Matt writes: The 2023 Sundance Film Festival kicked off on January 19th and runs through Sunday, January 29th. Stay tuned each day for dispatches from our writers Brian Tallerico, Nick Allen, Robert Daniels and Marya E. Gates, who are reviewing the festival’s enticing selections such as Brandon Cronenberg’s hotly anticipated thriller, “Infinity Pool,” starring Mia Goth of “Pearl” fame (view the trailer below). You can find all of this year’s Sundance coverage in our official table of contents.
Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret. (2023). Written and directed by Kelly Fremon Craig (based on the novel by Judy Blume). Starring Abby Ryder Fortson, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates. Synopsis: When her family moves from the city to the suburbs, 11-year-old Margaret navigates new friends, feelings, and the beginning of adolescence. Debuts in US theaters on April 28th, 2023.
Fuzzy Head (2023). Written and directed by Wendy McColm. Starring Wendy McColm, Alicia Witt, Numa Perrier. Synopsis: A woman searches through her childhood memories and trauma to unlock the truth about her mother’s death. US release date is TBA.
Somebody I Used to Know (2023). Directed by Dave Franco. Written by Dave Franco and Alison Brie.Starring Alison Brie, Jay Ellis, Haley Joel Osment. Synopsis: On a trip to her hometown, workaholic Ally reminisces with her ex Sean and starts to question everything about the person she’s become. Things only get more confusing when she meets Cassidy, who reminds her of the person she used to be. Debuts on Prime Video on February 10th, 2023.
Godland (2023). Written and directed by Hlynur Pálmason. Starring Elliott Crosset Hove, Ingvar Sigurdsson, Vic Carmen Sonne. Synopsis: In the late 19th century, a young Danish priest travels to a remote part of Iceland to build a church and photograph its people. But the deeper he goes into the unforgiving landscape, the more he strays from his purpose, his mission and morality. US release date is TBA.
Marlowe (2023). Directed by Neil Jordan. Written by William Monahan (based on the novel by John Banville and the character created by Raymond Chandler). Starring Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, Jessica Lange. Synopsis: In late 1930’s Bay City, a brooding, down on his luck detective is hired to find the ex-lover of a glamorous heiress. Debuts in the US on February 15th, 2023.
Consecration (2023). Directed by Christopher Smith. Written by Christopher Smith and Laurie Cook. Starring Jena Malone, Danny Huston, Thoren Ferguson. Synopsis: After the alleged suicide of her priest brother, Grace travels to the remote Scottish convent where he fell to his death. Distrusting the Church’s account, she uncovers murder, sacrilege and a disturbing truth about herself. US release date is TBA.
Blue Jean (2023). Written and directed by Georgia Oakley. Starring Rosy McEwen, Kerrie Hayes, Lucy Halliday. Synopsis: In 1988, a closeted teacher is pushed to the brink when a new student threatens to expose her sexuality. US release date is TBA.
Baby Ruby (2023). Written and directed by Bess Wohl. Starring Noémie Merlant, Kit Harington, Meredith Hagner. Synopsis: The tightly scripted world of a vlogger and influencer unravels after she becomes a mother, in noted playwright Bess Wohl‘s feature debut. Debuts in the US on February 3rd, 2023.
Polite Society (2023). Written and directed by Nida Manzoor. Starring Ulli Ackermann, Pritom Ahmed, Sophie Aisling. Synopsis: Ria Khan believes that she must save her older sister Lena from her impending marriage. After enlisting her friends’ help, she attempts to pull off the most ambitious of all wedding heists, in the name of independence and sisterhood. US release date is TBA.
Rye Lane (2023). Directed by Raine Allen Miller. Written by Nathan Bryon and Tom Melia.Starring David Jonsson, Alice Hewkin, Munya Chawawa. Synopsis: Two youngsters reeling from bad breakups who connect over an eventful day in South-London. Debuts in the US on March 31st, 2023.
Beau is Afraid (2023). Written and directed by Ari Aster. Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Parker Posey, Amy Ryan. Synopsis: A decades-spanning portrait of one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time. Debuts in the US on April 21st, 2023.
