40 Most Exciting Films From ‘Maestro’ to ‘Marvels’

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Because of the ongoing Writers Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild strikes, the future of Hollywood is uncertain. When we first drafted this list, Dune: Part 2 was one of our most highly anticipated movies of 2023. Now, like Challengers and Poor Things, the sci-fi epic has been pushed to the future as a result of the strikes, and major movies like Wicked and Gladiator 2 have paused production.

Our most anticipated lists for next year might look barren because of this stoppage, but there are still a slew of 2023 releases to look forward to this fall. Plenty of horror movies are set to release in the next several months as Halloween nears. Hits from Sundance and other prestigious film festivals are set to have their big premieres. And while it’s still unclear what the Oscars might look like this year, there’s a plethora of awards-bait films coming down the pike.

From Oscar hopefuls to horrors, below, here are our top picks for the biggest movies to look forward to this fall.

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3

Sept. 8, in theaters

John Corbett made his grand return to the Sex and the City Universe as Aidan this summer. Now, he’ll do the same for My Big Fat Greek Wedding, reuniting with star, writer, and director Nia Vardalos. Giving Mamma Mia! vibes, the new installment in the rom-com series will feature a big family reunion in Greece. Prepare for steaming dishes of spanakopita and fresh horiatiki! Ahead of the premiere, Twitter already started a huge discourse over the poorly photoshopped poster. We love/hate to see it. —Fletcher Peters

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

Sept. 8, in theaters

From Red, White, & Royal Blue to Passages, this summer had a handful of fantastic gay love stories. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe will continue that trend. It’s an adaptation of the beloved YA book, in which two Mexican American teenagers come of age in 1987 while coming to terms with their identities. Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda serves as a producer. —FP

The Nun II

Sept. 8, in theaters

The nuns are evil again. Taking place in 1963, this sequel follows the dark forces surrounding the murder of a priest. Sister Irene (Taissa Farmiga) must battle some demons if she wants to save the Catholic church. Akela Cooper, of M3GAN and Malignant fame, penned the script for this follow up to the 2018 box office hit. —FP

A Haunting in Venice

Sept. 15, in theaters

The latest Hercule Poirot joint brings together an impressive cast: Alongside star and director Kenneth Branagh, there’s Michelle Yeoh, Jamie Dornan, and Tina Fey, weirdly enough. This mystery movie looks appropriately horror-heavy for the fall, although with Tina Fey there, maybe it’ll also be… funny? Who knows. At any rate, it should be less controversial than the last Poirot movie that featured post-cannibal accusations Armie Hammer. —Allegra Frank

El Conde

Sept. 15, streaming on Netflix

Pablo Larraín’s latest film is a vampire story of the strangest order: Augusto Pinochet, infamous Chilean dictator, is the guy thirsting for blood this time around. While El Conde continues Larrain’s fascination with political figures of yore—his last film was Spencer—this one goes into the opposite direction, playing more satirical than sympathetic. —AF

A photo including a still image from the film El Conde


Sept. 15, in theaters

Gael García Bernal won raves for his performance in this unique wrestling film, which premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. The biopic follows the rise of Saúl Armendáriz, an openly gay wrestler in the ’80s who made a name for himself as a flamboyant lucha libre star. Bernal brings a sense of joy and pathos to Armendáriz that elevates this from what could be a hagiographic history lesson. —AF

Dumb Money

Sept. 22, streaming on Netflix

Remember when the GameStop stock skyrocketed? Everyone and their brother ran to Twitter to post something like, “Leonardo DiCaprio is going to win his second Oscar in the movie about this situation.” Well, there may not be any Oscars, nor any Leo, but Paul Dano does play the main role in the story behind the GameStop stock crisis. In case you’re like me and had no idea what was going on, let Hollywood break down the chaos that happened back in early 2021. —FP

A photo including a still image from the film Dumb Money

It Lives Inside

Sept. 22, in theaters

This 2023 SXSW entry hits theaters at a perfect time, right as we’re ready for more horror movies. (There are many, many, many horror movies out this fall.) This looks to be one of the more intriguing ones of the lot, starring an Indian American teenager rejecting her heritage in the name of assimilation. But an evil spirit doesn’t like that she’s denying her people, and she’ll have to reconcile her identity in order to snuff that demon out. —AF

The Kill Room

Sept. 29, in theaters

Nepo baby Maya Hawke will star alongside her real-life mama Uma Thurman in this dark comedy thriller about hitmen and art dealers. Further, Thurman will reunite with Pulp Fiction co-star Samuel L. Jackson—the pair become an unlikely team in an effort to reap the benefits of murders and art. Although the cast is packed with big names, The Kill Room looks an awful lot like the terrible thriller Velvet Buzzsaw. A stacked cast does not a good movie make. I hope I’m wrong! —FP

