FILM

Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend of May 17th

Drop everything you're doing and go see John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum.

Welcome back to "Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend."

Only one movie matters this weekend, and that movie is John Wick: Chapter 3.

WIDE RELEASE:

John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum

John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019 Movie) New Trailer – Keanu Reeves, Halle Berry www.youtube.com

It's no secret that I'm a huge John Wick fanboy. Few other franchises in movie history have managed to take material typically relegated to blockbuster shlock––in this case, absurd, hyper-violent action fare––and turn it into high art. But from the vibrant choreography to the expert cinematography to Keanu Reeve's career-best turn as the titular hitman, both prior John Wick movies have been absolutely awe-inspiring for action aficionados. I expect the trilogy's conclusion to follow suit. If you see one movie this weekend, make sure it's this one. And if you haven't seen the first two, do yourself a favor and watch them now.

The Sun Is Also a Star

THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR - Official Trailer www.youtube.com


This latest big screen YA novel adaptation, The Sun Is Also a Star, follows star-crossed teen lovers Daniel Bae (Charles Melton) and Natasha Kingsley (Yara Shahidi). He's a romantic. She's a pragmatist. Wacky hijinks ensue, mainly "will she or won't she be deported?" because, oh yeah, Natasha is an illegal immigrant from Jamaica. I doubt The Sun Is Also a Star will transcend its typical genre conventions, but it is nice to see a mainstream teen romance starring two minority characters.

A Dog's Journey

A Dog's Journey - Official Trailer (HD) www.youtube.com


Look, I don't know who keeps watching these dog movies. Are they for children? Do children love watching Dennis Quaid playing with dogs? I have no idea, but apparently, A Dog's Purpose did well enough that it got a sequel, and this is it. Based on the trailer, the dog's purpose was to hang out with Dennis Quaid in the first movie, and now its purpose is to hang out with Dennis Quaid's grandkid. So if you fall into the cross-section of people who love dogs and people who love Dennis Quaid, I guess this franchise is perfect for you.

LIMITED RELEASE:

The Souvenir

The Souvenir | Official Trailer HD | A24 www.youtube.com

Director Joanna Hogg presents a memoir-esque drama/mystery about a young film student (Honor Swinton Byrne) who enters into a complex relationship with an older man (Tom Burke) against her mother's (Tilda Swinton––Honor's real-life mom) wishes. The trailer looks great and initial reviews suggest that The Souvenir is a masterful narrative work. If it wasn't coming out on the same weekend as John Wick 3, I'd definitely be seeing it.

The Professor

THE PROFESSOR Official Trailer (2019) Johnny Depp Movie HD www.youtube.com


Remember when Johnny Depp was a bankable star? Remember when the quality of his roles went downhill but he was still doing mainstream Blockbuster fares like Alice in Wonderland and Dark Shadows. Well, those days are gone. Now, Johnny Depp is starring in The Professor, a surefire future entry on every bad movie podcast in existence. The premise seems to be that a professor, played by Johnny Depp, responds to a cancer diagnosis by being a big annoying asshole to everyone around him. "He's smoking weed? IN CLASS?!?!? WUUUUUUUT!"


Dan Kahan is a writer & screenwriter from Brooklyn, usually rocking a man bun. Find more at dankahanwriter.com


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Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend of April 19

Are people singing on the subway ever not insane? Find out this weekend.

Welcome back to "Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend."

This week we have more generic horror and the dumbest musical concept in human history.

WIDE RELEASE:

The Curse of La Llorona

The Curse of La Llorona - Official Trailer [HD] www.youtube.com

Based on an old Mexican folktale about the wailing ghost of a woman who drowned her children, The Curse of La Llorona follows a family...cursed by La Llorona. It's produced by horror icon James Wan, and while marketed as a standalone film, it takes place within the same universe as The Conjuring. Honestly, the trailer doesn't really set it apart from any of the other "spooky ghosts jumping out" horror fare of the last decade. Moreover, The Conjuring was fantastic, but the follow-up movies not actually directed by James Wan have been middling. Go in with low expectations and maybe it'll be fun.

