With the 90th Academy Awards a few days’ shy, the time has come of course to set our sights on some films that made the festival rounds and should be on our watch list like right now. Some of the famous film festivals like the Venice Film Festival, the Tribeca Film Festival,and the Cannes Film Festival are the most coveted ones which showcase some of the best work in cinema. 2017 as a year did not disappoint filmgoers and watchers and the following list is only a testament to that emotion.
Here is a list of the 5 festival movies of 2017 that you should watch now:
- Lean on Pete – This 2017 British drama film stars Charlie Plummer, Chloe Sevigny,and Steve Buscemi. The film directed by Andrew Haigh is based on the namesake novel by Willy Vlautin. Lean on Pete was screened at the 74thVenice International Film Festival. Charlie Plummer won the Marcello Mastroianni Award for Best Actor. The film has been well received by critics with 90% approval rating and an average rating of 7.3/10 on Rotten Tomatoes. Metacritic’s consensus is that the film has “generally favorable reviews”. Set in the Midwest in America, Lean on Pete is about 15-year-old boy Charlie who has spent most of his life in the dark shadows of his drunken father. Life changes for the better for the young boy when his path crosses with horse race trainer Del, played by Buscemi, and jockey Bonnie, played by Sevigny.
- Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri –An Oscar favorite, which has won awards in all the major ceremonies so far, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, is a fan favorite. Burn After Reading and Fargo actress Frances McDormand stars in this black comedy crime film directed by Martin McDonagh. While McDormand’s performance of a mother (Mildred Hayes) who rents three billboards to call out her daughter’s unsolved murder mystery is to watch out for, the film also boasts of Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell who are in superlative form and have been nominated for the Oscar gong alongside McDormand. The film was screened at the 74th Venice Film Festival.
- The Shape of Water –Screened at the 74th Venice Film Festival, where it also won the Golden Lion for the best film, The Shape of Water is a romantic film with copious amounts of drama and fantasy thrown in. Directed by Pan’s Labyrinth and Hell boy franchise director Guillermo Del Toro, The Shape of Water is set 1962’s Baltimore at the peak of cold war. Starring Sally Hawkins as Elisa Esposito, a mute janitor at a government research facility who falls in love with a humanoid-amphibian. Opening to widespread acclaim the film has received a whopping 13 nominations at the 90th Academy Awards.
- The Killing of a Sacred Deer – When the cast of a movie reads Nicole Kidman and Colin Farrell chances are that it is a winner already. The psychological horror film, directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, competed for the Palme d’Or at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. Farrell plays a doctor in the movie who becomes friends with a teenage boy, played by Barry Keoghan, who is somehow connected to his past. Mysteriously enough his family starts falling ill after he introduces Keoghan to them.
- Permission –Downtown Abbey and Beauty and the Beast star Dan Stevens pairs with Rebecca Hall of Vicky Christina Barcelona fame in this film about a monogamous couple who try out an open relationship before they take the final plunge. Hall, who also produces this film that premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival stars as Anna who is waiting for a marriage proposal from her long-time boyfriend Will, played by Stevens. However, she opens up to the idea of test dating other men before saying “I do” to Will, going by her brother and his partner’s suggestion.
Now that you have a comprehensive list of the festival movies to watch out for and only a weekend to spare before the Oscar D-day, what’s stopping you from sinking into your couch and digging into a bowl of buttered popcorn?