A photo including a still image from the film The Kill Room

Saw X

Sept. 29, in theaters

Saw X is an interesting type of sequel, in that it’s a prequel of sorts. It’s like The Lion King 1 ½ for horror movies. Set between the events of the original Saw and Saw II, Saw X follows John Kramer as he attempts to find a miracle cure to his cancer. When he discovers that the cure is actually a scam defrauding some of the most vulnerable people on the planet, John has a new reason to return to serial killing. —FP

The Creator

Sept. 29, in theaters

As AI becomes a huge issue in Hollywood amid the double strike, how fitting is it that Hollywood is releasing an action thriller about AI taking over the world? John David Washington stars in The Creator, which follows a soldier on the frontlines hunting for the person who founded the AI apocalypse. —FP

Dicks: The Musical

Sept. 29, in theaters

A musical about long-lost identical twins starring Megan Mullaly, Megan Thee Stallion, Nathan Lane, and Bowen Yang? Directed by the same guy who did Borat? And it’s titled Dicks: The Musical? This movie might not be for everyone, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t interested. —FP

A photo including a still image from the film Dicks: The Musical


Oct. 6, streaming on Netflix

Music superstars Justin Timberlake and Sky Ferreira appear in Netflix’s big thriller of the fall. Benicio del Toro stars as a detective investigating the death of a real estate agent, which causes him to reflect on his own not-so-quaint life in New England. We don’t know the ending yet, but Timberlake looks awfully suspicious. Lock him up! —FP

The Burial

Oct. 6, in theaters

The Burial stars Tommy Lee Jones and Jamie Foxx as a real-life odd couple: an idiosyncratic lawyer (Foxx) who helps a more straitlaced funeral home owner (Jones) sue a company that’s putting him out of business. It looks like a feel-good legal drama, and Foxx and Jones seem like they’ll be a fun pair to watch play off each other.—AF

Totally Killer

Oct. 6, streaming on Prime Video

Kiernan Shipka heads up this new Blumhouse horror comedy, directed by Nahnatchka Khan (Always Be My Maybe, Fresh Off the Boat). This is a story with a time-travel bent, as Shipka finds a way to head back in time in order to apprehend the serial killer that just murdered her mother. A modern, mournful teen dealing with the ridiculousness of the late-’80s? Sounds scary, in more ways than one. —AF

The Exorcist: Believer

Oct. 6, in theaters

Now that he’s done mucking up the Halloween franchise, director David Gordon Green has moved onto The Exorcist. This sequel to the 1973 classic features the return of Ellen Burstyn, the mother of the possessed girl featured in the first film. She’s called in to help out a father whose daughter has similarly become inhabited by an evil spirit. Hopefully Green’s follow-up to the story will be good enough to live up to the legacy of Exorcist director William Friedkin, who died in August. —AF

Anatomy of a Fall

Oct. 13, in theaters

This year’s Palme d’Or winner is a French film about a German woman who becomes the main suspect in her husband’s murder. While the film focuses as much on the trial as the people involved, raving notices from the festival assured that Anatomy of a Fall nails that balance. It looks to be a riveting watch for anyone who loves a good legal drama, murder mystery, or both. —AF

Fair Play

Oct. 13, streaming on Netflix

Fair Play won Sundance over earlier this year, scoring a $20 million payday from Netflix. Want to know the last film that was bought for $20 million? Best Picture winner CODA. That sets high expectations for Fair Play, but Netflix has done well in the past with both chess and Bridgerton’s Phoebe Dynevor, so it makes sense that they’d want to have another go with both. —FP


Oct. 13, in theaters

Paul Mescal and Saoirse Ronan are two of our finest working Irish actors. Yet in this film, they both don American accents to play a married couple in a doomed future. But their marriage looks pretty doomed too—Ronan’s Hen is losing interest in Mescal’s Junior, and their bond is tested when a mysterious man brings them an offer. Mescal can join an expedition in space for the good of mankind, but he’ll have to leave his wife behind. Beautiful people emoting beautiful ensues. —AF

Five Nights at Freddy’s

Oct. 13, streaming on Peacock

Five Nights at Freddy’s is notoriously one of the scariest video game series in recent memory—and one of the most recognizable, thanks to its (literally) killer premise. In this adaptation of the cult-hit games, Josh Hutcherson steps into the player character’s role: He’s the new nighttime security guard at a Chuck. E. Cheese’s-like establishment, stuck watching the camera feeds in the control room. When the animatronics start to pop up on-camera, walking throughout the building, he’ll have to stop them before they go on a killing spree. I never trusted those damn cutesy robots, and I was right! —AF