LIMITED RELEASE:

Under the Silver Lake

Under the Silver Lake | Official Trailer HD | A24 www.youtube.com

Writer/director David Robert Mitchell's previous film, It Follows, was genuinely one of my favorite movies of the past couple years. As such, Under the Silver Lake is a personal must-see, even if it hasn't been getting the same across-the-board praise as its predecessor. Andrew Garfield plays a lovestruck young man trying to solve the mystery of his missing neighbor, convinced that a vast conspiracy of strange codes and hidden messages across LA will lead to answers. It looks weird and unlike anything I've seen before, so even if it falls short of expectations it should be an interesting ride.

Stuck

STUCK Official Trailer #1 (2017) | Ashanti, Amy Madigan | Musical Film HD Trailer www.youtube.com

Imagine being stuck on the subway in NYC and then a bunch of assholes start singing about their most intimate problems. That's the premise of this mind-blowingly stupid concept for a musical starring Ashanti, Arden Cho (Teen Wolf), and Giancarlo Esposito (Gus from Breaking Bad) for some reason. Maybe the music is good, I don't know. But as a New Yorker who encounters singing subway lunatics on my daily commute, I can think of better ways to waste my weekend.

Grass

GRASS (official trailer) www.youtube.com

An artsy South Korean drama from director Hong Sang-soo (Right Now, Wrong Then), Grass is an unconventional narrative in which a writer eavesdrops on three different couples in a cafe. Their simultaneously unfolding stories influence the writer's work. The trailer itself is very interesting, playing an intimate, wordless moment out during a single shot. Your reaction to the trailer should be a good barometer for whether or not you'll appreciate Hong Sang-soo's directorial style.

Hail Satan?

Hail Satan? - Official Trailer www.youtube.com

What if people's notions about "Satanism" are entirely wrong? Those misconceptions are exactly what the comedic documentary Hail Satan? sets out to rectify. Featuring exploits and interviews with actual, self-proclaimed Satanists, director Penny Lane highlights what amounts to an activist movement ironically posing as a religion. For anyone even mildly interested in the intersection between theology and politics, this documentary should be high on your list.


Dan Kahan is a writer & screenwriter from Brooklyn, usually rocking a man bun. Find more at dankahanwriter.com


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Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend of April 5

An overgrown boy-hero, the leader of the KKK, and spooky children for whom death is too good a fate: welcome to American cinema.

GQ

This week in film, we have a new DC superhero and more reasons to fear cemeteries and young children.

WIDE RELEASES

Shazam! (April 5)

Zachary Levi embodies Shazam, an orphaned teenager named Billy who's been given the power to transform into a grown-ass-man who happens to harness the power of electricity. Director David F. Sandberg describes the light-hearted origin story as a kids' movie that emphasizes that "there are times when adults will let you down and fail you." With the mad scientist Doctor Sivana acting as his foe, Billy tries to stop the alienated genius from destroying the planet. Sandberg says, "When you take away their powers, what Billy and Sivana both want is to belong and be part of a family, and we wanted to get into how that desire can bring out the best or the worst in a person." Judging by the trailers, Shazam! looks like Spider-Man meets Big, which is a new type of superhero movie nobody asked for, but Zachary Levi is delightful and deserves to wear a red bodysuit as much as he wants.

SHAZAM! - Official Trailer 2 - Only In Theaters April 5 youtu.be

The Best of Enemies (April 5)

Taraji Henson and Sam Rockwell star as the two feuding chairpersons of the desegregation committee of Durham, North Carolina in 1971. Based on the nonfiction book of the same name, the film features civil rights activist Ann Atwater (Henson) and Ku Klux Klan leader C. P. Ellis (Rockwell) forming an unconventional friendship. Despite "being assailed by their friends as traitors and sellouts" at the time, the two bonded over their mutual concern for the children of Durham. Rockwell appears as a charismatic and strangely sympathetic KKK leader who's forced to question his beliefs, while Henson commands attention as an assertive woman who's determined to end segregation. The real Atwater noted, "It's just a strange thing, but it really happened. And the funny part about it, we stayed friends all these years."

