Landscape With Invisible Hand navigates an alien overseer tale with societal conflicts with ease. Though it does not commit fully, the film makes an impact.
Fancy Dance is a tragic yet beautiful story that highlights the traditions of Indigenous community with the harm that comes from societal abandonment.
Elijah Bynum’s Magazine Dreams is an outstanding drama about struggle, rage and grief. Jonathan Majors’s nuanced, electrifying performance is Oscar-worthy.
Banished From The Hero’s Party Volume 7 is light on laughter, and drags in part, but delivers a ton of drama with twists worthy of a soap opera.
Devotion is a moving story that focuses on the details of Jesse Brown’s relationships and excels thanks to Jonathan Majors multifaceted performance.
Old Flame shows promise through its lean three-act structure, and compelling cast but ultimately abandons something more for the same ole same ole.
Triangle of Sadness is a dark comedy, the hilarity is not rom-com style or even dramedy, but morbid, with an Animal Farm resemblance. A couple of influencers, not yet wealthy but collecting free stuff for a plug, wind up on a cruise that goes downhill. At almost two and half hours long, Triangle of Sadness, directed by Ruben Östlund, delivers snickering humor about the disconnectivity and excess of the wealthy.
Nightsiren, playing at Fantastic Fest, is a folk horror gem surrounding a young woman’s return to a small village she fled as a child. Directed by Teresa Nvotová and written by Nvotová and Barbora Namerova, the film is another slow-burn style, filled with analysis of patriarchal oppression. Filled with atmospheric suspense and tense acting, Nightsiren keeps you on your toes as to what is real and what is superstition.
From Dutch to Next Exit, I enjoy a good road trip movie. Even moreso when it takes an approach that I have not seen. Unidentified Objects, directed by Juan Felipe Zuleta and written by Zuleta and Leland Frankel, playing at Fantastic Fest, delivers. The story, during the pandemic, follows Peter (Matthew Jeffers), a testy little person offered money by Winona (Sarah Hay), a sex worker determined to keep her date of departure with aliens, who needs his car. Unidentified Objects focuses on the road trip themes of growth and shines as a poignant movie that makes you look inward and upward.
There are some films based on true stories that you have to research after watching. You need more details because you are screaming, “it cannot end like this.” The Silent Twins is one such film. As soon as it ended, I did not even wait to go home; I was on my phone googling June and Jennifer Gibbons. The story is tragic, mysterious, and even magical, as many describe twin bonds. Directed by Agnieszka Smoczynska with the screenplay by Andrea Seigel, based on the book by Marjorie Wallace, the movie feels uncomfortable as you sympathize with the twins and family but also seethe at the racism touched on in the film, which played a pivotal role in these events.