‘Raat of the Kings,’ ‘Lucky’ and more streaming gems

It’s not just summer’s blockbuster season at the reopened multiplexes; Just like streamers are getting bigger with mega-productions “Yesterday’s War” and “Fear Street” Dominates ad space and home pages. But if those aren’t your cup of tea, no worries—we have a handful of American indies, foreign films, and thoughtful documentaries to fill your summer nights with.

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The Netflix movie “Gunpowder Milkshake” isn’t just a matter of interest because of its all-star cast; It is also director Navot Papushado’s first feature film in seven years, whose last picture was this gruesome impact thriller, co-written and co-directed with Aharon Keshales. When a child is kidnapped and horrifyingly murdered, the victim’s father and a renegade cop separately plot to kidnap the prime suspect and torture him for information; All three men end up in a stateroom, where Papushado and Keshaless cleverly use, and twist, our preconceived notions of good, evil, and evil. Wildly unpredictable and deeply funny, though not for the weak of stomach.

With each passing year, it seems more certain that “Jackie Brown” is the best film of Quentin Tarantino’s career—yet with that residual and growing good will, audiences still haven’t discovered this sinister crime comedy. , which is the “Jackie” prequel. Adapted from Elmore Leonard’s 1978 novel “The Switch,” “Life of Crime,” introduces the characters Ordell Robbie, Louis Gara, and Melanie Ralston (here played by Yasin Bay, John Hawkes and Isla Fisher) as they play themselves in a plot to kidnap a wealthy socialite (Jennifer Aniston). Daniel Schechter directs with a clever, light touch, and his screenplay captures the offhand humor and jumpy story rhythms of Leonard’s novels well.

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“This is your first time here?” Blackbeard asks new prisoner Roman, who nods; “Here” is Ivory Coast’s infamous La Maca prison, and the opening scenes of Philippe Lacotte’s electrifying drama offer up plenty of disturbing details of life inside. But realism soon gives way to ritual, such as Blackbeard—Dangero, or the prisoner king—anointing young Romans to tell stories to the prison population during that night’s red moon. Roman (played with an appropriate mix of fear and intensity by Cone Bakery) is intimidated by this temporary state and its tough crowds, but he works through that fear, and as he regains his confidence, his voice becomes more powerful, and her stories come to life vivid, often majestic.

Director Lynn Shelton’s The final feature film was this jarring, loose-fitting, slightly gloomy, and utterly amusing ensemble cast, which is as charming as any film about a Confederate sword can be. The sword is left by his grandfather to Cynthia (Jillian Bell), who insists that it is proof that the Confederacy won the war; Marc Maron co-stars as a pawn shop owner who discovers that, pointless story or not, The Sword is worth a fair amount of money, and a potential salesperson leads a grueling road trip. As was his custom, Shelton fills the film with story and poignant character moments, and Maron delivers his finest performance to date.

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Austin-based filmmaker Bob Byington has honed a distinctive and unmistakable style over the past decade – his films are short, funny, self-aware, unapologetically funny, and unmistakably satirical. Her latest story is the story of a small-town schoolteacher (Cally Wheeles) who becomes embroiled in a sex scandal, driven less by lust than by boredom and marital unhappiness (the hatred to which she and her husband are a- respect the other, he is one of the best movies of the movie (running jokes). While the man who also co-wrote the story is a genuine find, his dry-dry line is a good match for Bington’s sarcastic wit. And the narrator, Nick Offerman, steals the picture as he finds voice-overs, like, “There’s a badass in every story. A rapscallion. A… Scallywag? I might need a thesaurus to move on.” “

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It’s been 21 years since the smash success of “Scary Movie,” both bringing back the spoof film — which flopped from the glory days of Mel Brooks and the “Airplane” team Zucker-Abraham-Zucker — and making its own as the film. hastened the conclusion. Various sequels, spinoffs and alumni projects all but bury the form in the practice of witless, laughable in pop culture outcry. The only oasis in the desert of the dumb is David Wayne’s strangely witty twist of twinkly romantic comedy, which stars Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd in the “You’ve Got Mail” riff as competing candy merchants in New York City who feel (now all together ) “like another character” in his story.

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Few film actors have enjoyed farewell as affectionate Harry Dean Stanton, unique and prolific character actor (with over 200 credits to his name) whose final film role was also one of his few leading roles. He plays the title character, a 90-year-old cracker and badass who knows his end is near, but isn’t quietly going out. Director John Carroll Lynch is an iconic character actor himself — he played Frances McDormand’s husband in “Fargo” and the prime suspect in “Zodiac” — and he handles his leading man with affection and respect, giving him a handful Surround yourself with friends and past collaborators including David Lynch, Tom Skerritt and Ed Begley Jr.

Although director Claire Denis and actor Juliette Binoche are two of the most attractive forces in French cinema, they had never worked together before in this character-driven drama. However, it is a perfect collaboration, highlighting his unique gifts and his non-prisoner approach to his work. Binoche is in top form as a Parisian artist in his quest for happiness, but not through the usual cinematic solution of the male partner – although there are partners, many of them, and in the various ways they fail, both in rich comedic situations and Intelligent emotional resonance both provide.

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Actor Michael Rapaport — known for his fast-paced turns in films like “True Romance” and “Bambuzzled” — masters himself with this loving but candid tribute to ’90s rap group A Tribe Called Quest. Documentary proved. Much of the picture is a suggestive musical history of the tendencies and sounds of his original era, which the filmmaker lovingly captures. But it falls into difficult waters for “Rock the Bells” tours documenting their reunion, capturing long-lasting resentments and ugly conflicts, becoming something as “Let It Be” for hip-hop majors. .

According to Mark Harris’s recent (and excellent) biography “Mike Nichols: A Life,” Respected stage and screen directors, in their later years, would spend a lot of time rehearsing to tell stories from the good old days. A taste of it is given in this documentary, which includes his final interview (held in the summer of 2014) on the stage of the John Golden Theater, where he and Elaine May performed their Broadway shows. Focusing on his early years — it ends with his Oscar win for “The Graduate” — the film provides a brief but informative snapshot of his directorial approach and philosophy. But it is most valuable as a personality portrait; He’s sharp as a nail and endlessly funny, his comic timing and personal anecdotes honed and refined over the years of storytelling.

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