Matt writes: On January 7, the world of cinema lost one of its brightest lights, filmmaker Michael apted (1941-2021), died at 79. Renowned for his revolutionary work “To the top“A series of documentaries, which have followed the lives of British children every seven years into adulthood, Apted has also directed various sublime narrative feature films, including the 1980s Loretta Lynn biopic,”Coal Miner’s Daughter, “who won Sissy Spacek an Oscar for best actress. You can read Matt Zoller Seitz’s obituary here and Roger Ebert’s Great Movies essay on the “Up” series here, as well as watch Apted’s 2019 interview at “63 More“as part of the BUILD series in the embedded video below.
In and of itself(2021). Directed by Frank Oz. Written by Derek delgaudio. FeaturedDerek delgaudio. Synopsis: Conceptual storyteller and magician Derek DelGaudio attempts to understand the illusory nature of identity and answer the deceptively simple question “Who am I?”Debut on Hulu on January 22, 2021.
I care a lot(2021). Written and directed by J Blakeson. Featured Rosamund Pike,Eiza González,Dianne Wiest. Synopsis: A crooked legal guardian who drains savings from her old quarters meets her match when a woman she tries to swindle turns out to be more than she appears. Debut on Netflix February 19, 2021.
Dear friends!(2021). Directed by Andrey Konchalovskiy. Written by Andrey KonchalovskiyandElena Kiseleva. Featured Yuliya Vysotskaya,Vladislav Komarov,Andrey Gusev. Synopsis: When the Communist government raised food prices in 1962, rebel workers in the small industrial town of Novocherkassk went on strike. The ensuing massacre is seen through the eyes of a pious party activist. The release date in the United States is to be determined.
Latest news in Yuba County(2021). Directed by Tate taylor. Written by Amanda Idoko. Featured Mila kunis,Allison janney,Juliette Lewis. Synopsis: After her husband goes missing, an underrated suburban bride Sue Buttons has a taste for being a local celebrity as she embarks on a city-wide search in Yuba County to find it. Debut in the United States February 12, 2021.
The United States vs. Billie Holiday(2021). Directed by Lee daniels. Written by Suzan-Lori Parks(based on the novel byJohann hari). Featured Andra’s Day,Trevante Rhodes,Garrett hedlund. Synopsis: Follows Holiday through her career as she is targeted by the Federal Department of Narcotics with an undercover operation led by black federal agent Jimmy Fletcher, with whom she has had a tumultuous affair. Debut on Hulu on February 26, 2021.
Real mothers(2021). Directed by Naomi kawase. Written by Naomi kawaseandIzumi Takahashi(based on the novel byMizuki Tsujimura). Featured Hiromi nagasaku,Arata Iura,Aju Makita. Synopsis: A woman with an adopted child is unexpectedly contacted by the child’s biological mother. The release date in the United States is to be determined.
Cherry(2021). Directed by Anthony russoandJoe russo. Written by Angela Russo-OtstotandJessica goldberg(based on the novel byNico walker). Featured Tom holland,Ciara Bravo,Jack reynor. Synopsis: An army medic with post-traumatic stress disorder becomes a serial bank robber after drug addiction puts him in debt.Debut on Apple TV + on February 26, 2021.
Congratulated(2021). Written and directed by Mike Cahill. Featured Salma hayek,Madeline Zima,Owen Wilson. Synopsis: A mind-blowing love story following Greg who, after recently divorced and then laid off, meets the mysterious Isabel, a woman living on the streets who is convinced that the polluted and shattered world around them is a computer simulation.Debut on Prime Video on February 5, 2021.
Clapboard jungle(2021). Directed by Justin mcconnell. Synopsis: After five years in the life and career of a freelance filmmaker, backed up by dozens of interviews, asking a question: How does a freelance filmmaker survive in today’s film industry?The release date in the United States is to be determined.
The world to come(2021). Directed by Mona Fastvold. Written by Ron hansenandJim shepard. Featured Katherine Waterston,Vanessa Kirby,Christopher Abbott. Synopsis: Somewhere along the border of the mid-19th century US East Coast, two neighboring couples struggle against misery and isolation, witnessing a splendid yet trying landscape, challenging them both physically and psychologically .Debut in the United States on February 12, 2021.
