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    IMAGINARY

    Director: Jeff Wadlow
    Cast: Betty Buckley, DeWanda Wise, Tom Payne
    Genre: Horror

    Horror isn’t usually my first choice of film as gore just ain’t my thing, but I do love freaky mind-stretching horror like Get Out or the Paranormal films and this is the latest film from their producer Blumhouse which I nervously can’t wait to see. They have even taken that most comforting of childhood friends, our teddy bear, and asked the disturbing question…. Is Teddy evil? (oh, how could they…)

    When Jessica moves back into her childhood home with her family, her youngest stepdaughter Alice develops an eerie attachment to a stuffed bear named Chauncey she finds in the basement. Alice starts playing games with Chauncey that begin playful but become increasingly sinister. As Alice’s behaviour becomes more and more concerning, Jessica intervenes only to realize Chauncey is much more than the stuffed toy bear she believed him to be.

    I dare you to bring your Teddy (and maybe a blanky) when seeing the film! 


    LOVE LIES BLEEDING

    Director: Rose Glass
    Cast: : Jena Malone, Dave Franco, Kristen Stewart, Ed Harris, Jerry G. Angelo

    Genre: Romance, thriller

    Remember the Twilight phenomenon? What’s been most interesting about that series is the careers of Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattison since; they have both become champions of really interesting Indie films, in some quite fearless performances. Love that. This month, Kristen is back in what looks to be a steamy roller coaster intense fully pumped tale of love and, oh, all the crap that can get in the way.

    Reclusive gym manager Lou (Kristen Stewart) falls hard for Jackie (a ripped Jena Malone), an ambitious bodybuilder headed through town to Vegas in pursuit of her dream. But their love ignites violence, pulling them deep into the web of Lou’s criminal family. 

    This also happens to be one popular movie title, in looking for a poster I found over a dozen different films called Love Lies Bleeding from over the years, even a STV POC with Christian Slater during his not so good period… this one should be the pick of the crop.


    WICKED LITTLE LETTERS 

    Director: Thea Sharrock
    Cast: Olivia Colman, Timothy Spall, Eileen Atkins, Gemma Jones, Anjana Vasan, Jessie Buckley
    Genre: Comedy, history, mystery

    Oh this looks fun, Wicked indeed, the type of comedy only the English could make. The one I’m most looking forward to this month, huzzah!

    A 1920s English seaside town bears witness to a dark and absurd scandal in this riotous mystery comedy. Based on a stranger than fiction true story, WICKED LITTLE LETTERS follows two neighbours: deeply conservative local Edith Swan (Olivia Colman) and rowdy Irish migrant Rose Gooding (Jessie Buckley). When Edith and fellow residents begin to receive wicked letters full of unintentionally hilarious profanities, foul-mouthed Rose is charged with the crime. 

    The anonymous letters prompt a national uproar, and a trial ensues. However, as the town’s women – led by police officer Gladys Moss (Anjana Vasan) – begin to investigate the crime themselves, they suspect that something is amiss, and Rose may not be the culprit after all.


    PERFECT DAYS

    Director: Wim Wenders
    Cast: Koji Takusho, Tokio Emoto, Arisa Nakano, Aoi Yamada, Yumi Aso
    Genre: Drama
    Language: Japanese with English subtitles

    German director Win Wenders turns 80 next year, but there are no signs of him slowing down or taking the easy path. He’s worked in Europe and Hollywood, making wonderful films such as Wings of Desire through to doco’s like Buena Vista Social Club. His latest film takes him to Japan where he has made a moving, insightful and heartwarming Japanese film.

    Set in Tokyo, Perfect Days follows Hirayama (Kôji Yakusho in a Cannes Best Actor Award-winning role), a meticulous man of routine who seems to find joy in his job as a toilet cleaner. He speaks very little but has a great passion for music, books and the trees he loves to photograph. He drives to work in his minivan, fully equipped with his cleaning gear, while The Rolling Stones, Patti Smith or Lou Reed ring in ageless, husky hums from a tape player. As if in search of a new cinema on the road, Wenders follows his protagonist and instead discovers new places of the heart. 

    Through Yakusho/Hirayama, Wenders captures the poetry of the everyday with intimacy and stunning simplicity. With a sensibility and pacing reminiscent of the beloved Drive my Car from 2021, this is a film that will have you thinking long after the lights come up. 


    Michael Smith
    Michael Smith
    Michael Smith is a proud Westie, passionate film fan and owner of the Sun Theatre, adventurer and host of Thursday Drive on 88.9 Wyn-FM

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