A Lot of Nothing (2023). Directed by Mo McRae. Written by Mo McRae and Sarah Kelly Kaplan. Starring Cleopatra Coleman, Y’lan Noel, Sheila Carrasco. Synopsis: James and Vanessa are ostensibly the perfect married couple; beautiful, successful, and smart. Their lives spiral out of control when they decide to seek justice against a neighbor they saw commit a crime on the evening news. US release date is TBA.
Your Place or Mine (2023). Written and directed by Aline Brosh McKenna. Starring Reese Witherspoon, Ashton Kutcher, Steve Zahn. Synopsis: Two long-distance best friends change each other’s lives when she decides to pursue a lifelong dream and he volunteers to keep an eye on her teenage son. Debuts on Netflix on February 10th, 2023.
Divinity (2023). Written and directed by Eddie Alcazar. Starring Bella Thorne, Stephen Dorff, Scott Bakula. Synopsis: Centers on two mysterious brothers, who abduct a mogul during his quest for immortality. Meanwhile, a seductive woman helps them launch a journey of self-discovery. US release date is TBA.
Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves (2023). Directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein. Written by Michael Gilio, John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein. Starring Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, Sophia Lillis. Synopsis: A charming thief and a band of unlikely adventurers embark on an epic quest to retrieve a lost relic, but things go dangerously awry when they run afoul of the wrong people. Debuts in the US on March 31st, 2023.
Swallowed (2023). Written and directed by Carter Smith. Starring Jena Malone, Mark Patton, Cooper Koch. Synopsis: Follows two best friends on their final night together, with a nightmare of drugs, bugs, and horrific intimacy. Debuts in the US on February 14th, 2023.
Scream VI (2023). Directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett. Written by James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick (based on characters created by Kevin Williamson). Starring Jenna Ortega, Courteney Cox, Hayden Panettiere. Synopsis: In the next installment, the survivors of the Ghostface killings leave Woodsboro behind and start a fresh chapter in New York City. Debuts in the US on March 10th, 2023.
Titanic (1997), 25th anniversary reissue. Written and directed by James Cameron. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Gloria Stuart. Synopsis: A seventeen-year-old aristocrat falls in love with a kind but poor artist aboard the luxurious, ill-fated R.M.S. Titanic. Debuts in the US on February 10th, 2023.
State of the Oscar Race
Matt writes: With this year’s Oscar nominations being announced at 7:30am CT this morning, let’s take a look back at our awards season coverage thus far. Susan Wloszczyna provided her insights on the state of the Oscar race by reflecting on the 2023 Golden Globe winners as well as the recent SAG, DGA and PGA nominees. Steven Spielberg’s “The Fabelmans” took home the top prizes for Best Picture (Drama) and Best Director at the Globes, while Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert’s “Everything Everywhere All At Once” won in those same categories at the Critics Choice Awards (read Sarah Knight Adamson’s coverage here)
Oscar-winner Jane Campion
Matt writes: Last year’s Oscar-winner for Best Director, Jane Campion, discussed her celebrated film, “The Power of the Dog,” in the latest installment of Marya E. Gates’ Female Filmmakers in Focus column. You can read their full conversation here.
Not Wanted (1949). Directed by Elmer Clifton and Ida Lupino. Written by Ida Lupino and Paul Jarrico. Starring Sally Forrest, Keefe Brasselle, Leo Penn. Synopsis: After a beautiful but unsophisticated girl is seduced by a worldly piano player and gives up her out-of-wedlock baby, her guilt compels her to kidnap another child.
The Terror (1963). Directed by Roger Corman, Francis Ford Coppola, Jack Hale, Monte Hellman, Jack Hill, Dennis Jakob and Jack Nicholson. Written by Leo Gordon and Jack Hill. Starring Boris Karloff, Jack Nicholson, Dick Miller. Synopsis: A French Army officer, Lieutenant Duvalier, has been separated from his unit and receives help from a mysterious woman. He follows her to the castle of Baron Von Lepp only to find that she is the Baron’s wife who died 20 years ago.
The Ravishing Idiot (1964). Directed by Édouard Molinaro. Written by Édouard Molinaro, François Billetdoux, André Tabet and Georges Tabet (based on the novel by Charles Exbrayat). Starring Brigitte Bardot, Anthony Perkins, Grégoire Aslan. Synopsis: A Russian spy is supposed by the British Secret Service to steal some faked orders, but he is to stupid to succeed. His girlfriend tries to help him, but it seems he is too foolish to succeed.