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15 Films to See in April

Written by on April 1, 2019 

10. Peterloo (Mike Leigh; April 5)

While not received with the same amount of acclaim as his prior features, a new Mike Leigh film still beckons our attention. Rory O’Connor said in his review,” Leigh translates the defining moment–and those in the immediate lead-up–to the screen with tremendous weight and great clarity, making the sense of tragedy all the more potent. Indeed, if audiences are prepared to sit up straight, take in an opening dialectic, and forgive the understandable shortcomings of some performers, there are many important, fascinating, and devastating truths to be found here.”

9. Missing Link (Chris Butler; April 12)

While I’m embargoed from telling you any thoughts on the new Laika animation, I’ll just say the years between their releases–in which our eyes are exposed to hours of unimaginative, cookie-cutter Hollywood animations, be it through marketing or, in the rare case, actually seeing the ghastly creations–always seems to be just enough time to crave their visually inventive worlds. So, for those yearning to see the company’s most epic adventure yet, prepare to be satiated.

8. A Land Imagined (Siew Hua Yeo; April 12)

The top winner at Locarno last year will land on Netflix this month, but those in NYC get the rare chance to see it theatrically. Rory O’Connor said in his review, “His story tells of a detective who arrives on a land reclamation site to investigate how and why one of the workers disappeared. What Yeo presents is remarkable for its style and ambition but also for its scattered folly, a world of Lynchian dreams and techno-surrealism that somehow echoes both Chinatown and Wong Kar-wai. It’s also a tale buckling at the knees under all that symbolism and with at least one too many loose ends left dangling.”

7. Grass (Hong Sang-soo; April 19)

grass-1

South Korean filmmaker Hong Sangsoo is returning with his second U.S. release of the year. Rory O’Connor said in his review, “The artistic relationship shared by Hong and Kim Min-hee has been key to the filmmaker’s recent run of exceptional films and it goes without saying that the actress’ involvement has paralleled the director’s own evolving scrutiny of gender roles in his work. In Grass she appears no less statuesque in her undeniable beauty but–as in last year’s On The Beach at Night Alone and The Day After–there is a newfound saltiness to how her character deals with the men who surround her, often meeting their groveling advances with a bemused dismissiveness that makes them look all the more foolish. The prime culprit this time is a writer whose self-involvement is so great he feels it appropriate to request that she move in with him in order to be his own live-in muse.”

6. Under the Silver Lake (David Robert Mitchell; April 19)

under-the-silver-lake

After continuing to delay David Robert Mitchell’s It Follows follow-up, if all goes according to plan, A24 will actually release his modern noir this month. Giovanni Marchini Camia said in his review, ” David Robert Mitchell is a nostalgic. His debut feature, The Myth of the American Sleepover, paid tribute to such teenage dramas as American Graffiti and the work of John Hughes. Its follow-up, the terrific It Follows, ranks amongst the smartest and most effective specimens in John Carpenter’s vast and variegated suburban horror legacy. Mitchell has now tried his hand at an L.A. noir with Under the Silver Lake, which owes as big a debt to The Long GoodbyeMulholland Drive, and Inherent Vice (to mention but three of the most conspicuous referents) as it does Thomas Pynchon’s labyrinthine, paranoia-laden narratives.”

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