The Weekly MUBI Digest | 23rd February 2019
James R | On 23, Feb 2019
It’s Oscars weekend and MUBI is getting into the spirit with its final two awards season highlights: 2003’s 21 Grams and 2011’s A Separation. They join everything from Billy Wilder’s A Foreign Affair to Paddy Considine’s Tyrannosaur, with a side order of Alfonso Cuaron’s Children of Men. And, if you want to see an award-worthy gem on the big screen, you can use MUBI Go (which offers a free cinema ticket every week to its subscribers) to see The Favourite at participating cinemas.
What’s new, coming soon and leaving soon on the subscription service? This is your weekly MUBI Digest:
This week on MUBI
Awards 2019: 21 Grams – 23rd February
Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu’s follow-up to 21 Grams follows three people whose lives and fate come together in a car crash. Academic Paul suffers from a fatal heart disease and is waiting for a transplant; Christina, a former drug addict, now leads a calm life with husband and children; Jack, a hot tempered ex-con, seeks redemption in religion. Both Both Naomi Watts and Benicio del Toro received deserved Oscar nominations for their roles.
Awards 2019: A Separation – 24th February
Written and directed by Asghar Farhadi, this hard-hitting Iranian film follows a middle-class couple (Nader and Simin) who decide to divorce. But that simple idea, summed up in the deceptively short title, has ramifications that spread throughout society. Read our full review
Wim Wenders: Notebook on Cities and Clothes – 27th February
Commissioned by the Centre Georges Pompidou to make a film about the relationship between fashion and cinema, Wenders chose the Japanese designer Yohji Yamamoto as his subject. The film is an inquiry into Wenders’s mutable language of cinema and Yamamoto’s mutable language of fashion.
Suite Française – 28th February
France, 1940. Lucile, the wife of a prisoner of war, leads an existence closely watched over by her mother-in-law. When the German army arrives in their village, they are forced to take in Lieutenant von Falk. Lucile tries to avoid him, but is soon unable to ignore her attraction for German officer.
byNWR: The Maidens of Fetish Street – 1st March
This “experimental grindhouse” film by director Saul Resnick is a series of kinky vignettes centered around a lonely, wandering soul, purportedly set in a 1928 Los Angeles infused with 1960s S&M iconography.
“With the original negative long ago destroyed, a world-wide search was conducted for all existing print materials of this rare title. With the help of collectors and archivists, byNWR created the most complete version of the film seen in decades and restored it to its original glory.” –NWR
Other new releases on MUBI
Awards 2019: Tyrannosaur
Olivia Colman deserved all the awards for her heartbreaking turn in Paddy Considine’s powerful, intense drama about domestic abuse, co-starring an excellent (and entirely loathsome) Eddie Marsan. Read our full review
Awards 2019: Children of Men
Alfonso Cuaron’s remarkable dystopian sci-fi, starring Clive Owen, only feels more relevant 12 years after it was released. Read our full review
Awards 2019: Fish Tank
This 2009 film sees 15 year old Mia get a little too close to her mum’s boyfriend (Michael Fassbender). Shot in an apartment block with a raw immediacy, it won the Jury Prize at Cannes – announcing Andrea Arnold as one of Britain’s most exciting filmmakers. A free-wheeling, intimate drama that captures the claustrophobia of council flat living, and (like many of Arnold’s films) captures the rolling Essex landscape with the shadow and colour of a Constable painting. Superb. Read our full review
Awards 2019: Winter’s Bone
Jennifer Lawrence delivers a star-making performance in this mystery, which sees a determined Ozark Mountain girl go on a dangerous search for her drug-dealing father, who has skipped bail. Cold and bleak, with a cracking supporting turn from John Hawkes, this is a frostbitten pleasure. Read our full review
Awards 2019: Foxcatcher
Channing Tatum delivers a knock-out performance as real life wrestler Mark Schultz, who is taken under the wing of Steve Carrell’s eccentric millionaire, John du Pont. Supported by Mark Ruffalo as Mark’s generous older brather, director Bennett Miller captures the shifting power balance of the trio with a chilling detachment. Read our full review
Awards 2019: The Virgin Spring
Christians Töre and Märeta send their daughter, the virginal Karin, and their foster daughter Ingeri, to deliver candles to a church. On the way, the girls meet three goat herders who brutally rape and murder Karin. When the killers seek refuge in their family’s farm, Töre plots a fitting revenge.
