WIFF’s Weekend Watch List — 02/12

MY OCTOPUS TEACHER

(If you want the one Netflix film that you haven’t watched yet)

Vincent Georgie: I finally caught up with this film only a few days ago and realized I had been missing out on one of the most touching, thoughtful and educational films I’ve seen in a while. Don’t let the wonky title scare you off. The underwater footage is expectedly gorgeous but it’s the central friendship between man and, well, octopus that really impresses.

Synopsis: A diver swims with an octopus that lives in a kelp forest off the coast of South Africa.

Watch on Netflix

THE LIVES OF OTHERS

(If you want to be impressed)

Vincent Georgie: Mori McIntosh, one of our sharpest programmers, holds every film to a certain standard: “Is it as good as The Lives of Others?”. That’s her gold standard, and it’s a very high bar.

Audiences who discover this Oscar-winning German film always comment how fascinating and absorbing the film is. A top-shelf drama, with excellent performances.

Synopsis: In 1983 East Berlin, dedicated Stasi officer Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Mühe), doubting that a famous playwright (Sebastian Koch) is loyal to the Communist Party, receives approval to spy on the man and his actress-lover Christa-Maria (Martina Gedeck). Wiesler becomes unexpectedly sympathetic to the couple, then faces conflicting loyalties when his superior takes a liking to Christa-Maria and orders Wiesler to get the playwright out of the way.

Watch on iTunes

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AMERICAN ANIMALS

(If you like your crime true… and false)

Vincent Georgie: I’ve never seen a crime story that is first filmed (quite perfectly) as a full-on drama with great young actors…and then filmed it a second time (again, quite perfectly) as a true-crime documentary with the real subjects…and then interweave it all, equally. Filmmaker Bart Layton, who made one of the most memorable docs ever called THE IMPOSTER (WIFF 2012), returns here with a film that is as interesting in its plot as it is conceptually interesting in how it was told. Let it be said that the filmmaker didn’t take the easy way out on anything. A nifty achievement seen here at WIFF 2018.

Synopsis: In an attempt to perform a brave robbery, four young men, Spencer Reinhard, Warren Lipka, Eric Borsuk and Chas Allen, decide to steal valuable books from the school’s library.

 

Watch on Amazon Prime

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Watch on YouTube

DOUBLE FEATURE

JOHN HUGHES 80’S NIGHT

THE BREAKFAST CLUB

Vincent Georgie: The soundtrack, the hair, the moment in your life where you were obsessed with Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez and the rest of the Brat Pack. Still holds up beautifully.

Synopsis: Five high school students, all with different mindsets, face detainment in their school library on a Saturday morning. As time passes by, their egos fade and they become close buddies.

Watch on Amazon Prime

Watch on Crave

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PRETTY IN PINK

Vincent Georgie: Molly Ringwald returns here, one year later, as the lead in another script by Hughes. Her charisma and appeal are on full-display in this 80s classic. Again, it still holds up beautifully.

Synopsis: Andie, a young girl, is not popular at school. She mostly kept to her friend Iona and childhood sweetheart, Duckie. But what happens when one of the popular guys at school, falls in love with her.

Watch on Amazon Prime

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Watch on YouTube