Movies that are going to blow everyone away in fall 2017

Though 2016 was an epic year for movies, it almost feels like a warm-up compared to the long list of blockbuster films we've had on the release calendar throughout 2017. And the major releases are far from finished: we've lined up the biggest upcoming releases during the fall quarter, and whether you're into action, comedy, horror, or drama, there's something here for everyone. We even tossed in a couple of bonus features, including the new big-screen adaptation of Stephen King's It and Pitch Perfect 3 even though they arrive a bit outside the fall calendar. As you'll see, plenty of films will be fighting for your movie ticket money over the next several months.

Kingsman: The Golden Circle - September 22

The creative team behind 2015's Kingsman: The Secret Service reunites for this sequel, with director Matthew Vaughn continuing to work with characters created by comics legends Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons. The plot details are still a little loose—rumor has it that the Kingsman British spy team will team up with their American equivalents after their headquarters are destroyed by a lethal foe—but who needs a synopsis when you've got a cast this intriguingly weird? Returning stars Taron Egerton, Mark Strong, and Sophie Cookson are joined by an eclectic ensemble that includes Channing Tatum, Halle Berry, Julianne Moore, Jeff Bridges, and Elton John. Also reportedly in the mix? Kingsman star Colin Firth, who—if you've seen the original—is kind of a surprising addition. Whatever happens in The Golden Circle, we're betting it won't be dull.

Mother! - September 22, 2017

When director Darren Aronofsky goes dark, he goes pitch black. Black Swan and Requiem for a Dream may not be traditional horror films, but they both borrow quite a bit from the genre. With Mother!, Aronofsky seems fully committed to making the psychological horror movie we all know he's capable of, and we can't wait.

It helps that Mother! has a truly remarkable cast. Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem play a (supposedly) happy couple who welcome Ed Harris and, later, his wife (Michelle Pfeiffer) into their happy home—but the home doesn't stay happy for long. While the surreal, disjointed trailer (thankfully) doesn't give much away, Mother! is full of common horror-flick imagery—bleeding walls and mobs with torches both feature prominently—but under Aronofsky's lens, it feels fresh and new. September 15 can't get here soon enough.

The LEGO Ninjago Movie - September 29, 2017

Yes, The LEGO Ninjago Movie is a feature-length toy commercial. You know what else was designed to sell a bunch of little plastic blocks? The LEGO Movie and The LEGO Batman Movie. Both of those films managed to infuse a pretty blatant marketing grab with enough humor, character, and emotion to delight audiences the world over. They aren't just good advertisements, they're good movies—and there's no reason to think LEGO Ninjago won't be, too.

In LEGO Ninjago, Dave Franco (21 Jump Street, Now You See Me) sets off to stop his supervillain father Garmadon, voiced by Leftovers star Justin Theroux. Along the way, he'll team up with fellow ninjas played by Kumail Nanjiani, Michael Peña, Abbi Jacobson, and others, will receive advice from his mom, Olivia Munn, and will undergo rigorous training from his ninja master, Jackie Chan. The action looks bright and fun, while the father-son plot provides much-needed heart. All that, and LEGO Ninjago features a giant cat. That's just too adorable to turn down.

American Made - September 29, 2017

Put Tom Cruise behind the yoke of an airplane, and good things happen. More than three decades after he flew an F-14 to action movie stardom in Top Gun, he's taking to the skies again in American Made, a thriller based on the life of real-world DEA informant Barry Seal. In American Made, Cruise's character transforms from a bored commercial airline pilot to one of the world's most notorious drug smugglers. But when you're working with the CIA, the DEA, and Pablo Escobar's drug cartel all at once, there's a pretty good chance things will go sideways—something Seal learns the hard way.

American Made reunites Cruise with his Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman, and the movie promises to be a wild, if factually inaccurate, ride (the real Seal never officially worked for the CIA). Whether the story is true or not doesn't really matter as long as it's good. After The Mummy flopped, Cruise could use a hit to turn his 2017 around. By all indications, American Made will be it.

