A few snuck onto the release calendar this week that weren’t on my monthly look, but they’re worth noticing!
HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE – Taika Waititi’s last film was the brilliant WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS, this one’s much more, um, normal, but it’s still a fantastic film (currently 100% on RT). It’s an extremely kiwi film that hits on several levels, but it’s basically an action comedy featuring the brilliant Sam Neill trying to help his sheltered city-dwelling nephew deal with living on the run in the wilderness. Go see it, we need more films like this to do well.
THE NEON DEMON – Nicholas Winding Refn is a true cinematic treasure. Sometimes everyone loves him (DRIVE) sometimes everyone hates him (ONLY GOD FORGIVES) but dammit, he’s a genius and no one can tell him what to do. His latest is the tale of a model (Elle Fanning) drawn into the woodchipper of celeb life in LA. Visually stunning, thematically challenging, but the reviews are definitely mixed. Still worth checking out if you’re a fan of Refn.
THE SHALLOWS – Brooke Lively gets stuck on a tiny reef while avoiding a really pissed off shark. By most accounts this one delivers the goods, a lean and mean shark thriller from the director of NON-STOP.
FREE STATE OF JONES – Matthew McConaughey goes for more serious/important fare here, as the sole white dude in the south willing to help out black folks during the civil war. Sadly it’s pretty undercooked, which is a shame since Gary Ross is capable of great things (PLEASANTVILLE, HUNGER GAMES).
INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE – This was a real disappointment. All the interesting visuals are in the trailer, and the story is just plain stupid. Lots of useless characters, terrible dialogue, weak motivations, just a worthless film all around. Not even worth making fun of.