#388 September 1, 2020

Matt writes: The film world is reeling over the death of Chadwick Boseman, one of the most extraordinary talents of his generation, who succumbed to colon cancer at age 43. He had been privately battling the disease for years, all the while making history with his portrayal of the titular hero in Marvel’s mega-hit “Black Panther” and the two-part “Avengers” finale that broke all box office records. His enormously inspiring life was paid tribute by Odie Henderson in his moving obituary (excerpted below and available in full here) and by various writers at our site in a compilation of remembrances (read it here). Be sure to watch both of the video clips embedded below which showcase the brilliance and beautiful soul of Boseman. The first is his hilarious appearance as T’Challa on SNL’s “Black Jeopardy” sketch, and the second is a deeply poignant excerpt from a SiriusXM interview where he is moved to tears while speaking about what “Black Panther” meant to its terminally ill fans.

“I must with a heavy heart say goodbye to Chadwick Boseman, Howard University alum, spectacular thrower of shade (see his response when ‘Green Book’ won Best Picture), brilliant actor and forever king of a Black paradise so many of us wish existed. Back in his Howard days, Boseman received an all-expenses paid semester of theater classes at Oxford University. The trip was paid for by another actor of exceptionally high regard, Denzel Washington. So even before he was famous, Boseman managed to cross paths with legends. They’ve inspired him and benefitted him, and until his last day, he paid it all forward. Chadwick Boseman played heroes onscreen. He was the real deal off of it. Rest in Peace, Our King.”


On the Rocks (2020). Written and directed by Sofia Coppola. Starring Bill MurrayRashida JonesMarlon Wayans. Synopsis: A young mother who reconnects with her larger-than-life playboy father on an adventure through New York. US release date is TBA.

Ammonite (2020). Written and directed by Francis Lee. Starring Kate Winslet, Saoirse Ronan, Fiona Shaw. Synopsis: 1840s England, acclaimed but overlooked fossil hunter Mary Anning and a young woman sent to convalesce by the sea develop an intense relationship, altering both of their lives forever. Debuts in the US on November 13th, 2020.

Enola Holmes (2021). Directed by Harry Bradbeer. Written by Jack Thorne (based on the novel by Nancy Springer). Starring Millie Bobby BrownHenry CavillSam Claflin. Synopsis: When Enola Holmes–Sherlock’s teen sister–discovers her mother missing, she sets off to find her, becoming a super-sleuth in her own right as she outwits her famous brother and unravels a dangerous conspiracy around a mysterious young Lord. Debuts on Netflix on September 23rd, 2020.

Agents of Chaos (2020). Directed by Alex Gibney. Synopsis: A two-part documentary examining Russia’s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Debuts on HBO on September 23rd, 2020.

Lingua Franca (2020). Written and directed by Isabel Sandoval. Starring Isabel Sandoval, Eamon FarrenLynn Cohen. Synopsis: Olivia, an undocumented Filipino transwoman, works as a caregiver to Olga, an elderly Russian woman, in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. When Olivia runs out of options to attain legal status in the US, she becomes romantically involved with Alex, Olga’s adult grandson, in the pursuit of a marriage-based green card. Now playing in theaters.

The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020). Written and directed by Radha Blank. Starring Radha Blank, Welker WhiteReed Birney. Synopsis: Radha is a down-on-her-luck NY playwright, who is desperate for a breakthrough before 40. Reinventing herself as rapper RadhaMUSPrime, she vacillates between the worlds of Hip Hop and theater in order to find her true voice. Debuts on Netflix on October 9th, 2020.

Time (2020). Directed by Garrett Bradley. Synopsis: Fox Rich fights for the release of her husband, Rob, who is serving a 60-year sentence in prison. Debuts on Prime Video on October 9th, 2020.

Let Him Go (2020). Written and directed by Thomas Bezucha (based on the novel by Larry Watson). Starring Diane LaneKevin CostnerLesley Manville. Synopsis: A retired sheriff and his wife, grieving over the death of their son, set out to find their only grandson. Debuts in the US on November 6th, 2020.

Death on the Nile (2020). Directed by Kenneth Branagh. Written by Michael Green (based on the novel by Agatha Christie). Starring Gal GadotKenneth BranaghArmie Hammer. Synopsis: While on vacation on the Nile, Hercule Poirot must investigate the murder of a young heiress. Debuts in the US on October 23rd, 2020.

