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Up To Date

What's Showing In Independent, Foreign & Documentary Film, October 2-4

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Lionsgate
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'Sicario' stars Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro as FBI agents involved in the war against drugs at the U.S. - Mexico border.

Fall is officially here, and along with the cooler weather — is a new array of independent, foreign and documentary films. So grab an autumnal coffee blend and head to a theater near you. KCUR's film critics share their reviews and recommendations of movies now in area cinemas.

Sleeping With Other People, R

  • Bob: This film has grown on me. It's an interesting blend of raunch and romance. These people wouldn't be likeable, except somehow they are.  
  • Steve: I was very impressed with Allyson Brie. She was so charismatic. 

Mississippi Grind, R

  • Bob:  What I like about this...there is a very interesting dynamic between the two characters. I'm not sure that great lessons are learned here but there's something about the quality of the acting, which I expect of Ben Mendelsohn. As good as Mendelsohn is, I've got to give credit to Ryan Reynolds.
  • Cynthia: I was put off by the title. I think if they changed the title it might attract a larger audience, and it should — because Ben Mendelsohn's performance really made the movie. There were some moments that were just incredible. 

Sicario, R

  • Bob: I liked it very much.  Here's a movie with a big budget and lots of stars. Can we consider it an art film? I think we actually can. There are scenes in this film that will absolutely blow you away...Really grim stuff. Nobody actually says it, but this movie says 'We've lost the war on drugs.'

Goodnight Mommy, R

  • Cynthia: It's beautifully shot, the cinematography is great, the symbolism, the use of music. It is an art house horror movie. 
  • Steve: It's very effectively creepy. There are a couple of scenes that are... gruesome. 

Grandma, R

  • Bob: I really liked this movie. I felt it built to a huge emotional conclusion, it's not just about Lily, it's about three generations of women in one family. Their misunderstandings, their hatreds, their mistrusts and how in a crisis they come together. Another pro-female bonding story for a change.
  • Steve: [Lily Tomlin] is quite funny, quite acerbic, sharp tongued... and her granddaughter shows up and she's pregnant and doesn't want to be but doesn't have enough money to terminate the pregnancy, which is a very brave plot line right there.  I'm a big fan of [Tomlin's], but this is not her best work. I think the script is lackluster at best.

Learning To Drive, R

  • Cynthia: This is a movie I liked a lot. Patricia Clarkson is a fantastic actress. I think it's very well done, very charming. At the end I thought, if you liked I'll See You In My Dreams, you like this movie too. 
  • Steve: It's a little randier than the Blythe Danner film. Clarkson is one of my very favorite actresses and she's just always terrific.   
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9 a.m., my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. My email is steve@kcur.org.
Slow news days are a thing of the past. As KCUR’s news director, I want to cut through the noise, provide context to the headlines, and give you news you can use in your daily life – information that will empower you to make informed decisions about your neighborhood, your city and the region. Email me at lisa@kcur.org or follow me on Twitter @larodrig.