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15 Films to See in September

Written by on September 2, 2019 

5. First Love (Takashi Miike; Sept. 27)

The films of Takashi Miike don’t always get U.S. distribution, but thankfully after a strong response at Cannes, First Love will arrive this month. Rory O’Connor said in his review, “The last film legendary Japanese ultra-violence auteur Takashi Miike brought to Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight (Yakuza Apocalypse, 2015) featured a character that was essentially a person in a felt frog costume that looked like it’d gone through the wash a few too many times. The being had a knack for martial arts and, like some acid-trip Sesame Street version of the four horsemen, was said to signal the coming apocalypse. So to note that First Love, Miike’s latest deliriously violent mob film, which opened this week in that same renowned sidebar, is the more sober of the two is to perhaps not say a whole lot.”

4. Between Two Ferns: The Movie (Scott Aukerman; Sept. 20)

One may wonder just how the Zach Galifianakis web series Between Two Ferns could be expanded into a feature film, but in the hands of Scott Aukerman, our fears are kept at bay. Netflix is keeping the surely massive of cast cameos a tight-lipped secret, thankfully, so we expect many surprises are in store come this September. “We shot it like an actual documentary, where we built a public-access station and we shot at it. And if something came up where one of the actors would improvise something, we would then get with our production designers and production team and go shoot that scene that just came up in the improvising. So it was really a fun, cool way to do a movie,” Aukerman recently told Vulture.

3. The Death of Dick Long (Daniel Scheinert; Sept. 27)

When the directing duo known as DANIELS brought Swiss Army Man to Sundance in 2016 they took audiences aback with their peculiarly original vision, involving fart-propelled, jet-skiing corpses and boner compasses. Daniel Scheinert, one-half of the directing team, has now returned with The Death of Dick Long, a more naturalistic but also funnier (and more disturbing) follow-up. A butt rock epic built on bad decisions with plenty of affectation for its idiotic characters, the deeply dark comedy does for small-town Alabama what Fargo did for Minnesota. Continue reading my full review.

2. The Laundromat (Steven Soderbergh; Sept. 27)

Following High Flying Bird, Steven Soderbergh is back with Netflix for the Panama Papers drama The Laundromat. With the wildly varied cast of Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, Antonio Banderas, Jeffrey Wright, Matthias Schoenaerts, David Schwimmer, Alex Pettyfer, James Cromwell, Sharon Stone, and Will Forte, Rory O’Connor was a big fan at Venice, saying in his review, “A new entry into the financial satire sub-genre of Soderbergh’s filmmaking (a list including The Informant!, High Flying Bird, etc.), his new movie The Laundromat is an air-tight, tumultuous info-graph about our rotten to the core financial systems and, in particular, the 2016 Mossack and Fonseca leak, when millions of the Panamanian law firm’s files were anonymously leaked to the press.”

1. Ad Astra (James Gray; Sept. 20)

It’s been nearly a year since the release of James Gray’s long-awaited space drama Ad Astra had been promised, but after a few delays and an entire conglomerate merger, it is finally arriving in a wide release. Starring Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones, Ruth Negga, Donald Sutherland and Jamie Kennedy, the film follows our lead as astronaut Roy McBride who sets out on a mission to find his missing father and, of course, discover more mysteries of our vast solar system. While our Venice review was a bit cooler than most, I still simply can not wait to experience one of my favorite directors embark on something of this scale.

Matinees to See: Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice (9/6), It: Chapter 2 (9/6), Spoor (9/11), 3 From Hell (9/13), The Sound of Silence (9/13), The Goldfinch (9/13), Liam: As It Was (9/13), Hustlers (9/13), Midnight Traveler (9/18), Where’s My Roy Cohn? (9/20), Always in Season (9/20), Loro (9/20), Britt-Marie Was Here (9/20), and Judy (9/27)

What are you watching this month?

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