The Weekly MUBI Digest | 11th May 2019
James R | On 11, May 2019
With Madeline’s Madeline released this weekend online and in cinemas by MUBI, the streaming service is going all out with a celebration of director Josephine Decker, a retrospective that continues this week looking at her work both in front of and behind the camera.
Then, it’s off to Cannes for a fortnight-long takeover that ranges Ken Loach to Ruben Ostlund, via Nicolas Winding Refn and Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu.
And, for those who want to catch Madeline’s Madeline on the big screen, you can use MUBI Go (which offers a free cinema ticket every week to its subscribers), to see the movie at participating theatres.
What’s new, coming soon and leaving soon on the subscription service? This is your weekly MUBI Digest:
This week on MUBI
A Most Violent Year – 11th May
Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain are on superb form in JC Chandor’s gripping Shakespearean crime drama about a New York gangster trying to stick to his own moral compass.
MUBI Shorts: Flores – 13th May
The entire population of Azores is evicted due to an uncontrolled plague of hydrangeas, a common flower in these islands. Two young soldiers, bound to the beauty of the landscape, stay on the islands to guide us through the stories of those forced to leave and the inherent desire to resist.
Cannes: Force Majeure – 14th May
MUBI’s Cannes takeover kicks off with Ruben Ostlund’s superbly spiky comedy. It follows a Swedish family who travel to enjoy a few days of skiing. The slopes are spectacular but, during a lunch at a mountainside restaurant, an avalanche turns everything upside down. Tomas and Ebba’s marriage now hangs in the balance as Tomas struggles desperately to reclaim his role as family patriarch.
Cannes: The Angels’ Share – 15th May
MUBI’s Cannes series continues with Ken Loach’s Jury Prize winner from 2012. Robbie is a Glasgow boy locked in a family feud who just wants a way out. On community service he meets Rhino, Albert and Mo. Little did Robbie imagine that turning to drink might change their lives, leading them to the distilleries of the Scottish Highlands and the biggest gamble of his life.
MUBI Debuts: Closeness – 16th May
1998, Nalchik, Russia. A crisis arises in a Jewish family when son David and his fiancée are kidnapped. Rebellious daughter Ilana is trying to fight her way out of the traditional family structure. While her parents cling to the Jewish community for help, she turns to her Kabardian boyfriend.
Other new releases on MUBI
Josephine Decker: Madeline’s Madeline
Madeline has become an active member of an experimental theatre troupe. When its ambitious director pushes Madeline to weave her rich interior world and her troubled relationship with her mother into their collective art, the lines between performance and reality begin to blur.
Josephine Decker: Art History
Josephine Decker stars in Joe Swanberg’s filmic act of self-reflection. Sam likes Juliette, the lead actress in his sexually explicit film, but he must remain professional while directing her. When Juliette and her co-star Eric develop feelings for each other that they explore off-camera, Sam feels jealous, and his inner struggles threaten to derail the project.
Josephine Decker: Me the Terrible
With Madeline’s Madeline on the way to cinemas, MUBI begins a Josephine Decker retrospective with this wondrous, charmingly eccentric ode to imagination.
The Childhood of a Leader
Brady Corbet’s acting career was quietly developing with roles in the likes of Melancholia, Simon Killer, and Force Majeure, when he surprised us all with his directorial debut: this stunning and ambitious rumination on violence scored by Scott Walker.
Spike Lee returns to the old Brooklyn stomping grounds of his adolescence with this dazzling film co-written with his two siblings. It follows the day-to-day joys and frustrations of Troy, a young girl living in 1970s Brooklyn with her four older brothers and her loving but complicated parents.
MUBI Rediscovered: Funeral Parade of Roses
MUBI’s new strand devoted to new restorations begins with iconoclastic Japanese director Toshio Matsumoto’s bold, transgressive and influential first feature. A rare and revelatory immersion into Japan’s 1960s queer and drag culture.
Scarlett Johansson and Jonathan Rhys Meyers are on steamy form in this Dostoevskian thriller about luck, fate and British society – watch out for a scene-stealing turn from Matthew Goode.
