By Sarah Forman and Nassir Ali
Here are all the major international movies to catch in Chinese theaters this September.* Click here to see more available movie tickets.
September 8: Pelé: The Birth of a Legend
The producers of Friday Night Lights and Apollo 13 give us fast footwork and a Brazillian backdrop with this biographical film, Pelé. The movie tells the true story of the legendary footballer who was instrumental in Brazil’s 1958 FIFA World Cup Win. Touching on heavy themes like patriotism and class politics, the film chronicles Pelé’s journey to becoming one of the most famous athletes of all time while documenting major events that shaped Brazil’s political and social landscape over the 20th century.
September 8: Alpha: The Wolf’s Way Home
Set in prehistoric times, Alpha tells the story of a young boy named Keda (Kodi Smit-McPhee) who meets an injured wolf and nurses it back to health. No longer with their original tribes, the two form their own pack and brave the harshness of the Ice Age together. Keda’s journey into manhood is marked by this unlikely friendship, wide vistas and life-threatening animal encounters in a coming of age film unlike any other.
September 14: Destiny: The Tale of Kamakura
Image via Toho Co./IMDB
In this romantic comedy and detective mystery hybrid, Masakazu Isshki (Masato Sakai) is a mystery writer and detective who lives with his wife Akiko (Mitsuki Takahata). Together, the two solve cases taking place around them. The enchanting flick is set in Kamakura, a small Japanese town that happens to be filled with all sorts of creatures and spirits. With Edmund Lee of the South China Morning Post reviewing it as a "sweet and charming fantasy film" filled with "gentle jokes and imaginative character designs," Destiny: The Tale of Kamakura is sure to delight audiences.
September 21: Death Wish
In reprise of the 1974 film of the same name, Dr. Paul Kersey (Bruce Willis) is a trauma surgeon who sets on a mission of revenge following a vicious attack on his wife (Elizabeth Shue) and daughter (Camila Morrone). In a crime-ridden city of Chicago, police are too overburdened to help in this matter - so Paul decides takes things into his own hands in this high-octane action thriller.
September 21: Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters
Image via Toho Co. & Polygon Pictures/IMDB
In what is the 32nd film of the longest continuously running movie franchise in the world, Toho Animation presents the first animated take of the film that defines the Kaiju genre. In this version, Godzilla already rules the planet. A team of refugees return in a desperate mission to take back humanity's home, however they come to find that Earth now has a bizarre alien ecosystem dominated by the reptilian beast. Having already been released in Japan last year and internationally on Netflix in 2018, critics have been impressed by the unique take of the classic, especially the CG animation.
TBD: The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir
Image via Sony Pictures/IMDB
In this film adaptation of the best-selling novel by Romain Puertolas, The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir tells the story Ajatashatru Lavash Patel (Dhanush), a street magician based in a small Mumbai neighborhood that gets lost in Europe following the untimely death of his mother. Adopting the title of a 'fakir' and boasting that he possesses special powers, Aja heads on a journey to Paris with the aim of reuniting with his father on the Eiffel Tower — a dream of his late mother's. Being shot in four countries (India, France, Italy and Libya), this feel-good comedy-adventure flick has been received positively as an "upbeat triumph-over-adversity tale" at a time when the topic of immigration has become one of the most hotly contested issues in Europe and the US.
TBD: The Mountain II
Image via Insignia Productions/IMDB
In a sequel to the first film released 2012, The Mountain II (also known as Dağ II to domestic Turkish audiences) tells the story of an elite Turkish special forces squad that are assigned with a rescue mission in a desolate war zone within modern day Iraq. With a user rating of 9.4 on IMDB, audiences are set to be impressed by the first class direction, special effects and cinematography in this dramatic action flick.
* Release dates subject to change.
[Cover image via Studio 8/IMDB]
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This article was originally published by our sister magazine That's Shanghai. For more articles like this, visit the That's Shanghai website, or follow the That's Shanghai WeChat account (ID: Thats_Shanghai).