There are less than three months left in the 2019 calendar year and that means its Oscar season.
We’ve already had some Academy Award contenders so far with “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood,” “Midsommar” and quite possibly “Avengers: Endgame.”
So here’s a ranking of the best highly anticipated upcoming movies of 2019.
6) Joker (October 4th)
Winner of the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival. This seems like a perfect October movie. Joaquin Phoenix is the fourth actor to don the makeup required to play the joker in the film pantheon alongside Jack Nicholson, Heath Ledger and Jared Leto. It’s one of those critically acclaimed coveted roles.
Joker seems like a completely different breed of superhero film because it utilizes the psychopathic character as the protagonist instead of the antagonist. It’s really weird to even call it a superhero film because nobody in the film has superhero abilities but as director Todd Phillips recently said to Phoenix when he was trying to persuade him into taking the role, “I told him this isn’t really a superhero film. Instead we just fooled the studio.”
5) Parasite (October 11th)
Winner of the Palm d’or at the Cannes Film Festival. Yes, this movie beat out “Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood” at the Cannes Film Festival. That should give you an idea of how awesome this film is.
Directed by the incomparable Bong Joon-ho – known for “Memories of Murder,” “The Host,” “Okja” and “Snowpiercer” – “Parasite” is about a penniless poor South Korean family who infiltrate a wealthy upper-class family but things take a wild turn when an unexpected incident occurs.
“Parasite” might be the most unpredictable film ever made. It’s a movie that mutates into something mind-blowingly original before your very eyes. And the way Joon-ho moves the camera is just a master class.
4) Uncut Gems (December 25th)
People were furious to learn Robert Pattinson was cast as the newest Batman because the stigma surrounding his performances in the “Twilight” saga will always be suspect. But those people have never seen the low-budget thriller masterpiece “Good Time,” also starring Pattinson. Directed by brothers duo Benny and Josh Safdie, they brought out the best of the actor.
They apparently did the same thing with the upcoming highly anticipated “Uncut Gems” starring Adam Sandler who has been getting Oscar buzz for his performance. It’s set in the diamond district in New York City and focuses on a jewelry storeowner, Howard Ratner (Adam Sandler), who becomes desperate to become rich and famous. The Safdie brothers are quickly becoming a master duo of filmmaking and they’ll be household names soon.
3) Ford v Ferrari (November 15th)
Matt Damon plays legendary Ford designer Carroll Shelby. Christian Bale plays legendary driver Ken Miles. Directed by James Mangold – known for “Walk the Line,” “Logan” and “3:10 to Yuma” (2007) – “Ford v Ferrari” is the true story about Ford finally beating Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1966.
The buzz about this film is through the roof and you really can’t go wrong with Damon and Bale behind the wheel.
2) A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (November 22nd)
In the entire history of movies there probably hasn’t been a more perfect movie to open in time for Thanksgiving Day than “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” Tom Hanks is often referred to as “America’s Dad,” and nowhere will that be any clearer than playing Fred “Mr.” Rogers.
“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” was the talk of the Toronto International Film Festival in September and critics say Hanks is at his best in this movie, which says a lot considering all of the iconic roles he’s played. It’s based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Rogers and journalist Tom Junod who wrote a profile about him towards the end of his career on his famous television show.
Also, Matthew Rhys who plays Junod, is supposed to be magnificent in this role.
1) The Irishman (November 1st in theaters and November 27th on Netflix)
Martin Scorsese, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci team up for this gangster epic based on the book “I Heard you Paint Houses” by Charles Brandt. It tells the story of a mob hitman, Frank Sheeran (De Niro), who recalls his relationship with union mob boss Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino).
Critics are already saying that Pesci steals the show as mafia crime boss Russell Bufalino. At an eye-popping runtime of 210 minutes, this is the perfect vehicle for Netflix given the climate of binge watching.
There’s no question all of these films will be Oscar contenders.