MUBI Undiscovered: The Wild Frontier
MUBI’s Undiscovered strand, spotlighting adventurous films that push boundaries, kicks off with this compassionate 2017 French documentary that tacks us inside the Calais Jungle, as it’s partially torn down, leaving expelled migrants to move to the Northern zone to find shelter and keep on living.
Cold in July
Michael C Hall stars as a man who shoots a low-life burglar in 1989 Texas. He’s hailed as a hero by the town, but his father is soon out for revenge… (Read our full review)
byNWR: Olga’s House of Shame
The notorious exploitation entry that jumpstarted an entire “roughie” genre of S&M-tinged exploitation films. Audrey Cambell plays Olga, a sadistic jewel-thieving madame who hides in an abandoned mine and exacts all kinds of misery upon those who defy her—all told in oddball semi-documentary style.
Following its theatrical release, award-winning documentary The Raft docks at MUBI, which follows what happened in 1973, when 5 men and 6 women embarked on a raft as part of a scientific experiment studying violence, aggression and sexual attraction in human behaviour.
Shireen Seno, who started as a photographer for Lav Diaz, confirms an eye for intimacy with her award-winning sophomore film. Nervous Translation enters the mind of a child to paint a portrait of the Philippines in the 80s that delicately captures the weight of history and the power of imagination.
Straub + Huillet: Machorka-Muff
Relishing his political and sexual prospects in postwar Germany, a former Nazi colonel muses on the stupidity of the bourgeoisie, who can be easily duped in the voting booth and in the bedroom. Jean-Marie Straub and Daniele Huillet direct this vision of post-war German society, which is by turns wry and ruthless.
Straub + Huillet: Not Reconciled, or Only Violence Helps Where Violence Rules
50 years of German history in nearly 50 minutes, such is Straub-Huillet’s audacity. For such a scope, the duo reject conventional storytelling in favor of a more confrontative, daring cinema. Time and people are fragmented across eras in order to discover the past within the present—and vice versa.
Perhaps one of the most intoxicating portraits of the “neither with nor without you” romantic scenario, The Fire is a tale of self-destructive love taking place over the course of 24 hours in Buenos Aires.
The Double Life of Veronique
One of the most acclaimed films by Polish master Krzysztof Kieslowski (Dekalog, Three Colors), Veronique is a haunting, mysterious tale of connection, separation, and yearning.
Luis Buñuel: Belle de Jour
Frigid, beautiful young housewife Séverine cannot reconcile her kinky, sadomasochistic imagination with her everyday life alongside dutiful husband Pierre. She starts an afternoon job in a local, high-class brothel under the name Belle de Jour while her husband is away at work. Luis Buñuel’s dark comedy about desire is one of his biggest successes.
Luis Buñuel: That Obscure Object of Desire
MUBI closes its retrospective on Luis Buñuel, the cinema maestro of Surrealism, with his last film: an impiously perverse take on hypocrisy and human desire within a patriarchal society.
Between Buena Vista Social Club and The Salt of the Earth, Wim Wenders struck gold with Pina, an Academy Award-nominated documentary profile of Pina Bausch. A fitting tribute to the iconic dancer and choreographer, a cinematic spectacle of bodies in motion on-stage and off.
Of Horses and Men
In a remote valley in Iceland, where neighbours follow each other closely and people have deeply intertwined relationships with their horses, a couple’s first official visit is keenly monitored. Spring is coming and, with it, the dangerous force of nature. This cannot end well.
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Last chance to stream: Titles leaving MUBI soon
Available until end of: 11th May
Available until end of: 12th May
Available until end of: 13th May
Chronicles of Anna Madgalena Bach
Available until end of: 14th May
The Phantom of Liberty
Available until end of: 15th May
Available until end of: 16th May
The Last Temptation of Christ
Available until end of: 17th May
Available until end of: 18th May
Available until end of: 19th May
The Breakfast Club
Available until end of: 20th May