With a mess of movies to choose from, here are a few highlights to check out to keep from being overwhelmed by the lineup at this year’s Independent Film Festival Boston.
Remarkably ambitious and anxiously taut from its opening shots to its closing, the success of “Green Room” isn’t found in its jump scares or gore (although both are plentiful) but in its realistic approach to both.
Melissa McCarthy is as deftly nimble a comedienne as they come these days. It’s a shame, then, that such a wonderfully vibrant performer ends up in a film that can barely stagger to her level of commitment.
Director Jean-Marc Vallée, ever a plumber of the human condition, digs in and veers to the left every time a cliché appears on the horizon. Though not all are not avoidable, this ambitious, dramatic undertaking gets a big boost from lead Jake Gyllenhaal.
Jeff Nichols, the budding auteur showing a profound affinity for character development and edgy ambiance with “Take Shelter” and “Mud,” gets a tad heavy-footed in his latest, a further contemplation on the Rapture, sanity and the supernatural.
Richard Linklater is true to his roots – he’s revisited and re-envisioned them time and again, and does so again in “Everybody Wants Some!!” with what’s tagged as a “spiritual sequel” to “Dazed and Confused.”
Zack Snyder, the hyperkinetic visual stylist who’s crafted such spectacles as “300” and but also the underappreciated “Watchmen,” winds up in no man’s land with epic aspirations as he grandiloquently pits two classic comic book giants against each other.
Gavin Hood’s taut treatment of a terrorist hunt gets at the complex innards of drone diplomacy, putting the viewer solidly in the seats of a multitude of players with wide-ranging agendas.
With “Allegiant,” the final book of Veronica Roth’s “Divergent” series is being split in two and the series has lost all momentum – not to mention its focus on Tris, its hero – in what amounts to little more than a cash grab that will leave audiences wondering at the point.
The recent works of a revived Terrence Malick are all imbued artfully with discovery and revelation, and “Knight of Cups” delivers on all the things his fans have come to expect – yet is still subpar on the Malick meter compared with his early greatness