Matt writes: Happy New Year, Ebert Club subscribers! As we embark on 2023, RogerEbert.com publisher Chaz Ebert would like to take a moment to reflect on all of the essential writing that was published at our site in 2022. Click here to read her complete essay, which begins with the following words…
“HAPPY NEW YEAR! I am hoping that 2023 will be healthier, happier and more prosperous for you. And thank you for joining us here at RogerEbert.com as we share our film reviews, TV/streaming reviews, collections, interviews, blog entries and more. All of our contributors and their individual collection of published work, can be found here. But none of that happens without this team: Managing Editor, Brian Tallerico; Editor-at-Large, Matt Zoller Seitz; Senior Editor, Nick Allen; Literary Editor, Matt Fagerholm; and our Contributing Editor, Nell Minow. I am so grateful to them, and to all of you.”
No Bears (2022). Written and directed by Jafar Panahi. Starring Jafar Panahi, Naser Hashemi, Vahid Mobasheri. Synopsis: Two parallel love stories in which the partners are thwarted by hidden, inevitable obstacles, the force of superstition, and the mechanics of power. Now playing in the US.
JUNG_E (2023). Written and directed by Sang-ho Yeon. Starring Kim Hyun-joo, Ryu Kyung-Soo. Synopsis: On an uninhabitable 22nd-century Earth, the outcome of a civil war hinges on cloning the brain of an elite soldier to create a robot mercenary. Debuts on Netflix on January 20th, 2023.
Of an Age (2023). Written and directed by Goran Stolevski. Starring Thom Green, Elias Anton, Hattie Hook. Synopsis: A Serbian ballroom dancer experiences an unexpected and intense 24-hour romance with a friend’s older brother. Debuts in the US on February 10th, 2023.
Blood (2023). Directed by Brad Anderson. Written by Will Honley. Starring Michelle Monaghan, Finlay Wojtak-Hissong, Skeet Ulrich. Synopsis: Jess, a separated and nurse who moves with her daughter and young son Owen back into her old farmhouse. Shortly after settling in, Owen is bitten by the dog, resulting in a mysterious infection from the bite. Debuts in the US on January 12th, 2023.
Onlookers (2023). Directed by Kimi Takesue. Synopsis: A visually striking, immersive meditation on travel and tourism in Laos, reflecting on how we all live as observers. Debuts in the US on January 20th, 2023.
Alone at Night (2023). Directed by Jimmy Giannopoulos. Written by Jimmy Giannopoulos and Diomedes Raul Bermudez. Starring Luis Guzmán, Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton. Synopsis: Quarantine leads to a night of terror. Debuts in the US on January 20th, 2023.
True Detective: Night Country (2023). Created by Nic Pizzolatto. Starring Jodie Foster, John Hawkes, Christopher Eccleston. Synopsis: In Ennis, Alaska, the men that operate a research station vanish. To solve the case, Detectives Danvers and Navarro will have to confront the darkness themselves, and dig into the haunted truths that lie buried under the eternal ice. US release date is TBA.
The Last of Us (2023). Created by Neil Druckmann and Craig Mazin. Starring Pedro Pascal, Bella Ramsey, Gabriel Luna. Synopsis: Joel and Ellie, a pair connected through the harshness of the world they live in, are forced to endure brutal circumstances and ruthless killers on a trek across post-pandemic America. Debuts on HBO Max on January 15th, 2023.
Kaleidoscope (2023). Created by Eric Garcia. Starring Giancarlo Esposito, Paz Vega, Rufus Sewell. Synopsis: Centered around the largest heist ever attempted, the vengeance and betrayals that surround it. Now streaming on Netflix.
Nightmare at Precinct 84 (2023). Written and directed by Samuel Gonzalez Jr. Starring Meredith Thomas, Jill Awbrey, Bill Moseley. Synopsis: Set on a stormy night on Christmas Eve, a small town female sheriff who secretly is a serial killer gets a visit from a mysterious woman who tells 4 bizarre stories. US release date is TBA.
