For movie lovers, it's too simple to say that independent films are just a break from the sensibility of big studio movies. There's no question that independent movies can take different risks than studio movies can. They cost a lot less, which means that ideas which seem too daring in a tentpole can be explored to their fullest in an indie. Independent films give actors and filmmakers alike room to play, and their freedom shows on screen.
In fact, the line between independent and studio movies can be blurry. For example, Taika Waititi's new film, JOJO RABBIT, is an indie. And yet, thanks to the new parent company of Fox Searchlight Pictures, it is effectively being distributed by Disney. Now, as festival season brings waves of new indie films to our attention, fall is also the best time of the year for new independent films. With that in mind, here are some of the new indie movies coming to theatres thanks to CinéArts, our independent movie initiative.
[Image Credit: Fox Searchlight]
During World War II, a pre-teen member of the Hitler Youth discovers a secret in his own home that challenges everything he has been taught to believe. That would be difficult enough, but he's getting some bad advice from his imaginary friend: Adolf Hitler. We already knew writer/director Taika Waititi, who also plays Hitler, to be a surprising and skilled filmmaker, so the big discovery in JOJO RABBIT is the young actor Roman Griffin Davis, who makes his debut as the title character, and seems fated to child stardom, if that's the path he chooses to take. [October 18]
[Image Credit: A24]
Black and white chiller THE LIGHTHOUSE isn't just one of the year's better, stranger horror movies. It's a layered duel between actors Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe, who play an apprentice lighthouse keeper and his rough-tempered new boss as they spend a month working together out on a desolate rock. Things get bad between them, in more ways than one, especially once they get deep into the bottle. [October 18]
[Image Credit: 101 Studios]
In THE CURRENT WAR, three great actors play three titans of American industry and invention. Benedict Cumberbatch plays the brilliant and forward-thinking Thomas Edison, whose direct current stands to become the future of power in the United States. Michael Shannon plays a competitor to Edison's plan, George Westinghouse, who has a secret weapon in his battle against direct current: the almost mystically-inspired genius Nikolai Tesla (Nicholas Hoult). The showdown between these three men will affect generations of people all around the world. [October 25]
[Image Credit: A24]
[Image Credit: Amazon Studios]
In HONEY BOY, young A QUIET PLACE star Noah Jupe plays a surprising role. He stars as actor Shia LaBeouf, or at least a character heavily based on the troubled young LaBeouf, in this intense drama about the actor's early life and struggles with abuse and addiction. LaBeouf wrote the script and appears as his own father in this deeply personal confessional that seems intent on wiping the actor's slate clean, at least with respect to public outbursts and misdeeds. Alma Har'el, director of the documentaries BOMBAY BEACH and LOVETRUE, turns the actor's script into a challenging but effective purge of past sins. [November 8]