Flatliners - September 29, 2017

If Flatliners sounds familiar, there's good reason: Niels Arden Oplev's upcoming sci-fi thriller is actually a sequel to a 1990 Kiefer Sutherland vehicle of the same name. Like the original, Flatliners features a group of five medical students—in this case, led by Ellen Page and Rogue One's Diego Luna—who undergo near-death experiences in an effort to document what happens in the afterlife. When they return, they have brand new abilities and insights—and might be going a little bit crazy.

The new Flatliners comes across as more of a traditional horror film than its predecessor, although that could be misdirection; with a premise this trippy, it's hard to tell. All we know for certain is Sutherland will join Page, Luna, and the rest of the cast, reprising his role from the first film—and that this year's Flatliners promises looks just as weird as the original. Flatliners isn't a sequel anyone was asking for, but if Oplev can pull it off, it might very well sit alongside as the original as a cult favorite.

Blade Runner 2049 - October 6

What kind of chutzpah does a person need to have in order to try and follow up a towering sci-fi classic like Blade Runner? It's a daunting task to say the least, but Blade Runner 2049 director Denis Villeneuve has a few big things going for him—most importantly, the presence of original Blade Runner director Ridley Scott, who's producing, and star Harrison Ford, reprising his role as Rick Deckard. Ford's joined by an ensemble rounded out by Ryan Gosling, Robin Wright, and Jared Leto (not to mention Dave "Drax" Bautista), all working from a script co-written by Blade Runner writer Hampton Fancher with Michael Green (Logan, Alien: Covenant). Storyline details are under wraps and whether the end result can stand up alongside the original obviously remains to be seen, but all the ingredients are here for a helluva movie.

The Mountain Between Us - October 6, 2017

It's only a matter of time before Idris Elba takes his rightful place as one of Hollywood's top stars. The Dark Tower didn't get the job done, but The Mountain Between Us might. Elba isn't going it alone, of course: in The Mountain Between Us, he stars opposite Oscar winner Kate Winslet, two-time Academy Award-nominated director Hany Abu-Assad, and hundreds of miles of a barren, snowy landscape to help him on his way.

In the film, Elba plays a doctor and Winslet plays a journalist who end up on the same small flight over the Uinta Mountains. When the plane crashes, they must team up to escape the harsh and unforgiving wilderness. That's a difficult task for anyone, especially two strangers, and with Winslet's character injured from the get-go, the couple's chances of survival seem slim. After all, charisma can only carry you so far.

The Foreigner - October 13, 2017

The Foreigner might star former James Bond Pierce Brosnan, and it might be helmed by Casino Royale and GoldenEye director Martin Campbell, but this Jackie Chan-driven action flick has more in common with Liam Neeson's Taken than anything to do with 007. After his daughter dies in a terrorist attack, Chan's character, Quan, sets out to to find the perpetrators. In the process, he runs afoul of Brosnan's Liam Hennessy, a British government official who has ties to the IRA—and who might hold the key to uncovering the attackers' identities.

But Quan is more than just a low-key, unassuming businessman. He's a trained killer, and he knows how to hurt people. No matter how hard Hennessy tries to keep the truth under wraps, Quan seems to be one step ahead. It's going to take everything both men can muster (and more) to come out on top.

Happy Death Day - October 13, 2017

It isn't Friday the 13th in America if there isn't a schlocky horror film in theaters. In 2017, that's going to be Happy Death Day. The title is ridiculous. The premise—a college girl relives the day that she dies over and over again until she solves her own murder—is exactly the same as Groundhog Day and Edge of Tomorrow except, y'know, a horror movie. The cast, headlined by relative unknown Jessica Rothe, is full of young and attractive young 20-somethings just begging to be offed. Heck, there's even a killer in a creepy mask. What more could you want?

In other words, if you like your horror served with a generous side of cheese, Happy Death Day (directed by Paranormal Activity vet Christopher B. Landon) is just what you're looking for. Happy Death Day might be all empty calories, but like the best junk food, it sure goes down easy.

