Bookmark(0)

No account yet? Register

New Indie Films & Documentaries in Theaters This Weekend (Friday August 23)

There are a number of excellent indie releases coming out this weekend, and if you can’t get to your local art house theater (or, even worse, you don’t HAVE a local art house theater), most of them will be available soon either on VOD or on DVD/Blu-ray. Good news for all of us indie and foreign film fans, right?

DRINKING BUDDIES

DRINKING BUDDIES
Director: Joe Swanberg
Starring: Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson, Ron Livingston
It’s one of my favorite films I’ve seen this year so far, so I can’t recommend Drinking Buddies enough. Director Joe Swanberg (Hannah Takes the Stairs) and the cast, including Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Jake Johnson and Ron Livingston, made this film without scripted dialogue. Wilde and Johnson play co-workers at a Chicago brewery who seem like they are perfect for each other, but they’re currently involved with other people. Now factor in their daily drinking, and Drinking Buddies ends up being one of those wonderful indie “romantic comedies” that exposes the mainstream entries in that genre as completely artificial. If it isn’t playing at a theater by you yet, it’s already available on VOD and iTunes.

THE FROZEN GROUND

THE FROZEN GROUND
Director: Scott Walker
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Vanessa Hudgens, John Cusack, Dean Norris, 50 Cent
The first feature by New Zealand writer/director Scott Walker stars the unlikely duo of Nic Cage and Vanessa Hudgens. Cage is an Alaskan State Trooper and Hudgens is a woman who escaped a serial killer. John Cusack plays the real-life 1980s serial killer Robert Hansen, who murdered at least 17 women. If nothing else, that cast list makes this worth a look, and if you don’t catch it in theaters it’s already scheduled for an October 1 DVD and Blu-ray release.

THE GRANDMASTER

THE GRANDMASTER
Director: Kar Wai Wong
Starring: Tony Leung, Ziyi Zhang, Hye-kyo Song, Chen Chang
Ip Man is a revered figure in the history of martial arts, training many venerable martial arts including Bruce Lee. Though there have been other films about Ip Man — most notably 2008’s Ip Man and its 2010 sequel both starring Donnie Yen — The Grandmaster stars Infernal Affairs’ Tony Leung and was directed by frequent Leung collaborator Kar Wai Wong. Together they have created a slower-paced film about Ip Man that approaches the iconic martial artist less as an action movie hero and more as a philosopher. One important note: the film has been recut for the version that will be screened in the U.S. (which is presented by Martin Scorsese, no less), but it’s no clear how extensive those cuts are yet.

SHORT TERM 12

SHORT TERM 12
Director: Destin Cretton
Starring: Brie Larson, John Gallagher Jr., Kaitlyn Dever, Stephanie Batriz, Rami Malek
Short Term 12 made the festival rounds earlier this year and flew a bit under the radar. Lots of films do that, but Short Term 12 has since received nearly unanimously glowing reviews and won the Audience Award at the SXSW Festival. Brie Larson portrays a supervisor at a foster home who finds it difficult to balance her past and current relationships with the troubled lives of the children she works with every day. If it’s as good as critics have been saying and that words gets out, there will probably be many more awards in the future for Short Term 12.

SCENIC ROUTE

SCENIC ROUTE
Directors: Kevin & Michael Goetz
Starring: Josh Duhamel, Dan Fogler, Miracle Laurie, Christie Burson
Being that I live in New York City I don’t have to worry about my car breaking down in the middle of the desert (but trust me, we have lots of other things to be concerned about!) According to Scenic Route, the problem isn’t just the concern of how you’re going to get out of that situation, it’s who you’re with. Josh Duhamel and Dan Fogler star as old friends whose friendship begins to unravel when they are isolated together on a desert road once their car breaks down. Or did their friendship already unravel and now they finally have a chance to tell each other how they really feel? It’s also available for streaming and will be available on DVD/Blu-ray on September 17.

THÉRÈSE

THÉRÈSE
Director: Claude Miller
Starring: Audrey Tautou, Gilles Lellouche, Anaïs Demoustier
This adaptation of the 1927 French novel was the final film directed by visionary French director Claude Miller before his April 2012 death. It stars Amelie’s Audrey Tautou as the title character, who seeks to break out of social expectations of women when she realizes her husband has little concern for her. Though it’s certainly a story that has been done before in film, I doubt it’s been done looking this cinematically beautiful before.

PARADISE: FAITH (PARADIES: GLAUBE)

PARADISE: FAITH (PARADIES: GLAUBE)
Director: Ulrich Seidl
Starring: Maria Hofstätter, Nabil Saleh, Natalya Baranova, Rene Rupnik
After debuting a year ago at the 2012 Venice Film Festival (where it was awarded a Special Jury Prize and a Best Film in Competition prize) and appearing in festivals around the globe, Paradise: Faith is finally getting a limited release in the United States. Maria Hofstätter stars as Anna Maria, an Austrian woman who is completely devoted to her ultra-religious views. However, the reemergence of her estranged husband threatens her religious bliss. Paradise: Faith will also be out on DVD on October 22.

THE TRIALS OF MUHAMMAD ALI (Documentary)

THE TRIALS OF MUHAMMAD ALI
Director: Bill Siegel
How much left is there to say about a man who is generally regarded to have once been the world’s most famous athlete? Perhaps everything about his life in the ring has been told, so director Bill Siegel (who worked on the influential documentary Hoop Dreams) looks at perhaps the most controversial period in Ali’s life outside of the ring: when he was sentenced to five years in prison for refusing to serve in Vietnam after he was drafted and was unable to box.

OTHER NOTABLE WEEKEND INDIE, FOREIGN & DOCUMENTARY RELEASES:

UNA NOCHE (ONE NIGHT)
SAVANNAH
THE CONSPIRACY
THE UNITED STATES OF FOOTBALL (DOCUMENTARY)

Share ...

Subscribe for Blog Updates

Sign up for our latest updates.

Please follow us to get updates online.