If you are in Joburg for the December holidays and are looking to catch up on the latest hyped about Hollywood films, then you are in luck as many of this year’s Oscar favourites are currently showing at Joburg cinemas. Here’s a look at some of the best.
Mexican director Alfonso Cuaron’s gorgeous black and white film Roma (pictured top) is dedicated to his childhood nanny who the narrative follows through her everyday life, cleaning and caring for the Cuaron family, falling in love, having her heart broken and overcoming her own sorrows while helping the family through the breakup of the parent’s marriage. Described by the New York Times as “a masterpiece of memory”, the film is set in the middle class Roma district of Mexico City in 1970 and 1971. Through Cuaron’s magnificent cinematography, the lives of Cleo and the Cuaron family are effortlessly stitched together with the political upheavals and cultural shifts sweeping the country at the time.
The film was produced by Netflix (you can also stream it online) and has a limited run in cinemas. For the outstanding sound effects and cinematography alone it is worth making the effort to catch it on the big screen while you can.
Showing at Cinema Nouveau at Rosebank Mall until Dec 27.
A STAR IS BORN
The remake of a 1970s classic, which was in turn a remake of another popular film from the 1950s, this soaring dramatic love story has Oscar written all over it, with Lady Gaga surely set to pick up best song for any number of hits from the extensive soundtrack and Bradley Cooper also a favourite for best director / actor. Lady Gaga is utterly charming, stealing the limelight of every scene that she walks into, as an unknown budding young singer-songwriter who falls in love with a troubled rock star.
At Nu Metro Hyde Park until December 27.
Director Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave, Shame)’s latest film is a thrilling heist starring Viola Davis as a widow who owes the mob money on behalf of her now deceased bank robbing husband. To get the money (and save her own life) she decides to enlist the help of three fellow mobster widows, whose partners also died in the failed bank robbery, to pull off a a tricky high-stakes heist.
Set in southside Chicago, themes of grief, domestic abuse, racism, police violence, sexism and corruption all play vital parts in the gripping story that sees the Widows facing a race against time to steal millions and evade a nasty death at the hands of one of this year’s most terrifying villains.
At Cinema Nouveau at Rosebank Mall until Dec 27.
Nominated for best foreign language film at the 2018 Oscars, this Swedish Palme D’Or-winning satirical film is set in an art museum. In spectacular style the film pokes fun at the faux sincerity, pretension and hypocrisy of the contemporary art world, while also deftly dealing a blow to male privilege and the notion of ‘middle class altruism’.
The film follows an art museum curator who is having an affair with a journalist and suffering from what appears to be a mental breakdown. After his phone is stolen in the ‘safe space’ of his new exhibition The Square and a controversial promotional video for an art installation is published without his oversight, the curator starts to lose his grip entirely.
Showing at Cinema Nouveau, Rosebank Mall from December 21 – 27 December