Watch Kusama: Infinity, coming to the Northwest Film Forum in October, to learn about the woman behind the jaunty, oft-copied polka dot installations that everyone was obsessed with last year. Tokyo Lee Productions, Inc.

In addition to its wealth of film festivals (devoted to everything from cats to local filmmakers to French culture), fall is also full of Oscar-bait movies (don't miss Mary Queen of Scots), indie gems (like Kusama: Infinity), and screenings of autumnal favorites (The Craft, anyone?). Below, we've rounded up the top film events and openings for the season, and you can also find a complete list of film events in Seattle this fall on our Things To Do calendar, or check out the rest of our critics' picks from Seattle Art and Performance.

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Jump to: Film Series & Festivals | Film Runs, Screenings & Openings


Through Sept 20

70mm Film Festival Put down your phone and surrender to the splendor of actually-epic-scale cinema in the cathedral that is the Cinerama. The last few days will include screenings of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Vertigo. SEAN NELSON (Cinerama)

Sept 21–23

Port Townsend Film Festival Veteran actor Danny Glover and world-class filmmakers Charles Burnett and Jane Campion will be the special guests at this festival in this scenic town. (Port Townsend)

Sept 21–29

Local Sightings Film Festival What is this city becoming? What have we lost in the rush and thrust of all these new developments? The brilliant Local Sightings Film Festival will show films that reveal the answers to these questions, through features, shorts, and animation that are born here or hereabouts. CHARLES MUDEDE (Northwest Film Forum)

Sept 27–Oct 4

French Cinema Now This event celebrating new French and Francophone movies is one of Seattle's best film festivals. This year's will feature movies by established directors Agnès Jaoui, Laurent Tirard, Xavier Giannoli, and Yvan Attal. (SIFF Uptown)

Sept 28–Dec 6

Night Heat: The 41st Film Noir Series They proliferated in anxious postwar America and still occasionally return to brood and smolder onscreen: films noirs, born of the chiaroscuro influence of immigrant German directors and the pressure of unique American fears. Once again, the museum will screen nine hard-boiled, moody crime classics like White Heat, Force of Evil, Sudden Fear, and one of the most fascinating films of the 1950s, Night of the Hunter. (Seattle Art Museum)

Sept 28–Oct 7

Tasveer South Asian Film Festival This year, the 13-years-running, 10-day festival will focus on Pakistani film, with the theme of #KnowMe. (Various locations)

Oct 4–8

Orcas Island Film Festival This film festival—with 30 feature-length and short films—features progressive plots and directors as well as classy, farm-to-table food. (Orcas Island)

Oct 5–13

Seattle Latino Film Festival This year's festival of Hispanic and Latinx cinema will highlight Spanish filmmakers and feature independent movies, filmmaker panels, workshops, and more. (To Be Announced)

Oct 5–14

Social Justice Film Festival As social justice provides the only throughline, many of the movies have little in common. But the selection skews toward limber, on-the-ground filmmaking in the midst of protests and conflicts. They say: "This year's screenings will fill in the national and local picture on immigration, Native American rights, Black Lives Matter, prisoner justice, and more. The festival will host several screenings with community groups and activists."(Various locations)

Oct 11–21

TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival Local shorts, indie features, and national or international releases will stoke and satisfy your appetite for gay, lesbian, bi, trans, and otherwise queer-focused films. (Various locations)

Oct 25–28

NFFTY The "young filmmaker's Cannes" assembles the best films made by directors under 25. (To Be Announced)

Oct 26–28

Friday Harbor Film Festival Tip: take advantage of any excuse you have to travel up to the San Juans. The Friday Harbor Film Festival is a pretty good one, with documentaries focusing on Pacific Rim topics from culture to environmentalism, as well as discussions and special events. (Friday Harbor)

Sun Oct 28 & Sun Nov 5

Cine Mexicano: '70s Art House Watch intellectually stimulating cinema from our southern neighbor, including works by Alberto Isaac, Jaime Humberto Hermosillo, and others. (NWFF)

Oct 29–Nov 12

Indian Film Masterpiece SAM will screen restored versions of Satyajit Ray's incredible trilogy on Monday nights, beginning with the heartbreaking Song of the Open Road (also known as Pather Panchali, 1955) and continuing with The Unvanquished (Aparijto, 1956) and World of Apu (Apur Sansar, 1960). These lush portraits of a poor but brilliant young Bengali man's coming of age have been consistently ranked as some of the best films of all time. (Seattle Art Museum)

