Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, Nadine Labaki’s CAPERNAUM (“Chaos”) follows Zain, a gutsy streetwise child as he flees his negligent parents, survives through his wits on the streets, takes care of Ethiopian refugee Rahil and her baby son, Yonas, being jailed for a crime, and finally, seeks justice in a courtroom.
Directed by Nadine Labaki / Written by Nadine Labaki, Jihad Hojeily, Michelle Keserwany / Starring Zain Al Rafeea, Yordanos Shiferaw, Boluwatife Treasure Bankole, Kawthar Al Haddad / 120 minutes
At the age of 85, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has developed a lengthy legal legacy while becoming an unexpected pop culture icon. But the unique personal journey of her rise to the nation's highest court has been largely unknown, even to some of her biggest fans – until now. RBG explores Ginsburg's life and career.
A vivid portrayal of domestic strife and social hierarchy amidst political turmoil, ROMA follows a young domestic worker Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio) from Mixteco heritage descent and her co-worker Adela (Nancy García), also Mixteca, who work for a small family in the middle-class neighborhood of Roma. Mother of four, Sofia (Marina de Tavira), copes with the extended absence of her husband, Cleo faces her own devastating news that threatens to distract her from caring for Sofia’s children, whom she loves as her own. While trying to construct a new sense of love and solidarity in a context of a social hierarchy where class and race are perversely intertwined, Cleo and Sofia quietly wrestle with changes infiltrating the family home in a country facing confrontation between a government-backed militia and student demonstrators. Filmed in luminous black and white, ROMA is an intimate, gut-wrenching and ultimately life-affirming portrait of the ways, small and large, one family maintains its balance in a time of personal, social and political strife.
Directed by Alfonso Cuarón / Written by Alfonso Cuarón / Starring Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de Tavira, Marco Graf, Daniela Demesa, Enoc Leaño, Daniel Valtierra / Country: Mexico, USA / 135 minutes
Kore-eda’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner is a heartrending glimpse into an often invisible segment of Japanese society: those struggling to stay afloat in the face of crushing poverty. On the margins of Tokyo, a most unusual “family”—a collection of societal castoffs united by their shared outsiderhood and fierce loyalty to one another—survives by petty stealing and grifting. When they welcome into their fold a young girl who’s been abused by her parents, they risk exposing themselves to the authorities and upending their tenuous, below-the-radar existence. The director’s latest masterful, richly observed human drama makes the quietly radical case that it is love—not blood—that defines a family
Directed by Hirokazu Kore-eda / Written by Hirokazu Kore-eda / Starring Starring Lily Franky, Sakura Ando, Mayu Matsuoka, Kairi Jō, Miyu Sasaki, Kirin Kiki / Country: Japan / 121 minutes
The Silence of Others reveals the epic struggle of victims of Spain’s 40-year dictatorship under General Franco, who continue to seek justice to this day. Filmed over six years, the film follows victims and survivors as they organize the groundbreaking “Argentine Lawsuit” and fight a state-imposed amnesia of crimes against humanity, in a country still divided four decades into democracy.