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::: Coming Soon :::

~Upstairs at the Savoy~

Calvary

Coming Soon

Rated R; 100 minutes

WATCH THE TRAILER


Matthew Turner, View London (excerpted)

Writer-director John Michael McDonagh's Calvary is a superbly written, darkly funny and powerfully moving mystery with a terrific supporting cast and a magnificent central performance from Brendan Gleeson. Gleeson stars as Father James, a parish priest in a coastal village in County Sligo, Ireland, who receives a death sentence from one of his parishioners during confession. The man in question gives Father James a week to get his house in order, telling him that he will meet and kill him on the beach, a week on Sunday.

Though Father James apparently knows the identity of his would-be murderer, he nonetheless calmly goes about his weekly rounds, encountering a number of potential suspects. Gleeson is magnificent, delivering an eminently compassionate performance that is genuinely moving to watch, as each of his parishioners attempts to undermine, denigrate or challenge his faith. His interactions with Fiona (Kelly Reilly), his troubled daughter from his marriage before he joined the priesthood after his wife's death, are particularly touching, as he struggles with the knowledge that his decision to join the priesthood has meant that he has, paradoxically, swapped being a father for being a Father.

The superbly written script keeps you guessing throughout as to the would-be killer's identity, unfolding less as a whodunnit than a who's-gonna-do-it, while providing a contemplative portrait of faith and guilt that is ultimately deeply moving, regardless of your own personal convictions. The dialogue is packed full of delicious lines and McDonagh orchestrates a number of powerfully memorable scenes that will stay with you long after you leave the cinema.

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~Downstairs at the Savoy~

Mood Indigo

Coming Soon

Not Rated; 94 minutes
In French w/subtitles

WATCH THE TRAILER


Matthew Turner, View London (excerpted)

Beautifully designed and directed by Michel Gondry (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), Mood Indigo, adapted from the 1947 cult novel L'écume des Jours, stars Romain Duris and Audrey Tautou. Duris plays Colin, a wealthy inventor who shares a Parisian rooftop apartment with his live-in lawyer/cook Nicolas (Omar Sy) and hangs about with his best friend Chick (Gad Elmaleh). When Chick announces that he has fallen in love, Colin declares that he wants to fall in love too and promptly does so, when he meets the beautiful Chloe (Tautou) at a party.

After a whirlwind romance during which they take a Cloud Tour of Paris (a wonderful sequence), Colin and Chloe are married. However, when Chloe contracts a mysterious illness, a water lily growing in her lung, Colin finds himself approaching bankruptcy as he attempts to cure her.

The plot of the film is essentially Love Story (boy meets girl, girl falls terminally ill), only filtered through the bonkers sensibilities of Gondry. From the opening sequence, Gondry packs in a breathtaking amount of visual effects work that includes papier-mache eels in the taps, a table on roller-skates, food that moves, shoes that run away and a tiny man in a mouse costume that lives in the walls. Mood Indigo is Gondry at his most ‘Gondry-esque,’ a dazzlingly inventive romantic tragedy with breath-taking effects and charming performances.

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~Downstairs at the Savoy~

Love is Strange

Coming Soon

Rated R; 98 minutes

WATCH THE TRAILER


Joe McGovern, Entertainment Weekly (excerpted)

As Love Is Strange opens, George (Alfred Molina) and Ben (John Lithgow) have finally tied the knot after 39 years as a couple, but with consequences. George is let go from his job as a music teacher at a Catholic school for violating the moral code (i.e., marrying a man), and he and Ben are forced to sell their Manhattan apartment and bunk with separate friends before they can reunite.

Independent filmmaker Ira Sachs (Forty Shades of Blue, Keep the Lights On) takes an impeccably balanced approach to the film. It's neither an advertisement for same-sex marriage nor a scold against the Catholic Church. His ironic title refers to all tough relationships, including the one that the characters have with New York City. In how it mirrors life's joys and disappointments, and charges a minimum of $1,500 per month for the privilege, the city is as much a leading player here as Molina and Lithgow — both of whom, in their many decades as actors, have rarely been as beguiling or moving on screen.

The story is elusive, with unexpected leaps in time but Love Is Strange is hardly plotless. The final act is punctuated by a major event, yet Sachs is too smart a director to dwell on it. Instead he aims away from the obvious and toward a poignant wordless denouement involving Ben's 15-year-old great-nephew (the revelatory Charlie Tahan). It's one final nuanced decision in a movie loaded with them. Sachs, Molina, and Lithgow have given adult moviegoers a perfect piece of summer counter-programming — a warm, humane, resplendent romance to savor while our days are still long.

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