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by Peter Knegt
November 1, 2012 12:32 PM
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The 10 Indie Films You Must See This November

5. Anna Karenina (November 16)

Director: Joe Wright
Cast: Keira Knightley, Aaron Johnson, Jude Law, Matthew Macfadyen, Kelly Macdonald, Emily Watson, Olivia Williams, Holliday Grainger
Distributor: Focus Features
Current Criticwire average: B+ (see all grades)

Why Are They "Must Sees"? A literary classic gets a brand new cinematic take thanks to Joe Wright and an all-star cast. Leo Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina" (last adapted in 1997 by Bernard Rose) comes to life again via a re-teaming of Wright and Keira Knightley (their third film together). The film has had generally muted buzz since screening at the Toronto Film Festival, but it was indeed warmly received there overall, with many suggesting Oscar possibilties for Knightley (and raving about the film's design). The fact that the film didn't do so well in its native UK when it was released there in September doesn't help things, but a strong reception stateside could change that.

Check out the trailer below:

6. A Royal Affair (November 9)

Director: Nikolaj Arcel
Cast:  Mads Mikkelsen, Alicia Vikander and Mikkel Følsgaard
Distributor: Magnolia
Current Criticwire average: B (see all grades)

Why is it a "Must See"? The Danish entry in this year's Oscar race, "A Royal Affair" stars great Dane Mads Mikkelsen as an 18th century royal physician who romances the queen while tending to the mentally ill King Christian VII of Denmark (Mikkel Følsgaard ). The film premiered to strong reviews at the Berlinale earlier this year, with Mikkel Følsgaard winning the Silver Bear for Best Actor and Nikolaj Arcel and Rasmus Heisterberg winning screenplay honors at the fest.

Check out the trailer below:

7. Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence In The House of God (November 16)

Director: Alex Gibney
Distributor: HBO Documentary FIlms
Current Criticwire average: B+ (See all grades)

Why is it a "Must See"? Tireless doc filmmaker Alex Gibney ("Casino Jack and the United States of Money," "Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer," "Taxi To The Dark Side," "Enron") takes on the abuse of power in the Catholic Church in his latest film. He discovers a cover-up that goes all the way to the highest office of the Vatican. A definite must see doc.

Check out the trailer below:


  • Daniel T | January 27, 2013 12:07 PMReply

    Really loved the Silver linings playbook although the craziest film I've seen recently is a quality little mock on the Irish porn industry; …

    Reckon Bradley could be the next Leo?

  • bob hawk | November 2, 2012 3:26 AMReply

    I'd add CHASING ICE. Mesmerizing, visually stunning, a "message" movie that is never polemical -- not to mention courageous filmmaking, considering what they had to do, and where they had to go, to place some of their cameras. It still resonates vividly in my mind's eye, even though I saw it almost a year ago, and I can't wait to see it on the screen again.

  • Joseph Campanella | November 1, 2012 6:45 PMReply

    Not saying these movies don't look great. Just find it funny that you are billing them as "indie" films.

    Seems to me they are studio films with MAJOR actors. Just cause something isn't THE AVENGERS doesn't mean it's an independent film.

  • Kenneth Bossard | November 1, 2012 1:19 PMReply

    I'm a big IndieWire fan. You overlooked a gem. Sundance winner, Middle of Nowhere, has been receiving great media attention and has inspired a grassroots support unprecedented. Please view the trailer and let me know your thoughts -

  • Gabe | November 1, 2012 2:48 PM

    These are for films opening November. IndieWIRE has given MIDDLE OF NOWHERE ample coverage over the months: