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Up To Date

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' December 14-16

Two woman dressed in 18th century dresses, one is doing the other's hair.
Yorgos Lanthimos
Fox Searchlight
'The Favourite' is the second time Olivia Coleman, right, has portrayed a British monarch, the first being Queen Elizabeth in the TV series 'The Crown.'

And, suddenly, 2019 is nearly upon us! For those looking to ignore the trials of time gone by, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary Film Critics have recommendations sure to wisk you away. Immerse yourself in early 18th-century England, amongst wars and queens, experience the mundanity of life in 1970s Mexico City, or maybe something closer a little closer to home. Whatever you chose, take a break this weekend from the exhaustive final weeks of 2018.

Steve Walker

"The Favourite," R

  • This delightfully vulgar, lavishly designed romp from director Yorgos Lanthimos stars Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone as ruthless ladies-in-waiting vying for the attentions of a maladjusted Queen Anne, played to the hilt by Olivia Coleman. 

"Vox Lux," R

  • Natalie Portman gives a jaw-dropping visceral performance as an unpleasant, drug-addled rock star who shot to fame 18 years prior as a teenage vocalist who survives a barbaric school shooting. 

"Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki," not rated

  • After filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki, considered a master of hand-drawn animation, announces his retirement in 2013, he begins flirting with the idea of computer graphics in a documentary that is virtually an asethic debate between the way things were and the way they've gone. 

Cynthia Haines

"Roma," R

  • Academy Award-winning director and writer Alfonso Cuaron brings us his most emotional project to date. Drawing on his own childhood, he explores political turmoil and social strife through the narrative of a single family.

"Can You Ever Forgive Me?" R

  • Lee Israel made her fame profiling celebrities. When her unconquerable writer's block and her alcoholic tendencies leave her broke, she does what she knows best. This time, though, her thoughtfully crafted stories about the famous are made up.

"The Favourite," R

  • In the early 18th century, a fragile, yet tempestuous Queen Anne reigns. But behind her throne are two women who tend to her health and calm her bouts of rage. Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz bring this period piece to a modern audience with witty dialouge and spicy rivalry.
Since 1998, Steve Walker has contributed stories and interviews about theater, visual arts, and music as an arts reporter at KCUR. He's also one of Up to Date's regular trio of critics who discuss the latest in art, independent and documentary films playing on area screens.