Farida Pacha’s documentary transports us into the middle of nowhere and leaves us with a sense of awe. We follow one of the thousands of Indian families who leave their villages, mine salt in the desert and transform the earth in astounding ways. “A beautifully crafted meditation… A film crystalline in its austere purity…”—Hollywood Reporter. Winner, Best Documentary, Edinburgh 2014.
Hungarian director/ringmaster György Pálfi (Hukkle) turns an apartment building into seven rings of carnivalesque hell in this stunner. Pálfi essays the grotesqueries of modern life through stories that run the gamut from social realism to sci-fi. “It’s thrilling to see a director in such clear command of the cinematic medium operating in such a playfully stylized way.”—Variety. Winner, Best Director, Karlovy Vary 2014.
Mixing awe and irreverence, this cinephile’s delight explores the legendary Swedish auteur Ingmar Bergman’s home, life, films and legacy through interviews with luminaries like Michael Haneke, Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese, John Landis, Claire Denis, Ang Lee, Zhang Yimou and Lars von Trier (as quotable as ever). Their insights will inspire an intense desire to view (or re-view) Bergman’s classics.
Wandering through the old rooms of his childhood, a young boy uses his wild imagination to fight the grief of leaving his home.
A dutiful civil servant (Eddie Marsen, superb) whose job it is to thanklessly—and often fruitlessly—try to locate next of kin is inspired to finally start living by the daughter (Downton Abbey’s Joanne Froggatt) of a recently deceased neighbour. Uberto Pasolini’s latest is dry and sardonic comedy at its best. “Resonant and life-affirming, Still Life is a tonic for the soul.”—Empire. Winner, Horizons: Best Director, Venice 2013.
Alex Ross Perry
Narcissists tangle and barbed tongues draw blood in this savage comedy from The Color Wheel’s Alex Ross Perry. When an arrogant novelist (Jason Schwartzman, making snipe sing) takes a literary titan as a mentor (Jonathan Pryce, emulating Philip Roth), he’s encouraged to devote himself fully to his favourite muse: himself. Of course, self-involvement rarely begets self-discovery. “A clever, nasty piece of work…”—Film Comment
Finishing his late grandfather’s final model ship, a young boy drifts between surreal dreams and waking life.
Director Christian Petzold and muse Nina Hoss follow Barbara with this brilliantly acted drama about a facially disfigured camp survivor, Nelly (Hoss), in 1945 Berlin, who receives reconstructive surgery before searching for her husband. When she finds him (Ronald Zehrfeld), he doesn’t recognize her—but, believing Nelly dead, enlists her in a plan to inherit his wife’s money… Echoes of Vertigo redound in this haunting work.
A broad ranging and hard-hitting discussion of the importance (and regular misuse) of mathematics in our lives, Olivier Peyon’s documentary is also very much about why we should love math, and care that its power is used well. This captivating work builds its arguments on significant recent data, as well as the inspired testimonials of gifted teachers, mathematicians, finance critics—and kvetching children.
Droll and seductive, Matías Piñeiro’s romantic drama revolves around young theatre director Victor (Julián Larquier Tellarini), working on a radio adaptation of Love’s Labour’s Lost in Buenos Aires, who gets caught up in the lives of the five actresses he’s directing… "The film underlines the fluidity of romantic attachments… bringing to mind the complexity of the amorous allegiances in the Bard’s work."—Hollywood Reporter
A man tries to save the life of a minuscule fish but the situation spirals out of control.
Thanks to a lottery windfall, Alice Klieg (Kristen Wiig) is free to follow her wildest whims. Unfortunately, her Borderline Personality Disorder-determined impulses lead her to quit her meds and launch a cable access talk show. Shira Piven’s outrageous dramedy hands Wiig her best role since Bridesmaids while delivering a cautionary tale about the debilitating side effects of a meteoric rise to celebrity status.
A formal yet intimate study of this seminal performance artist.
Prompted by Ari Seth Cohen’s wildly popular blog (itself indebted to Bill Cunningham’s guerrilla fashion photography), Lina Plioplyte’s inspiring documentary profiles seven New York women—aged “between 50 and death”—whose eccentric approaches to style and glamour reflect their inextinguishable vitality. “They reject the youth-culture diktat that age makes you invisible, and offer us all an example of self-acceptance.”—Globe & Mail
The frankness of the title reflects Sacha Polak’s uncommon candour in this reflective, unsentimental and incredibly personal documentary. Having inherited a rare cancer gene, is a preventative mastectomy the answer for Polak? What if it’s all for naught and cancer never appears? Does such surgery diminish or alter one’s femininity? Nearing the age at which cancer tragically claimed her mother, the filmmaker urgently searches for answers.
Home to some of the greatest hockey players ever, the Soviet Union’s Red Army team was also a key combatant in the Cold War’s propaganda battle and exemplars of the ethos that the system trumped individual stardom. Viacheslav Fetisov—a Red Army standout and eventual defector to the NHL—makes an ideal guide for Gabe Polsky’s exploration of the ties between on-ice ambition and national identity.
After contemptuously gaming the system through uproarious (if inconsequential) scams, a true 21st-century man-child (Joshua Burge) becomes convinced that he’s about to be collared. As paranoia sets in, he goes on the lam and Joel Potrykus’ (Ape) unflinching Buzzard transforms into “an affecting character study. It’s a fearless and moving exploration of a man whose smug ambivalence masks an inner rage…”—Film Comment
Set in the aftermath of the devastating 2010 Christchurch earthquakes, Gaylene Preston’s docudrama tells the true stories of New Zealanders picking up the pieces and fully earns its tagline: "It’s the aftershocks that run the deepest." Real news footage and recreated disaster sites are seamlessly blended in a moving tale of survival that “certainly pulls no punches.”—New Zealand Herald