The Best of Enemies Trailer #1 (2018) | Movieclips Trailers youtu.be

Pet Sematary (April 5)

Shit, guys, it's back! Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer direct this adaptation of the Stephen King classic. Jason Clarke, Amy Seimetz, and John Lithgow star as the unsuspecting family who turns their daughter into a spooky, spooky creature who terrorizes the adults. Early reviews praise the film as one of the best Stephen King adaptations to date. It's also an excellent first date movie for couples who share a mutual hatred of children.

Pet Sematary (2019) - Final Trailer - Paramount Pictures youtu.be

LIMITED RELEASES

High Life (April 5)

This Robert Pattinson flick looks so cringe-worthy, it might actually be entertaining. Plus, the lovely Juliette Binoche is in it. She plays some sort of mad space doctor experimenting on humans, maybe? It's not very clear from the bonkers trailer. Here's the synopsis: "Monte (Pattinson) and his baby daughter are the last survivors of a damned and dangerous mission to the outer reaches of the solar system. They must now rely on each other to survive as they hurtle toward the oblivion of a black hole." Okay, then.

High Life | Official Trailer HD | A24 youtu.be

Amazing Grace (April 5)

After being shelved since 1972, Neon production company is finally releasing its Aretha Franklin music documentary. Originally intended to be released with Franklin's record-breaking gospel album of the same name, Franklin's surviving family members finally approved of the project, calling it "very moving and inspirational." Released on Friday in Los Angeles and New York and slated for national release at a later date, Amazing Grace features Franklin's iconic 1972 performances at New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles.

AMAZING GRACE - Official Trailer - Aretha Franklin Concert Film youtu.be



Meg Hanson is a Brooklyn-based writer, teacher, and jaywalker. Find Meg at her website and on Twitter @megsoyung.


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Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend of March 29

Is Mia Farrow Okay?

Welcome back to "Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend."

This week sees the release of the Marvel's latest blockbuster and, oh man, angry internet dudes are raging.

WIDE RELEASE:

Captain Marvel

Marvel Studios' Captain Marvel - Trailer 2 www.youtube.com

As the first female-centered superhero movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Captain Marvel's success or failure will likely influence the priorities of Disney's future output. This is probably a positive thing, as the movie is likely to do very well at the box office and it's about time we have more superhero movies that star people other than white guys. But does that mean Captain Marvel will actually be a good movie? Judging from the trailers, it's hard to say––it looks just like every other MCU movie from the past decade. If you like everything else Marvel puts out, you're probably going to like this. Otherwise, it looks as generic as always, albeit with the very talented Brie Larson in the leading role.

LIMITED RELEASE:

An Elephant Sitting Still

AN ELEPHANT SITTING STILL Trailer | TIFF 2018 www.youtube.com

Deeply human and incredibly depressing, An Elephant Sitting Still follows four people in China as they travel to the city of Manzhouli to visit an elephant who is said to sit completely still and ignore the outside world. Each of the four protagonists, ranging from a schoolboy to a pensioner, are trying to escape their morbid realities––the repercussions of severely injuring a bully, parental disputes, an illicit affair leading to a friend's suicide, being offloaded into a nursing home against one's will. It's not a feel-good movie (the writer/director killed himself shortly after finishing), but it's an honest, empathetic glimpse of humanity.

The Kid

The Kid (2019 Movie) Official Trailer – Ethan Hawke, Dane DeHaan, Jake Schur www.youtube.com

A semi-biographical Western about a young kid who befriends famous lawman Pat Garrett (Ethan Hawke) and legendary outlaw Billy the Kid (Dane Dehaan) as he tries to save his kidnapped sister from the clutches of his evil uncle (Chris Pratt). The cast is pretty great and the action looks decent, but the dialogue seems a bit too on the nose judging from the trailer. That being said, Westerns don't come to theaters very often, so if you have an itch for gunslinging, this might scratch it.

Babylon

BABYLON • Official Trailer HD • Kino Lorber Repertory & Seventy-Seven www.youtube.com

A British film made in 1980 but never before released in the US, Babylon tells the story of a black, working-class reggae musician named Blue. The movie explores the Jamaican "sound system" culture, along with police racism, poverty, and violence against young black men. Watching it now in theaters is an interesting experience, as the movie works as an 80s cultural time capsule while remaining politically relevant today.

