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#364 October 1, 2019

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    By Entertainer

    Matt writes: Last month's Venice Film Festival presented its top prize to this week's most anticipated wide release, Todd Phillips' "Joker" (starring Joaquin Phoenix), a film that has received polarizing reviews from critics, including those featured on our site. Click here to read our full Venice coverage penned by Chaz Ebert and Glenn Kenny.


    The Irishman (2019). Directed by Martin Scorsese. Written by Steven Zaillian (based on the book by Charles Brandt). Starring Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci. Synopsis: A mob hitman recalls his possible involvement with the slaying of Jimmy Hoffa. Opens in US theaters on November 1st, 2019.

    Uncut Gems (2019). Directed by Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie. Written by Ronald Bronstein, Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie. Starring Adam SandlerJulia FoxKevin Garnett. Synopsis: Set in the diamond district of New York City, Howard Ratner, a jewelry store owner and dealer to the rich and famous, must find a way to pay his debts when his merchandise is taken from one of his top sellers and girlfriend. Opens in US theaters on December 25th, 2019.

    Clemency (2019). Written and directed by Chinonye Chukwu. Starring Alfre WoodardVernee WatsonAldis Hodge. Synopsis: Years of carrying out death row executions have taken a toll on prison warden Bernadine Williams. As she prepares to execute another inmate, Bernadine must confront the psychological and emotional demons her job creates, ultimately connecting her to the man she is sanctioned to kill. Opens in US theaters on December 27th, 2019.

    Ordinary Love (2019). Directed by Lisa Barros D'Sa and Glenn Leyburn. Written by Owen McCafferty. Starring Liam NeesonLesley ManvilleDavid Wilmot. Synopsis: An extraordinary look at ordinary love. US release date is TBA.

    Dark Waters (2019). Directed by Todd Haynes. Written by Mario Correa (based on the magazine article by Nathaniel Rich). Starring Mark Ruffalo, Anne HathawayWilliam Jackson Harper. Synopsis: A corporate defense attorney takes on an environmental lawsuit against a chemical company that exposes a lengthy history of pollution. Opens in US theaters on November 22nd.

    El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (2019). Written and directed by Vince Gilligan. Starring Aaron PaulMatt JonesCharles Baker. Synopsis: After escaping Jack and his gang, Jesse Pinkman goes on the run from the police and tries to escape his own inner turmoil. Debuts on Netflix on October 11th, 2019.

    Scandalous (2019). Directed by Mark Landsman. Synopsis: The sensational true story of The National Enquirer, the infamous tabloid with a prescient grasp of its readers darkest curiosities. Opens in US theaters on November 15th, 2019.

    In My Room (2019). Written and directed by Ulrich Köhler. Starring Hans LöwElena RadonicichMichael Wittenborn. Synopsis: A bored man suddenly realizes everyone around him has disappeared though he isn't sure what happened. Opens in US theaters on October 11th, 2019.

    Farming (2019). Written and directed by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. Starring Kate BeckinsaleGugu Mbatha-RawAdewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. Synopsis: A young Nigerian boy is 'farmed out' by his parents to a white British family in the hope of a better future. Instead, he becomes the feared leader of a white skinhead gang. US release date is TBA.

    Fractured (2019). Directed by Brad Anderson. Written by Alan B. McElroy. Starring Lily RabeSam WorthingtonStephen Tobolowsky. Synopsis: Driving cross-country, Ray and his wife and daughter stop at a highway rest area where his daughter falls and breaks her arm. After a frantic rush to the hospital and a clash with the check-in nurse, Ray is finally able to get her to a doctor. While the wife and daughter go downstairs for an MRI, Ray, exhausted, passes out in a chair in the lobby. Upon waking up, they have no record or knowledge of Ray's family ever being checked in. Debuts on Netflix on October 11th, 2019.

    Cyrano, My Love (2019). Written and directed by Alexis Michalik. Starring Thomas SolivérèsOlivier GourmetMathilde Seigner. Synopsis: December 1897, Paris. Edmond Rostand is not yet thirty but already two children and a lot of anxieties. He has not written anything for two years. In desperation, he offers the great Constant Coquelin a new play, a heroic comedy, in verse, for the holidays. Only concern: it is not written yet. Ignoring the whims of actresses, the demands of his Corsican producers, the jealousy of his wife, the stories of his best friend's heart and the lack of enthusiasm of all those around him, Edmond starts writing this piece which nobody believes. For now, he has only the title: "Cyrano de Bergerac." Opens in US theaters on October 18th, 2019.

    The Kingmaker (2019). Directed by Lauren Greenfield. Synopsis: Documentary centering on the controversial political career of Imelda Marcos, the former first lady of the Philippines whose behind-the-scenes influence of her husband Ferdinand's presidency rocketed her to the global political stage. Opens in US theaters on November 1st, 2019.

