Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

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THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI is a darkly comedic drama from Academy Award® winner Martin McDonagh (IN BRUGES). After months have passed without a culprit in her daughter’s murder case, Mildred Hayes (Academy Award® winner Frances McDormand) makes a bold move, commissioning three signs leading into her town with a controversial message directed at William Willoughby (Academy Award® nominee Woody Harrelson), the town’s revered chief of police. When his second-in-command Officer Dixon (Sam Rockwell), an immature mother’s boy with a penchant for violence, gets involved, the battle between Mildred and Ebbing’s law enforcement is only exacerbated.

The Post

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Steven Spielberg directs Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in The Post, a thrilling drama about the unlikely partnership between The Washington Post’s Katharine Graham (Streep), the first female publisher of a major American newspaper, and editor Ben Bradlee (Hanks), as they race to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spanned three decades and four U.S. Presidents. The two must overcome their differences as they risk their careers – and their very freedom – to help bring long-buried truths to light.

Wonder

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Based on the New York Times bestseller, WONDER tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a boy with facial differences who enters fifth grade, attending a mainstream elementary school for the first time.

 

The Greatest Showman

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“The Greatest Showman” is a bold and original musical that celebrates the birth of show business and the sense of wonder we feel when dreams come to life. Inspired by the ambition and imagination of P.T. Barnum, “The Greatest Showman” tells the story of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a mesmerizing spectacle that became a worldwide sensation. “The Greatest Showman” is directed by exciting new filmmaker, Michael Gracey, with songs by Academy Award® winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (“La La Land”) and starring Academy Award nominee Hugh Jackman. Jackman is joined by Zac Efron, Academy Award nominee Michelle Williams, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya.

Jane

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Oscar-nominated director Brett Morgan (“Cobain: Montage of Heck”) uses a trove of 16mm footage unearthed from the National Geographic archives to tell the story of a young woman whose only dream was to live among animals and learn about them. The film presents an intimate portrait of Jane Goodall, whose chimpanzee research challenged the male-dominated scientific consensus of her time and revolutionised our understanding of the natural world.

Breath

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Based on the acclaimed novel by Australian author Tim Winton, the feature directorial debut of actor Simon Baker is a powerful story in which the immense force of the open sea is matched by the tidal bore of adolescent emotion.

Pikelet (Samson Coulter) was 13 when he first saw people surf. “Never had I seen men do something so beautiful, so pointless, and elegant,” he would recall years later while looking back on those days in the 1970s when he and his rambunctious friend Loonie (Ben Spence) roamed their small coastal town in search of excitement. They found it in Sando (Baker), a pro surfer living in a secluded house with his wife Eva (Elizabeth Debicki), a former freestyle skier forced to retire after an injury. Sando introduces the boys to the thrill of riding the waves and living in the moment. Pikelet displays a natural facility for surfing, but as risks burgeon both on the open sea and in the privacy of Sando and Eva’s bohemian abode, he will need to decide what is right for him — and what is too far out.

The sequences of Pikelet, Loonie, and Sando rushing through colossal tunnels of water are exquisite and exhilarating, but equally impressive are close moments between characters seeking meaningful contact. Baker has always been a charismatic actor, but as a director, he displays vision, compassion, and tenderness.

The Big Sick

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Based on the real-life courtship between Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon, THE BIG SICK tells the story of Pakistan-born aspiring comedian Kumail (Nanjiani), who connects with grad student Emily (Kazan) after one of his stand-up sets. However, what they thought would be just a one-night stand blossoms into the real thing, which complicates the life that is expected of Kumail by his traditional Muslim parents.

When Emily is beset with a mystery illness, it forces Kumail to navigate the medical crisis with her parents, Beth and Terry (Holly Hunter and Ray Romano) who he’s never met, while dealing with the emotional tug-of-war between his family and his heart. THE BIG SICK is directed by Michael Showalter (HELLO MY NAME IS DORIS) and produced by Judd Apatow (TRAINWRECK, THIS IS 40) and Barry Mendel (TRAINWRECK, THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS).

I, Tonya

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Based on the unbelievable but true events, I, TONYA is a darkly comedic tale of American figure skater, Tonya Harding, and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history. Though Harding was the first American woman to complete a triple axel in competition, her legacy was forever defined by her association with an infamous, ill-conceived, and even more poorly executed attack on fellow Olympic competitor Nancy Kerrigan. Featuring an iconic turn by Margot Robbie as the fiery Harding, a mustachioed Sebastian Stan as her impetuous ex-husband Jeff Gillooly, a tour-de-force performance from Allison Janney as her acid-tongued mother, LaVona Golden, and an original screenplay by Steven Rogers, Craig Gillespie’s I, TONYA is an absurd, irreverent, and piercing portrayal of Harding’s life and career in all of its unchecked––and checkered––glory.

I, Tonya

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Based on the unbelievable but true events, I, TONYA is a darkly comedic tale of American figure skater, Tonya Harding, and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history. Though Harding was the first American woman to complete a triple axel in competition, her legacy was forever defined by her association with an infamous, ill-conceived, and even more poorly executed attack on fellow Olympic competitor Nancy Kerrigan. Featuring an iconic turn by Margot Robbie as the fiery Harding, a mustachioed Sebastian Stan as her impetuous ex-husband Jeff Gillooly, a tour-de-force performance from Allison Janney as her acid-tongued mother, LaVona Golden, and an original screenplay by Steven Rogers, Craig Gillespie’s I, TONYA is an absurd, irreverent, and piercing portrayal of Harding’s life and career in all of its unchecked––and checkered––glory.

Chappaquiddick

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This suspenseful historical drama examines the infamous 1969 incident when Senator Ted Kennedy (Jason Clarke) accidentally drove off a bridge, resulting in the death of campaign worker Mary Jo Kopechne (Kate Mara).

Among the most morally murky episodes in late-20th-century US politics — and that’s a crowded field — was the drowning of campaign specialist Mary Jo Kopechne in what would become known as the Chappaquiddick Incident. Kopechne was trapped in a car that Senator Ted Kennedy drove off a bridge on Chappaquiddick Island, Massachusetts, following a night of festivities. This sombre, suspenseful recreation of the accident and its aftermath, directed by John Curran (TIFF 2013’s Tracks), invites us to speculate on how this shameful scandal came to be.

The Kennedy dynasty had lost three heirs apparent by 1969, and Ted (Jason Clarke) was, at the time, the family’s last hope to carry their name and ambitions into the upper echelons of US politics. Kennedy patriarch Joe (Bruce Dern), however, always considered his youngest son a ne’er-do-well — and he never let Ted forget it. The party on Chappaquiddick reunited the “Boiler Room Girls” who had served on Robert Kennedy’s 1968 presidential campaign, among them Mary Jo (Kate Mara). Ted whisks Mary Jo away for a reckless moonlight drive that ends in tragedy. But the more profound malfeasance begins after the drowning — itself dramatized here in harrowing detail — when a battalion of spin doctors gets to work on covering up the incident, using the Apollo 11 moon landing as a distraction.

What makes Chappaquiddick such a brilliant historical drama is the way Curran and company focus on moment-by-moment choices instead of suggesting some overarching conspiracy. This is an unsettling film about the way power strives to protect itself while bystanders are left by the wayside

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