#441 September 13, 2022

ytsfreeSeptember 13, 2022

Matt writes: The Toronto International Film Festival kicked off on September 8th and runs through Sunday, September 18th. Check out our official table of contents for daily updates to our list of essential dispatches penned by Brian Tallerico, Robert Daniels, Marya E. Gates and Soren Hough, who are providing their thoughts on some of the most anticipated titles of this year’s awards season, including Steven Spielberg’s “The Fabelmans.” You can read an excerpt from Tallerico’s rave review below…

“The Fabelmans” isn’t a dry study on the purpose of filmmaking. It’s a family drama at its core, and it works just as well for people who don’t know anything about Spielberg’s true story. The film jumps forward a few times, and mostly settles down in the ‘60s with Sammy (now played by the phenomenal Gabriel LaBelle) in high school. Burt is a tech wizard, going from repairing electronics to designing the early days of computers with his best friend Bennie (Seth Rogen), one of those guys that’s around the house so much that the kids call him uncle. The pursuit of better jobs takes the Fabelmans across the country, and Sammy’s love for moviemaking goes with them.

Sammy will learn that life may not be like the movies, but we use the movies to hold onto life, to help us understand it. Spielberg co-wrote “The Fabelmans” with his “West Side Story” scribe Tony Kushner, and the screenplay is a graceful gem, moving through different chapters of the life of this relatively average family that would just happen to produce an unaverage filmmaker. Sammy learns hard lessons about his family and there’s a stunning centerpiece sequence in which the very thing he loves is what forces him to look at everything around him in a new light. Judd Hirsch has an amazing single scene early too as a relative who warns Sammy that family and art don’t mix, and one wonders if that conversation is why it’s taken Spielberg so long to tell his own story, even if he’s also subtly been telling parts of it his whole career.


The Fabelmans (2022). Directed by Steven Spielberg. Written by Steven Spielberg and Tony Kushner. Starring Michelle Williams, Paul Dano, Gabriel LaBelle. Synopsis: Growing up in post-World War II era Arizona, a young man named Sammy Fabelman discovers a shattering family secret and explores how the power of films can help him see the truth. Debuts in the US on November 23rd, 2022.

The Watcher (2022). Created by Ryan Murphy and Ian Brennan. Starring Jennifer Coolidge, Naomi Watts, Mia Farrow. Synopsis: A married couple moving into their dream home is being threatened by terrifying letters from a stalker, signed- “The Watcher”. US release date is TBA.

Close (2022). Directed by Lukas Dhont. Written by Lukas Dhont and Angelo Tijssens. Starring Eden Dambrine, Gustav De Waele, Émilie Dequenne. Synopsis: The intense friendship between two thirteen-year old boys Leo and Remi suddenly gets disrupted. Struggling to understand what has happened, Léo approaches Sophie, Rémi’s mother. Debuts in the US on November 1st, 2022.

The Good Nurse (2022). Directed by Tobias Lindholm. Written by Krysty Wilson-Cairns (based on the book by Charles Graeber). Starring Jessica Chastain, Eddie Redmayne, Kim Dickens. Synopsis: An infamous caregiver is implicated in the deaths of hundreds of hospital patients. Debuts on Netflix on October 26th, 2022.

My Policeman (2022). Directed by Michael Grandage. Written by Ron Nyswaner (based on the book by Bethan Roberts). Starring Harry Styles, Emma Corrin, David Dawson. Synopsis: The arrival of Patrick into Marion and Tom’s home triggers the exploration of seismic events from 40 years previously. Debuts in the US on October 21st, 2022.

Sirens (2022). Directed by Rita Baghdadi. Synopsis: Lilas and Shery, co-founders and guitarists of the Middle East’s first all-female metal band, wrestle with friendship, sexuality and destruction in their pursuit of becoming thrash metal rock stars. US release date is TBA.

Blueback (2022). Written and directed by Robert Connolly. Starring Mia Wasikowska, Radha Mitchell, Eric Bana. Synopsis: Follows Abby, a child who befriends a magnificent wild blue groper while diving. When Abby realizes that the fish is under threat, she takes inspiration from her activist Mum, Dora, and takes on poachers to save her friend. US release date is TBA.

Subtraction (2022). Directed by Mani Haghighi. Written by Mani Haghighi and Amir Reza Koohestani. Starring Navid Mohammadzadeh, Taraneh Alidoosti, Ali Bagheri. Synopsis: A married couple believe they meet their doppelgangers in Tehran. US release date is TBA.

Meet Cute (2022). Directed by Alex Lehmann. Written by Noga Pnueli. Starring Kaley Cuoco, Pete Davidson, Deborah S. Craig. Synopsis: What would you do if you could travel to your loved ones’ past, heal their traumas, fix their problems, and change them into the perfect partner? Debuts in the US on September 21st, 2022.

