Portrait of a Lady on Fire
France, 1760. Marianne is commissioned to paint the wedding portrait of Héloïse, a young woman who has just left the convent. Because she is a reluctant bride-to-be, Marianne arrives under the guise of companionship, observing Héloïse by day and secretly painting her by firelight at night. As the two women orbit one another, intimacy and attraction grow as they share Héloïse’s first moments of freedom. Héloïse’s portrait soon becomes a collaborative act of and testament to their love. Winner of a coveted Cannes prize and one of the best reviewed films of the year, Portrait of a Lady on Fire solidifies Céline Sciamma as one of the most exciting filmmakers working in the world today.
Jane (Ozark’s Julia Garner) is a recent college graduate and aspiring film producer, who’s just landed her dream job as a junior assistant to a powerful entertainment mogul. Her day is much like any other assistant, making coffee, ordering lunch, arranging travel accommodation and taking phone messages. But as Jane follows her daily routine, she grows increasingly aware of the abuse that insidiously colours every aspect of her workday – an accumulation of degradations against which she decides to take a stand.
Young couple Tom (Jesse Eisenberg) and Gemma (Imogen Poots) want to purchase a house. They visit a strange estate agent, Martin, who tells them of a new development called Yonder. The pair drive out to the development, where the houses are identical suburban homes. The place is silent, empty and otherworldly. Martin shows the couple around house #9 and then vanishes. Gemma and Tom attempt to leave Yonder, but become lost – every route returns them to #9. When the car eventually runs out of fuel, they decide to stay the night in #9. Lorcan Finnegan’s satirical sci-fi thriller smartly skewers the banality of domestic life.
A new release from the director of The Full Monty, Military Wives follows a group of women in England whose partners are away serving in Afghanistan. Faced with the men’s absences, they form a choir and quickly find themselves at the centre of a media sensation and global movement. Inspired by the real-life phenomenon of military wives’ choirs, this uplifting story celebrates a band of misfit women who form a choir on a military base. Kristen Scott Thomas and Sharon Horgan star.
This Jane Austen adaptation follows the antics of a young woman, Emma Woodhouse (Anya Taylor-Joy), who lives in Georgian and Regency-era England and occupies herself with matchmaking – in sometimes misguided, often meddlesome fashion – in the lives of her friends and family. Also stars Johnny Flynn, Callum Turner and Josh O’Connor. Whether you’re an eager Austen fan or rolling your eyes at the prospect of another period adaptation, Autumn de Wilde’s lush, pastel-hued take on the classic is well worth a watch. Read our full review here.
Lady & The Tramp
Lady & The Tramp is a timeless re-telling of the 1955 animated classic, which focuses on a pampered house dog and a tough but lovable stray as they embark on an unexpected adventure. For Christmas 1909, Jim Dear gives his wife, Darling, a female American cocker spaniel puppy named Lady as a present. Meanwhile, a homeless mutt, who goes by the name Tramp, spends his days wandering the streets in search of food and causing trouble for the local dog catcher. When Lady and Tramp meet, they grow closer and come to understand the value of home, despite their differences.
This Spanish sci-fi film is a must watch. Inside a vertical prison system, inmates are assigned to a level and forced to ration food from a platform that moves between the floors. Inside, inmates on high floors eat better than those below, who get the scant scraps. But all hell breaks loose when one man tries to effect change so everyone gets enough. Directed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia, The Platform is a twisted social allegory about mankind at its darkest and hungriest.
In 2003, as politicians in Britain and the US angle to invade Iraq, GCHQ translator Katharine Gun (Keira Knightley) leaks a classified email that urges spying on members of the UN Security Council to force through the resolution to go to war. Charged with breaking the Official Secrets Act, and facing imprisonment, Katharine and her lawyers set out to defend her actions. With her life, liberty and marriage threatened, she must stand up for what she believes in. Also stars Matt Smith and Ralph Fiennes.
The Invisible Man
Emmy winner Elisabeth Moss (The Handmaid’s Tale) stars in this terrifying modern tale of obsession. Trapped in a violent, controlling relationship with a wealthy and brilliant scientist, Cecilia Kass (Moss) escapes in the dead of night and disappears into hiding, aided by her sister, their childhood friend and his teenage daughter. But when Cecilia’s abusive ex commits suicide and leaves her a generous portion of his vast fortune, Cecilia suspects his death was a hoax. As a series of eerie coincidences turns lethal, threatening the lives of those she loves, Cecilia’s sanity begins to unravel as she desperately tries to prove that she is being hunted by someone nobody can see.
Birds of Prey
Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is a twisted tale told by DC Comic character Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie). When Gotham’s most nefariously narcissistic villain, Roman Sionis, and his zealous right-hand, Zsasz, put a target on a young girl named Cass, the city is turned upside down looking for her. Harley, Huntress, Black Canary and Renee Montoya’s paths collide, and the unlikely foursome have no choice but to team up to take Roman down.
Written by the American author Louisa May Alcott, Greta Gerwig’s 2019 adaptation of Little Women tells the story of four sisters – Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy – who live in Massachusetts with their mother, Marmee, as they wait for the return of their father in the aftermath of the American Civil War. Inspired by Alcott’s own life with her three sisters, it explores the period when the simple days of childhood transitions into the realities and complexities of adulthood. Gerwig brings warmth and wit to a stunning adaptation that feels fitting for our times – not least because the outfits throughout are highly covetable.
In the shadow of a dark internet conspiracy theory, a group of elites gathers for the very first time at a remote Manor House to hunt ordinary Americans for sport. But the elites’ master plan is about to be derailed because one of The Hunted, Crystal (Betty Gilpin) knows The Hunters’ game better than they do. She turns the tables on the killers, picking them off, one by one, as she makes her way toward the mysterious woman (two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank) at the centre of it all.
Tyler Rake (Chris Hemsworth) is a fearless black-market mercenary with nothing left to lose when his skills are solicited to rescue the kidnapped son of an imprisoned international crime lord. But in the murky underworld of weapons dealers and drug traffickers, an already deadly mission approaches the impossible, forever altering the lives of Rake and the boy. An action-packed, edge-of-your-seat thriller.
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