Earlier this month, Headstuff published its mid-year best movies of 2019 list – a blend of big superhero spectaculars, worthy Oscar winners, brilliant indies and thought-provoking docs. However, in the next six months, there’s still plenty more to be excited about. Read below about 30 films still to come in 2019.
Midsommar – July 3
Writer-director Ari Aster’s follow-up to last year’s critical darling Hereditary, Midsommar centres on a couple who travel to Sweden to visit their friend’s rural hometown for its fabled mid-summer festival. What begins as an idyllic retreat quickly devolves into an increasingly violent and bizarre competition at the hands of a pagan cult. Florence Pugh, Will Poulter and the Irish Jack Reynor star.
The Dead Don’t Die – July 12
Indie legend Jim Jarmusch (Gimme Danger, Paterson) assembles a stacked cast of his frequent collaborators (including Adam Driver, Bill Murray, Iggy Pop and Tilda Swinton) for his idiosyncratic, comedic take on a zombie flick.
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw – August 1
This spin-off of the Fast & Furious franchise sees lawman Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and criminal Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) form an unlikely alliance. This is when a cyber-genetically enhanced villain (Idris Elba) threatens the future of humanity.
Never Grow Old – August 2
This Irish Western (potato Western?) centres on Patrick Tate (Emile Hirsch), an undertaker from the Emerald Isle who profits when outlaws (led by John Cusack) take over a peaceful American frontier town on the California Trail circa 1850. However, his family eventually comes under threat as the death toll rises.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood – August 14
Quentin Tarantino returns next month with his most ambitious sounding movie to date. In 1960s Los Angeles, around the time of the Charles Manson murders, a TV actor (Leonardo Di Caprio) and his stunt double (Brad Pitt) embark on an odyssey to make a name for themselves in the film industry. They are neighbours to actress Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie).
The Souvenir – August 30
Arthouse darling Joanna Hogg writes and directs this semi-autobiographical drama. It centres on a young film student (Honor Swinton Byrne) in the early 80s who becomes romantically involved with a complicated and untrustworthy man (Tom Burke).
It Chapter 2 – September 6
27 years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise (Bill Skarsgard), the Losers Club have grown up and moved away. However, a devastating phone call brings them back. A follow-up to 2017’s smash-hit Stephen King adaptation, Bill Hader, James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain join the cast as the adult versions of the predecessor’s characters.
Ad Astra – September 18
Crime thriller maestro turned prestige filmmaker James Gray (The Lost City of Z, We Own the Night) directs this sci-fi starring Brad Pitt as an astronaut who searches for his father (Tommy Lee Jones). His dad left Earth 20 years previously to look for signs of extra-terrestrial life but may be behind a series of recent attacks on his home planet. Ireland’s own Ruth Negga also co-stars.
The Kitchen – September 20
Straight Outta Compton scribe Andrea Berloff makes her directorial debut with this crime drama about the wives of New York gangsters in 1970’s Hell’s Kitchen. They continue to operate their husbands’ rackets after their spouses are imprisoned. Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish and Elizabeth Moss play the leads. Meanwhile, Domhnall Gleeson features as an intense Vietnam vet/hitman.
Rambo: Last Blood – September 20
This is the fifth and perhaps final entry in the long-running franchise focusing on Sylvester Stallone’s war veteran/one-man army. This time around, he teams with a reporter to save a kidnapped girl from a vicious Mexican drug cartel.
The Report – September 20
This drama details the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation into accusations of torture by the CIA following 9/11. Adam Driver stars.
Ready or Not – September 27
This comedy-horror follows a young bride (Samara Weaving). After she agrees to join her new husband’s rich, eccentric family (Adam Brody, Andie McDowell and Henry Czerny) in one of the clan’s traditions, she finds herself the pawn in a lethal game with everyone fighting to kill her.
The Woman in the Window – September 27
Joe Wright (Hanna, The Darkest Hour) directs this script from Tracy Letts (Killer Joe). It’s about an agoraphobic woman living alone in New York. She begins spying on her new neighbors only to witness a disturbing act of violence. Amy Adams, Julianne Moore and Gary Oldman star.
Joker – October 4
The Hangover’s Todd Phillips writes and directs this new origin for the classic DC character. Joaquin Phoenix steps into the iconic role, joined in the movie by Robert De Niro and Zazie Beetz.
Gemini Man – October 11
This sci-fi from Ang Lee (Life of Pi) revolves around an aging assassin (Will Smith) seeking to exit his career. However, he finds himself up against a younger clone of himself (Will Smith de-aged), who can predict his every move.
Terminator: Dark Fate – October 23
More than two decades after the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) sets out to protect a young woman (Natalia Reyes, Birds of Passage) and her friends. This is as a liquid metal Terminator, sent from the future attempts to terminate them. Deadpool and Love, Death & Robots’ Tim Miller directs. James Cameron has a story by credit.
