The Florida Project
The Florida Project

Lauded for its artistry and authenticity, The Florida Project starring Willem Dafoe will open the 28th New Orleans Film Festival on Wednesday, October 11, 2017.  The Florida Project also stars child actress Brooklynn Prince and a debut performance by Bria Vinaite, whom writer-director Sean Baker discovered via Instagram. The Florida Project is the newest movie from writer-director Sean Baker, who staked his claim two years ago with Tangerine, an indie feature shot entirely with his iPhone camera.

Call Me By Your Name, which created major buzz when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, will close the festival on Thursday, October 19, 2017. Call Me By Your Name stars Armie Hammer, Timothée Chalamet and Michael Stuhlbarg.  Director Luca Guadagnino continues his exploration of complicated intimate relationships that he’s addressed in prior critically-acclaimed films like I Am Love and A Bigger Splash.

Several Spotlight films have also been announced, including Darkest Hour, Last Flag Flying, The Upside, and Marshall.

Call​ ​Me​ ​By​ ​Your​ ​Name
Luca​ ​Guadagnino​ ​|​ ​132​ ​min​ ​|​ ​Italy,​ ​France,​ ​Brazil,​ ​United​ ​States

Summer is a perpetual state of being at the Perlmans’ Italian villa. Lush, lazy mornings become long, wine-filled evenings, ensconced in discussions of Greco-Roman art and the sounds of Mahler on piano. Oliver, a 24-year-old research assistant (Armie Hammer), joins the Perlmans for six weeks of study before returning to his position at Columbia. 17-year old Elio (Timothée Chalamet) is immediately infatuated. They begin a tense series of furtive glances and curt conversations, both enchanted but unwilling to meet the other halfway. A coming of age story. A tale of first love. Americans summering in beautiful, foreign locales. Any categorization would be an oversimplification of the evocative and intoxicating world of Call Me By Your Name.

The​ ​Florida​ ​Project
Sean​ ​Baker​ ​|​ ​115​ ​min|​ ​USA

Set on a stretch of highway just outside Disney World, The Florida Project follows six-year-old Moonee and her rebellious mother Halley over the course of a single summer. The two live week-to-week at “The Magic Castle,” a budget motel managed by Bobby. Despite her harsh surroundings, the precocious Moonee has no trouble making each day a celebration of life, her endless afternoons overflowing with mischief and grand adventure as she and her ragtag playmates fearlessly explore the utterly unique world into which they’ve been thrown. Unbeknownst to Moonee, however, her delicate fantasy is supported by the toil and sacrifice of Halley, who is forced to explore increasingly dangerous possibilities in order to provide for her daughter.

Last​ ​Flag​ ​Flying
Richard​ ​Linklater​ ​|​ ​124​ ​min|​ ​USA

Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, a former Navy Corpsman Larry “Doc” Shepherd (Steve Carell) reunites with his old military buddies, Sal Nealon (Bryan Cranston) and Reverend Richard Mueller (Laurence Fishburne), to bury his son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War. With the casket, the three friends take a bittersweet road trip up the East Coast, reflecting on the impact of war and reminisce about their times together. Marking a new direction for Linklater after his joyful college romp, Everybody Wants Some!!, Last Flag Flying is a poignant exploration of aging, masculinity, and friendship.

Marshall
Reginald​ ​Hudlin​ ​|​ ​118​ ​min​ ​|​ ​USA

As the nation teeters on the brink of WWII, a nearly bankrupt NAACP sends Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) to conservative Connecticut to defend a black chauffeur against his wealthy socialite employer in a sexual assault and attempted murder trial that quickly became tabloid fodder. In need of a high profile victory but muzzled by a segregationist court, Marshall is partnered with Samuel Friedman (Josh Gad), a young Jewish lawyer who has never tried a case.

The​ ​Upside
Dir.​ ​Neil​ ​Burger​ ​|​ ​118​ ​min​ ​|​ ​USA

Based on the film The Intouchables by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano Based on a true story, The Upside chronicles the unexpected friendship between Phillip Lacasse (Bryan Cranston), a Park Avenue billionaire left paralyzed after a hang-gliding accident, and ex-con Dell Scott (Kevin Hart), in need of a job and a fresh start. From worlds apart, Phillip and Dell form an unlikely bond, bridging their differences and gaining invaluable wisdom in the process, giving each man a renewed sense of passion for all of life’s possibilities. Directed by Neil Burger (The Illusionist, Limitless) and written by Jon Hartmere, THE UPSIDE also stars Academy Award® winner Nicole Kidman.

The​ ​Darkest​ ​Hour
Joe​ ​Wright​ ​|​ ​2017​ ​|​ ​UK

A thrilling and inspiring true story begins on the eve of World War II as, within days of becoming Prime Minister of Great Britain, Winston Churchill (Academy Award nominee Gary Oldman) must face one of his most turbulent and defining trials: exploring a negotiated peace treaty with Nazi Germany, or standing firm to fight for the ideals, liberty, and freedom of a nation. As the unstoppable Nazi forces roll across Western Europe and the threat of invasion is imminent, and with an unprepared public, a skeptical King, and his own party plotting against him, Churchill must withstand his darkest hour, rally a nation, and attempt to change the course of world history.

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