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Nate Parker Leads A Rebellion

The high profile debut of the week is the Nate Parker re-telling of Nat Turner’s rebellion. The historical event Nate Parker needs recounting, if only to cheese off the Alt-Right trolls backing Donald Trump.

But if you’re uninterested in checking out the award-winning film from Nate Parker for reasons connected to Parker himself, there are other options available. A film from Australia mixes teen anxiety with forest-based fantasy. Horror films set in Tehran and Los Angeles have received great buzz. Rachel Weisz delivers yet another stirring performance as an embattled history professor. And acclaimed director Andrea Arnold takes viewers on a modern-day teen American road trip.

American Honey

Andrea Arnold (Fish Tank)’s new film is set in the American Midwest. Teenage runaway Star has joined an itinerant crew of young door-to-door magazine sales people. The crew includes the charismatic Jake (Shia LeBoeuf). Star soon adopts the group’s party hearty, law-breaking, and free love lifestyle.

Now at the Embarcadero Center Cinemas, the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas

The Birth Of A Nation

In the Antebellum South, slave owner Samuel Turner (Armie Hammer) allows his literate slave and preacher Nat Turner (Nate Parker) to have his preaching skills used to quell slave discontent. But the plan backfires. The preacher’s witnessing of atrocities against his fellow slaves and himself inspires him to start a slave rebellion aimed at leading his people to freedom. Winner of both the Audience Award and Grand Jury Award for Drama at Sundance Film Festival 2016.

Now at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, the AMC Bay Street 16, the AMC Metreon 16, the AMC Van Ness 14, the Aquarius Theatre, the California Theatre, the Century 12 San Mateo, the Century 20 Daly City, the Century at Tanforan, the Century San Francisco Centre 9, the CineArts at the Empire, the Grand Lake Theatre, the Marina Theatre, and the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas

Denial

Historian Deborah E. Lipstadt (Academy Award-winner Rachel Weisz) publicly declares that David Irving (Timothy Spall) is a Holocaust denier. Irving retaliates by suing Lipstadt for libel in the English court system. There, defendant Lipstadt must prove the truth that the Holocaust occurred and Irving is a liar. Can a legal team led by Richard Rampton (Tom Wilkinson) successfully defend Lipstadt? Writer David Hare adapts Denial: Holocaust History On Trial for the screen.

Now at the Embarcadero Center Cinemas

Girl Asleep

Australian teen Greta Driscoll gets thrown out of her emotional comfort zone thanks to her parents’ surprise 15th birthday party. The social misfit soon finds herself emotionally overwhelmed dealing with a houseful of teenagers. Greta flees from the party into the nearby woods, where she finds herself in a bizarre world which mixes storybook fantasy with her anxieties about teenage life.

Now at the Roxie Theatre

The Greasy Strangler

Big Ronnie runs a Los Angeles disco walking tour with his son Brayden. When sexy, alluring Janet takes the tour, both father and son compete for her attention. Things get complicated by the appearance of a slimy inhuman maniac who comes out at night to strangle the innocent.

Now at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

The Hollow

One of the victims of a triple teen homicide in a small Mississippi town happens to be a Congressman’s daughter. FBI agents Vaughn Killinger (James Callis, Battlestar Galactica) and Sarah Desoto are sent to investigate. But the agents’ investigation is hampered by Killinger’s own lack of professional investment. More relevantly, certain powerful Cutler County adults want to prevent the FBI from discovering the town’s more unsavory secrets.

Now at the Roxie Theatre

The Lennon Report

When NYC news producer Alan Weiss becomes the victim of a hit-and-run, he accidentally stumbles onto the news opportunity of a lifetime. Weiss has been taken to Roosevelt Hospital, the same place where John Lennon has been taken shortly after getting shot by Mark David Chapman. Director Jeremy Profe re-creates the events of that night in the hospital from multiple perspectives. Besides Weiss’ story, the film focuses on accounts from the surgeon who struggled to save Lennon, various police officers, and Yoko Ono.

Now at the Roxie Theatre

Under The Shadow

During the Iran-Iraq War, Shideh’s life goes into the toilet. She’s been blacklisted from medical school. Her husband has been drafted. A missile hits Shideh’s apartment building. And daughter Dorsa has begun acting bizarrely. Is it possible a Djinn has arrived with the missile and is attempting to possess Dorsa? Shideh struggles to save her small family from the Djinn.

Now at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

About the Author

I'm a film reviewer for the Beyond Chron blog. Agnes Varda and Hirokazu Kore-eda are among my favorite filmmakers. I occasionally break down and watch a good action film...but don't tell anyone.

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