Take your pick: A Johnny Depp-Tim Burton misfire, a slight but charming Lebanese comedy-musical (Toronto’s People’s Choice Award, “Where Do We Go Now”), an anti-American shoot ’em up (“God Bless America”), a delightful Japanese kids’ movie (“I Wish”), the impeccably reviewed thriller “Sleepless Night” or Paul Simon music doc “Under African Skies” — and that’s just a few of this weekend’s offerings. Details on these and more below. Indiewire has reviews for 15 indies hitting theaters.
“Sleepless Night” Tribeca Film, FR/BEL/LUX | Dir: Frédéric Jardin; Cast: Tomer Sisley, Serge Riaboukine | Criticwire’s Pick | 100% Fresh | Time Out NY says: “An American remake is already being prepped. We suggest Hollywood simply cries uncle now and calls it a day.”
“Under African Skies” A&E IndieFilms, US/SA | Dir: Joe Berlinger; With: Paul Simon | Criticwire’s Pick | 100% Fresh | THR calls it “A pure-bliss celebration of Paul Simon’s landmark album Graceland coupled with an interesting if not unbiased look at the controversy surrounding its release.”
“I Wish” Magnolia, JAP | Dir: Hirokazu Koreeda; Cast: Koki Maeda, Ohshirô Maeda | ThePlaylist hails it as “The Rare Example Of A Great Kids Film That Actually Understands Kids” | 85% Fresh | AV Club says: “Full of life, heart, and funny little details about daily existence, as it meanders its way toward moments of real profundity.”
“Where Do We Go Now” Sony Pictures Classics, FR/LEB/EGY/IT | Dir: Nadine Labaki; Cast: Nadine Labaki, Claude Baz Moussawbaa, Layla Hakim, Yvonne Maalouf | Indiewire interviews Labaki | 50% Rotten | Roger Moore: “Slow moving…it isn’t a great film but it is an entertaining one, a touchy subject given a feel-good flavor.”
“Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview” Magnolia, US | Dir: Paul Sen, Interviewer/Writer: Robert X. Cringely | Magnolia buys the “Fascinating Document” | Roger Ebert says: “It’s a tribute to the singular popularity of Steve Jobs that he’s probably the only talking head people would pay to watch for more than an hour.”