The Snowman - October 20, 2017

When a local woman disappears during the year's first snowfall, Michael Fassbender's Detective Harry Hole picks up the case—and it turns out that things are much worse than they first appear. The day after the woman vanishes, her body turns up with its head missing. Hole and his partner Katrine Bratt (The White Queen and Mission Impossible's Rebecca Ferguson) investigate, and after perusing a collection of so-called "cold cases" (har har), he realizes he's up against the Snowman Killer, Sweden's first known serial killer.

What follows is a Silence of the Lambs-like cat-and-mouse game across Sweden's snowy landscape, punctuated with performances from well-known character actors like J.K. Simmons, Chloë Sevigny, Val Kilmer, and James D'Arcy. And if The Snowman does well at the box office, expect to see more Harry Hole adventures in the future—the movie is based on the seventh book in Jo Nesbo's best-selling Harry Hole series. There are a lot of killers out there, after all. Someone has to catch 'em.

Professor Marston & the Wonder Women - October 27, 2017

Just in case there's any doubt: 2017 is Wonder Woman's year. Not only did the Amazing Amazon's first solo film break box office records, but she's set to return (along with star Gal Godot) as part of the Justice League in November.

And then, there's Wonder Woman's other origin story, which is also getting the big-screen treatment. Professor Marston & the Wonder Women won't have much in the way of superpowers, but it'll make up for the lack of action with lots and lots of sex. See, psychologist William Moulton Marston, who created Wonder Woman, had some pretty unique ideas about male-female relationships (spoiler: they involve a lot of bondage), and his distinct views became fundamental elements of Princess Diana's story.

It's a weird and interesting tale, and Professor Marston & the Wonder Women is set to bring the whole thing to life with the help of Luke Evans; Rebecca Hall, who plays Marston's wife; and Bella Heathcote, who plays the third pillar of the Marstons' polyamorous relationship.

Jigsaw - October 27

Lionsgate was definitely playing a game by presenting 2010's Saw 3D: The Final Chapter as the very last round of Jigsaw's punishing plans. While details are scant on what the newest round of trap-filled thrills will bring, composer Charlie Clouser told The Hollywood Reporter that the eighth installment of the franchise will be a "reinvention" of the series and that co-directors Michael and Peter Spierig offer "a fresh take on the material that will establish a new storyline and new characters that can carry the saga into the future."

Some speculate that the new flick will pick up material left on the screenwriting table by Saw 3D, as that film was originally supposed to be split in two. As screenwriters Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan revealed to Bloody-Digusting.com, the return of Dr. Lawrence Gordon (Cary Elwes) to the final installment was supposed to be a little more eventful than it already was. "The big reveal of Dr. Gordon was a bit underserved as a result [of not being split into two], perhaps creating more questions than answers. There were several ideas we never quite figured out, but I don't want to say what they were because you never know what might happen in the future."

Suburbicon - October 27, 2017

George Clooney might be best known for his acting, but over time he's proved himself to be a capable, thoughtful, and diverse director as well. This fall, he's teaming up with his O Brother, Where Art Thou? and Hail, Caesar! collaborators Joel and Ethan Coen to bring the quirky crime thriller Suburbicon to theaters.

Suburbicon boasts a lot of talent in front of the cameras, too. Matt Damon plays the protagonist, a man who loses his wife in a shocking home invasion incident. Julianne Moore shows up as Margaret, the aunt Damon recruits to take care of his suddenly motherless child. Oscar Isaac's loanshark brings the violence. Before long, gangsters die, riots break out, and the once-quiet suburban neighborhood turns entirely upside down.

Oh, did we mention that it's funny too? In classic Coen brothers fashion, Suburbicon doesn't take any of its wildly twisting plot too seriously. If you like murder with a sense of humor, Suburbicon is a must-see when it debuts in late October.