Eternal Beauty (2020). Written and directed by Craig Roberts. Starring Sally Hawkins, Billie PiperDavid Thewlis. Synopsis: After Jane falls into a state of despair over her schizophrenia, she encounters new sources of love and life with surprising results. Debuts in the US on October 2nd, 2020.

The Social Dilemma (2020). Directed by Jeff Orlowski. Synopsis: Never before have a handful of tech designers had such control over the way billions of us think, act, and live. Silicon Valley insiders reveal how social media platforms are reprogramming society by exposing the other side of your screen. Debuts on Netflix on September 9th, 2020.

The Babysitter: Killer Queen (2020). Directed by McG. Written by McG and Dan Lagana. Starring Bella ThorneLeslie BibbKen Marino. Synopsis: Two years after Cole survived a satanic blood cult, he’s living another nightmare: high school. And the demons from his past? Still making his life hell. Debuts on Netflix on September 10th, 2020.

Ottolenghi and the Cakes of Versailles (2020). Directed by Laura Gabbert. Synopsis: Exploring the relationship between modern-day social media and the open court of the French Monarchy, the film studies the alarmingly cyclical intersection between food, culture, and history. Debuts in the US on September 25th, 2020.

Class Action Park (2020). Directed by Seth Porges and Chris Charles Scott III. Synopsis: A documentary that focuses on a dangerously legendary water park and its slew of injuries and crimes along with child safety concerns. Now available on HBO Max.

Come Play (2020). Written and directed by Jacob Chase. Starring Azhy RobertsonGillian JacobsJohn Gallagher Jr.. Synopsis: A monster named Larry that manifests itself through smart phones and mobile devices. Debuts in the US on October 30th, 2020.

Spontaneous (2020). Written and directed by Brian Duffield (based on the novel by Aaron Starmer). Starring Katherine LangfordPiper PeraboCharlie Plummer. Synopsis: A high school senior discovers that she and her classmates may explode at any moment. Debuts in the US on October 6th, 2020.

The Binge (2020). Directed by Jeremy Garelick. Written by Jordan VanDina. Starring Vince VaughnSkyler GisondoDexter Darden. Synopsis: Set in a time where all drugs and alcohol are illegal, the only day anyone can participate in the “fun” is on Binge day. Now streaming on Hulu.

The Batman (2021). Directed by Matt Reeves. Written by Matt Reeves and Peter Craig (based on the characters created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger). Starring Robert PattinsonPaul DanoZoë Kravitz. Synopsis: The latest big screen reboot of the beloved comic book hero. Debuts in US theaters on October 1st, 2021.

Tenet” opens in physical theaters

Matt writes: The first COVID-19 era blockbuster, Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet,” was released in actual physical theaters this past weekend, and it received positive reviews from both our Managing Editor Brian Tallerico (read his three-star review here) and our Far Flung Correspondent Michał Oleszczyk (read his essay here).

Timeliness of “High Flying Bird

Matt writes: Steven Soderbergh’s 2019 Netflix film “High Flying Bird” is revisited by Roxana Hadadi in light of last week’s NBA strike in this enormously insightful and timely essay (click here to read the full article).

Free Movies

Animals (2012). Directed by Marçal Forés. Written by Marçal Forés, Enric Pardo and Aintza Serra. Starring Oriol PlaAugustus PrewDimitri Leonidas. Synopsis: Pol is a teenager with a seemingly calm life. He lives with his brother, and is still in high school. However, Pol has a secret: Deerhoof, a cuddly teddy bear who thinks, moves around, and with whom he shares his best moments.

Watch “Animals

Hemel (2012). Directed by Sacha Polak. Written by Helena van der Meulen. Starring Hannah HoekstraHans DageletRifka Lodeizen. Synopsis: A promiscuous young woman struggles with her emotions when the one man she cares deeply about, her equally restless father, finally finds true love.

Watch “Hemel”

Everybody Street (2013). Directed by Cheryl Dunn. Synopsis: A documentary that illuminates the lives and work of New York’s iconic street photographers–including Bruce Davidson, Mary Ellen Mark, Elliott Erwitt, Ricky Powell and Jamel Shabazz–and the incomparable city that has inspired them for decades.

Watch “Everybody Street”

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