Insane Like Me? (2023). Directed by Chip Joslin. Written by Britt Bankhead. Starring Britt Bankhead, Eric Roberts, Jack Maxwell. Synopsis: A supernatural thriller about a combat veteran, who returns home after a tour of duty overseas. He becomes the lead suspect in his girlfriend’s disappearance and is subsequently wrongly convicted and incarcerated. Ten years later he is released from the mental asylum, he returns home to find the truth and settle the score. US release date is TBA.
Knock at the Cabin (2023). Directed by M. Night Shyamalan. Written by M. Night Shyamalan, Steve Desmond and Michael Sherman (based on the book by Paul Tremblay). Starring Dave Bautista, Rupert Grint, Jonathan Groff. Synopsis: While vacationing, a girl and her parents are taken hostage by armed strangers who demand that the family make a choice to avert the apocalypse. Debuts in the US on February 3rd, 2023.
M3GAN (2023). Directed by Gerard Johnstone. Written by Akela Cooper. Starring Violet McGraw, Amie Donald, Allison Williams. Synopsis: A robotics engineer at a toy company builds a life-like doll that begins to take on a life of its own. Debuts in the US on January 6th, 2023.
Millennium Mambo (2001), 4K restoration. Directed by Hsiao-Hsien Hou. Written by T’ien-wen Chu. Starring Shu Qi, Jack Kao, Chun-hao Tuan. Synopsis: The ethereally beautiful Vicky recalls her romances with Hao Hao and Jack in the neon-lit clubs of Taipei. Now playing in select theaters.
The Rules of the Game (1939), 4K restoration. Directed by Jean Renoir. Written by Jean Renoir and Carl Koch. Starring Nora Gregor, Paulette Dubost, Mila Parély. Synopsis: A bourgeois life in France at the onset of World War II, as the rich and their poor servants meet up at a French chateau. Now playing in select theaters.
Oppenheimer (2023). Written and directed by Christopher Nolan (based on the book by Kai Bird and Martin Sherwin). Starring Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Robert Downey Jr. Synopsis: The story of American scientist J. Robert Oppenheimer and his role in the development of the atomic bomb. Debuts in the US on July 21st, 2023.
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023). Directed by James Mangold. Written by James Mangold, Jez Butterworth and John-Henry Butterworth (based on characters created by George Lucas and Philip Kaufman). Starring Harrison Ford, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Mads Mikkelsen. Synopsis: The fifth and reportedly final installment of the Indiana Jones series. Debuts in the US on June 30th, 2023.
Barbara Walters (1929-2022)
Matt writes: R.I.P. Barbara Walters, the pioneering network nightly news anchor, premiere interviewer of major world figures and creator of “The View,” who passed away on December 30th at age 93. She is eulogized here by Nell Minow.
Great Performances & Craft of 2022
Matt writes: I joined many of my fellow writers at RogerEbert.com to spotlight the Great Performances of 2022 (including Austin Butler in “Elvis,” Danielle Deadwyler in “Till,” Brian Tyree Henry in “Causeway” and Mia Goth in “Pearl”) as well as the Great Filmmaking Craft of 2022 (in such pictures as “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” “Nope,” “Decision to Leave” and “Top Gun: Maverick”).
Nothing Sacred (1937). Directed by William A. Wellman. Written by Ben Hecht. Starring Carole Lombard, Fredric March, Charles Winninger. Synopsis: An eccentric woman learns she is not dying of radium poisoning as earlier assumed, but when she meets a reporter looking for a story, she feigns sickness again for her own profit.
Three Came Home (1950). Directed by Jean Negulesco. Written by Nunnally Johnson (based on the book by Agnes Newton Keith). Starring Claudette Colbert, Patric Knowles, Florence Desmond. Synopsis: During Word War II, American author Agnes Newton Keith is imprisoned by the Japanese in various POW camps in North Borneo and Sarawak.
Don’t Wait, Django…Shoot! (1967). Directed by Edoardo Mulargia. Written by Vincenzo Musolino. Starring Ivan Rassimov, Ignazio Spalla, Rada Rassimov. Synopsis: Django returns home to discover that his father has been killed by local bandits in a business deal gone wrong.