Back to IndieWire

Film Guide: What Movie Should I Watch This Weekend?

Film Guide: What Movie Should I Watch This Weekend?

To help sift through the increasing number of new releases (independent or otherwise), the Weekly Film Guide is back! Below you’ll find basic plot, personnel and cinema information for all of this week’s fresh offerings. 

Starting this month, we’ve also put together a list for the entire month. We’ve included this week’s list here, complete with information on screening locations for films in limited release. 

SEE MORE: Here Are All the Upcoming Movies in Theaters for May 2016

Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, May 6. All synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise.


Captain America: Civil War

Directors: Joe & Anthony Russo
Cast: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Don Cheadle, Paul Rudd, Chadwick Boseman, Tom Holland, Daniel Brühl, Frank Grillo, William Hurt,
Synopsis: “Following the events of Age of Ultron, the collective governments of the world pass an act designed to regulate all superhuman activity. This polarizes opinion amongst the Avengers, causing two factions to side with Iron Man or Captain America, which causes an epic battle between former allies.”
Criticwire Grade AverageB (9 reviews)


Being Charlie

Director: Rob Reiner
Cast: Nick Robinson, Morgan Saylor, Devon Bostick, Cary Elwes, Susan Misner, Common, Ricardo Chavira
Synopsis: “Charlie Mills has just turned 18 and is running away from rehab – again. Returning home, he is shocked to learn that his father, a former film star currently running for Governor of California, has staged an intervention, with the goal of making Charlie address–and, hopefully, conquer–his substance abuse issues far from the harsh glare of the media. Reluctantly, Charlie enters a new adult facility where he meets a kindred spirit, Eva, and their budding romance looks like it might be an antidote to his strained relationship with a highly preoccupied father and overly indulgent mother. The question is, will these two kids help each other or lead one another down yet another rabbit hole? Facing more obstacles, restrictions, disappointments, and even tragedies than any 18 year-old should have to, Charlie is forced to begin the difficult but necessary journey to self-discovery and acceptance.”
Theatrical Release: New York and Los Angeles (expands to additional cities on May 13th)

A Bigger Splash

Director: Luca Guadagnino
Cast: Ralph Fiennes, Dakota Johnson, Matthias Schoenaerts, Tilda Swinton, Aurore Clément, Corrado Guzzanti, Lily McMenamy, Elena Bucci
Synopsis: “An American couple, Paul and Marianne, spend their vacation in Italy and and experiences trouble when the wife invites a former lover and his teenage daughter to visit, which leads to jealousy and dangerous sexual scenarios.”
Theatrical Release: New York, Los Angeles and Ann Arbor, MI


Director: Chad Archibald
Cast: Elma Begovic, Annette Wozniak, Jordan Gray, Lawrene Denkers, Denise Yuen, Tianna Nori
Synopsis: “While on her bachelorette party getaway, Casey, the bride to be, gets a seemingly harmless bite from an unknown insect. After returning home with cold feet, Casey tries to call off her wedding but before she’s able to, she starts exhibiting insect like traits. Between her physical transformation and her wedding anxiety, Casey succumbs to her new instincts and begins creating a hive that not only houses her translucent eggs, but feeds on the flesh of others. As her transformation becomes complete, Casey discovers that everything can change with a single bite.”
Theatrical Release: Various (including Los Angeles, Phoenix and Columbus, OH)


Director: Jeppe Rønde
Cast: Hannah Murray, Josh O’Connor
Synopsis: “Sara and her dad arrive in a town haunted by a spate of teenage suicides. When she falls in love with Jamie, she becomes prey to the depression that threatens to engulf them all. Jeppe Ronde’s debut is based on the real-life Welsh county borough of Bridgend, which has recorded at least 79 suicides since 2007.” [Tribeca Film Festival]
Criticwire Grade Average: C+ (4 reviews)
Theatrical Release: New York

