A Wrinkle In Time (out 3/9)
Ava DuVernay’s big screen adaptation of Madeleine L’Engle’s beloved sci-fi/fantasy novel marks a departure from the filmmaker’s best known works. Selma and 13th are arguably two of the most popular depictions of the United States’ history on race released in recent years. This time, DuVernay herself makes history as the first black woman to direct a $100 million movie. Considering the anticipation around it, the project seems poised to continue the trend of recent high profile films such as Black Panther and Wonder Woman that have proved blockbuster success doesn’t have to rely on white male talent
Thoroughbreds (out 3/9)
Thoroughbreds features the final performance of Anton Yelchin, the talented actor who died much too young in 2016, as well as a turn from Anya Taylor-Joy, known for her roles in The Witch and Split. The onscreen talent alone make the film worthy of attention. Its attempt to pull off dark comedy on par with beloved cult films American Psycho and Heathers isn’t exactly the easiest feat to pull off, but to do so would be truly impressive.
Isle Of Dogs (out 3/23)
There’s something about the stop motion animation in the trailer that screams, “Wes Anderson film.” Of course, being a Wes Anderson film, it’s not so much screamed as earnestly stated directly to camera in a symmetrically composed shot immediately recognizable as his style. Anderson’s last animated effort, Fantastic Mr. Fox, was a surprising joy. His last movie set in Asia, The Darjeeling Limited, exploited its backdrop in a way that was sometimes cringeworthy. Hopefully, despite hints of a similar problem here, it will be more the former than the latter.
Ready Player One (out 3/30)
Steven Spielberg borrowing the plot of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to deliver an overload of eighties nostalgia seems a bit on the nose. Perhaps it was only a matter of time, though, before one of the New Hollywood auteurs who rose to fame pastiching classic directors wound up cannibalizing their own work in a Who Framed Roger Rabbit? for the 21st century.
Gemini (out 3/30)
Zoë Kravitz, Lola Kirke and John Cho are each compelling screen presences. Put them together in a neo-noir from the indie studio responsible for releasing I, Tonya, Ingrid Goes West and Beach Rats and you have the makings of a potential cult film. Going by the trailer, this certainly seems like a candidate for that coveted status.
Also of Note (for better or worse):
- 7 Days in Entebbe
- Death Wish
- Final Portrait
- Love, Simon
- Pacific Rim Uprising
- Red Sparrow
- Tomb Raider
J. McVay also hosts the BreakThru Radio Weekly podcast, which features reviews of new and recently released movies each week. Check out future episodes to hear reviews and discussions of some of these releases.