INDIE FILMS

First International Trailer for Australian Racism Drama 'Sweet Country'

Sweet Country Trailer

"You run away, I'll shoot you for desertion!" Memento Films has debuted an official international trailer for the Australian racism drama Sweet Country, from acclaimed director Warwick Thornton (of Samson & Delilah). This just premiered at the Venice Film Festival, and will also play at the Toronto and London Film Festivals next. Sweet Country takes place in the dusty Northern Territory of Australia nearly 100 years ago, telling the story of an Aboriginal stockman who shoots a white man and is taken to trial. Hamilton Morris stars, with Sam Neill, Ewen Leslie, Bryan Brown, Thomas M. Wright, and Matt Day. I saw this in Venice and it's good, but a bit dry. There's more intensity in this trailer than the film, it's a very slow drama.

 Posted September 10 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

The Venice Film Festival is a Wonderful Film Fest That Stole My Heart

Venice Film Festival

"Venice was and is full of lost places where people put up for sale the last worn bits of their souls, hoping no one will buy." (-Ray Bradbury) The canals, the tiny streets, the little bridges, the amazing food. There's so much to love about Venice, the beautiful Italian city on the water. I wasn't sure what to expect attending the Venice Film Festival for my first time, but at the end of it all, I have to admit it is a wonderful festival in an extremely lovely city. At the beginning of the fest, I wrote about how much I love the Telluride Film Festival and how sad I was to skip that fest and attend this one instead. But, Venice stole my heart, and has shown me there's just as much to love about this festival as there is about Telluride. Not only do they show some of the best films every year, but there is a charm to the city that can't be found nearly anywhere else.

 Posted September 9 in Editorial, Indies, Venice 17 | Comments

Full Trailer for Action Horror 'Happy Hunting' with Martin Dingle Wall

Happy Hunting Trailer

"The rules are simple: you run, we hunt you!" Vertical Ent. has debuted an official trailer for an indie action horror titled Happy Hunting, which is basically a brand new take on "The Most Dangerous Game". The description only explains that an alcoholic drifter becomes the target of a "deranged sporting event" but it's clear from the title and the trailer that it's obviously about a bunch of rednecks hunting people in a desert town. The film stars Martin Dingle Wall, Ken Lally, and Kenny Wormald. There's a few cool shots in this trailer, mainly the silhouette shots. Other than that, I'm not sure if this going to be entertaining or just sickening to watch. This footage makes it seem like the latter. If any of this interests you, then check it out.

 Posted September 7 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Matt Bomer & Josh Wiggins in Trailer for Survival Thriller 'Walking Out'

Walking Out Trailer

"This whole mountain's ours…" "We own it. Grandfather brought me up on this mountain when I was 14." IFC Films has unveiled the first official trailer for the film Walking Out, a survival thriller set in the snowy Montana mountains. The story is actually about a father and son, and their bond together and how their relationship is tested in a dangerous situation. Matt Bomer stars as the father, and Josh Wiggins as his son, who comes to visit him once a year. He's not very happy about it, but they decide to go out hunting. When something goes wrong, it's up to his son to come to the rescue and does his best to save them. This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and I caught it there. I wasn't the biggest fan of the film, it's a bit bland and straightforward, but there is a strong emotional core about father-son bonding worth exploring.

 Posted September 7 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

First Trailer for Irish Gothic Horror Film 'The Lodgers' Playing at TIFF

The Lodgers Trailer

"Something is broken in them." An official trailer has debuted for a gothic horror film from Ireland titled The Lodgers, which is playing at the Toronto Film Festival this month. Set in 1920s, the story is about twins Rachel and Edward who share a strange existence in their crumbling family estate. Each night, the property becomes the domain of a sinister presence ("The Lodgers") who enforces three rules upon the twins: they must be in bed by midnight; they may not permit an outsider past the threshold; if one attempts to escape, the life of the other is placed in jeopardy. Yeah. Starring Charlotte Vega, Bill Milner, David Bradley, and Eugene Simon. This looks cool, with some very weird visual moment in this trailer. Enjoy.

 Posted September 6 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

First Trailer for Stephen King Adaptation of 'Gerald's Game' for Netflix

Gerald's Game Trailer

"Is this really what it takes these days?" Netflix has revealed the first official trailer for Mike Flanagan's Gerald's Game, an adaption of Stephen King's novel of the same name. Another Stephen King adaptation this year?! Sure, why not. That makes three so far - between this film, It, and The Dark Tower. Unless I'm missing another one? Gerald's Game stars Carla Gugino as Jessie Burlingame, and Bruce Greenwood as her husband. The two travel out to their lake house to spice up their marriage, and for some fun in the bedroom she's handcuffed to the bed. When he suddenly dies, she must figure out a way to get out in order to survive. Sounds freaky, doesn't it? As a Stephen King story, there's obviously a bit more to it. Take a look.

