martedì 1 dicembre 2015

6 Amazing Movies You Can’t Miss This Month

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Why you should watch Charlie from Girls getting grimy, Virgin Suicides filtered through conservative Turkey, and the birth of angry pundit TV.

1. Best of Enemies

1. Best of Enemies

ABC Photo Archives / Magnolia Pictures

In 1968, last-place-network ABC's idea of a ratings stunt was having William F. Buckley Jr. debate Gore Vidal on live television. Strange as it is to think about today, this was desperate counterprogramming to the other networks' primetime wall-to-wall coverage of the Republican National Convention being held in Miami Beach. Stranger still, it worked. This doc about the 10-night series, directed by Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville (who won an Oscar last year for Twenty Feet From Stardom), provides an entertaining and, ultimately, depressing peek into TV at a pivotal moment. It feels utterly foreign right until it's uncomfortably familiar.

Buckley, the conservative founder of the National Review, and Vidal, the lefty "we are all bisexual"–proclaiming writer, bear as much resemblance to contemporary TV personalities as they do to aliens. The two men, who both ran unsuccessfully for office, duel in silky, proudly patrician accents, unabashed in their intellectualism, their erudition, and their self-importance. And they genuinely hated each other's guts. It was politics as increasingly testy theater, and the moment Buckley famously lost his cool and sneeringly called Vidal a "queer" and threatened to sock him "in the goddamn face" feels like a surrender to a new world in which yelling would replace debate. Open hostility may not be productive in the long run, but it's much better TV.

Where to see it: Best of Enemies was recently added to Netflix. It's also available for digital rental and on Blu-ray and DVD.

2. Breathe

2. Breathe

Film Movement

Inglourious Basterds star Mélanie Laurent, who recently held her own alongside Angelina Jolie in By the Sea, has, like Jolie, been nurturing her own career as a filmmaker. Breathe is her second feature as a director, and it's a shrewd story about the kind of friendship between teenage girls that can feel just as involved and as emotionally devastating as a romance. Charlie (Joséphine Japy) does fall in a sort of love with Sarah (Lou de Laâge), a newcomer to her high school who's more confident and more sophisticated, with stories of living abroad and affairs with Englishmen.

Sarah's the Rayanne Graff to Charlie's Angela Chase, and they bond over makeup and sneaked cigarettes, holding each other's hair back after too much drinking, and their respective imperfect home lives. But Sarah also tells lies, offers glimpses of a cruel streak, and acts out when she doesn't get the male attention she wants. Their friendship turns believably toxic, and then unbelievably toxic, with an ending that breaks with the delicate realism that came before. But before then, Breathe is a deftly observed look at teen power games and how closeness can turn to animosity in one miserable night out, someone's world shattering while everyone dances to Fun's "We Are Young" in the background.

Where to see it: Breathe is on VOD and is available via digital rental.


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