The Persian Version

Oct. 13, in theaters

After its premiere at Sundance in January, critics cited The Persian Version as a moving, funny film with a lot of heart—and dancing. About an Iranian mother-daughter pair, it should appeal to fans of immigrant stories, rom coms, and even musicals. It’s a more fun entry in a heavy October slate. —AF


Oct. 13, in theaters

Ticketmaster may have failed Swifties, but AMC will not. Taylor Swift has partnered with the movie theater chain to release a concert movie of the Eras Tour, filmed while she was performing at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. Swift has encouraged her fans to sport Eras outfits, friendship bracelets, and sing along for the nearly three-hour-long bash. Swift is constantly on the Billboard Hot 100—will she break into this year’s box office charts too? —FP

Killers of the Flower Moon

Oct. 20, in theaters

Killers of the Flower Moon premiered at Cannes in May to widespread acclaim, citing it as another dramatic masterwork from Martin Scorsese. But what got people most excited were the performances, particularly that of leads Leonardo DiCaprio and Lily Gladstone. Leo’s practically Ol’ Reliable at this point, but critics have already named Gladstone, as his indigenous wife who gets caught up in the spate of murders in their Oklahoma town, as the one to watch. No matter how long this film is—and it’s very, very long—we expect to be glued to our seats. —AF

A photo including a still image from the film Killers of the Flower Moon

Killlers of the Flower Moon

Apple TV+

Pain Hustlers

Oct. 27, streaming on Netflix

Netflix is doubling down on movies with splashy A-List casts. Pain Hustlers boasts big names like Chris Evans, Emily Blunt, Andy Garcia, and Catherine O’Hara, to name just a few. If you look for big names, that should be enough to grab your attention. But if you actually care about the plot: Pain Hustlers follows a woman who tries to strike it big in pharmaceutical sales, but ends up at the center of a criminal investigation. —FP


Oct. 27, in theaters

Last year, Baz Luhrmann brought the world his sparkly, wildly edited, Tom Hanks-heavy Elvis. Now, Sofia Coppola will turn the camera to focus on the other half of the Presley marriage, instead telling the story of Priscilla, his wife. Expect a dazzling anachronistic soundtrack, stellar performances, a discourse about grooming on Twitter, and an undeserved 67 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. (I’m still fighting to make Marie Antoinette Certified Fresh.) —FP

A photo including a still image from the film Priscilla

Quiz Lady

Nov. 3, streaming on Hulu

Sisters Jenny and Anne, played respectively by Sandra Oh and Awkwafina, go on a wild goose chase across the country trying to find their dog. Meanwhile, the duo are also trying to figure out how to recoup their mother’s money after her passing. Too bad she had a gambling problem, and there’s not much money to be found. But that won’t stop the game show-obsessed sisters from going for the prize. —FP


Nov. 3, in theaters

Netflix’s big biopic of the year, Rustin, will follow March on Washington founder Bayard Rustin, played by Colman Domingo. The historical film will unpack Rustin’s unfettered activism during the Civil Rights Movement and beyond. Domingo is already a surefire pick to be a Best Actor frontrunner at this year’s Oscars—the Academy sure loves recreations of historical events, and this one will probably impress. —FP

Aml Ameen as Martin Luther King and Colman Domingo as Bayard Rustin in Rustin.

The Holdovers

Nov. 10, in theaters

It’s a well-known fact that Paul Giamatti can do wrong. The same goes for Da’Vine Joy Randolph, the only good aspect of The Idol. The pair will collaborate in The Holdovers, which sounds a lot like Dead Poets Society: A grumpy instructor decides to spend his winter break at university, babysitting a handful of deadbeats while taking particular interest in the school’s resident troublemaker. —FP

The Marvels

Nov. 10, in theaters

The third and final MCU film of the year (following the wonderful Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and the crappy Ant-Man and the Blah Blah Blah) mashes up the franchise’s big- and small-screen heroes for the first time. Joining Captain Marvel are Monica Rambeau, last seen in WandaVision, and Ms. Marvel, star of Disney+’s Ms. Marvel. It looks a lot sillier than the last (and first) female-led MCU flick, Black Widow, which was quite thrilling and even funny in its own right. But The Marvels looks to go way heavier on the laughs, hopefully for the better. —AF

A photo of Teyonah Parris as Monica Rambeau in The Marvels.

