SWALLOW
2019, 94 min, Dir: Carlo Mirabella-Davis

Hunter (Haley Bennett, in an outstanding performance) leads a charmed life; married to the handsome Ritchie, she has a pristine home and more money than she could spend in a lifetime. So why can’t she stop ingesting household objects that vary from the small and insignificant to the deadly and dangerous? One thing is for sure: Strange habits like this cannot stay hidden for long under the scrutinizing eyes of suburbia, and there’s no way her snooty family will accept her odd preoccupations. An incredible debut from director Mirabella-Davis, SWALLOW examines the subconscious world of a woman and her coping mechanism for past trauma through a very graphic representation. Each ingested object brings Hunter closer to revealing a truth that she’s trying to suppress, but she faces endless social obstacles before she can even consider her own identity in a world manufactured to make her obey.


SONG TO SONG
2017, Broad Green Pictures, 145 min, USA, Dir: Terrence Malick

The Austin, Texas, music scene is the setting for acclaimed writer-director Terrence Malick’s drama of intersecting love triangles. Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara, Natalie Portman and Michael Fassbender lead the star-studded ensemble cast, while a “who’s who” of alternative music artists (including Patti Smith, Iggy Pop and Arcade Fire) appear in cameos. Frequent Malick collaborators Emmanuel Lubezki (cinematography), Jack Fisk (production design) and Jacqueline West (costumes) give this exploration of obsession and betrayal a rich visual component.


RULES DON’T APPLY
2016, 20th Century Fox, 127 min, USA, Dir: Warren Beatty

An aspiring young actress (Lily Collins) and her ambitious young driver (Alden Ehrenreich) struggle hopefully with the absurd eccentricities of the wildly unpredictable billionaire Howard Hughes (Warren Beatty) for whom they work.

It’s Hollywood, 1958. Small town beauty queen, songwriter, and devout Baptist virgin Marla Mabrey (Collins), under contract to the infamous Howard Hughes (Beatty), arrives in Los Angeles. At the airport, she meets her driver Frank Forbes (Ehrenreich), who is engaged to be married to his 7th grade sweetheart and is a deeply religious Methodist. Their instant attraction not only puts their religious convictions to the test, but also defies Hughes’ #1 rule: no employee is allowed to have any relationship whatsoever with a contract actress. Hughes’ behavior intersects with Marla and Frank in very separate and unexpected ways, and as they are drawn deeper into his bizarre world, their values are challenged and their lives are changed. The terrific ensemble cast includes Annette Bening, Matthew Broderick, Alec Baldwin, Haley Bennett, Candice Bergen, Dabney Coleman, Steve Coogan, Ed Harris, Megan Hilty, Oliver Platt, Martin Sheen and Paul Sorvino.


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