Winter Guide: Lesley Manville Is the Toast of Mike Leigh's Latest Film, Another Year

A guide to winter movie releases

The Housemaid
January 21
You don’t need to be familiar with Kim Ki-young’s 1960 psychodrama of the same name—a landmark of South Korean cinema that spoke volumes about postwar male neuroses—to dig into this lurid, black-humored reimagining from The President’s Last Bang filmmaker Im Sang-soo. An upper-crust family’s beautiful new hire falls victim to the seductions of the paterfamilias whose material worth allows him every whim. As a treatise on class warfare, it bangs its single note with style, but don’t dismiss what might be the greatest WTF? ending of the year. IFC Films, in limited release,

Fritz Lang in Hollywood
January 28 to February 10
The Austrian-born legend may be best known for such works of expressionist genius as Metropolis and M, but his American studio career (beginning with 1936’s Fury, here among the 22 features) remains a vital slice of the canon. Beyond new 35mm restorations of Western Union, American Guerilla in the Philippines, and The Return of Frank James (Lang’s first western and color film), there will be smartly paired double features, including the Edward G. Robinson one-two punch of The Woman in the Window and Scarlet Street. Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street,

January 28
Mysterious Skin and Smiley Face may have shown a growing maturity in filmmaker Gregg Araki’s work, but in returning to the campy, scatological, punk-rock roots of his ’90s comedies (The Doom Generation, Totally F***ed Up), the queercore auteur has unleashed a gonzo teen fantasy that’s trippier, hornier, and more apocalyptically funny than Donnie Darko. Thomas Dekker stars as a bisexual college stud whose recurring dreams connect him to a candy-colored conspiracy involving animal masks and the supernatural. There’s seriously no easier way to describe thrills this deliriously dippy. IFC Films, in limited release,

Manville (center) with liquid and non-liquid co-stars.
Simon Mein (c) Thin Man Films Ltd., Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics
Manville (center) with liquid and non-liquid co-stars.

Dick Fontaine
February 17 to 24
Over the past four decades, this British documentary pioneer has used an array of techniques to tell vibrant tales on topics ranging from the American civil rights movement to the Beatles’ first visit to New York. Anthology’s exhaustive retrospective—starting with Fontaine’s early investigations as co-founder of Granada TV’s “World in Action” series and on through his brand-new work—features a who’s who of cultural icons and iconoclasts: Sonny Rollins, Norman Mailer, Jean Shrimpton, Huey Newton, Afrika Bambaataa, and Johnny Rotten. Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second Avenue,

Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives
March 2
As a widower slowly dies of kidney failure in Thailand’s lush jungles, his dead wife materializes, as does his long-lost son (now a “monkey ghost”), and what’s with that princess being orally pleasured by a talking catfish? A slow-burning cinematic riddle that worms its dreamy abstractions through the likes of melodrama, comedy, horror, fable, and documentary, Thai auteur Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Palme d’Or winner is a free-spirited, hypnotic masterpiece—and that’s not a word to be thrown around lightly. Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street,

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