Have You Missed These Autumn Screenings?

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Category Columnists, Culture, Town
Date October 6 2023
Reading Time 5 min.

Have You Missed These Autumn Screenings?

The memories of the greatest cinematic stand-off of this year “Barbenheimer” are slowly fading and with this comes a realisation that many of the upcoming films this autumn might have been missed, buried by the avalanche of Barbie and Oppenheimer marketing. However, it seems now that all these new films are no less great than the previous “it”-movies. More importantly, the fact that they have been under the radar for so long makes every single one of them an even bigger cinematic masterpiece that proves that real cinema doesn’t need advertisement to reach a determined cinephile.


Past Lives, dir. Celine Song

UK release date: Friday 8 September

This tremendous feature debut of a Korean-Canadian writer-director Celine Song tells a poignant tale of childhood love and separation by time and distance. Focusing on the lives of two childhood friends, Moon Seung-ah and Hae Sung, whose developing love story is interrupted when Moon Seung-ahs family moves to Toronto. Later their they reconnect via Skype but only after years when she becomes a successful playwright in New York they meet face to face. The depth, at which Song manages to bring to life the feeling of romance full of lost chance, non-vanishing connection and love makes this film one of the biggest hits of this autumn.


 

The Old Oak, dir. Ken Loach

UK release date: Friday 29 September

Ken Loach, one of Britains most critically-acclaimed directors and writers working in the genre of social realism, has announced his retirement from cinematography four years ago after the release of his last masterpiece Sorry We Missed You. Now he is back with another politically resonant Northern-based drama. Set in a former mining village in County Durham, The Old Oak tells the story of a declining Northern community struggling as their old lifestyle crumbles under the social hopelessness and economical pressures. As a group of Syrian refugees arrives to the village to occupy the cheap houses, the situation takes an unexpected turn with the locals having to come to a newer understanding of their community. The theme of social and economic hardships of the North interlaced with the subject of race, culture and immigration are what makes this on of the most important British films of the year.


 

Dalíland, dir. Mary Harron

UK release date: Friday 13 October

Mary Harron is mostly known to the mainstream public for her fascinating adaptation of the controversial novel American Psycho. Her new film is yet another story of a man but this time it is far less disturbing, focusing on the life of the defining surrealist of the 20th century Salvador Dalí. Starring Sir Ben Kingsley as Dalí and Barbara Sukowa as his wife, Gala Dalí, this biographical motion picture depicts the later stage in the life and career of the painter, as he tries to navigate the art and social scene of the 70s. Brought to the viewer from the point of view of Dalí’s young assistant James, the film begins with the painters preparation for the opening of a big gallery show in 1974. This film, though set far from the present day, is a great way to immerse into the mind of a painter that had transformed the art scene into what it is today.


 

Foe, dir. Garth Davis

UK release date: Friday 20 October

Set in a dystopian future and based on the best-selling novel Im Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Raid, this film features an ideal Irish pairing Saoirse Ronan and Paul Mescal. But besides from this amazing cast, Garth Davis brings a reimagined and futuristic vision of a troubled marriage an vision as relevant as it is different from the previous attempts to portray this theme through the narrative of today. When a married couple is offered a place for a husband to join a new space program, the purpose of which is to ease the transition away from a dying Earth, they have to decide if he will leave his family in hopes of finding a better future.


 


Killers of the Flower Moon
, dir. Martin Scorsese

UK release date: Friday 20 October

This unexpected western from Martin Scorsese, melding the theatrics of Segio Leone and the Native American antagonism of Hostiles, is expected to be a brutal, bullet-ridden experience. Set in the 1920s in Oklahoma, this story, which is based on true events, unpacks a serial murder of members of the Osage tribe. The film reunites Scorsese with his classical leading man Robert De Niro and his more recent star Leonard DiCaprio, as they are cast to play the real bad guys of the modern American history. Knowing that Scorsese never fails to deliver the most gut-wrenching story of lust for money and cold-blooded ambition, this is a film to see this autumn to tickle your nerves.


 

How to Have Sex, dir. Molly Manning Walker

UK release date: Friday 3 November

This is a directing debut for the cinematographer Molly Manning Walker, famous for shooting Charlotte Regans brilliant British film Scrapper. With How to Have Sex opening Cannes Film Festival this year and later received the Un Certain Regard award, the new director is off to a great start in her career. The films dives deep into the subject of virginity and the meaning of its loss for women. As the main character, teenage Tara, finds herself on a trip in the Mediterranean, where she aims to lose her virginity by immersing into the life of hedonism by partying and clubbing, her lack of experience enhances the pressure of her goal. The beauty of this cinematic experience comes not only from the mesmerising mise-en-scene, but also the way the light-hearted teenage narrative uncovers topics that are quiet heavily intervened into the modern womens life everywhere in the world the importance of consent, the weight of  societal expectations and female friendships.


 


Anatomy of a Fall
, dir. Justine Triet

UK Release date: Friday 10 November

This French courtroom drama brought on screen by the director Justine Triet is a thrilling story of a German writer trying to prove her innocence in her husbands death. With the rise of popularity of the true-crime series and an in-depth analysis of ambitious crimes now becoming a cultural industry, it comes to no surprise that this film won the Palme dOr at Cannes earlier this year. As the family is questioned regarding the death of the husband and father, the relationship of the parents is uncovered through the eyes of the writers young son struggling with a vision impairment. The film received a positive critical acclaim due to the depiction of the complex, psychological structure of the childs vision of his parentscomplicated relationship.


 


Napoleon
, dir. Ridley Scott

UK release date: Wednesday 22 November

This is actually not the only adaptation of the French emperors life that is coming on screens this year, with the second one being an HBO series directed by Steven Spielberg from the famously unfinished Stanley Kubricks film. However, Ridley Scotts version is coming out first and will be later featured on AppleTV+ after its official release in the cinemas this November. The film stars Joaquin Phoenix as Napoleon Bonaparte and Vanessa Kirby as his great love Josephine de Beauharnais and will trace emperors origins and his rapid ascension to power via his passionate but deeply troubled relationship with Josephine. This witty period drama uncovers the side of Napoleon that is rarely touched upon by anyone who is not a history nerd and is a great way to familiarise yourself with the depth of this legendary and tragic figure.


 


The Eternal Daughter
, dir. Joanna Hogg

UK release date: Friday 24 November

Director Joanna Hogg known for her gothic style and complicated themes touching on memory, auto-biography and self-reflection is bringing a new ghost-story to the screens of London in her latest film The Eternal Daughter. Starring Tilda Swinton as both the mother and the daughter as they are immersing into their memories through conversations after they return to their old residence, this film delivers an eerie atmosphere of ghosts and family secrets. Knowing the power of Swintons acting game, it is safe to say that this powerful ode to the past will leave you shaken to the core.

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