PG, mature themes.
Dir: Caroline Vignal, France/Belgium. Laure Calamy, Benjamin Lavernhe, Olivia Côte César Award Winner, Best Actress. In French with English Subtitles. "Inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson's memoir Travels with a Donkey in the Cévennes, this delightful French comedy boasts sparkling work from Laure Calamy (Call My Agent!'). She is the film's lovestruck and hapless protagonist, Antoinette, whose romantic folly becomes the talk of the Cévennes when she rashly pursues her lover Vladimir and his family on a trekking holiday... But when she arrives at the first inn of the journey, Vladimir and his family are nowhere to be seen. Instead, she explains to the assembled guests the reason for her trip, creating quite a stir. Antoinette is also the only one of them who has opted to travel with a donkey; when she's assigned Patrick, a truly stubborn mule, she quickly realises why, and the pair lag pathetically behind on each leg of the journey, leaving Antoinette at first fuming at Patrick, though later he becomes her confidant. Writer-director Caroline Vignal does a lovely job of balancing the farce and the utter beguilingness of the surroundings, and humanising her emotionally vulnerable lead, who's clearly in for quite the confrontation. It's a sunny, non-judgemental, ultimately spirit-lifting tale, and Calamy's animated turn is stupendously entertaining, as Antoinette wears her heart embarrassingly on her sleeve and falls hook, line and sinker for a donkey." - Emma Simmonds, List Film
PG, coarse language.
Dir: Fergus Grady, Noel Smyth, Spain, 2019. Manny Domingo Jr., Neill Le Roux, Sue Morris "Exploring themes of spirituality, wellbeing and religion, this is the inspirational journey of six strangers from New Zealand and Australia walking the 800km Camino de Santiago to overcome the personal and physical trauma that life has dealt them. Through blisters, shin splints and heat, the Camino forces pilgrims to defy their age and physical ability, while also acting as a catalyst for change. Both heart-breaking and inspirational, Camino Skies is an uplifting story about everyday people doing the extraordinary." - Alexa Dalby, Dog and Wolf
PG, brief nudity, language, mature themes.
Dir: Chloé Zhao, USA, 2020. Frances McDormand, David Strathairn, Linda May, Charlene Swankie Winner of three Academy Awards including; Best Picture, Best Actress and Best Director. "A transformative journey across the American west unfolds with utter majesty in Chloé Zhao's adaptation of Jessica Bruder's non-fiction book. Reeling from the twin tragedies of losing her home and her husband, the free-spirited Fern (a never-better Frances McDormand) is plunged into a transient existence as she hits the road in a lovingly converted van. It's an unforgiving lifestyle, dependent on seasonal gigs and 'stealth parking'. But along the way, Fern meets many beautiful souls (including real-life nomads Linda May and Bob Wells), and finds a sense of community with other older Americans, who have been similarly cast adrift. Freed from the need to explain itself, or explicitly condemn the negligence that has brought Fern to this point, Nomadland transcends narrative conventions, allowing us to simply luxuriate in its protagonist's exploits. With a stunning score and sublime cinematography the film boasts a remarkable ability to capture the cathartic power of connecting with nature, and is an almost spiritual experience. As she salutes the resilience of humankind, Zhao has given us something genuinely unforgettable." - Emma Simmonds, Radio Times (UK)
PG, mature themes.
*Due to a change in the release date, showtimes have changed from what was printed in The BUZZ Dir: Majid Majidi, Iran, 2020. Ali Nassirian, Javad Ezati, Tannaz Tabatabaei, Roohollah Zamani Winner of the 2020 Venice International Film Festival Marcello Mastroianni Award. In Persian with English Subtitles. "Iranian director Majid Majidi has made some of the most visually stunning and emotionally stirring films in world cinema about the plight of under-privileged young people, and Sun Children is one of his very best. The story of street boys commissioned by a local boss to dig for a treasure unfolds around an urban schoolyard and the clever, freckled face of 12-year-old Ali, a stereotype-buster of non-stop courage... He directs his gang - Reza, Maman and the small Afghan boy Abolfazi - in petty crimes at the behest of a neighborhood don... Ali is instructed to take his boys and enroll in the Sun School, a charitable institution for working kids whose teachers aren’t cold-hearted bureaucrats but idealistic educators... Ali's brief is to find an underground tunnel that leads under the cemetery next door, where he is to look for a lost but unspecified treasure." - Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter "If one intention of Sun Children is to remind that all kids are created equal, deserving of education and encouragement, Majidi’s young ensemble makes the case loud and clear... His kids compel and entertain." - Peter Debruge, Variety