Awards 2019: Beasts of the Southern Wild
Magical realism writ large, Beasts of the Southern is a gorgeous, sad depiction of a child’s view of the world, featuring a star-making turn from Quvenzhané Wallis. Read our full review
Awards 2019: A Foreign Affair
Congresswoman Phoebe Frost travels to postwar Berlin to investigate reports that an American officer may be protecting cabaret singer Erika von Schlütow, the former mistress of a leading Nazi. Miss Frost falls for her military escort Captain Pringle, unaware that he is in fact the singer’s paramour.
Berlinale: Hotel Dallas
1980s Romania. The TV show Dallas becomes a huge hit and inspires a young woman to immigrate to America. Playfully mixing fiction and documentary, Hotel Dallas is a surreal parable of communism, capitalism, and the power of art.
Berlinale: Brothers of the Night
Soft boys by day, kings by night. The film follows young Bulgarian Roma who come to Vienna looking for freedom and a quick buck. They sell their bodies as if that’s all they had. What comforts them, so far from home, is the feeling of being together. But the nights are long and unpredictable.
Berlinale: Victory Day
Every year, on the 9th of May, people gather in Treptower Park in Berlin. They come dressed in their best outfits or in Soviet military uniform. They carry flags, banners and posters, they sing, dance and drink. They celebrate the victory of the Soviet Union over Nazi Germany.
A couple composed of a male sculptor and a female dancer split their empty loft with a strip of orange tape to mark their respective working space, a divide which changes the nature of their relationship. Gradually the young artists’ works bleed together and inspire one another.
Richard Ayoade’s gently hilarious coming-of-age story is quality naval gazing cinema.
Central Airport THF
From its storied history glorified by the Nazis and enshrined for its role in the Berlin Airlift, Berlin’s Tempelhof is probably the world’s most famous airport. Karim Aïnouz’s striking documentary explores the essential role it has today, housing refugees in its astounding, repurposed architecture.
Laura Huertas Millán: Black Sun
Like the black sun of an eclipse, Antonia is a lyrical singer of exuberant and dark beauty. Recovering from a suicide attempt in a rehabilitation institution, all her family ties are irreparably broken. But her sister remains deeply affected by what happened. May they reunite once again? MUBI kicks off a triple-bill dedicated to Laura Huertas Millán with this 2016 short documentary.
Laura Huertas Millán: La Libertad
MUBI continues its run of Laura Huertas Millán short docs, as matriarchs assemble around a backstrap loom, a pre-Hispanic technique preserved by indigenous women of Mesoamerica. Unfolding like a weaving of figures and the gestures making up this labor, the film circulates between a domestic space, an archaeological museum, and a weavers’ cooperative.
Wim Wenders: Paris, Texas
Paris, Texas follows the mysterious, nearly mute drifter Travis (a magnificent Harry Dean Stanton, whose face is a landscape all its own) as he tries to reconnect with his young son, living with his brother in Los Angeles, and his missing wife.
Wim Wenders: The American Friend
Jonathan Zimmerman, a picture framer who suffers from a fatal disease, crosses paths with Tom Ripley, who trafficks in forged artworks. Drawn into an underworld of shady gangsters, Zimmerman is tempted to commit murder for a sum of money that would ensure the welfare of his family after his death.
Wim Wenders: Tokyo-Ga
German director Wim Wenders travels to Japan to explore the world of one his “masters” in cinema, Japanese celebrated film director Yasujiro Ozu. Sequences of Wenders’ view of Japan alternates with encounters and interviews with crew and cast-members of Ozu’s films.
Hong Sang-soo: Claire’s Camera
Film sales assistant Man-hee is working in Cannes but is abruptly fired halfway through the festival. Now unmoored, she strikes up a friendship with Claire, a French teacher and first-time visitor to the festival. By chance, Claire also becomes friends with Man-hee’s boss and Korean filmmaker So.
Hong Sang-Soo: On the Beach at Night Alone
Young-hee visits a friend in Hamburg to nurse a broken heart with all the enthusiasm of the romantic drifter abroad. Meanwhile, back in Gangneung and with the soju flowing, Young-hee questions the social attitudes that have punished her relationship with a married film director.
Hong Sang-soo: The Day After
Areum is looking forward to her first day of work at a small publishing house, unaware that she’s replacing the boss’s lover who recently left him. She is therefore caught off-guard when the boss’s wife causes a scene in the belief that Areum was to be the recipient of a love letter.
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Last chance to stream: Titles leaving MUBI soon
Do the Right Thing
Available until end of: 23rd February
Available until end of: 24th February
Available until end of: 25th February
Les Unwanted de Europa
Available until end of: 26th February
Yourself and Yours
Available until end of: 27th February
The American Friend
Available until end of: 28th February
The Endless Film
Available until end of: 1st March
Satan in High Heels
Available until end of: 2nd March
Available until end of: 3rd March