Here’s a quick round-up of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week, including one of the most grotesque films of the year and one of the greatest films of all time.
Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)
Border – A Swedish fantasy-horror about a twisted creature-on-creature romance. This is supposed to be one of the most divisive, what-the-fuck cinematic freak-outs of the year, a repulsive nightmare. So why not watch it in public with fellow squirming weirdos? Only playing at Zeitgeist.
Roma – Alfonso Cuarón’s black & white period-piece epic & personal memoir is all but guaranteed to be a major Oscar contender in the next few months, but most people will only have a chance to see it at home on Netflix. We’re one of the few cities where audiences can fully immerse themselves in its lush cinematography & meticulously detailed sound design on the big screen. Only playing at The Broad Theater.
Mary Queen of Scots – Saoirse Ronan & Margot Robbie square off in a not-quite-historically-accurate costume drama directed by a legitimate mainstay of the British stage. The reviews are generally positive, and this seems like the exact kind of buttoned-up period piece that earns Oscars attention, but that’s not why I’m excited. I just like to watch actors play Queen Elizabeth I, because it’s a role that invites them to chew scenery while dressed like a maniac, and I’m sure Margot Robbie is up for the task.
Movies We Already Enjoyed
Citizen Kane (1941) – It’s near impossible to live up to the hype of being The Greatest Film of All Time, but Citizen Kane does a damn good job of it. Here’s a pull-quote from when I reviewed it for my Roger Ebert Film School series a couple years ago: “It’s tempting to label Citizen Kane as the first modern film, the birth of an auteurist fever that wouldn’t fully take hold of the industry until the New Hollywood movement got rolling three decades later. Citizen Kane’s punishing rhythm and hands-off-the-handlebars fragmentation feels strikingly modern even at today’s standards.” Playing Sunday 12/30 & Wednesday 1/2 as part of Prytania’s Classic Movies series.
The Favourite – Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – In the abstract, the concept of a 2010s CG animation Spider-Man origin story sounds dreadful. In practice, prankster screenwriter Phil Lord explodes the concept into a wild cosmic comedy by making a movie about the world’s over-abundance of Spider-Man origin stories (and about the art of CG animation at large). Spider-Verse is a shockingly imaginative, beautiful, and hilarious take on a story & a medium that should be a total drag, but instead is bursting with energetic life & psychedelic creativity.