I CARE A LOT
Writer/director J Blakeson made his remarkable feature film debut back in 2009 with THE DISAPPEARENCE OF ALICE CREED, one of the most unexpected and unpredictable crime thrillers of recent years, which was remade first in The Netherlands as RECKLESS and in Germany as KIDNAPPING STELLA. He now cements his reputation as one of the most exciting talents working in cinema today with this terrific thriller. He has written a gift of a part for Rosamund Pike, who plays Maria Grayson, a hard as nails legal guardian to many elderly women. She “cares a lot” about their predicament after she locks them up in nursing homes but in fact, she is exploiting the law for her own benefit and strips the elderly from their possessions. She believes she has found the perfect new client in the innocent looking Jennifer Peterson (Diane Wiest) but instead she opens a pandora’s box letting out many ruthless Russian criminals including Roman Lunyov (Peter Dinklage)…
An ace cast with a phenomenal Pike as the ruthless protagonist, very much deserving her Golden Globe nomination as Best Actress. A fully fleshed villain that will stop at nothing in achieving her goal- a kind of role not often created for women. Totally unpredictable with many twists and turns that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the final credits!
This brilliant documentary about the incredible life of Brazilian footballer Pelé unearths some rare archive material particularly at the start of the young athlete’s career. His colleagues, his sister, and the man himself talk about those early days when Pelé first went to Sweden to play for his country in the 1958 World Cup. And it is the shy 17-year-old that defies expectations and spearheads his country’s win with 5-2 in the final before he returns home as a national hero.
“Through him Brazilians learnt to love themselves,” says one colleague “He became a symbol of Brazil’s emancipation,” says another. An iconic figure who never lost his popularity even during his country’s dark years under dictatorship. You don’t have to be a football fan to enjoy David Tryhorn and Ben Nicholas’s excellent film! (Netflix)
BARB AND STAR GO TO VISTA DEL MAR
Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo are the co-writers as well as stars of this silly but hugely entertaining comedy. Their script for BRIDESMAIDS was celebrated and received an Academy Award nomination, so it is hardly a big surprise to see them sharing an endearing chemistry as Barb and Star, two lifelong friends who make a life changing decision and leave their small Midwestern town for the first time to go to Vista Del Mar…
The gags come fast and thick in an OTT, preposterous premise which frequently misfire, but there is no doubt that the leading ladies’ sheer enjoyment especially in delivering their razor-sharp dialogue is highly infectious!
BIRDS (OR HOW TO BE ONE)
The rise of the Greek New Wave, which began with Yorgos Lanthimos DOGTOOTH in 2009, continues with the remarkable work of Babis Makridis. His daring new film, inspired by Aristophanes’ comedy “The Birds (ORNITHES)”, is partly fiction partly documentary. He follows a group of people ready to abandon their comfortable lives in the city in exchange for a life with nature as birds.
The action spans across Greece and New York with the aid of scenes from a stage production of Aristophanes’ classic comedy. It is a sad and often very funny film, and like his previous film PITY (OIKTOS), also available on MUBI, a terrific combination of the absurd with the eccentric. (MUBI)
A superior horror from Denmark about a series of horrific bio-hacking experiments led by Doctor Ruben (Signe Egholm Olsen). Mia (Sara Hjort Ditievsen) sets out to investigate after the Russian nanny living next door disappears…
It is good to see strong female roles especially a smart resourceful heroine in this intense horror but best of all it is the villain which was originally written for a man but is now played with suitable menace and authority by Olsen as the ruthless businesswoman. Jens Dahl directs with style and wisely takes his time in introducing his characters before the explosive climax. (Blu-ray from Eureka)
WHITE COLOUR BLACK
Joseph A. Adesunloye’s engaging film follows the story of Leke (Dudley O’ Shaughnessy), a London based photographer who reluctantly leaves his elegant lifestyle behind for Senegal after he receives a call about his estranged father…
Like the main protagonist the film also finds its feet once the action moves to the beautiful, serene landscape of Senegal; while the striking presence of O’ Shaughnessy is used brilliantly for this gentle, touching drama.
SATOR: This creepy, atmospheric supernatural horror is set deep in the forest and follows the story of Adam (Gabe Nicholson) a hunter living all alone in his small cabin. Thanks to his grandmother’s warnings, Adam is always cautious of the arrival of the mysterious entity Sator …It is based on a true story of occult and it will suitably chill your blood.
IF IT WERE LOVE: Patric Chiha’s highly energetic dance documentary was screened at last October’s London Film Festival and on a second viewing I still found it as mesmerising and satisfying. The film focuses on Gisele Vienne’s innovative work “Crowd” and her talented ensemble of dancers. We see them on stage dancing their little hearts out, and in their dressing room talking about their lives. A treat for dance lovers! (MUBI)
STUMP THE GUESSER: Guy Maddin, the Canadian filmmaker whose experimental work includes THE SADDEST MUSIC IN THE WORLD joins forces with the Johnson Brothers for this joyous short film. A celebration of Silent Soviet cinema with rapid cut montage and more visual imagination that most films currently on release. (MUBI)
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