The Teachers’ Lounge

When one of her students is suspected of theft, idealistic new teacher Carla Nowak (Leonie Benesch) decides to take matters into her own hands, trying to mediate between outraged parents, opinionated colleagues and aggressive students. Caught between what she believes is right and the school system, the consequences of her actions threaten to tear her apart. A modern parable with the heart of a thriller, the film is marvelously carried by the virtuoso talents of Benesch (The White Ribbon, Babylon Berlin).

more…

Perfect Days

Nominated for an Oscar for Best International Feature

Leave it to boundary crossing German filmmaker Wim Wenders (Wings of Desire; Paris, Texas) to direct a film that became Japan’s entry into the Academy Awards. Hirayama (Koji Yakusho) is content with his mostly solitary life as a toilet cleaner in Tokyo. Beyond his  structured daily routine, he reads, takes photos of trees with a throw-back camera, and listens to his cherished cassette recordings of The Animals, The Kinks, Patti Smith and Lou Reed on his drive to and from work. When his teenage niece shows up unexpectantly, he attempts to show her how to lead a simpler, quieter life.

more…

The Taste of Things

The story of Eugenie, an esteemed cook, and Dodin, the fine gourmet who she has been working for over the last 20 years.

more…

Origin

Written and directed by Academy Award nominee Ava DuVernay, Origin chronicles the tragedy and triumph of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson as she investigates a global phenomenon of epic proportions. DuVernay’s film puts Wilkerson’s life at the center of the story to explore how she developed the argument in her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Caste. Starring Academy Award nominee Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor (King Richard), Origin honors its source material in service of a deeply emotional story of love and loss, and a fight for the future of us all.

more…

The Boys in the Boat

A 1930s-set story centered on the University of Washington’s rowing team, from their Depression-era beginnings to winning gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

more…

Oscar Shorts: Animation

See the Oscar-nominated short films before the Academy Awards on March 12! Produced by ShortsTV for the past 16 years and the largest commercial release of short films on the planet, this special feature showcases Oscar-nominated short films in three categories on the big screen. The emotionally complex and moving animated selections this year come from Iran, France, Israel and the United States. Sean Ono Lennon concepted and helped produce “War Is Over!”, the short film inspired by his parents’ music (above). Napoleon Dynamite filmmakers Jared and Jerusha Hess directed “Ninety-Five Senses,” their first animated film, about the musings of a death-row inmate. Note: This year’s program is not appropriate for children under 13. Topics include the Holocaust, inferred child sexual abuse, and violent battle scenes. The nominees are: Our Uniform – Yegane Moghaddam, 7 min., Iran (in Farsi; subtitles)…

more…

Oscar Shorts: Documentary

Produced by ShortsTV for the past 16 years and the largest commercial release of short films on the planet, this special feature showcases Oscar-nominated short films in three categories on the big screen. This year’s documentary topics include aging, friendship, economic inequality, Taiwanese independence, and book bans. It is probably the most uplifting program in the Oscar Shorts lineup!

more…

Oscar Shorts: Live Action

See the Oscar-nominated short films before the Academy Awards on March 12! Produced by ShortsTV for the past 16 years and the largest commercial release of short films on the planet, this special feature showcases Oscar-nominated short films in three categories on the big screen. This year’s live-action program is moving and cinematically rich and does not shy away from addressing tough topics. Nominee “The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch (above), encapsulates the wonderful cinematic world of Wes Anderson, from his recent adaptation of Roald Dahl short stories.

more…

All of Us Strangers

A screenwriter drawn back to his childhood home enters into a fledgling relationship with a mysterious neighbor. He then discovers his parents living just as they were on the day they died, 30 years before. This heartbreaking film, directed by Andrew Haigh, uses the shifting veil of the ghost story to tell an emotion-packed, profoundly human tale.

more…

Four Daughters

A musician is blessed with four musical prodigies, all girls, and cursed when a troubled young composer enters the lives of his Four Daughters.

more…

The Zone of Interest

Director Jonathan Glazer’s film about the Holocaust dispassionately examines the ordinary existence of people complicit in horrific crimes, forcing us to take a cold look at the mundanity behind an unforgivable brutality.

more…