Thor: Ragnarok - November 3

In Norse mythology, Ragnarök is an apocalyptic series of events that results in the world being plunged into water after the deaths of several gods—including Odin, Thor, and Loki—and culminates in a planetary rebirth. Needless to say, it's obvious from the title that Thor: Ragnarok won't be a jolly good time for our hammer-wielding hero (Chris Hemsworth), although we can guess from his imminent participation in the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War movies that he'll emerge relatively unscathed after the final act. First, however, he'll have to bust out of prison—without his hammer—and, according to the official synopsis, "survive a deadly gladatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger—the Incredible Hulk!" Thor: Ragnarok marks the MCU debut of New Zealand filmmaker Taika Waititi, who earned raves for his 2014 vampire mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows.

Daddy's Home 2 - November 10, 2017

The first Daddy's Home didn't exactly thrill critics, but audiences ate it up: the movie made over $242 million at the global box office. That's enough to earn a follow-up, and in true sequel fashion, Daddy's Home 2 is doubling down on everything that made the first movie stand out—including twice as many dads as the original. This time around, returning stars Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg are joined by Jon Lithgow and Mel Gibson as their respective fathers; naturally, chaos ensues.

Hopefully, that'll mean twice as many laughs, too: Ferrell and Wahlberg have undeniable chemistry, and Lithgow proved his comedic chops long, long ago. Gibson remains a wildcard, however, not to mention a controversial choice for a family comedy. Daddy's Home 2 could be a stroke of subversive genius. We'll see.

Justice League - November 17

Marvel has done a brilliant job of laying out the template for a successful shared universe, and now Warner Bros. is following in its rival's footsteps with its DC Comics properties, which are due to get their first moments in the all-star superhero team spotlight with Justice League. Director Zack Snyder has already agreed to helm, and confirmed members of the cast include stars from the studio's pre-existing franchises, including Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, and Ben Affleck, as Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman, respectively. While we don't yet have any idea what danger our team will face, we do know it'll be serious enough to attract the attention of Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher). And with a sequel already scheduled for 2019, you can bet the battle won't end here.

Coco - November 22, 2017

Pixar hasn't released a non-sequel film since 2015, when the largely forgotten The Good Dinosaur hit theaters. While it's always nice to return to Pixar's lively and unique worlds, it's even more exciting when the studio decides to experiment with something brand new.

That's just one of the reasons you should be excited about Coco. Drawing heavily on Mexican culture, it tells the story of a young boy, Miguel, whose family has banned music. For an aspiring musician like Miguel, that's a problem. Before long, the boy finds himself wandering the Land of the Dead, where he teams up with a trickster named Hector (voiced by Gael García Bernal) to unravel his family's history. While Disney's made some bizarre choices while marketing the movie (the studio's attempt to trademark "Dia de los Muertos" raised the ire of critics), Coco should at least look gorgeous. Whatever issues Pixar might have, delivering a shoddy-looking product isn't one of them.

The Disaster Artist - December 8, 2017

If you're a fan of B movies, you've probably heard of Tommy Wiseau's The Room, which is widely considered the single worst movie ever made. You might also wonder exactly how a movie so, so terrible was even made in the first place.

James Franco has the answer. The Disaster Artist, which Franco directed, produced, and stars in, tells the real-life story of The Room's production, as first unveiled in George Sestero's book of the same name. Franco, who plays Wiseau, is joined onscreen by his real-life brother Dave, who plays Sestero, as well as fellow stars like Seth Rogen, Zac Efron, Melanie Griffith, Sharon Stone, and many others (naturally, Wiseau himself makes a cameo as well).

Unlike its source material, The Disaster Artist is supposed to be pretty good, too: the film received a standing ovation when it premiered at South by Southwest in spring 2017, and there's something deliciously subversive about one of the most terrible films of all time inspiring one of the best films of 2017. In other words, we can't wait.

The Shape of Water - December 8, 2017

Between The Hobbit, Hellboy 3, Pacific Rim 2, and the Silent Hills video game, it can seem like Guillermo del Toro is more famous for what he's not directing than what he is. As a result, every movie he releases feels like a rare treat. And why not? While Crimson Peak only came out a couple of years ago, del Toro remains one of the most interesting directors working in Hollywood—especially when he's playing with monsters.