The perfect little things card(2021). Directed by Ian samuels. Written byLev Grossman. Featured Kathryn newton,Josh hamilton,Kyle Allen. Synopsis: Two teenagers who live on the same day several times, allowing them to create the card holder.Debut in the United States February 12, 2021.
Skyline(2021). Directed by Mikael marcimain. Written byJosh campbellandMatthew Stuecken. Featured Allison williams,Alexandre dreymon,Keith david. Synopsis: A couple flying in a small plane to attend a wedding on a tropical island must fight for their lives after their pilot suffers a heart attack.Now available in the United States.
Willy’s Wonderland(2021). Directed byKevin lewis. Written by GO Parsons. Featured Nicolas cage,Beth grant,Terayle hill. Synopsis: A quiet vagrant is trapped in a janitorial job in the now doomed Wally’s Wonderland. The mundane tasks suddenly become an all-out fight for survival against wave after wave of demonic animatronics. Fists fly, strike the ground, titans clash – and only one side will make it alive. The release date in the United States is to be determined.
To all the boys: always and forever(2021). Directed by Michael fimognari. Written by Katie lovejoy(based on the novel by Jenny Han). Featured Noah Centineo,Lana condor,Janel Parrish. Synopsis: To continue the love life of the teenager and to face her good and hard times with her friends and family. Debut on Netflix on February 12, 2021.
Barb & Star go to Vista Del Mar(2021). Directed by Josh greenbaum. Written byKristen wiigandAnnie mumolo. Featured Kristen wiig,Annie mumolo,Jamie Dornan. Synopsis: Two best friends find themselves above their heads. Debut in the United States February 12, 2021.
The music(2021). Directed by Sia. Written by SiaandDallas clayton. Featured Maddie Ziegler, Leslie Odom Jr., Juliette Lewis. Synopsis: Zu is newly sober when she learns that she is going to become the sole guardian of her half-sister named Music, a young girl with autism.The release date in the United States is to be confirmed.
Fall(2021). Written and directed by Viggo Mortensen. Featured Viggo Mortensen,Lance Henriksen,Sverrir Gudnason. Synopsis: John Peterson lives with his partner Eric and their adopted daughter in Southern California. When he receives a visit from his aging father Willis from Los Angeles who is looking for a place to retire, their two very different worlds collide.Debut in the United States on February 5, 2021.
Malcolm and Marie(2021). Written and directed by Sam levinson. FeaturedZendaya,John David Washington. Synopsis: The relationship of a director and his girlfriend is tested after they return home from the premiere of their film and await responses from critics.Debut in the United States on February 5, 2021.
Sam pollard sure “MLK / FBI“
Matt writes:Director Sam Pollard recently spoke with our contributor Donald Liebenson about his extremely timely documentary, “MLK / FBI”, which was praised by our critic Odie Henderson. Read the full conversation here.
Charlie Chaplin’s “The child“
Matt writes: In honor of the 100th anniversary of Charlie Chaplin’s masterpiece, “The Kid,” our contributor Audrey Fox wrote about the film’s enduring legacy, which can even be highlighted in the popular “Star wars“series,” The Mandalorian. “Read the full essay here.
How to go out on a date in Queens(2006). Directed by Michelle danner. Written byRichard Vetere. FeaturedJason alexander,Ruth barrie,Carlos M. Castillón. Film synopsis: A self-proclaimed dating expert tries to bring his best friend, who lost his wife two years earlier, back to the dating scene, with disastrous results.
Uncle bob(2010). Directed by Robert Oppel. Synopsis: documentary by Robert Oppel on the life and murder of his uncle and namesake, Robert Opel; the man who won the Oscars in 1974.
The Casserole Club(2011). Directed by Steve balderson. Written by Frankie Krainz. Featured Susan traylor,Kevin Scott Richardson,Daniela Sea. Synopsis: A close-knit, neighborly group of suburban housewives from the 1960s are all determined to outdo each other, trying to prove that each is “the hostess with the most.”