Movies Not to Miss: September 2016

Writer: Casey Lee

Which of these are you going to watch?

With the end of Summer, we enter into the Fall season of movies. While it's still a little early to see any of the serious award contenders, moviegoers won't be suffering with any blockbuster leftovers from what was an already lackluster summer. This September in particular will be a happily busy month for those who enjoy Asian movies.

There's going to be a lot of ground to cover. So let's get on to the movies you shouldn't miss this September!

When Max's owner adopts a new dog, Duke, into her home, the two dogs don't get along as they squabble over their owner's affection. When both dogs fall into an alley and lose their collars, they are captured by animal control but are rescued by a rabbit named Snowball, who leads 'The Flushed Pets'; a gang of abandoned house pets. Will Max and Duke be able to find their way home?

You may remember Illumination Entertainment for unleashing unto the world the endlessly adorable horde of banana minions from their "Despicable Me" series, but now they are set to be known for unleashing cute cuddly talking pets. Already receiving positive reviews around the world since its release in the United States in July, reviews are calling this the "Toy Story" for pets, which is as good a compliment it gets or as derivative as it sounds. This is sure to make Illumination Entertainment get hot on the heels of animation titans Pixar and Disney, but they probably have the voice cast that has Louis C.K., Kevin Hart, Steve Coogan, Lake Bell and Jenny Slate to thank for it.

General Release Date: 1 September

On the fateful day of 15 January 2009, Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger piloted flight US Airways Flight 1549. After hitting a flock of geese and losing both engines three minutes from take-off, Captain Sully makes the call to ditch the plane on the Hudson River, saving 155 lives in what is called the Miracle on the Hudson. Dubbed as a hero, Captain Sully's personal life is gradually invaded by the media as investigations on his purported miracle might cost him his career, reputation and family.

Failing to even get an Oscar nod with Steven Spielberg's "Bridge of Spies" last year, Tom Hanks seems to be banking his bet with another Oscar-winning director who was practically showered during the same awards night; Clint Eastwood. Not a match-up one would argue to have some wings, and Eastwood is once again working with adapted material that if done well by screenwriter Todd Komarnicki, could get both actor and director some momentum going come early next year. Still, if the award potential is not a factor for you, the fascinating aftermath of The Miracle of the Hudson is still a story of how being hailed as a hero could ultimately destroy one's good name.

General Release Date: 8 September

When trouble is brewing in one of their laboratories, corporate trouble-shooter Lee Weather is sent to evaluate the problem. What she finds is that the lab has genetically engineered a super-human named Morgan, who not only has demonstrated rapid development, but also something that could be dangerous to the outside world.

One of the most encouraging trends of 2016 is the rise of intense, atmospheric thriller and horrors that put a slight twist to the worn out formulas. Contained within a tight space with an even tighter scripting and a tight-knit cast of Kate Mara, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Paul Giamatti and our very own Michelle Yeoh, "Morgan" is another entry that refreshes the thriller genre with a good twist in its premise. Already looking to be a much less mind-bending "Ex Machina" and emphasizing on the genre tones, this is also the directorial debut of Luke Scott, son to genre-master Ridley Scott, so it would be interesting to see what he has learned from his father.

General Release Date: 15 September

As the ICAC look into a match fixing scandal that could lead up to the higher ranks of government, the police are investigating a murder. When both officers from the ICAC and the police find that they could be looking for the same culprit and mastermind, they decide to form a joint taskforce, but will they uncover more than they handle?

Not to be outdone by this year's "Cold War 2", director David Lam is back with a sequel to his anti-corruption procedural. Bringing in once again Louis Khoo to the fore, this time accompanied by a cast of TVB favourites starting with Ada Choi, Dada Chan and Bowie Lam to be entangled in a corrupted web of passionate cops against intelligent and also brutal gangsters.

General Release Date: 15 September

Before General MacArthur could launch his landing operation on Incheon, he sends a small squad of soldiers behind enemy lines for a dangerous reconnaissance mission.

If you quota for Korean movies does not want to be filled by the zombie category, September offers another genre that the Koreans have been quite adept in making; the war drama, especially those set during the Korean War. Until now director John H. Lee has not repeated a genre out of the films he has made, but "Operation Chromite" will be his second war drama by since his 2010 "71: Into the Fire", and he is bringing in the bigger guns into the battle. Aside from having Lee Jung-jae and Lee Beom-soo in the leading cast, Liam Neeson will be making his presence felt as the American general.

General Release Date: 15 September

When an industrialist threatens the town of Rose Krick, the residents of the town hire Sam Chisolm, a bounty hunter, who sets out to recruit six other outlaws to defend the town against overwhelming odds.

Speaking of readapting classical material, this one has a little more confidence in making it more exciting. Director Antoine Fuqua reunites with his "Training Day" leads Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke, and recruits Chris Pratt and Byung-hun Lee to make up the new seven for this classical western. While westerns of late have gone down the grit and dirty road in recent years, there's certainly nothing wrong with a good shoot 'em up that Fuqua is not lacking in delivery. The late James Horner had already began scoring for this adaptation before production began, so this will be one of the few last films he has worked on.

General Release Date: 22 September

On 20 April 2010, 40 miles off the coast of Louisiana, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded causing what is considered the largest environmental disaster in the United States that killed 11 workers.

Based on the New York Times article about the incident, and was set to have director J.C. Chandor to run the show, Chandor eventually left the project over creative differences. But his replacement is no slack either, with Peter Berg taking the helm and as evident in the trailer, "Deepwater Horizon" is fully expected to be a drilling experience that will have you riveted for the tiniest of sparks, and all the more made better with Mark Wahlberg in the lead.

General Release Date: 29 September

After the mysterious death of his grandfather, young Jake Portman is sent to find the Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and tasked to help its headmistress, Miss Peregrine to look after them. Upon discovering that the Peculiar Children are more peculiar in more ways than one, will Jake and Miss Peregrine be able to protect them from the evil forces of the Hollows and Wrights.

If you're wondering where director Tim Burton went in "Alice Through the Looking Glass", this is where you will find him. Based on the 2011 novel by Ransom Riggs, "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children" seems to be a good fit to Burton's fantastic gothic sentiments of peculiar characters in fantastical settings. Lead by Eva Green as the titular headmistress to the strange home, she is aided by Judi Dench and Asa Butterfield to look after a cadre of children that wouldn't look out of place in the Xavier's Institute from the "X-Men". Samuel L. Jackson will don on as the undead Wight who is out to kill the peculiar children, in a villain role we haven't seen him since "The Kingsmen".

General Release Date: 29 September

Cinema Online, 31 August 2016

Related Movies:
Morgan (15 Sep 2016)
Sully (08 Sep 2016)
The Secret Life Of Pets (01 Sep 2016)
The Magnificent Seven (22 Sep 2016)
Operation Chromite (Korean) (15 Sep 2016)
Deepwater Horizon (29 Sep 2016)
Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children (29 Sep 2016)

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