WIFF’s Weekend Watch List — 02/26

MINARI

(If you want to see the most under-the-radar hit of the year)

Vincent Georgie: What started off as a beloved but very, very small title from Sundance 2020 has emerged into the title that critics and audiences alike have not forgotten over a year later. This is the story of a Korean family and how the American Dream tests, expands and deepens their sense and need for family. Every step of the way, all you can think is “I really want everything to work out for these people”. Think of how often you watch a film and don’t care (or even remember) what happens to its characters. Let this gem of a film make up for that. Like NOMADLAND, expect this to be a breakout at the Oscars.

Synopsis: A Korean American family moves to an Arkansas farm in search of its own American dream. Amidst the challenges of this new life in the strange and rugged Ozarks, they discover the undeniable resilience of family and what really makes a home.

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BULL DURHAM

(If you want a hot, sweaty…comedy)

Vincent Georgie: I recently revisited Ron Shelton’s 1988 baseball comedy and the smart laughs, energy and huge sex appeal of its lead performers still holds up. The very funny, saucy chemistry between Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins makes for a very entertaining night at the movies. The evidence was clear that each would continue on paths to greater stardom.

Synopsis: Crash Davis, a veteran catcher in baseball, is hired to coach Ebby Calvin ‘Nuke’ LaLoosh, a dim-witted beginner. However, both of them soon get involved with Annie, a groupie who loves the sport.

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COPYCAT

(If you want a quality psychological thriller)

Vincent Georgie: Here’s an easy recipe on how to set-up a thriller to succeed: cast Holly Hunter in a lead as a police detective, then cast Sigourney Weaver (also in a lead role) as a serial killer expert, and finally go way outside the box and cast crooner Harry Connick Jr seriously against type as a “person of interest”. Matched with an intelligent script and taut direction and you’ve got yourself a title that is a cut above the rest. The film holds up well 26 years after its release.

Synopsis: Helen, an agoraphobic psychologist, leads a reclusive life after getting attacked by a psychopath. However, she later teams up with two detectives to hunt down a dangerous serial killer.

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DOUBLE FEATURE

THE COMPLICATED LIVES OF MUSICAL LEGENDS

BIRD

Vincent Georgie: Clint Eastwood directed this stylish biopic about the legendary jazz saxophonist Charlie “Bird” Parker. With a deeply impressive performance by future Oscar Winner Forest Whitaker, this 1988 musical drama will impress you.

Synopsis: A biographical movie based on jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker. Addicted to drugs from a young age, Parker suffers the corresponding highs and lows but his loving wife Chan supports him.

 

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SEARCHING FOR SUGARMAN

Vincent Georgie: ’70s famed musician Rodriguez cut a big hit in South Africa, led a mysterious and low-profile life, and has spent much of his adult life in the great haunts of downtown Detroit. Our hero is as improbable, cool and captivating as is this film. Come for the film, stay for the music. Oscar Winner for Best Documentary Feature and WIFF 2012 local favourite.

Synopsis: Though he faded into obscurity in the U.S., an early ’70s musician known as Rodriguez became a huge hit in South Africa and was widely rumored to have died. Two obsessed fans set out to learn the man’s true fate.

 

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