How good is going to the movies?
If you take the price of the ticket out the equation and sneak in snacks from the local supermarket instead of paying $20 for a pack of Maltesers, and mute the David and Margarets around you commentating the whole time, and remember to bring a jumper because the ACs are set to ‘Arctic Tundra’… then it’s the best! Go to the cinema this month and make sure you see at least one of these movies.
By now you’ve probably seen Jordan Peele’s racially-charged, satirical horror film Get Out (which bagged him an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay). Well, the new king of the heebie-jeebies is back with yet another reason to never go on vacay with our families again in Us. In the film, a young family’s summer holiday is quickly disrupted by another family who appear at the end of their driveway—a family which is quickly revealed to be… them. Being terrorised by your own doppelgänger sounds like the most terrifying movie plotline ever, and I’ve seen Gigli. Also, never in a million years would I have told you that ‘I’ve Got 5 on It’ was the perfect, chilling fit for a horror movie, but that’s why I’m not Jordan Peele.
The Price of Everything
David Bowie’s art collection sold for $41 million. Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi sold for over $450 million (that’s one painting). Why do oversized balloon animals sell for millions, but then other artistic masterpieces float by unnoticed? Nathaniel Kahn’s documentary, The Price of Everything, tries to answer that question by talking to the people involved in the buying and selling of some of the world’s most expensive artworks (which often find themselves in the climate-controlled storage units of the filthy rich anyway). One of the trailer’s talking head’s sums up the consumerist culture around the art world pretty simply: ‘There’s a lot of people who know the price of everything and the value of nothing.’ Oof.
This is Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem’s tenth movie together since Jamón Jamón (a film which you should watch if for no other reason than the film’s tagline is ‘A Tale of Ham and Passion’), and I’d still watch their next 50. This film follows Laura (Cruz) who returns to her hometown outside of Madrid for a family wedding with her two children. Shit goes south fast: kidnapping, family feuds, betrayal, and, hopefully, a side of Spain’s finest Jamón Iberico. Oh, and Javier Bardem yells a lot. Go give it a watch.
Sometimes Always Never
No one does offbeat comedy better than the English. Sometimes Always Never is a must-watch for many reasons, but mostly Bill Nighy. Alan (Nighy) is a retired tailor who goes searching for his estranged son, who stormed out of the house years before because of a heated argument over Scrabble. Alan’s an expert at finding the right words in a board game, but unable to find the right words to communicate his loss to those around him. This looks like the kind of film that’ll make you laugh, cry, and want to travel back to 2001 and apologise to your little sister for giving her a Chinese burn when she landed on Mayfair. I’m over it now, though.
The world’s not in great shape right now, but the kids are coming to save us. Premiering at Sundance Film Festival, Inventing Tomorrow follows a group of young scientists from around the world who are trying to fix the fuckups of generations past, from air pollution to noxious foam. And there’s not a crappy cardboard diorama in sight. One kid’s working on paint that will turn smog into non-toxic elements, another is working on an app to record pollutants, and another kid is friend-zoning the shit out of her new science pal: ‘No I don’t do hugs, we can do an arm grasp thing.’ The kids are alright.
Island of the Hungry Ghosts
Australian filmmaker Gabrielle Brady’s documentary takes a closer look at a place infamous in the minds of all Australians: Christmas Island. The ‘Guantánamo’ of Australia, which houses around 800 asylum-seeking refugees, has (along with detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru) made headlines for human rights abuses. Through trauma counsellor Poh Lin Lee and the detainees she treats, Island of the Hungry Ghosts reveals the inhumane conditions inside the walls of the island’s detention centre, where abuse, depression and suicide are all too common. Providing a backdrop to the film’s issues is the yearly migration of the island’s crab population from the jungle to the sea, a journey which, ironically, is made as smooth as possible with the help of locals.