Dark Horse

Director: Louise Osmond
Synopsis: “In early 2000, in a tiny village in one of the poorest mining valleys in Wales, Jan Vokes, the barmaid at the local men’s club, hatches a crazy plan to take on the “sport of kings” and breed a racehorse. She gathers together a group of locals who each agree to pitch in 10 pounds a week. They raise their foal on a hillside made of slag from the coal mine and nurture it to maturity. Reflecting their pride and flights of fancy, they name their horse Dream Alliance. To the astonishment of the racing elite, Dream becomes an unlikely champion, beating the finest thoroughbreds in the land. Then, in one fateful race, the horse—which embodies the plucky band of misfits’ hopes and dreams—has a near-fatal accident. Nursed back to health through the love of his owners, Dream makes a remarkable recovery, returning to the track for a heart-pounding comeback.” [Sundance Film Festival]
Criticwire Grade AverageA- (4 reviews)
Theatrical Release: New York and Los Angeles (expands to various cities nationwide through the end of June)


Director: Jacques Audiard
Cast: Jesuthasan Antonythasan, Kalieaswari Srinivasan, Claudine Vinasithamby, Vincent Rottiers, Marc Zinga
Synopsis: “A former soldier who assumes the name Dheepan, a young woman, Yalini and a nine year old orphan, Illayaal pose as a family to gain political asylum in France after the Sri Lankan civil war has ended. Upon arrival in Paris, Dheepan gets a job as a resident caretaker at an apartment complex in a rough and violent northeast Parisian suburb. Not only must he, Yalini and Illayaal learn a new language and way of life, they must learn to live as a family and adjust to an equally violent environment run by gangs. When Yalini gets a job tending to an older man, she is introduced to his newly returned son Brahim who unsettles the entire housing estate and sets off a spate of gang violence. Dheepan is ultimately unable to entirely escape his violent past as he tries to protect the community and the family he’s created.”
Criticwire Grade AverageB (21 reviews)
Theatrical Release: New York (opens in Los Angeles on May 13th)

Elstree 1976

Director: Jon Spira
Synopsis: “From the man behind film’s most iconic villain, to the actor whose character was completely cut from the final film, this documentary delves into the eccentric community these individuals have formed and how the Star Wars franchise continues to impact their lives decades later.”
Theatrical Release: Various (including New York and Los Angeles, Atlanta, Columbus, Houston, Orlando, Phoenix and Vancouver)

The Faith of Anna Waters

Director: Kelvin Tong
Cast: Elizabeth Rice, Matthew Settle
Synopsis: “When young and successful reporter Jamie finds out that her sister has died in mysterious circumstances, she travels to Singapore to uncover the truth. There, she discovers multiple deaths linked to her sister’s and must join forces with her sister’s husband in order to defeat a demonic entity that is using new technology to complete an ancient mission.”
Theatrical Release: New York and Los Angeles

A Light Beneath Their Feet

Director: Valerie Weiss
Cast: Taryn Manning, Madison Davenport, Maddie Hasson, Kali Hawk, Kurt Fuller, Carter Jenkins, Nora Dunn
Synopsis: “A high school senior must choose between enrolling at the college of her dreams and remaining at home to take care of her bipolar mother.”
Theatrical Release: Various

Mothers and Daughters

Director: Paul Duddridge
Cast: Susan Sarandon, Sharon Stone, Courteney Cox, Christina Ricci, Mira Sorvino, Eva Amurri Martino, Paul Wesley, Selma Blair, Ashanti
Synopsis: “Interwoven stories about what it means to be a mom, which are tied together via single gal Rigby Gray, a rock photographer who’s riding a career high when an unlikely and unexpected pregnancy forces her to turn her lens inward. As Rigby slowly comes to terms with what it might mean to change her life forever, she discovers with fresh eyes her own relationship with her estranged mother. Through a series of photographs documenting motherhood in all its varieties, she considers what it means to be maternal at all.”
Theatrical Release: Various (including New York and Los Angeles, Detroit, Houston, Louisville, Memphis, Minneapolis, Ottawa, San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto and Washington, DC)

Phantom of the Theatre

Director: Yip Wai Man
Cast: Ruby Lin, Simon Yam, Tony Yang
Synopsis: “A haunted theatre, filled with the vengeful spirits of a tragically-trapped performance troupe murdered in a fire 13 years ago, waits for the once-grand palatial playhouse to re-open with a new show…and bring in new victims.”
Theatrical Release: Various (including New York and Los Angeles, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dallas, Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, DC)