The Killer

Nov. 10, streaming on Netflix

David Fincher’s second feature collab with Netflix remains largely mysterious. We know it stars Michael Fassbender, in his first leading role since 2019’s X-Men: Dark Phoenix. And we know that he’s playing an assassin on the brink of a breakdown. But as for his mark and the cause of his disintegrating mental state, we’ll have to see the film itself to find out. Unless you’ve read the comic book source material, however; The Killer is based on a 2007 graphic novel. If you have, I beg: No spoilers for the rest of us! —AF

American Fiction

Nov. 10, in theaters

Cord Jefferson won raves for his writing work on HBO’s excellent Watchmen. His directorial debut similarly probes American race relations, albeit without the fantastical elements. This grounded story follows a young Black writer as he contends with the intersections of his racial identity and his place in the publishing industry. While American Fiction is based upon a 2001 novel, the premise sounds particularly salient today, with publishing remaining a racially fraught system for writers of color. —AF

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Nov. 17, in theaters

This Hunger Games prequel tells the backstory of President Snow, played by Donald Sutherland in the original film quadrilogy, and how he became a wretched homicidal freak. If you’ve read the book already, you know that the story is … pretty unimpressive. But the movie looks to focus more on what worked with the book, based on the first trailer: the Hunger Games themselves. Whether we can stomach two hours following a teenage version of a known supervillain, however, remains to be seen. —AF

A photo including a still image from the film The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes


Trolls Band Together

Nov. 17, in theaters

Trolls Band Together. Get it? Because the annoying/lovable little fluff balls are teaming up with one another…to start a band. When Poppy discovers her pal Branch was in a boy band growing up, she sets off to bring the group back together. Take the kids ahead of Thanksgiving—or if you’re a fan of Trolls in a different, more adult sense, enjoy the trip. —FP

Next Goal Wins

Nov. 17, in theaters

Taika Waititi has two big projects coming out this fall, from the return of his uber-popular comedy series Our Flag Means Death to his latest non-Marvel-related film project, Next Goal Wins. The quirky director takes on the underdogs of soccer with his latest flick, which will follow the American Samoa soccer team under new management. Sound familiar? Ted Lasso, you’re being challenged to a duel with star Michael Fassbender! —FP

A photo of the cast of Next Goal Wins.

Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/Searchlight Pictures

May December

Nov. 17, in theaters

Anything new from director Todd Haynes is worth a watch, but May December looks particularly intriguing. Starring Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore, the psychological film follows an actress who is set to play a controversial figure in a biopic about her life. The plot is very loosely based on Mary Kay Letourneau, a convicted sex offender who pleaded guilty to raping her student, but later married him. —FP

Please Don’t Destroy: The Treasure of Foggy Mountain

Nov. 17, streaming on Peacock

The Destroy Boys have become some of TV’s favorite nepo babies, having transitioned from the NYC stand-up scene to the writing staff of SNL; they’ve also made frequent appearances on the show. (Two of the three boys’ dads are producers on SNL—funny that!) Now, they’re starring in their own movie, alongside Conan O’Brien. It’s an adventure story that will lean heavily into their fast-paced, quippy comedy, while also putting them in a surprisingly serious, throwback-y setting. It’s nice to have well-connected daddies to fund your pet projects, but this one looks like it could actually be fun. —AF


Nov. 22, in theaters

In honor of Disney’s 100th anniversary, the studio’s latest animated feature harkens back to one of its earliest: Pinocchio. That film’s wishing star has become an iconic symbol of the studio, with “When You Wish Upon a Star” becoming a familiar jingle played ahead of Disney films. Cute as that all is, a movie about the origins of said wishing star sounds like a story no one ever needed. But maybe star (lolololol) Ariana DeBose doing the thing will make it worthwhile. —AF


Nov. 22, in theaters

Joaquin Phoenix plays the French war hero, which is … interesting casting. While Napoleon’s height and accent remain disputed, it’s safe to say that Phoenix’s portrayal is not historically accurate. But who cares if he speaks with his standard American accent? It’s all about the attitude, and Ridley Scott’s biopic looks to be full of political intrigue and epic-scale battles. —AF


Nov. 22, in theaters

Whether or not you’re cool with the fake nose he’s wearing, Bradley Cooper’s latest directorial effort features another compelling performance from the actor. Cooper is Leonard Bernstein, the famed composer whose life story Maestro retells. With Carey Mulligan playing his wife, the awards potential is high with this one—as long as we can get past the discourse about if Cooper’s prosthetic nose is anti-semitic. —AF


Nov. 24, in theaters

The Talented Mr. Ripley gets a modern upgrade with director Emerald Fennell’s second feature, Saltburn. Barry Keoghan stars as a young man who grows obsessed with a wealthier, more charismatic classmate, played by the devilishly handsome Jacob Elordi. When the pair spend a summer together at the latter’s massive estate, the outsider becomes infatuated with the way the upper class live. —FP

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