Significant Other (2022). Written and directed by Dan Berk and Robert Olsen. Starring Maika Monroe, Jake Lacy, Teal Sherer. Synopsis: Follows a young couple who take a remote backpacking trip through the Pacific Northwest and face sinister events leading them to realize that everything about the place is not as it seems. Debuts on Paramount+ on October 7th, 2022.

Wendell & Wild (2022). Directed by Henry Selick. Written by Henry Selick, Jordan Peele and Clay McLeod Chapman. Starring Jordan Peele, Keegan-Michael Key, Angela Bassett. Synopsis: Two scheming demon brothers, Wendell and Wild, must face their arch-nemesis, the demon-dusting nun Sister Helly, and her two acolytes, the goth teens Kat and Raul. However, Raul cannot see them so Kat helps Wendell and Wild to help him. Debuts on Netflix on October 28th, 2022.

Leonor Will Never Die (2022). Written and directed by Martika Ramirez Escobar. Starring Sheila Francisco and Rocky Salumbides. Synopsis: Fiction and reality blur when Leonor, a retired filmmaker, falls into a coma after a television lands on her head, compelling her to become the action hero of her unfinished screenplay. US release date is TBA.

Accident Man: Hitman’s Holiday (2022). Directed by Harry Kirby and George Kirby. Written by Stu Small. Starring Scott Adkins, Ray Stevenson, Perry Benson. Synopsis: The Accident Man is back and this time he must beat the top assassins in the world, to protect the ungrateful son of a mafia boss, save the life of his only friend and rekindle his relationship with his maniacal father figure. Debuts in the US on October 14th, 2022.

The Visitor (2022). Directed by Justin P. Lange. Written by Simon Boyes and Adam Mason. Starring Jessica McNamee, Finn Jones, Shanna Forrestall. Synopsis: After a series of tragedies, Robert moves with his wife back to her childhood home. After he discovers an old portrait of a man who looks like him, he goes down a rabbit hole to discover the identity of this mysterious doppelganger. Debuts in the US on October 7th, 2022.

Amsterdam (2022). Written and directed by David O. Russell. Starring Christian Bale, Anya Taylor-Joy, Robert De Niro. Synopsis: Set in the ’30s, it follows three friends who witness a murder, become suspects themselves, and uncover one of the most outrageous plots in American history. Debuts in the US on October 7th, 2022.

What’s Love Got to Do With It? (2022). Directed by Shekhar Kapur. Written by Jemima Khan. Starring Lily James, Emma Thompson, Shazad Latif. Synopsis: A cross-cultural romantic comedy. US release date is TBA.

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile (2022). Directed by Josh Gordon and Will Speck. Written by Will Davies (based on the book by Bernard Waber). Starring Javier Bardem, Constance Wu, Shawn Mendes. Synopsis: Feature film based on the children’s book about a crocodile that lives in New York City. Debuts in the US on October 7th, 2022.

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022). Written and directed by Rian Johnson. Starring Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe. Synopsis: Famed Southern detective Benoit Blanc travels to Greece for his latest case. US release date is TBA.

FACETS’ 2022 Screen Gems Benefit

Matt writes: Only a few tickets remain for FACETS’ Screen Gems Benefit honoring RogerEbert.com publisher Chaz Ebert on Wednesday, September 28th, at 6pm at the Arts Club of Chicago, 201 E. Ontario Street. You can read all about it here.

“The Whale” at Venice 2022

Matt writes: Among the many films reviewed by our critic Glenn Kenny at the 2022 Venice Film Festival was Darren Aronofsky’s “The Whale,” in which Brendan Fraser delivers a performance that has instantly become a serious Oscar contender. Read Kenny’s review here and watch Fraser’s emotional response to the six-minute ovation that the film received upon its premiere in the video embedded above.

Free Movies

And Then There Were None (1945). Directed by René Clair. Written by Dudley Nichols (based on the novel by Agatha Christie). Starring Barry Fitzgerald, Walter Huston, Judith Anderson. Synopsis: Seven guests, a newly hired secretary and two staff are gathered at a manor house on an isolated island by an unknown absentee host and are killed off one-by-one. They work together to determine who the killer is before it’s too late.

Watch “And Then There Were None”

Enamorada (1946). Directed by Emilio Fernández. Written by Emilio Fernández and Íñigo de Martino. Starring María Félix, Pedro Armendáriz, Fernando Fernández. Synopsis: During the Mexican Revolution, a macho rebel general falls in love with the independent-minded daughter of an aristocrat in the town he is occupying.

Watch “Enamorada”

Moolaade (2004). Written and directed by Ousmane Sembene. Starring Fatoumata Coulibaly, Maimouna Hélène Diarra, Salimata Traoré. Synopsis: When a woman shelters a group of girls from suffering female genital mutilation, she starts a conflict that tears her village apart.

Watch “Moolaade”


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