The Professor: Tai Chi’s Journey West

Director: Barry Strugatz
Synopsis: “The first major feature documentary about the martial art of Tai Chi and one of its greatest masters, Cheng Man-Ching, the man who brought the Chinese practice to the U.S. during the turbulent 1960s. Professor Cheng Man-Ching (1901-1975) is considered one of the greatest Tai Chi masters of modern times. Strugatz’s documentary tells the story of the man who overcame cultural divides to bring ancient traditions to the Western world, in the process teaching Westerners how to seek an ethical, open-minded and joyful way of life with Tai Chi – not only as a martial art, but also as a spiritual practice and form of mindful exercise.”
Theatrical Release: Los Angeles

Rabin in His Own Words

Director: Erez Laufer
Synopsis: “Through a combination of rare archival footage, home movies and private letters, his personal and professional dramas unfold before the viewer’s eyes – from his childhood as the son of a labor leader before the founding of the State of Israel, through a change of viewpoint that turned him from a farmer into an army man who stood at some of the most critical junctures in Israeli history. Through a brilliant diplomatic career as Israeli Ambassador to the United States and his entry into the Israeli political arena, and through his later years during which he served as Prime Minister, opposition leader, Minister of Defense and Prime Minister once more, in which he made moves that enraged a large portion of the public, his fight with the settlers whom he denounced as ‘cancerous,’ until the horrific moment when his political career and life were suddenly brought to an end.”
Theatrical Release: New York, Los Angeles and South Florida

Sin Alas (Without Wings)

Director: Ben Chace
Cast: Carlos Padrón, Mario Limonta, Yusleivís Rodrígues, Lieter Ledesma, Adael Rosales, Camila Artecher, Veronica Lynn
Synopsis: “The ghost of a famous ballerina dances into Luis’ life the day before he reads about her death. Her mysterious appearance haunts him, stirring memories of their clandestine love affair from another time, when he was a young idealistic writer and she, a fledgling dancer. Luis struggles to remember a melody from one of her performances, his reverie intricately intertwined with the present day as he witnesses a young neighborhood couple on the brink of separating.” [LA Film Festival] 
Theatrical Release: New York

Those People

Director: Joey Kuhn
Cast: Jonathan Gordon, Jason Ralph, Haaz Sleiman, Britt Lower
Synopsis: “On Manhattan’s gilded Upper East Side, an impressionable young painter, Charlie, finds the man of his dreams in an older pianist from across the globe, Tim. Unfortunately, Charlie is also consumed with desire and love for his manipulative best friend, Sebastian, who is embroiled in a Bernie Madoff-esque family financial scandal. Sebastian’s coping mechanism is non-stop moneyed hedonism, and he insists Charlie join him on his self-destructive streak of sex, drinking and partying at his father’s massive penthouse.”
Theatrical Release: New York and Los Angeles

To Life (A la vie)

Director: Jean-Jacques Zilbermann
Cast: Julie Depardieu, Johanna ter Steege, Suzanne Clément, Hippolyte Girardot, Benjamin Wangermee, Mathias Mlekuz
Synopsis: “Helen, Lili and Rose met in Auschwitz, where the three twenty-year-old Jewish girls were deported. Thanks to German-speaking Dutch Lili, who was working in the camp kitchen, the two French girls survived. However, after the liberation of the camp, they lost touch. Lili went back to the Netherlands. Rose married a former deportee and settled down in Canada. Helen returned alone to France where she met an old childhood sweetheart and married him, aware of his impotency caused by sinister doctors carrying out experiments on him in the concentration camp. Determined to find her old companions, Helen puts an ad in a deportees’ newspaper. Against all odds the ad is answered and the women are reunited. The reunion takes place in Berck Plage in the north of France. The women rediscover each other, as well as help each other to overcome their Auschwitz demons.”
Theatrical Release: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Miami

For more upcoming films from this month, check out our May theatrical release guide.

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: News and tagged

Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox