Our top picks in books, movies and TV
Our top picks in books, movies and TV. DANIELLE GROEN
1 FIRST MAN
Make no mistake: Damien Chazelle’s dazzling drama about the Apollo 11 space flight is truly out of this world. But the director’s first film since Oscar darling La La Land is equally focused on terrestrial affairs, exploring the impact of Neil Armstrong’s mission on his marriage, his family and his sense of self. Given the sparky chemistry between Ryan Gosling (as the first man) and Claire Foy (as his first wife), it’s easy to see why Chazelle keeps the flick close to home. Oct. 12.
2 UNSHELTERED Barbara Kingsolver
In her latest work, the American novelist bounces between centuries to dramatize our resistance to new ideas. In one narrative, an 1880s science teacher finds his admiration for Darwin to be a threat to his marriage and his position; in the other, a couple watches helplessly as their jobs vanish, their children move back home and Trump careens toward the White House. Oct. 16.
3 MURPHY BROWN
Unapologetic feminist, medicalmarijuana experimentalist and fortysomething single mom: for a ’90s TV character, Murphy Brown was ahead of her time. So it’s unsurprising that creator Diane English and star Candice Bergen believe the show’s titular journalist might still resonate in our current era. For the reboot, Brown is back to host the cable show Murphy in the Morning, putting her in direct competition with Avery, her conservative millennial son. Sept. 27.
4 SPLIT TOOTH
Tanya Tagaq In an Arctic town in the 1970s, a young woman must contend with highschool bullies, sexual violence and an unexpected pregnancy. The Polaris Music Prize–winning throat singer Tanya Tagaq mines northern myths and childhood memories for her debut book. Not quite memoir, not quite poetry and not quite fable, it’s singular and altogether unforgettable. Sept. 25.
5 A STAR IS BORN
This particular star has been reborn three times since the 1937 film featuring Janet Gaynor: with Judy Garland in the ’50s, Barbra Streisand in the ’70s and now Lady Gaga. The pop singer plays a rising musician who falls in love with an established country star (Bradley Cooper, in his directorial debut). American Horror Story: Hotel already snagged Gaga a Golden Globe, so the surprise isn’t her acting chops but Cooper’s pipes. The leading man can actually sing. Oct. 5.