In the film world, summer starts In May so we are one month away from getting all the big tent pole action and comic book movies coming out. That said we are officially out of the studio dumping zone months and a few quality and potentially under rated films are starting to come out. While Fast and the Furious 56 comes out there are more than enough diamonds in the rough hitting theatres. Maybe one or two of my picks will hang around long enough to generate Oscar buzz at the end of the fall for 2016! 

New Theatrical Releases

Lambert and Stamp

Release Date: April 3rd 

Directed By: James D. Cooper (directorial debut)

Starring: Kit Lambert, Chris Stamp, The Who

IMDb Summary: A documentary that reveals how the unlikely partnership between aspiring filmmakers Chris Stamp and Kit Lambert produced one of the greatest rock bands in history: The Who.

Why I Am So Excited: I’m a pretty big fan of The Who, I didn’t know they were created like a boy band by two directors who had never managed a band before. With all the success they have had it is nice they are showing the world how they got there. There are interviews with Chris Stamp and members of the band and archival footage of Kit Lambert who unfortunately died in 1981. If you like documentaries about music you should probably check this one out.

Watch the trailer HERE

Ex Machina

Release Date: April 10th 

Directed By: Alex Garland (directorial debut)

Starring: Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander

IMDb Summary: A young programmer is selected to participate in a breakthrough experiment in artificial intelligence by evaluating the human qualities of a breathtaking female A.I.

Why I Am So Excited: There has been a spat of great original sci-fi movies the last few years and this one looks dark and twisted. Isaac is clearly an actor on the rise and looks to put another huge stamp on his resume as a leading man. Is he good? Is he evil? Is he just playing mental gymnastics and he is also an A.I.? There is nothing like a tight thriller and this roller coaster is ready to go.

Watch the trailer HERE

Adult Beginners

Release Date: April 24th 

Directed By: Ross Katz (Taking Chance)

Starring: Rose Byrne, Nick Kroll, Bobby Cannavale, Joel McHale, Josh Charles

IMDb Summary: A young, narcissistic entrepreneur crashes and burns on the eve of his company’s big launch. With his entire life in total disarray, he leaves Manhattan to move in with his estranged pregnant sister, brother-in-law and 3-year-old nephew in the suburbs – only to become their nanny.

Why I Am So Excited: Nick Kroll can be a bit hit or miss for people, but here he seems to be flexing his dramatic muscles. It seems like a rite of passage for a comedian to play a depressed character so why not Kroll (who I mostly know as The Douche from Parks and Rec). It doesn’t seem to be getting very good reviews, but hey it might be a good turn on and just enjoy it without thinking too hard of a flick. Plus anything with Joel McHale can’t be all that bad. 

Watch the trailer HERE

New On Blu-Ray

A Most Violent Year

Release Date: April 7th 

Directed By: J.C. Chandor (Margin Call, All is Lost)

Starring: Oscar Isaac, Jessica Chastain, David Oyelowo, Albert Brooks

IMDb Summary: In New York City 1981, an ambitious immigrant fights to protect his business and family during the most dangerous year in the city’s history.

Why I Am So Excited: After Chandor directed the under seen Margin Call and the under rated All Is Lost, I am fully on board with whatever he makes. I don’t even care what the movie is about and I’ll watch it. This was seen as a potential to get a bunch of Oscar nominations, especially for the two leads, but ended up coming away with nothing. Since it came out at the same time I was doing my Oscar primers, I didn’t have time to watch films that didn’t have any nominations. Also as I said earlier Isaac is an actor to watch turning in some another intense performance. Bring on the violence!

Watch the trailer HERE

Maps to the Stars

Release Date: April 14th 

Directed By: David Cronenberg (Do I really have to list his films? Fine A History of Violence, The Fly, Dead Ringers, Scanners and on and on)

Starring: Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, John Cusack

IMDb Summary: A tour into the heart of a Hollywood family chasing celebrity, one another and the relentless ghosts of their pasts.

Why I Am So Excited: No one does messed up like Cronenberg, and no one does dark and creepy like Cronenberg. When you add those ingredients to depraved world of Hollywood and are basically showing how the hot dog is made as far as films go you are bound to have an interesting combination. With Moore going for over the top Gloria Swanson style and some ghosts that pop up along the way you have my attention. I’d rather see an original unique film by an auteur that fails than most of the usual junk Hollywood turns out that always plays it safe. Plus how risky is it that Cronenberg has used Pattison back to back now? Is he the new Viggo Mortenson?    

Watch the trailer HERE