We’re finally out of the sparse summer season of bad Hollywood blockbusters and children’s films (although Brave is wonderful), into the richer waters of the autumnal early Oscar hopefuls.
There is much to hope for in this. Whilst Tolstoy will never be accused of being brief, his narratives are always rich and scintillating. Admittedly, I’m only 250 pages in to the book so far (in an attempt to read it before the film), but epic appears to be an understatement. To get a screenwriter of the calibre of Tom Stoppard on board is exceedingly exciting. A man whose credits include Empire of the Sun, Brazil & Shakespeare in Love is not to be trifled with. As for the director, Joe Wright is the person who brought us the fantastic Atonement, and the best performances out of Keira Knightley. Anna Karenina is a story about the most powerful thing on earth: Love.
Killing Them Softly
Killer Joe has been one of the cinematic highlights of this year so far, and it would seem as though Killing Them Softly is roughly along similar lines. Brad Pitt plays a Mob enforcer with the task of tracking down two petty criminals who accidentally manage to collapse the local criminal economy. The cast is superb: along with Pitt it stars: Liotta, Jenkins, Gandolfini & Shepard.
You may recognise the name Asghar Farhadi as the Oscar-winning director of A Separation. This is the film he made directly before that. It’s a tale about a young school teacher travelling with friends to the seaside, unaware that she is going to be set up with a recent divorcee. This deceit leads to tragic consequences.
Tabu –Miguel Gomes, the acclaimed director of Our Beloved Month of August, returns with a sumptuous Black and White two-part tale.
Lawless – Lawless is the true story of the infamous bootlegging siblings the Bondurant Brothers. LaBoeuf and Hardy star whilst Cave and Ellis provide the soundtrack.
Evil Dead 2 – FINALLY! A horror comedy classic and a film that needs no introduction. Groovy.
Shut Up and Play the Hits – Documenting the last ever LCD Soundsystem gig, and an intimate portrait of frontman James Murphy as he faces the ramifications of disbanding the band.
To Rome with Love – Woody Allen does his bit for the Rome tourist board.