Five Minute Film Guide: Every Indie Film Opening This Weekend

on January 13, 2012 by Sara Maria Vizcarrondo


We Need To Talk About Kevin
On the heels of Beautiful Boy, this drama about the mother of a Columbine-style killer, We Need To Talk About Kevin is hardly a retread. Hewing close to psychological horror, this film tries to legitimize the Bad Seed subgenre of horror and ask explicitly what parents leaving The Omen or Joshua asked themselves: "Sometimes they seem outright evil, but they can't be...right?"
Cast: John C. Reilly, Tilda Swinton, Lauren Fox, Siobhan Fallon, Ezra Miller, Ursula Parker, Ashley Gerasimovich
Director/Screenwriter: Lynne Ramsay


Don't Go In The Woods
Vincent D'Onofrio's directorial debut is a horror about a band that goes into the timberland to write their big break album. Now. D'Onofrio's big on TV's Law & Order: Criminal Intent, but before that he was best remembered as the cockroach wearing an Edgar-suit. With that proximity to scary bugs, I'd say this freaky-forest is a natural choice for his first stab at directing.
Director: Vincent D'Onofrio
Writers: Sam Bisbee, Joe Vinciguerra
Stars: Bo Boddie, Eric Bogosian, Gwynn Galitzer

Bobby is a thief who lives life like a sportwhich is why the appearance of a pregnant one night stand stops him in his getaway tracks. He's not just a subway pick-pocket, he's made theft into an art, and if we've learned anything from the Ocean movies, it's that con men are fun to watch, even when you hate them.
Director: Michael Corrente
Writers: Peter Facinelli
Stars: Peter Facinelli, Jaimie Alexander, Michael Madsen

Ed Burns' newest romance garnered buzz on the indie circuit when its Kickstarter campaign went public. It later made small headlines when Burns blogged about life on the set after a beer company signed on to support. (Hint: His characters drink a lot of Heineken.) Expect Burns' trademark New York naturalism.
Director: Edward Burns
Writer: Edward Burns
Stars: Edward Burns, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Kerry Bishé

Star David Call might have more renown as the guy Lena Dunham had sex with in a pipe in Tiny Furniture, but for those who didn't see that dramedy, this film about a similarly wayward New Yorker might provide a different view into need, relationships and responsibility in the gritty boroughs.
Director: Gregory Kohn
Writer: Gregory Kohn
Stars: Utkarsh Ambudkar, Russ Armstrong, David Call

Old enough to know the school and young enough to enjoy terrorizing the freshman, the sophomores in this coming-of-age comedy struggle against petrifying math teachers (Amanda Plummer), heedless parents and driver's classes that don't teach you how to save your car from the snow.
Director: T. Lee Beideck
Writer: T. Lee Beideck
Stars: Patrick Warburton, Amanda Plummer, Erin Foley

The Divide
The director of Frontier(s) made this thriller about the survivors of a nuclear blast trapped beneath their apartment building. When the neighbors saw a leader, they followed him to safety, but once food rationing and waiting for liberation became the key to survival, the power dynamics changed-and with all that time and hunger on their hands, they may be dining Donner-style.
Director: Xavier Gens
Writers: Karl Mueller, Eron Sheean
Stars: Lauren German, Jennifer Blanc, Michael Biehn


All Me: The Life and Times of Winfred Rembert
Artist Winfred Rembert uses leather and dye to create portraits of the segregated south. Though the pieces have the look of graphic historical record, they aren't about some distant past: they're autobiographical. Director Vivian Ducat shows how Rembert breathes life into the histories and makes them today's concern.
Director: Vivian Ducat

Fake It So Real
No one ever asks how pro-wrestlers work their way up to pro-levels. They've gotta practice somehow, and that's part of what director Robert Greene captures in this doc about a troupe of independent pro-wrestlers in North Carolina who (mostly) work by day, train by night, and once a month don costumes and pretend to kick butt to considerable injury.
Director: Robert Greene

Man on a Mission: Richard Garriott's Road to the Stars
Richard Garriott's father was an astronaut. He, a man who made a fortune developing video games, is using his fortune to become the first second generation American astronaut. Known for creating virtual worlds, Garriott wants to follow his father's footsteps to see the real one from the perspective of space.
Director: Mike Woolf

Sing Your Song
Casually referred to as the "You don't know Harry Belafonte doc," this film is on the Academy's Documentary Shortlist in contention for the Best Doc Oscar. Sing Your Song is about the lasting legacy Belafontewhose debut LP was the first to ever sell a million records (Day-O!)has on the activism of the Civil Rights era.
Director: Susanne Rostock

Robinson in Ruins
This doc by artfilm darling Patrick Keiller is a fanciful look at the English countryside from the perspective of a curious but not quite academic observer. It's the third in his Robinson Caruso series. The first two were narrated by Paul Scofield (1922-2008); here, Vanessa Redgrave replaces her Caruso, as if she'd been his traveling partner through this immense place, now seen in extreme close-up.
Director: Patrick Keiller



Like Crazy star Felicity Jones plays a fresh-faced teen who befriends a writer with designs on her dad. Perhaps the title is a reference to that image from The Ancient Marinerthe plot does imply a grade of sleaze that could be the death of someone. Clearly, things won't go well.
Director: Niall MacCormick
Writer: Tamzin Rafn
Stars: Felicity Jones, Jessica Brown Findlay, Sebastian Koch

The gap-toothed Breton actress Béatrice Dalle captured hearts and disturbed minds in her starmaking turn as Betty Blue. Her manic vixen dreamgirl antics made her a cult heroine, baggage she brings with her into this May/August romance about a woman in her 30s getting hot and heavy with a handsome high schooler.
Director: Patric Chiha
Writer: Patric Chiha
Stars: Béatrice Dalle, Isaïe Sultan, Alain Libolt


Lula, Son of Brazil/Lula, o Filho do Brasil /World
Brazil's answer to Pursuit of Happyness, Lula Son of Brazil is a true-life rags-to-riches tale about Luis Inácio Lula da Silva, a barrio boy who moved to the financial capital of Brazil and worked his way up the political ladder to become a leading Brazilian politician.
Directors: Fábio Barreto, Marcelo Santiago
Writers: Fernando Bonassi, Daniel Tendler, Denise Paraná
Stars: Rui Ricardo Diaz, Glória Pires, Juliana Baroni

Tool Booth/Gi┼če Memuru
Even if a toll booth is in Disneyland, the life of its operator would still be dull. So when one Turkish toll booth operator's humdrum work-a-day is disrupted by a new manager, he loses his footing and goes as quietly postal as a non-violent introvert can go.
Director: Tolga Karacelik
Writer: Tolga Karacelik
Stars: Serkan Ercan, Zafer Diper, Nur Aysan

After their father, a constable, dies, two brothers have to forge a life in their hometown. One boy quickly ascends the ranks to replace his father as the town constable, while the other is crippled with cowardice. In proper, Bollywood style, the heroic brother lifts the weaker up and shows him the way.
Director: N. Linguswamy
Writers: N. Linguswamy, Brindha Sarathy
Stars: Madhavan, Arya, Sameera Reddy


Tags: Vettai, Lula Son of Brazil, Domain, Albatross, Robinson in Ruins, Sing Your Song, Man on a Mission: Richard Garriott's Road to the Stars, Fake It So Real, All Me: The Life and Times of Winfred Rembert, The Divide, Sophomore, Northeast, Newlyweds, Loosies, Don't Go Into The Woods, We Need To Talk About Kevin

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