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thumbnail We’ll End Up Together (2020 France)

Comedy, Drama, Genre , comments closed

Director: Guillaume Canet
Starring:   François Cluzet, Marion Cotillard, Gilles Lellouche
Genre:  
Comedy, drama
Duration:   
135 mins

Guillaume Canet’s sequel to the star-studded comedy Little White Lies that exploded at the box office in 2010 – Unlike the picture-postcard summer backdrop of that film, We’ll End Up Together opens in the off-season. Max and his wife, Vero, are divorcing, and he’s selling the summerhouse to pay for a debt caused by a bad investment. Two kinds of trouble appear on the horizon: Max’s group of friends have decided to visit him for a surprise party for his 60th birthday, even though they haven’t seen him in ages, and neither Vero nor any of his erstwhile friends know that he intends to sell the place where they hope to stay for a few days..  We’ll End Up Together becomes a story of long-term bonds and the joy of friendship, of suppressed emotions, personal and professional resentments, and the many ways children can both fracture and cement social circles.

thumbnail Fire Will Come (2020 Galicia)

Drama, Genre , comments closed

Director: Oliver Laxe
Starring:  
Amador Arias, Benedicta Sánchez, Inazio Abrao
Genre:
Drama
Duration:   
85 mins

A deserving prizewinner in Un Certain Regard at Cannes, Oliver Laxe’s third feature studies nature and human nature with equal fascination. Viewers obsessive about spoiler alerts will be thwarted by the very title of Fire Will Come: You know exactly what climax is coming in this rustically beautiful rural parable, but its dreamy, mesmeric power lies in the waiting. An exactingly paced slow burn before it becomes a very fast one, the film follows the daily travails of a convicted pyromaniac high in a remote rural mountain village of Galicia. Middle-aged Amador has returned home to his elderly mother, Benedicta, and her three cows, having been released from prison where he served time for starting a fire that laid waste to half the town. The rhythm of life slows to a gentle hypnosis, until one night, another fire breaks out, threatening to engulf the mountains in towering blaze.

thumbnail Honeyland (2019 Macedonia)

Genre , comments closed

Directors: Tamara Kotevska, Ljubomir Stefanov
Starring:  
Hatidze Muratova, Nazife Muratova, Hussein Sam
Genre:  
Documentary
Duration:   
85 mins

This astonishing, immersive environmental documentary began life as a nature conservation video about one of Europe’s last wild-beekeepers. The scene is an abandoned village in North Macedonia where Hatidze, a woman in her mid-50s, harvests honey sustainably the traditional way from wild hives. “Half for them, half for me,” she chants, leaving enough for the bees. Serendipitously for directors Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov (though not for Hatidze), the family from hell moves in next door mid-shoot, and this small-scale film takes on epic proportions, transforming into a parable about exploiting natural resources, or perhaps a microcosm of humans’ suicidal destruction of the environment. Winner of the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2019.

thumbnail Les Miserables (2019 France)

Genre , comments closed

Director: Ladj Ly
Starring:  
Damien Bonnard, Alexis Manenti, Djebril Zonga
Genre:  
Crime, drama
Duration:    
103 mins                 Rated R

In Montfermeil, where Hugo set his original Les Misérables, a cop newly recruited to the anti-criminal brigade finds himself on a team whose questionable methods lead them into direct conflict with the neighbourhood gangs in their jurisdiction. When a drone camera captures a wrongful police shooting, events boil over into a dramatic clash that threatens to burn the suburb to the ground. Inspired by the riots of 2005, director Ladj Ly makes his kinetic feature debut with a powerful, thrilling work that swings between brutal social realism and moments of electric melodrama. Les Misérables critiques systemic corruption and explores the fraught tension between cops and African and Arab teenagers with a sensitivity to the complicated perspectives at play on both sides.

thumbnail The Perfect Candidate (2019 Saudi Arabia)

Comedy, Genre , comments closed

Director:  Haifaa Al-Mansour
Starring:  
Nora Al Awadh, Dae Al Hilali, Mila Al Zahrani
Genre:  
Comedy
Duration:    
101 mins

Haifaa al-Mansour, the first Saudi woman to direct a feature (Wadjda), goes back to basics with a story of a female doctor trying to enter politics. Maryam is a plain-speaking country doctor whose desire to help her community is no simple task. One key hurdle – the road which leads to her clinic isn’t paved, and much of her job involves dragging patients across a bog so they can receive treatment. And that’s only part of the fun. If the patient happens to be male, an absurd negotiation then has to take place as to whether Maryam should be allowed to carry out her basic duties, what with her operating in a position above her station as a woman. Can you save a person without touching them, or looking at them? A domestic fable, it takes aim at the everyday misogyny that runs to the roots of Arabian society.

thumbnail To be announced

Genre , comments closed

Director: ?
Starring:   ?
Genre: ?
Duration:    ?