Nov 1–18

14th Annual HUMP! Film Festival Every year we put out the call to sex-havers everywhere to submit a homegrown amateur porn film. The result is an incredibly diverse representation of human sexuality in all its straight, gay, trans, queer, kinky, funny, pissy, painful, and pretty forms. MARJORIE SKINNER (On the Boards)

Nov 2–4

The Romanian Film Festival Seattle See features from one of the most fertile, innovative, intellectual film industries in Europe. This year's edition is subtitled "Uncanny Worlds." (SIFF Uptown)

Nov 3–24

Hep Cats On Saturdays, NWFF presents films that, either literally or figuratively, portray the sinister grace of the kitty: Chris Marker's The Case of the Grinning Cat and Cat Listening to Music, Kaneto Shindo's suspenseful Kuroneko, Paul Mazursky's sweet Harry and Tonto, and Paul Schrader's lurid Cat People. (NWFF)

Nov 8–15

Cinema Italian Style See the best in contemporary Italian cinema. (SIFF Uptown)

Nov 9–17

Seattle Turkish Film Festival This sixth annual festival will feature a rich panorama of new Turkish films. (Various locations)

See all film festivals and series happening in Seattle this fall here.


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Opening Fri Sept 21

Blaze Ethan Hawke’s biopic of the outlaw country singer Blaze Foley is based on his former wife Sybil Rosen’s memoir of their relationship, beginning with their meeting in a church commune. (SIFF Uptown)

Sept 21–24

The Maltese Falcon Directed by the lusty John Huston, starring the mid-century Hollywood hunk Humphrey Bogart and the mid-century Hollywood creep Peter Lorre, and based on a novel by the great hack Dashiell Hammett, The Maltese Falcon is lowbrow culture at its highest. CM (Central Cinema)

Sept 23 & 26

Rebel Without a Cause People who propose that James Dean is one of the best actors of all time will sometimes reference this film's milk scene. In it, bad boy James Dean, tired of being such a bad boy, takes five enormous gulps of milk from a carafe, then aggressively/erotically rolls the bottle across his forehead, then finishes with the bottle on his cheek, giving the poutiest pouty face a bad boy can muster. He looks like a madman, but this wild, unexplained moodiness is the sort of acting Americans love, and Rebel Without a Cause is rife with it. CHASE BURNS (Various locations)

Wed Sept 26

Bad Reputation Peek behind the scenes of '70s punk in this screening of a documentary about Joan Jett and the Runaways, with appearances by Iggy Pop, Billie Joe Armstrong, Debbie Harry, Carianne Brinkman, and Miley Cyrus. (SIFF Uptown)

Sept 28–Oct 2

The Lost Boys Kiefer Sutherland has never been sexier on the big screen than when he played the leather-wearing moto-riding leader of the vampire gang terrorizing a small California beach town in The Lost Boys. It's your classic '80s-era horror movie, with plenty of camp, some ill-fated romance, and a couple of stake-and-garlic-wielding pre-teens in classic '80s duo Corey Feldman and Corey Haim (RIP). LEILANI POLK (Central Cinema)

Opening Fri Oct 5

Matangi / Maya / M.I.A The brilliant musical provocateur M.I.A., aka Maya Arulpragasam, came to Great Britain as a refugee from Sri Lanka and has developed a powerfully anti-establishment body of work. This documentary brings to light her personal diaries. (SIFF Uptown)

The Sisters Brothers Patrick DeWitt's anti-Western novel will come to the screen, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Joaquin Phoenix as the titular assassins and directed by an internationally recognized talent, Jacques Audiard. (Wide)

A Star Is Born Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper step into this oft-remade chestnut about the relationship between an older man and a younger woman who pass each other meaningfully on the rungs of fame's wobbly ladder. SN (Wide)

Oct 5-9

Hausu Hausu is the legendary psychedelic ghost story from Japan about a group of schoolgirls who venture into the wrong house. Blasts of crazy animation (both stop-motion and ink) rub up against live-action plot twists that will bend your brain. DAVID SCHMADER (Central Cinema)

Oct 5–18

Kusama: Infinity In 2017, it was hard to escape the mania around Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Mirrors, which exhibited at SAM and other major art institutions all over the US. Everyone wanted a selfie in front of Kusama's famous dots, but did anyone want to know about the woman herself? Kusama, a giant in contemporary art who had her work copied by an embarrassingly large number of male pop artists, including Andy Warhol, now gets a major documentary on her life, and it's just as fascinating as those peculiar, infectious, maddening dots. CB (NWFF)

Opening Fri Oct 12

Bisbee '17 About 100 years ago, an Arizona town mass-deported 1,200 striking immigrant miners to the middle of the desert. On the exact anniversary of this act of cruelty, influential filmmaker Robert Greene (Kate Plays Christine) recorded current citizens of Bisbee as they performed reenactments of their history. (SIFF Film Center)

