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AFI FEST Preview: What to See and Skip

AFI FEST Preview: What to See and Skip

They include opening night film “A Most Violent Year,” from filmmaker J.C. Chandor, starring Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac, Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland’s “Still Alice,” starring Julianne Moore, Rupert Wyatt’s remake “The Gambler,” starring Mark Wahlberg and Brie Larson and a First Look at footage from Ava DuVernay’s ‘Selma.”

Here’s a preview and screening guide based on we have seen at festivals and screenings so far, and a sense of where these movies are heading. And as a bonus, we’ll steer you clear of what you can skip. We’ve initialed and graded our individual picks.

Oscar Contenders:

“Foxcatcher” (Bennett Miller, USA, Sony Pictures Classics) Anne Thompson: A-, Ryan Lattanzio: A
“Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem” (Ronit and Shlomi Elkabetz, Israel, Music Box Films)
“The Homesman” (Tommy Lee Jones, USA, Saban/Roadside Attractions) AT: B+
“Leviathan” (Russia, A. Zvyagintsev, Russia, SPC) AT: A-, RL: B+
“Merchants of Doubt” (Rob Kenner, USA, SPC) AT: B+
“Mommy”  (Xavier Dolan, Canada, Roadside Attractions) AT: A, RL: A
“Mr. Turner” (Mike Leigh, UK, SPC) AT: A
“Red Army” (Gabe Polsky, USA, SPC) AT: A-
“Saint Laurent” (Bertrand Bonello, France, SPC) AT: B, RL: B+
“Salt of the Earth” (Wim Wenders and Juliano Selgado, SPC) AT: A
“Timbuktu” (Abderrahmane Sissako, Mauritania, Cohen Media Group) AT: A
“The Tribe” (Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy, Ukraine, UFO Distribution) AT: B+, RL: A
“Two Days, One Night” (Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Belgium, IFC) AT: A-, RL: B
“Wild Tales” (D. Szifron, Argentina/Spain, SPC) AT: A

Other Must-Sees: 
“10,000 KM” (Carlos Marques, Spain, Broad Green) RL: B+
“’71” 
(Yann Demange, UK, Roadside Attractions/Black Label Media) AT: A-
“Alleluia” (Fabrice du Welz, France) RL: A-
“Clouds of Sils Maria” (Olivier Assayas, France, IFC) RL: A-, Matt Mueller: B
“Duke of Burgundy” (Peter Strickland, UK, IFC) RL: B+
“Felt” (Jason Banker, USA) RL: B+
“Happy Valley” (Amir Bar-Lev, USA, Music Box) RL: B+
“Inherent Vice” (Paul Thomas Anderson, USA, Warner Bros.) AT: B, RL: A-
“It Follows”  (David Robert Mitchell, USA, Radius/TWC) AT: B+, RL: A-
“Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles” (Chuck Workman, USA, Cohen Media Group)
 
Maybe-Sees and Possibly-Skips
“Eden” (Mia Hansen-Love, France, IFC) AT: B
“Goodnight Mommy” (Severin Fiala, Veronika Franz, Austria, RADiUS) RL: B-
“Jauja” (Lisandro Alonso, Argentina, Cinema Guild) RL: C
“Over Your Dead Body” (Takashi Miike, Japan, Shout Factory) RL: C+
“Thou Wast Mild and Lovely” (Josephine Decker, US, CineliciousPics) RL: C+

 

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