Whilst the world is on pause and your Filmhouse Sunderland visits aren’t possible, we’re keeping the independent cinema flag flying with our new weekly watch lists from Chris & Jonny, the people behind the project.
Each Friday, we’ll post a list of four films that are currently available across BBC iPlayer, All4, Netflix and Amazon Prime that we think you should seek out.
This week’s selection is…
End Of Watch (15) (2012) (BBC iPlayer)
Classed on release as ‘the thinking man’s action movie’ (!), David Ayers’ End Of Watch is a tough-as-nails drama that isn’t afraid to get under the skin of the relationship between its two central leads. It tells the story of long time LAPD partners and friends, Brian (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Mike (Michael Peña), who patrol one of the most dangerous neighbourhoods in LA. They bend the rules but are firmly dedicated to the law and to protecting one another, but when they cross paths with a vicious Mexican cartel they are tested to their limits….
Steve Jobs (15) (2015) (Netflix)
Danny Boyle’s film is as elegantly and craftily constructed as the products Jobs developed at Apple, providing insight into the man behind the innovations that have changed how we live. Set across three moments in time, at conferences / launch events in 1984, 1988 and 1998, the film catches Apple Inc. co-founders Steve Jobs (Michael Fassbender) and Steve “Woz” Wozniak (Seth Rogen) as they get ready to unveil the first Macintosh, jumping ahead in time to when Jobs is launching rival company NeXT Inc. and again to the point he is finally preparing to release a new computer, the revolutionary iMac. Fassbender, Rogen and Kate Winslet, as Apple founding team member Joanna Hoffman, tackle Aaron Sorkin’s rich and nuanced screenplay with terrific performances, making for an unexpectedly emotional experience. Unmissable.
The Lobster (15) (2015) (All 4)
Yorgos Lanthimos’ mischievous movie is the kind of film that you can rewatch over and over again, obsessing over every detail and delighting in each thrillingly off-kilter performance. The premise is wilfully strange, set in a dystopian society where single people must find a mate within 45 days or be transformed into an animal of their choice. Here, we find ourselves with David (Colin Farrell), who is transported to a strange hotel when his wife leaves him. Dumped into the ranks of the alone and disenchanted (including John C. Reilly and Ben Whishaw), he meets an unnamed short-sighted woman (Rachel Weisz), who he begins to form a longing for. Presided over by the imperious Hotel Manager (Olivia Colman), David must find his soulmate – or escape the hotel and his surreal fate.
Heathers (15) (1989) (Amazon Prime)
Brilliantly subversive, Heathers is a bona fide cult classic. Tearing apart the conventions of the 80s high school movie, director Michael Lehmann tells the story of Veronica (Winona Ryder), part of the most popular clique at her high school. Although she disapproves of the other girls’ cruel behaviour, she goes along with it but is desperate to escape. When Veronica and her boyfriend, new kid in town J.D. (Christian Slater) confront clique leader Heather and accidentally poison her, they must make it appear as though it was a suicide. However, when a mysterious suicide epidemic then begins to grip the school Veronica soon begins to realise that J.D. is to blame, and on the hunt for students he doesn’t like…
We’d love to hear what you think of the films we recommend – let us know!
See you next week,
Chris & Jonny