Doctor Sleep – October 31
Mike Flanagan (Gerald’s Game, The Haunting of Hill House) helms this sequel to Stephen King’s novel and Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece The Shining. It centres on an older Danny Torrance (Ewan McGregor) who, after forming a telepathic bond with a young girl must rescue the child from the clutches of villainous cult The True Knot. Led by Rose the Hat (Rebecca Ferguson), the group feed off the life-force of those with The Shining, calling it ‘steam’.
The Rhythm Section – November 22
Blake Lively stars in this partially Irish set spy thriller. It’s about a woman who seeks to uncover the truth behind a plane crash that killed her family. The Handmaid’s Tale’s Reed Marano directs.
Knives Out – November 29
From writer-director Rian Johnson (Looper, The Last Jedi), this murder mystery sees a detective investigate the death of a patriarch of an eccentric, combative family. The stacked cast features Chris Evans, Christopher Plummer, Daniel Craig, Don Johnson, Jamie Lee Curtis, Lakeith Stanfield, Michael Shannon and Toni Collette.
Charlie’s Angels – November 29
A reboot of the classic 70’s series, this stars Kristen Stewart, Aladdin’s Naomi Scott and newcomer Ella Balinska as crime-fighters for an international private detective agency.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – December 19
The surviving Resistance faces the First Order once more as Rey, Finn and Poe Dameron’s journey continues. The Force Awakens’ writer-director JJ Abrams returns to helm the finale to the Star Wars sequel trilogy.
No release dates yet
A highlight of DIFF 2019, Her Smell sees Elizabeth Moss give a performance of a life-time. In this drama, shot like a horror by writer-director Alex Ross Perry (Queen of Earth), she plays a self-destructive punk rocker in the midst of a severe alcohol and drug addiction, trying to recapture the creative inspiration that led to her band’s success.
Based on a real life experience from writer-director Lulu Wang, The Farewell stars Ocean’s 8’s Awkwafina. She plays Billi, a Chinese-American woman who returns to China at the behest of her parents. The reason is that her grandmother is terminally ill with cancer. The entire family – with objections from Billi – choose not to tell the matriarch the diagnosis.
This is out July 12 in the US so Irish audiences should have a chance to see it by the time 2019 wraps.
The most expensive movie of Martin Scorsese’s career, this Netflix gangster drama teams the legendary filmmaker back with Robert De Niro, along with Al Pacino. It centres on Frank Sheeran (De Niro), a labor union official with mob connections, recalling his involvement in the slaying of his long-life friend Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino).
Despite going over budget thanks to the visual effects needed to make its older cast (also featuring Scorsese regulars Harvey Keitel and Joe Pesci) appear up to 30 years younger at various points throughout the film, Netflix say this will drop in Autumn to be an Oscar player.
Hold the Dark’s Riley Keough plays a woman with a troubled past who winds up taking care of her fiancee’s children in a remote holiday village. The kids – including It star Jaeden Martell – do not take warmly to her. Stuck together, strange and frightening events occur in this new horror from the pair behind 2014 chiller Goodnight Mommy.
The Lodge is released in the US on November 15. We imagine it will arrive in Ireland not long after.
Steven Soderbergh continues his ongoing Netflix collaboration with his latest, a dramatised re-telling of the Panama Papers scandal starring Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman and Antonio Banderas.
No release date is confirmed. Yet, IMDB list The Laundromat as a 2019 film. Plus given the fact Soderbergh is so prolific, it’s a pretty safe bet this will drop to the streaming service sometime in the fall.
Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson play bickering lighthouse keepers in this atmospheric horror and homage to early sound cinema from The Witch director Robert Eggers.
Though no Irish release date is confirmed, there’s been early talk of Dafoe as an Oscar contender for best actor. Perhaps, this means The Lighthouse will reach Ireland before the year is out.
Jennifer Kent’s follow-up to 2014 horror The Babadook, The Nightingale stars The Fall’s Aisling Franciosi. She plays Claire, an Irish convict living in Tasmania in 1825. After she is raped and her family is killed by a group of British soldiers (led by Sam Claflin), Claire takes Billy (Baykali Ganambarr), an Aboriginal tracker, with her through the hellish wilderness to seek revenge.
This thriller has been kicking around since picking up trophies at Venice Film Festival last year. We imagine an Irish release is imminent.
From the pair behind Good Time, this crime-comedy stars Adam Sandler as a jewellery store owner and dealer to the rich living in the diamond district of New York City. He must find a way to pay his debts when his merchandise is taken from one of his top sellers and girlfriend.
A24 are releasing Uncut Gems in US cinemas this September. However, abroad it will be distributed by Netflix, with no date for when it will arrive on the streaming service confirmed. Yet, working off other times this has happened – such as Operation Finale and Shaft – we should be able to see it not long after it’s out in America.
In this sci-fi thriller from Irish writer-director Lorcan Finnegan (Without Name), a couple (Imogen Poots, Jesse Eissenberg) looking for the perfect home, find themselves trapped in a mysterious labyrinth-like neighborhood of identical houses.
Having earned some raves following its Cannes premiere earlier this year, we don’t believe this will sit on a shelf for long.