White Noise (in theaters November 25, on Netflix December 30)
Director: Noah Baumbach
Stars: Adam Driver, Greta Getwig, Don Cheadle
What It’s About: When an accident causes an “airborne toxic event,” a large academic family flees in terror.
Why It’s Worth Looking Forward To: Don DeLillo’s dark, satirical 1985 novel doesn’t easily lend itself to adaptation, so it will be interesting to see what Baumbach does with the material. He’s put together a great cast for it, however, and it’s heartening to see him continuing to challenge himself after Marriage Story.
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (in theaters in November and on Netflix in December, exact dates TBD)
Director: Guillermo del Toro, Mark Gustafson
Stars: Ewan McGregor, David Bradley, Christoph Waltz
What It’s About: You know the basic story, but del Toro’s stop-motion animation take on Pinocchio makies one major change by setting it in fascist Italy.
Why It’s Worth Looking Forward To: We’ve already seen Robert Zemeckis’ new take on the Disney version of Pinocchio this year. The story’s combination of magic, whimsy, and horror seems tailor-made to Del Toro’s sensibility.
Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies (in theaters December 2)
Director: Michael Showalter
Stars: Jim Parsons, Ben Aldridge, Sally Field
What It’s About: Drawing from a TV critic’s memoir, Showalter’s latest depicts the final year in the life of Michael Ausiello (Jim Parsons) and husband Kit Cowan (Ben Aldridge).
Why It’s Worth Looking Forward To: This should be a chance for Parsons to stretch well beyond the boundaries of his best-known role on The Big Bang Theory.
Women Talking (in theaters December 2)
Director: Sarah Polley
Stars: Rooney Mara, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley
What It’s About: Based on a Miriam Toews novel inspired by real-life events, Polley’s latest takes place in a Mennonite colony whose female residents discover the male members have been drugging and raping them at night, then blaming the attacks on demons.
Why It’s Worth Looking Forward To: Polley has emerged as director of great subtlety and she’s assembled the perfect cast to tackle difficult, shocking material.