"From now on, no one will tell us what we can and can't do." Quiver Dist. has released an official trailer for the indie drama I Am Woman, telling the inspiring story of Australian singer and activist Helen Reddy. This first premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year, and also stopped by the Busan Film Festival - we featured the first teaser last fall. Australian actress Tilda Cobham-Hervey stars as Helen, with a full cast that includes Danielle Macdonald (from Patti Cake$), Evan Peters (from X-Men), Matty Cardarople, Dusty Sorg, Toks James, Gus Murray, and also Rita Rani Ahuja. Reddy's most famous song is one called "I Am Woman", which quickly became the anthem for the women's movement in the 70s. The film is a story of fearless ambition and passion, of a woman who smashed through the patriarchal norms of her time to become an international singing superstar. This looks dazzling! An inspiring smash-the-patriarchy story.
"Please, Kat. It was always just a dream…" Trinity Creative Partnership has released an official trailer for a rock band comedy from the UK titled Kat and the Band, marking the feature directional debut of British filmmaker E.E. Hegarty. Seventeen year old, music-obsessed school girl Kat Malone tricks her way into managing struggling band Dollar Days, pretending to be a band manager in her twenties. Featuring original music by the real band Some Velvet Morning. The indie film stars Ella Hunt, the lead in cult classic horror musical Anna and the Apocalypse, along with Dougie Poynter, Callum McGowan, Idris Debrand, and Katherine Kelly. This looks clever and upbeat, something to watch with friends on the weekend. Have fun.
"You won't get away with this!" Amazon Prime Video has released an official trailer for an indie highlands comedy titled Get Duked!, which won the Midnighters Audience Award at last year's SXSW Film Festival. Formerly known as Boyz in the Wood, it has been given a new title for its US release this month. Set deep in the Scottish Highlands, the film follows wild teenage friends out on a character-building camping trip. With plans to do nothing but get high in the woods, the boys must face a shadowy force hell-bent on extinguishing their futures. From writer-director Ninian Doff comes an anarchic satire of generational politics, hip-hop loving farmers and hallucinogenic rabbit droppings that pits the youth of tomorrow against the status quo of yesterday. Starring Samuel Bottomley, Rian Gordon, Lewis Gribben, Viraj Juneja, Kate Dickie, Kevin Guthrie, Jonathan Aris, Georgia Glen, Alice Lowe, Brian Pettifer, with James Cosmo and Eddie Izzard. Heard nothing but great things about it, and the trailer gets me even more excited to watch.
"Bumping into each other again, it's odd, right?" Outsider Pictures has released an official US trailer for an indie summer drama titled The August Virgin, from acclaimed Spanish indie filmmaker Jonás Trueba. He partnered with actress / writer Itsaso Arana to make a very personal film about figuring yourself out in your 30s. Arana stars as Eva, a young actress who is not quite satisfied with her life. In an act of faith, she decides to stay in Madrid during August, when all the other locals leave because it's too hot to stay. August offers her a chance to start from scratch as she wanders around the city. The small cast includes Vito Sanz, Isabelle Stoffel, Joe Manjon, María Herrador, Luis Heras, and Mikele Urroz. The film premiered at the Karlvoy Vary Film Festival last year and also opened in Spain last year. I saw it at KVIFF, loved it, and published a glowing review, saying it's "an exceptional slice of cinematic bliss - a lyrical, poetic, meandering film about the never-ending challenge in life to define ourselves." I'm happy it's finally getting a US release.
"We need you as our first female field agent." IFC Films has released an official trailer for A Call to Spy, an indie spy drama from producer-turned-filmmaker Lydia Dean Pilcher. This is her second feature after directing Radium Girls, which is also about badass women from the past. In the beginning of WWII, with Britain becoming desperate, Churchill orders his new spy agency – the Special Operations Executive (aka SOE) – to recruit and train women as spies. Their mission: conduct sabotage and build a resistance, to help collect information about Nazis in France. SOE's "spymistress," Vera Atkins – who was the inspiration for Bond's Moneypenny – recruits two unusual candidates to be spies: Virginia Hall, an ambitious American with a wooden leg, and Noor Inayat Khan, a Muslim pacifist. Together, these women help to undermine the Nazi regime, leaving an unmistakable legacy in their wake. Starring Sarah Megan Thomas, Stana Katic, Radhika Apte, with Linus Roache, Rossif Sutherland, Samuel Roukin, & Laila Robins. This looks like a riveting, inspirational thriller about a group of women passionate about peace and saving the world.
"Be very careful with the boys in Lisbon." Grasshopper Film has released a new US trailer for Paulo Rocha's The Green Years, a 1963 coming-of-age romantic drama from Portugal. The film won a few awards during its initial premiere at film festivals back in 1963, but never got an official US release. The film has been restored in glorious 4K (overseen by Pedro Costa and the Portugeuse Cinematheque) and is getting a virtual cinema re-release in August this summer. Julio, aged nineteen, has just left the provinces to settle down in the outskirts of Lisbon. He lives in a poor area with his uncle Afonso and starts working as an apprentice shoemaker. At the shop, he gets to know Ilda, a young housemaid and regular customer. Ilda is pretty, joyful and modern and Julio falls for her. The two young people, although very different from each other, soon fall for each other. The film stars Rui Gomes, Isabel Ruth, Ruy Furtado, & Paulo Renato. Acclaimed as a "masterpiece" and "striking in its context and its mastery of filmmaking." It looks like a ravishing romance.