Film to be announced at a later time.

thumbnail Marianne and Leonard: Words of Love (2019 UK)

Documentary, Genre , comments closed

Director: Nick Broomfield
Starring:  
Nick Broomfield, Marianne Ihlen, Leonard Cohen
Genre
:  Documentary
Duration:   
97 mins                     Rated R

Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love is renowned filmmaker Nick Broomfield’s most personal and romantic film of his storied career. The documentary starts on the Greek island of Hydra in 1960, where Leonard Cohen, then a struggling and unknown fiction writer, and Marianne Ihlen, a single mother with a young son, became part of community of expat artists, writers and musicians. Never-before-seen footage shot by Broomfield and legendary documentarian D.A. Pennebaker make for a unique portrait of an idyllic 1960’s bohemia. It was a time that left a lasting imprint on both Marianne and Leonard, whose friendship would last another fifty years before their deaths in 2016.

thumbnail The Whistlers (2019 Romania)

Comedy, Genre , comments closed

Director: Corneliu Porumboiu
Starring:  
Vlad Ivanov, Catrinel Marlon, Rodica Lazar
Genre:  
Comedy
Duration:    97 mins

We all know film noir to be full of shadows; in Corneliu Porumboiu’s winning take on the old genre, the shade that looms largest is that of Nikolai Ceausescu, whose legacy of seething corruption and institutional fear gives a particular local texture to a story of bad cops, ruthless robbers and a femme fatale called Gilda. The fall guy is Cristi, a Bucharest cop whose commanding officer has realised he is on the take and is trying to trip him up; of course, she has her own racket running. Along with a pile of mattresses stuffed with cash, our hang-dog anti-hero finds himself on the small Canary Island of La Gomera learning the local whistling language, which the gangsters use as a police-resistant code. Poromboiu has always been the funniest of the Romanian new wave directors. Here, clearly revelling in the constraints of genre convention, he delivers pure entertainment.

thumbnail The Translators (2020 France)

Genre, Thriller , comments closed

Director: Régis Roinsard
Starring:  
Lambert Wilson, Olga Kurylenko, Riccardo Scamarcio
Genre:  
Thriller
Duration:    
105 mins

Régis Roinsard’s cleverly concocted thriller The Translators is set within the bookish confines of best-selling paperbacks and their ruthless publishers, following a group of talented polyglots caught in a scenario straight out of Agatha Christie. What could have been a dull and very French lecture in modern linguistics becomes a high-stakes whodunit where the usual suspects are not your typical movie culprits. The script is filled with twists, red herrings, false clues and third-act reversals, keeping us guessing until fairly late in the game. Add to that Roisnard’s meticulous sense of craft — already on display in his polished 2012 début, Populaire — and you get an altogether slick package that, like the prized book at the heart of its mystery, is a page-turner that never digs too deep.

thumbnail The Eulogy (2018 Australia)

Documentary, Genre , comments closed

Director: Janine Hosking
Starring:   –
Genre:
Documentary
Duration:    
100 mins

Drawn from Paul Keating’s searing eulogy at Geoffrey Tozer’s funeral, The Eulogy tells the compelling and tragic story of this unrecognised Australian musician. Tracing the rise and fall of Tozer, the documentary attempts to understand why this virtuoso pianist died alone and destitute at the age of 54. Paul Keating argues that Geoffrey Tozer was the best pianist that Australia has ever produced. What went wrong? In his quest for answers to that question, Melbourne-based conductor and music educator Richard Gill interviews Tozer’s brother, friends and colleagues. Keating recreates his controversial eulogy delivered at Tozer’s funeral in which he accused the Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras of neglecting Tozer through ‘indifference’ and ‘contempt’.