On the latest episode of CinemAddicts, we cover a slew of first rate features that are worth checking out (including Cloverand The Platform), but the highlight of the past week was discovering the acclaimed feature Bacaiau.
A Grand Jury Prize winner at the Cannes Film Festival, Bacurau centers on the members of a village who come together after the passing of its matriarch. Directed by Juliao Dornelles and Kleber Mendonca Filho, the 131 narrative gives us an up close and personal look at how these townspeople survive on a day to day basis.
With no direct access to water (thanks to a government corruption), the townsfolk continue to remain united while living in less than favorable conditions. When a group of trigger happy mercenaries (led by Udo Kier) are hired to eliminate Bacurau off the face of the earth, they refuse to bow down to this intimidating threat.
Kino Lorber is holding virtual screenings across the United States, and for more details on how you can support your local independent theater while also enjoying Bacurau, go KL’s official site.
Take a listen to Episode 114 of CinemAddicts and tell us what you think of Bacurau!!
Directed by Eliza Hittman, Never Rarely Sometimes Always centers on Autumn (Flanigan), a pregnant teen who travels to New York with her cousin Skylar (Talia Ryder) to get an abortion. Their trip to the Big Apple has its share of trials and tribulations, as Hittman delivers an incisive look at the challenges of teen abortion. Co-starring Ryan Eggold (New Amsterdam) as Autumn’s deadbeat stepfather, the feature was honored with the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at the 70th Berlin International Film Festival.
Never Rarely Sometimes Always also focuses on the detrimental effect men have on younger women, and its relatable journey appealed to Ryder. “I think a lot of women watching this will see these moments in the supermarket and on the bus and all these little interactions throughout the day in relation to that and – you don’t see the male gaze portrayed so honestly really ever in film,” said Ryder, who will be seen later this year in Steven Spielberg’s version of West Side Story. “And I think a lot of people will watch the film and be shocked (and think) ‘Oh my gosh, that happened to me too.'”
Click on the media bar to hear Sidney Flanigan talk about the bond she continues to share with Hittman and Ryder:
Never Rarely Sometimes Always hits On Demand Friday, April 3.
Director Cindy Meehl was a novice filmmaker when she made Buck, the 2011 documentary which focuses on the life and work of horse whisperer Buck Brannaman. Meehl was passionate about telling the story of Buck after getting to know him, and sometimes a personal connection to a subject can serve as the motivation behind creative endeavor.
Meehl first came up with the idea for The Dog Docduring the making and release of Buck, and she spent over two and a half years bringing her latest documentary to life. The feature centers on Dr. Marty Goldstein’sattempts to bring a bigger spotlight on integrative veterinary medicine. Along with treating the disease, Goldstein also focuses on helping build an animal’s immune system in hopes to enhance their quality of life (and possibly add years to their existentence).
“Conventional medicine has a great place in our world,” said Meehl. “But people have gotten to quick to take a pill and to ignore the whole body that grew the tumor. We don’t want to look at the big picture at what is creating the issue, without being preachy! But you’re immune system is so important and I think right now more than any other time that should be really something to think about.”
Along with focusing on Goldstein’s approach, the documentary also givese viewers a look into how other doctors at Smith Ridge Veterinary Center (where Goldstein worked) apply this integrative approach to several dogs. Click on the media bar to hear Meehl discuss how Goldstein impacted the life of her own dog:
These days staying in and social distancing are the norm, and various films that were released earlier this year have made their way onto digital much earlier than anticipated.
Downhill, a comedy starring Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, falls in that category, and it proved to be a more than worthy remake to the critically acclaimed feature Force Majeure.
The movie centers on Billie (Louis-Dreyfus) and Pete (Ferrell), a couple whose family skiing trip becomes a nightmare after Pete turns tail and leaves the family during an avalange. Pete’s act has repercussions throughout the vacation, leading one to question if this marriage will ever get back on track.
“I was blown away by the script,” said Ferrell. “Not having any knowledge of the original version, I thought it was such an interesting story and way to approach a relationship movie. To add this external event that becomes immediately to yourself. Like how would I react with my spouse? Would I do the right thing? And if didn’t, would I confess? Would I try to bury it deeper and hope that no one notices because everyone is okay? It just examines so many things in an interesting way while being funny but being dramatic at the same time.”
Click on the media bar to hear Julia Louis-Dreyfus talk about her character and the family dynamic behind the film:
Downhill, directed and penned by Jim Rash and Nat Faxon, is now available on Digital.
Blow The Man Down is a Maine set thriller that centers on Mary Beth (Morgan Saylor) and Priscilla (Sophie Lowe), sisters who have views on how to live a life without their recently deceased mother. Priscilla wants to stay in their small town and keep their house and fish shop alive (although they have mounting debts), and the more irresponsible Mary Beth simply wants to leave for greener pastures.
After Mary Beth kills someone in self defense, the sisters attempt to cover up the crime, only to get embroiled in the town’s political and social underbelly. Directed and penned by Danielle Krudy and Bridget Savage Cole, the feature is a first rate tale that, along with excellent lead performances, is blessed with a talented ensemble (which includes Margo Martindale and Annette O’Toole)
“I think (Blow The Man Down) stands out for a number of reasons,” said Lowe. “The way it’s shot kind of really grabs your eyes. It’s beautifully shot and the landscape is so different. And also it’s a mainly female cast and the characters are kind of relatable in their own different ways. I haven’t seen much like that so I think it’s refreshing to watch something . . .”
“It’s a New England noir,” interjects Saylor. “I think the setting is really, really fun. I’m a big Maine fan. And really the biggest thing was it being about women and being directed by two women. You don’t see that often.”
Click on the media bar to hear Morgan Saylor discuss how she, Lowe, and the filmmakers bonded during the pre-production of Blow The Man Down.
Blow The Man Down, which won Best Screenplay at the Tribeca Film Festival, is now streaming via Amazon Prime Video.
Directed by Craig Zobel ,The Huntfocuses on twelve strangers who are being tracked down and killed. This survivalist thriller, penned by The Watchmenproducers Damon Lindelof and Nick Cuse, stars Hilary Swank is Athena, the leader of these group of liberal elitists who have placed these people right in the midst of fatalistic nightmare.
“We haven’t really played with how social media can affect someone’s life and how social media can not only affect someone’s life but ruin someone’s life,” said Swank. “Something that is said about you becomes a reality if people don’t know the truth. So how do you get from under that.”
Click on the media bar to hear Swank discuss the nuances behind The Hunt:
The Hunt is currently in theaters, but with the importance of social distancing it is now available for streaming.