Gloria Bell

Gloria Bell | Official Trailer HD | A24 www.youtube.com

A reimagining of the 2013 Chilean-Spanish drama Gloria from the same director (Sebastián Leilo), Gloria Bell stars Julianne Moore as a divorcee living it up on the Los Angeles club scene. Not too many movies out there focus on the dating experiences of middle-aged women, making Gloria Bell a rarity, and a good one at that. John Turturro co-stars as Gloria's love interest, but the movie's heart lies entirely with Julianne Moore and her phenomenal performance.


Dan Kahan is a writer & screenwriter from Brooklyn, usually rocking a man bun. Find more at dankahanwriter.com



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Night of the Spooky Boy

Welcome back to "Now in Theaters: 5 New Movies for the Weekend."

February felt surprisingly long, but thankfully a new month means a new Madea movie.

WIDE RELEASE:

Greta

GRETA - Official Trailer [HD] - In Theaters March 2019 www.youtube.com

In this female-centric horror/thriller, Chloë Grace Moretz plays a young New Yorker trying to make her way in the big city. After returning a missing handbag to an older piano teacher named Greta, the two develop a nice friendship...but uh oh, things are not what they seem. That missing handbag? Planted. And Greta? She's crazy. Now Chloë Grace Moretz needs to escape the clutches of insane, geriatric Greta before it's too late. If you've ever wanted to see a horror movie where the ultimate terror is a nice old lady, here's your chance.

Tyler Perry's a Madea Family Funeral

Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral (2019 Movie) Official Trailer - Tyler Perry, Cassi Davis www.youtube.com

Madea is back, and this time she's organizing someone's funeral for some reason. Why would they let Madea do that? Don't they know that Madea's involvement is sure to lead to wacky hijinks? Maybe if you wanted your funeral to be filled with big farts and slapstick humor involving your corpse, then you'd want Madea to organize things. Otherwise, you should probably hire a professional funeral director.

NETFLIX:

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind | Offical Trailer [HD] | Netflix www.youtube.com

Directed, written by, and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave), The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is the story of a young boy in Malawi who builds a windmill to save his village from famine. Based on a true memoir of the same name, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is sure to be an emotional ride showcasing the power of human imagination and ingenuity in the face of turmoil. Check it out on Netflix from the comfort of your own couch.

LIMITED RELEASE:

Climax

Climax | Official Trailer HD | A24 www.youtube.com

French director Gaspar Noé, best known for his controversial art films, possibly has his best movie yet with Climax. Part dance film, part gruesome, LSD-driven horror, Climax is a wholly original and disturbing take on party films. The movie is incredible on a technical and cinematic level, but it's also not a good choice for the easily disturbed. Consider this one a highly recommended film with the caveat that you might not be able to handle it.

The Hole in the Ground

The Hole in the Ground | Official Trailer HD | A24 www.youtube.com

This movie's got it all: a hole, the ground, and best of all SPOOKY BOIS™. Yes, in this weekend's newest Spooky Boi flick, a young mother discovers that her son has become a true spook after seeing a hole in the ground outside their new home. You better believe this boy is dedicated to spooking. He's eating spiders! He's breaking peoples' arms! He's slurpin' his spaghetti. Very impolite! Now, as always, this young mother is forced to choose between putting up with a Spooky Boi in her home or abandoning her maternal instinct and murdering him. Hooray!


Dan Kahan is a writer & screenwriter from Brooklyn, usually rocking a man bun. Find more at dankahanwriter.com



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BOX OFFICE BREAKDOWN | NYFF Darling Shines Bright

OCTOBER 19TH-21ST | What's coming to theaters this weekend?

variety.com

It's about that time of year when Academy Award-worthy films start to pop up in the cinema.

In Popdust's column, Box Office Breakdown, we aim to inform you of the top flicks to check out every weekend. Looking to laugh? What about having your pants scared off? Maybe you just need a little love? Whatever the case may be, we have you covered. Take a peek at our top picks for this week.

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