New releases 10/6/20

Top Hits
Fisherman’s Friends (comedy/drama, Tuppence Middleton. Rotten Tomatoes: 67%. Metacritic: 45. From Glenn Kenny’s New York Times review: “This is one of those ‘based on a true story’ movies that rather undercuts its veracity by having every character talk like they’re in a movie. In 2010, in Port Isaac, Cornwall, a quartet of loutish music industry execs throwing a stag weekend for a colleague hear the singing of the local fisherman. Described by one character as ‘the rock ‘n’ roll of 1752,’ it sure has some heavenly harmonies, and one of the louts hears the sound of money.” Read more…)

Valley Girl (comedy/musical, Jessica Rothe. Rotten Tomatoes: 55%. Metacritic: 53. From Natalia Winkelman’s New York Times review: “The original movie, starring a hunky Nicolas Cage, cast this fantasy of Los Angeles as the backdrop for Julie and Randy’s star-crossed romance: Suburban fashionista meets downtown rebel. The remake… amplifies the couple’s divide by reimagining their affair as a jukebox musical. Encino-based mall rats harmonize to ‘We Got the Beat’; wild children of the strip belt ‘Bad Reputation.’ With teasing self-awareness, the director Rachel Lee Goldenberg flattens the characters into cultural touchstones.” Read more…)

Yes, God, Yes (coming-of-age drama/comedy, Natalia Dyer. Rotten Tomatoes: 93%, Certified Fresh. Metacritic: 71. From Jeannette Catsoulis’ New York Times review: “Burdened by a silly R rating that may deter the very youngsters who are likely to enjoy it most, ‘Yes, God, Yes’ [written and directed by Karen Maine] fights back with an appealing lead and an overwhelmingly innocent tone. In its hands, the pleasures of self-pleasuring might be elusive, but they’re never, ever shameful.” Read more…)

New Foreign DVDs
The Load (Serbia, drama, Leon Lucev. Rotten Tomatoes: 100%. Metacritic: 75. A New York Times Critic’s Pick. From Glenn Kenny’s Times review: “‘The Load’ is set in Yugoslavia in 1999, amid the NATO bombings meant to put an end to roiling ethnic violence. At both the film’s opening and close to its end, bombs are seen from afar — streams of what look like fireworks that ascend and descend but never burst into color. The characters in this atmospheric, gripping film don’t respond to the sight in any way; the explosives are just one more unpleasant component of their unpleasant day-to-day living.” Read more…)

Loveless (Russia, drama, Maryana Spivak. Rotten Tomatoes: 95%, Certified Fresh. Metacritic: 86. A New York Times Critic’s Pick. From Jeannette Catsoulis’ Times review: “Unfolding beneath skies the color and density of damp concrete, ‘Loveless,’ the fifth feature from the Russian director Andrey Zvyagintsev [after his notable 2014 drama, ‘Leviathan’], uses a toxic marriage to paint a larger portrait of decay, dereliction and moral detachment. And oh, his gaze is pitiless.” Read more…)

Santiago, Italia (Italy/Chile, documentary dir. by Nanni Moretti, history, Italy role in helping opponents of Chilean junta. Rotten Tomatoes: 100%. From Richard Brody’s New Yorker review: “The Italian director Nanni Moretti crafts this fiercely earnest documentary with a frank simplicity that feels remarkably original. The film tells a historical story with personal passion and grand drama: he interviews a wide range of Chileans—factory workers, filmmakers, doctors, writers—about Salvador Allende’s jubilant rise to power, in the early seventies, the Chilean Army’s 1973 coup [aided by the United States], and the monstrous cruelties to which the junta subjected Allende’s sympathizers. One embassy in Santiago—Italy’s—allowed Chileans to take refuge within its walls, and then managed to negotiate their safe passage to Italy” Read more…)

New TV
Rick & Morty: Season 4 (animated TV series. Rotten Tomatoes: 94%, Certified Fresh. Metacritic: 84.)