 Posted September 6 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Teaser Trailer for Dee Rees' Acclaimed 'Mudbound' with Jason Mitchell

Mudbound Teaser Trailer

"Silence. Oppression. Fear. It would take an extraordinary man to beat all that." Netflix has finally release an official teaser trailer for the highly acclaimed indie drama Mudbound from writer/director Dee Rees, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. Set in the rural American South at the end of World War II, Mudbound is an epic story of two families pitted against one another by a ruthless social hierarchy, yet bound together by the shared farmland of the Mississippi Delta. This is a fantastic trailer for the film, and hopefully it will get your attention now. Jason Mitchell stars, along with Carey Mulligan, Jason Clarke, Mary J. Blige, Rob Morgan, Jonathan Banks, and Garrett Hedlund. This fine film is likely to get a lot of awards recognition, and it's worth watching when it debuts for the performances alone.

 Posted September 6 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

First Teaser Trailer for Wild West Thriller 'Hostiles' with Christian Bale

Hostiles Teaser Trailer

"Understand this - when we lay our heads down out here, we're all prisoners…" To go along with the buzz out of the Telluride Film Festival, the first teaser trailer has arrived for Scott Cooper's new wild west thriller Hostiles. Set in New Mexico in 1892, the film follows a legendary Army captain who reluctantly agrees to escort a Cheyenne war chief and his family through dangerous territory. Christian Bale stars as Captain Joseph J. Blocker, and Wes Studi stars as Yellow Hawk. It's described as a "heroic odyssey of survival" that "becomes a story not about the miles traveled nor the battles fought, but the journey towards respect, reconciliation, and forgiveness." The cast includes Rosamund Pike, Ben Foster, Peter Mullan, Jesse Plemons, Stephen Lang, Q'orianka Kilcher, Timothée Chalamet, and Rory Cochrane. This did get quite a few great reviews at Telluride and plays at TIFF next, so keep an eye out for it if you're intriuged.

 Posted September 5 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

US Trailer for 'A Fantastic Woman' Starring Trans Actress Daniela Vega

A Fantastic Woman Trailer

"I'm just looking out for my loved ones, that's all." Sony Pictures Classics has unveiled an official US trailer for Sebastián Lelio's acclaimed drama A Fantastic Woman, from Chile, which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival this year to quite a bit of international acclaim. The films stars transgender actress Daniela Vega as Marina, a transgender woman living in Chile who must deal with the challenges of oppression and hate when her older lover suddenly passes away. His family rejects her and everything seems to start falling apart in her life. The cast includes Francisco Reyes, Luis Gnecco, Aline Küppenheim, and Nicolás Saavedra. I saw this film at Berlinale and it's good, but it didn't totally win me over. It's still an important film for trans actors and trans storytelling, and deserves attention for that reason. Definitely worth a look.

 Posted September 5 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Saoirse Ronan in Trailer for Greta Gerwig's Directorial Debut 'Lady Bird'

Lady Bird Movie Trailer

"You both have such strong personalities." A24 has unveiled the first trailer for actress Greta Gerwig's feature directorial debut, an indie coming-of-age drama titled Lady Bird, being released by the excellent A24. This film actually just premiered at the Telluride Film Festival over the weekend to rave reviews, which means it already has some great buzz to go along with this trailer. Saoirse Ronan stars as Christine 'Lady Bird' McPherson, a quirky teenager living in Northern California with her eccentric nurse mother. The cast includes Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Beanie Feldstein, Lois Smith, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Odeya Rush, Jordan Rodrigues, and Marielle Scott. As seen in this trailer, the film examines "both the humor and pathos in the turbulent bond between a mother and her teenage daughter." Looks great! I'm looking forward to seeing it, A24's films are always top quality.

 Posted September 5 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Annette Bening, Jamie Bell in 'Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool' Trailer

Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool Trailer

"Could you take me to Liverpool? I could get better there…" Lionsgate UK has unveiled the first trailer for a film titled Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, which just premiered at the Telluride Film Festival this weekend to great reviews. It will play at TIFF next and the London Film Festival, too. The film tells the story of Academy Award-winning actress Gloria Grahame, as played by the ever-so-talented Annette Bening. It mainly focuses on her passionate romance with a much younger movie star named Peter Turner, as played by Jamie Bell, and it's based on Turner's actual memoir. The full cast includes Julie Walters, Vanessa Redgrave, Kenneth Cranham, Stephen Graham, and Frances Barber. Grahame starred in The Big Heat, It's a Wonderful Life, In a Lonely Place, and Oklahoma!, and won the Oscar for her role in The Bad and the Beautiful. Based on the early buzz, this is definitely a film to keep an eye on. Take a first look below.

 Posted September 4 in Indies, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Watching Excellent Films on the Lido at My First Venice Film Festival

Venice Film Festival

My goodness, this is a beautiful place. I am currently in Venice attending the Venice Film Festival, aka Venezia 74, for my very first time. After nine years in a row attending the Telluride Film Festival, I decided to switch things up and head down to Venice. Honestly, the main reason is that I could not afford the cost of going to Telluride. Now that I live in Berlin, the total cost of flying back, staying in the city, and buying a badge was just too much. As crazy as it sounds, flying down to Venice and attending this festival is actually cheaper. Telluride and Venice both take place at the same time, and they both play many of the same films. But they take place on opposite sides of the world so I had to choose one or the other. But it doesn't matter, you can watch great movies anywhere around the world and I'm lucky to be able to enjoy this lovely festival.

 Posted September 1 in Feat, Indies, Venice 17 | Comments

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