    The King's Man (2020). Directed by Matthew Vaughn. Written by Matthew VaughnKarl Gajdusek and Jane Goldman. Starring Matthew GoodeGemma ArtertonAaron Taylor-Johnson. Synopsis: As a collection of history's worst tyrants and criminal masterminds gather to plot a war to wipe out millions, one man must race against time to stop them. Opens in US theaters on February 14th, 2020.

    The Wolf Hour (2019). Written and directed by Alistair Banks Griffin. Starring Naomi WattsJennifer EhleBrennan Brown. Synopsis: June was once a known counter-culture figure, but that was a decade ago. She now lives alone in her South Bronx apartment, having all but cut herself off from the outside world. It's the notorious "Summer of Sam" and June only has to look out of her window to see the violence escalating with the brutal summer heat. The city is on a knife's edge, a pressure-cooker about to explode into the incendiary 1977 New York blackout riots. US release date is TBA.

    I Lost My Body (2019). Directed by Jérémy Clapin. Written by Jérémy Clapin and Guillaume Laurant. Starring Hakim FarisVictoire Du BoisPatrick d'Assumçao. Synopsis: A story of Naoufel, a young man who is in love with Gabrielle. In another part of town, a severed hand escapes from a dissection lab, determined to find its body again. Debuts on Netflix on November 15th, 2019.

    Primal (2019). Directed by Nick Powell. Written by Richard Leder. Starring Nicolas CageFamke JanssenKevin Durand. Synopsis: A big-game hunter for zoos who has booked passage on a Greek shipping freighter with a fresh haul of exotic and deadly animals from the Amazon, including a rare white Jaguar - along with a political assassin being extradited to the U.S in secret. Two days into the journey, the assassin escapes and releases the captive animals, throwing the ship into chaos. Opens in US theaters on November 8th, 2019.

    Proxima (2019). Directed by Alice Winocour. Written by Alice Winocour and Jean-Stéphane Bron. Starring Eva GreenMatt DillonSandra Hüller. Synopsis: An astronaut prepares for a one-year mission aboard the International Space Station. US release date is TBA.

    Frozen II (2019). Directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee. Written by Allison Schroeder. Starring Kristen BellJonathan GroffEvan Rachel Wood. Synopsis: Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, Olaf and Sven leave Arendelle to travel to an ancient, autumn-bound forest of an enchanted land. They set out to find the origin of Elsa's powers in order to save their kingdom. Opens in US theaters on November 22nd, 2019.

    "Downton Abbey" is a hit movie 

    Matt writes: The enormously popular PBS series, "Downton Abbey," became a hit in movie theaters during the opening weekend of its big screen feature. Producer Liz Trubridge joined actresses Michelle Dockery and Laura Carmichael in chatting with Nell Minow about reuniting for the beloved film. Click here to read their full conversation.


    Chaz debuts first play at Chicago gala

    Matt writes: Victory Gardens Theater will be introducing Chaz Ebert and Stacy Janiak as debut playwrights while honoring Justina Machado and Phillipa Soo at its annual fundraiser, Chicago Stories Gala, on Saturday, October 5th, in honor of its 45th anniversary. Oscar-nominated filmmaker Steve James ("Hoop Dreams," "Life Itself") will be among the evening's presenters. To find more information on the event, including the name of Chaz's play, click here.


    Free Movies

    The Old Dark House (1932). Directed by James Whale. Written by Benn W. Levy (based on the novel by J.B. Priestley). Starring Boris KarloffMelvyn DouglasCharles Laughton. Synopsis: Seeking shelter from a storm, five travelers are in for a bizarre and terrifying night when they stumble upon the Femm family estate.

    Watch "The Old Dark House"

    Black Friday (1940). Directed by Arthur Lubin. Written by Curt Siodmak and Eric Taylor. Starring Boris KarloffBela LugosiStanley Ridges. Synopsis: Dr. Sovac transplants the brain of a gangster into his professor friend's body to save his life, but there is a side effect that causes a dangerous split personality.

    Watch "Black Friday"

    The Terror (1963). Directed by Roger Corman, Francis Ford Coppola, Jack Hale, Monte Hellman, Jack Hill, Dennis Jakob and Jack Nicholson. Written by Leo Gordon and Jack Hill. Starring Boris KarloffJack NicholsonSandra Knight. Synopsis: A young officer in Napoleon's Army pursues a mysterious woman to the castle of an elderly Baron.

    Watch "The Terror"

    By: Matt Fagerholm
    Posted: October 1, 2019, 5:01 am


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