"Forget this!" Shout Factory has released a new US trailer for the UK film Misbehaviour, a quirky comedy about badass women fighting back in the 70s. It already opened in the UK earlier this year. The film tells the true story of what happened during the 1970 Miss World competition in London, a beauty pageant that was the most viewed TV show at the time. A group of women from the Women's Liberation Movement disrupted the show, and even when the show continued, Miss Grenada went on to become the first black woman to be crowned Miss World. The film stars Keira Knightley, with Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Miss Grenada, Lesley Manville, Jessie Buckley, Keeley Hawes, Rhys Ifans, Phyllis Logan, Suki Waterhouse, Emma Corrin, plus Greg Kinnear as legendary American comedian Bob Hope (who hosted Miss World at the time). This looks great! Raucous and witty and amusing and devious. Catch up with the film later this year.
"One bad puff can put you in the ground." Better Noise Films has revealed the official trailer for an indie drama titled Sno Babies, one of the first feature films from editor-turned-filmmaker Bridget Smith. Sno Babies depicts the grim realities of addiction and its effects on families. Kristen and Hannah are likeable, college-bound teens - and heroin addicts - hiding their plight behind the façade of middle-class suburbia. This is one of those dramatic films where the innuendo in the title is actually a reference to drugs, and not something else. Starring Katie Kelly & Paola Andino as Kristen & Hannah, with Michael Lombardi, Evangeline Young, Niko Terho, and Joanne Baron. This looks like a powerful film about drugs and addiction, but it seems a bit too cliche and heavy-handed overall to really make an impact. Still worth a look.
"She learned to forge before she learned to write." Focus Features has finally revealed an official trailer for the spunky indie comedy Kajillionaire, the latest feature written & directed by indie filmmaker Miranda July (Me and You and Everyone We Know). This first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, and is currently set for release in September after initially being scheduled for the summer. A woman's life is turned upside down when her criminal parents invite an outsider to join them on a major heist they're planning. Starring Evan Rachel Wood, with Debra Winger, Richard Jenkins, and Gina Rodriguez. Described as a "a profoundly moving and wildly original comedy." The trailer features the song "Mr. Lonely" performed by Angel Olsen & Emile Mosseri (the film's composer). Definitely looks quite kooky and unique.
"Will you tell me what is going on in that house?" Dark Star Pictures has released an official US trailer for a Greek mystery fantasy horror titled Entwined, marking the feature directorial debut of filmmaker Minos Nikolakakis. This premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year, and it also played at the Thessalloniki, Warsaw, Bucheon, and Fantaspoa Film Festivals last year. Panos, a city doctor, relocates to a remote Greek village to offer his services to the underserved community. There he meets a woman with a mysterious skin condition named Danae, and he quickly falls for her. But soon discovers "Danae is not the helpless princess he thought she was, and time is of the essence for both of them." Uh oh. Starring Prometheus Aleifer, John De Holland, Maria Eglezaki, and Anastasia Rafaella Konidi. This reminds me of the superb Swedish film Border, also a strange forest fairy tale, and this seems to borrow a few of those fantasy themes.
Hi, fly. Memento Films in France has unveiled a short 15-second teaser trailer for the film Mandibules, the latest from wacky French musician / filmmaker Quentin Dupieux. The pandemic hasn't stopped him from working! Mandibules was also announced as part of the line-up for the 2020 Venice Film Festival, kicking off in September. So what the heck is this film about? Two simple-minded friends discover a giant fly in the trunk of a car and decide to domesticate it to earn money with it. Of course. Definitely a Dupieux concept. The film stars Adèle Exarchopoulos, Grégoire Ludig, Bruno Lochet, Coralie Russier, India Hair, David Marsais, with Dave Chapman as "La Mouche" (aka The Fly). There isn't really much to this teaser trailer except a quick shot of the giant fly drinking water from a pool, but still, you've gotta see this trailer with a giant fly drinking water from a pool! Because who knows what happens next…? Take a peek below.
"It had to come out eventually." Film Movement has debuted an official trailer for a Japanese indie drama titled A Girl Missing, the latest from acclaimed Japanese filmmaker Koji Fukada (Sayônara, Harmonium, The Man from the Sea). This film first premiered at the Locarno and Toronto Film Festivals last year, and stopped by a number of international festivals throughout the fall. Koji Fukada's followup to the critically-acclaimed Harmonium, A Girl Missing "is a satisfying slow-burn drama expertly told." A home-care nurse's relationship with the family she has spent years working for is threatened when her nephew is arrested for kidnapping their daughter. Japanese filmmakers love to tell dramatic stories about family and interpersonal relationships with devastating twists and turns. The film stars Mariko Tsutsui, Mikako Ichikawa, and Sôsuke Ikematsu. This looks like it starts out rather slow & calm and gets extremely intense as it goes on.