That's enough to get us excited for his latest effort, a romantic horror film starring Sally Hawkins, featuring appearances by Michael Shannon and Octavia Spencer. In The Shape of Water, a disabled janitor strikes up a relationship with a creature in a water tank (played by Hellboy's Abe Sapien, Doug Jones). Fox must think it's pretty good, too: they've decided to release it right in the heart of awards season, when it's sure to get as much attention as possible.

Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi - December 15

This is Star Wars we're talking about, so the list of things we truly know about Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi is awfully short. But we do know a couple of important facts: one, Rian Johnson (Looper) will be in the director's chair; and two, most of Episode VII's cast will be back, including Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, and Adam Driver, along with OG franchise stars Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher. (Carrie Fisher had wrapped filming for Episode VIII before her tragic and unexpected death.) Beyond that, pretty much all we can tell you is that this installment follows the events of Episode VII, and advances the new trilogy pitting the Resistance against the First Order led by Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) and his apprentice Kylo Ren (Adam Driver). Oh, and another thing: it'll sell tons of tickets.

Now that you've marked up your movie calendar for 2017, there's no time like the present to plan ahead for next year—and you can get an early jump on your fellow filmgoers by taking a look at our list of the top movies of 2018.

Ferdinand - December 15, 2017

Despite his claims to the contrary, John Cena's professional wrestling career is winding down. Thankfully, the 16-time WWE champion is proving just as dominant in Hollywood as he is in the ring. With a handful of comedies (Trainwreck, Sisters), action flicks (the upcoming Transformers spinoff Bumblebee), and a reality TV show (American Grit) under his belt, the Doctor of Thuganomics is branching out into family entertainment with Ferdinand, an animated feature based on Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson's popular children's book.

The film, which stars Cena playing against type as the pacifist bull Ferdinand, also stars SNL's Kate McKinnon, former Doctor Who and current Scrooge McDuck David Tennant, Hamilton's Daveed Diggs, and many, many others. The film relies on slapstick—a Blue Sky Studios specialty—and action much more than the original story, but the book's general theme, which teaches kids that it's okay to just be yourself, still comes through intact. That's good, because the book is a bona fide classic, and deserves a respectful adaptation. With Cena in the lead, we might get just that.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle - December 20, 2017

Ostensibly, Jumanji is a sequel to the 1995 Robin Williams film (Williams' character even provides some help from beyond the grave), but don't expect things to look too similar in the 2017 outing. For one, the latest edition of Jumanji stars the Rock, not Williams, with Jack Black, Karen Gillan, Kevin Hart, and Nick Jonas serving as sidekicks. Secondly, the new Jumanji is a video game, not a board game. Finally, instead of a game that brings exotic creatures into the real world, the main characters in this Jumanji actually enter the fictional jungle—and then, as in any other video game, must fight their way to the exit if they want to win. If it works, Jumanji should provide an interesting spin on a well-known story (even if Gillan's costume looks ridiculous), as well as a fitting tribute to one of the greatest actors of his (or any) generation.

Pitch Perfect 3 - December 22, 2017

Even in a world where pretty much every movie is part of a trilogy, Pitch Perfect—which focuses on the trials faced by a college a capella group—seems like a weird choice for an ongoing series. On the other hand, the franchise's recurring cast, which includes Anna Kendrick, Anna Camp, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow, Hailee Steinfeld, and Elizabeth Banks, is full of funny and lively performers who seem up for anything. The music is catchy. The stories don't break new ground, but they're sweet and fun.

So, why not check in on Beca, Fat Amy, and the rest for a third helping of melodious shenanigans? Pitch Perfect 3 reunites pretty much the entire cast—and then some—as the Bellas try to cope with life after college while teaming up for one last performance at a USO show, where they'll compete against bands with real instruments for the very first time. If all goes according to plan, Pitch Perfect 3 will be just the thing you need to escape the winter doldrums—at the very least, it should provide a welcome respite from December's all-consuming holiday madness.