August traditionally inspires moviegoers to look forward, not only to television’s new fall season, but to what hot movies are released as well. You know me. Nothing excites me more than seeing Black actors and actresses, as well as Blacks behind the camera, working in the latest films. Please note I’m only focusing on those actors with starring roles.
“Baggage Claim,” starring Paula Patton, Taye Diggs, Adam Brody, Tia Mowry, Djimon Hounsou, Derek Luke and directed by David E. Talbert. This movie is all about sibling rivalry. It seems flight attendant Montana Moore’s (Paula Patton) younger sister is getting married. Determined at least to get engaged, Montana sets out to hook a man that she can dangle on her arm at her sister’s wedding. “Baggage Claim” is scheduled for release Sept. 27.
“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2,” starring Bill Hader, Anna Faris, Neil Patrick Harris, Andy Samberg, and Terry Crews. In the animated sequel Terry Crews’ voice can be heard as Earl Devereaux. After the disastrous food storm in the first film, Flint (Hader) and his friends are forced to leave the town. Flint accepts the invitation from his idol Chester V to join The Live Corp Co., which has been tasked to clean the island, and where the best inventors in the world create technologies for the betterment of mankind. When Flint discovers that his machine still operates and now creates mutant food beasts like living pickles, hungry tacodiles, shrimpanzees and apple pie-thons, he and his friends must return to save the world. Opens Sept. 27.
“Prisoners,” starring Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Paul Dano, Terrence Howard, Viola Davis, Maria Bello, and Melissa Leo. A Boston man (Hugh Jackman) kidnaps the person he suspects is behind the disappearance of his young daughter and her best friend. It’s a vigilante story guaranteed to chill and thrill you. “Prisoners” opens Sept. 20.
“Winnie Mandela,” starring Jennifer Hudson, and Terrence Howard (Mandela), is a drama that chronicles the life of Winnie Mandela from her childhood through her marriage to Nelson Mandela and his incarceration. “Winnie Mandela” is scheduled to open Sept. 6.
“Riddick,” starring Vin Diesel. Bookeem Woodbine is left for dead on a sun-scorched planet. Riddick finds himself up against an alien race of predators. Activating an emergency beacon alerts two ships: one carrying a new breed of mercenary, the other captained by a man from Riddick’s past. Get prepared for action Sept. 6.
“12 Years a Slave,” starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Quvenzhané Wallis, Michael Fassbender, Alfre Woodard, and Michael Kenneth Williams. Based on an incredible true story of one man’s fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free Black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender), as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the 12th year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon’s chance meeting with a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt) will forever alter his life. “12 Years a Slave” in theaters Oct. 18.
“Escape Plan” stars Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, and 50 Cent. Ray Breslin (Stallone) is the world’s foremost authority on structural security. After analyzing every high-security prison and learning a vast array of survival skills so he can design escape-proof prisons, his skills are put to the test. He’s framed and incarcerated in a master prison he designed himself. He needs to escape and find the person who put him behind bars. In theaters Oct. 18.
That’s all she wrote for now. But I will give you the 411 on “The Best Man Holiday” scheduled for November. Yes, the boys—Taye Diggs, Morris Chestnut, Terrence Howard, and Harold Perrineau Jr.—are back. And we’ll discuss “The Black Nativity” and more.