First Man Damien Chazelle (La La Land) adapts the exploits of Neil Armstrong, with Ryan Gosling playing the astronaut and Claire Foy as his wife, Janet. (Wide)

Oct 12-16

Get Out Jordan Peele's directorial debut is both a clever, consistently funny racial satire and a horror film, one that mocks white liberal cluelessness and finds humor in—but doesn't dismiss—black people's fears. ERIC D. SNIDER (Central Cinema)

Rear Window A voyeur in a wheelchair gets his comeuppance when he witnesses a murder and tries to do something about it. (Central Cinema)

Fri Oct 19

Puget Soundtrack: Too Much Johnson William Tyler of the Silver Jews and Lambchop (Dave Segal called him "brilliant") will live-score a reconstruction of a once-lost filming of a stage production of a farce called Too Much Johnson, which was edited by Orson Welles. Too Much Johnson was a 1894 farce written by William Gillette; quite possibly, the title is meant as a naughty pun. (NWFF)

Opening Fri Oct 19

The Guilty A police dispatcher receives a call from a woman who's been kidnapped by her violent ex-husband in this twisty minimalist Danish thriller, which won the Audience Award at Sundance. (SIFF Uptown)

The Hate U Give A black teen in a mostly white prep school witnesses the death of her childhood friend at the hands of police. Based on the young adult novel, George Tillman Jr.'s film looks honest, tense, and complex. (Wide)

Oct 19–23

The Craft There are many reasons you are/should be/will be obsessed with The Craft, Andrew Fleming's cult '90s-era film about telekinetic wannabe witches. I will list four of them. One, Nancy's studded choker. Iconic! Two, Neve Campbell's fake cries. Horrible! Three, Laura Lizzie losing her hair for being a racist piece of shit. Satisfying! Four, LIGHT AS A FEATHER, STIFF AS A BOARD! CB (Central Cinema)

Psycho A fun experiment while you're watching Psycho is to imagine it's 1960, when 95 percent of the film's likely audience would have been literally incapable of imagining that Norman Bates was anywhere near as fucked up as he turns out to be. Remembering that recasts Hitchcock's technique as a willful erosion of human innocence, which makes the whole thing even more powerful. SN (Central Cinema)

Oct 26–31

Hocus Pocus This beloved fantasy/comedy film features a badass trio of witches who want to suck out children's souls. (Central Cinema)

Mon Oct 29

Silent Movie Mondays Halloween Special: The Cat and the Canary Pregame Halloween with this beloved horror-comedy from 1939. In a haunted mansion, an eccentric uncle's will is read, and an onslaught of murder and mayhem follows. (Paramount Theatre)

Sat Nov 3

Puget Soundtrack Puget Soundtrack invites musicians to create and perform a live score for a film of their choosing. Sundae Crush, the Seattle-by-way-of-Denton, Texas, dreamy pop electronica band, have aptly chosen Sailor Moon R: The Movie for their turn at the series. The sweet, sentimental, stubbornly spacey band is a perfect fit for the cult anime. CB (NWFF)

Thurs Nov 15

Meow Wolf: Origin Story The adorably named Santa Fe artist collective Meow Wolf caught the fancy of George R.R. Martin, who helped them take over a disused bowling alley for an epic art exhibition. But success comes with its own struggles. Enter their world and find delirious, DIY inspiration. (NWFF)

Opening Fri Nov 16

Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald Twee hunter Newt Scamander returns for more J.K. Rowling-inspired exploits. (Wide)

Widows We have no choice but to watch Steven McQueen's first crack at a Hollywood movie. His first film, Hunger, was practically an art installation. His second film, Shame, was art house. His third, 12 Years a Slave, was studio indie. His latest film, which is packed with big names (Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Daniel Kaluuya, Robert Duvall, Liam Neeson), is pure Hollywood. This work has been built to make loads of money. It has explosions, cars flying through the air, and a heist. McQueen is not fucking around. No more of this art shit. Let the bullets fly. CM (Wide)

Opening Fri Dec 7

Mary, Queen of Scots Fuck A Star Is BornMary, Queen of Scots is the diva movie of the season. I can't think of a film that's more Oscar-baity than this one, with Margot Robbie, riding high off I, Tonya, and Saoirse Ronan, who won everyone's admiration after Lady Bird, facing off in an epic battle of the queens. The period dresses and shit look so good. We're going to be talking about this film all winter, so just go and see it now. CB (Wide)

See all movie times for currently playing films here.