ROAR
1981, AGFA, 102 min, Dir: Noel Marshall

“No animals were harmed in the making of this film. 70 cast and crew members were.” Anyone who thinks life with the lions is all BORN FREE bliss should watch this notorious adventure-horror film, shot over the course of a decade. Star of THE BIRDS and an animal-rights activist, Tippi Hedren plays a woman who brings her three children (including real-life daughter Melanie Griffith) to visit her husband’s California wildlife ranch - only to be attacked by its four-legged inhabitants.


LIMBO
1999, Sony Repertory, 126 min, USA, Dir: John Sayles

One of John Sayles’ most haunting films, LIMBO is a sublime meditation on the feeling of being stuck in a liminal state, a theme as relevant to the characters as it is to the viewer’s experience. Set in Juneau, Alaska, a town on the edge of civilization surrounded by water and wilderness, the film follows former fisherman-turned-handyman Joe (David Strathairn) and tired lounge singer Donna (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio), who strike up a casual relationship to distract themselves from their otherwise dreary lives. Their sudden relationship comes much to the chagrin of Donna’s teenage daughter Noelle (Vanessa Martinez) but all three lives gradually begin to improve - until a forgotten part of Joe’s past reemerges and sets off a dramatic chain of events that leaves them stranded on a deserted island.


LES MISÉRABLES
2019, Amazon Studios, 102 min, France, Dir: Ladj Ly

In the Paris suburb where Victor Hugo set part of his 19th-century magnum opus, French filmmaker Ladj Ly tells an all-too-contemporary tale of crime and community. Inspired by the 2005 riots that set cars ablaze across France, Ly focuses his lens on a trio of police officers whose unorthodox tactics bring them into conflict with local youth. Heightening the tension are a drone’s probing eye and the threat that at any moment racial tensions will flare too high to be contained. Winner of the Prix du Jury at 2019’s Cannes Film Festival, LES MISÉRABLES leverages documentary-style rawness and pulse-quickening momentum to stake its claim as an accomplished thriller concerned with social inequity and its corrosive effect on the rule of law.


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