OKJA
2017, Netflix, 120 min, South Korea/USA, Dir: Bong Joon Ho

A decade after biotech CEO Lucy Mirando (Tilda Swinton) launches a contest to raise the world’s finest genetically designed “super pig,” South Korean farm girl Mija (Ahn Seo-hyun) learns that her super pig, Okja, has won the title. When Okja is hauled off to be exhibited in New York City, Mija undertakes a rescue mission that puts her in league with the Animal Liberation Front – and into the clutches of the profit-minded Mirando Corporation. An imaginative adventure with friendship and humanity’s nearsightedness at its center, OKJA is a moving reminder that courage can take small forms.


IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK
2018, Annapurna Pictures, 119 min, USA, Dir: Barry Jenkins

Set in early-1970s Harlem, this adaptation of James Baldwin’s novel is a timeless and moving love story of both a couple’s unbreakable bond and the African-American family’s empowering embrace, as told through the eyes of 19-year-old Tish Rivers (newcomer KiKi Layne). She dreams of a future with her artist fiancé, Fonny (Stephan James), but the couple’s plans are derailed when the young man is arrested for a crime he did not commit. As Fonny’s weeks in prison turn to months, Tish draws upon inner strength and the unwavering support of her family to face the challenges of life without her partner at her side and the imminent arrival of the couple’s child. “In BEALE STREET as in MOONLIGHT, the director melds color, music and portraiture to do more than tell a story. By the time he’s finished, he seems to have transcended the conventional tools of filmmaking to work with pure emotion itself.” - Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post.


THE BIG SHORT
2015, Paramount, 130 min, Dir: Adam McKay

In 2005, money manager Michael Burry (Christian Bale) is startled to discover highly rated mortgage bonds are based on delinquent home loans certain to default. As Wall Street bankers and government regulators ignore this ticking time bomb, Burry invents a financial instrument called the credit default swap in order to “short” the booming housing market. By the time things crash in 2008, he and a small group of contrarian investors (including Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt) will make billions yet will be forever changed by their experience, while millions of Americans lose their homes and the financial institutions responsible for the meltdown are bailed out by U.S. taxpayers.


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