Ana De Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis, Don Johnson, Michael Shannon, Toni Collette, LaKeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford and Jaeden Martell complete the cast.

There are a few more prestige dramas that may come out around this time, to get in on the awards race. Martin Scorsese's The Irishman and the Meryl Streep Pentagon Papers drama The Laundromat will most likely hit Netflix sometime around Thanksgiving. The Natalie Portman astronaut thriller Lucy in the Sky could premiere in theaters around then too. The list is already stacked in every genre, however — it's going to be a good fall at the movies.