Reichardt uses a journey to a natural hot spring in Oregon to reveal the sad, inarticulable weirdness of a friendship in transition. Trusting her actors with the sparest of dialogue, she lets us map the gulf between them with what goes unsaid, so the tiniest efforts to bridge it feel heroic.
After watching Criterion movies from 41 different countries, I’m going back to Italy for a timely story of an old man with a fever desperately trying to get his government benefits so his landlady doesn’t evict him! It co-stars one of the best movie dogs of all time, and this stubborn couple just about wrecked me.
A widow brings her son to her late husband’s childhood home in search of a clean slate. As the doofy mechanic following her around like a puppy dog, PARASITE’s Song Kang-ho is a perfect counterpoint to Jeon Do-yeon, one of those rare actors with such raw emotional access that you almost need to look away. She taps into the indignity of trying to cope with debilitating grief in public, as well as the limits of forgiveness.
Wrongfully institutionalized for eight years when her crippling shyness is mistaken for schizophrenia, Janet Frame survives to write what critics will call New Zealand’s first great novel. Frame captured the tranquility and horrors around her in rich detail, and director Jane Campion treats all of those colors with equal care, while Kerry Fox’s heartbreaking vulnerability powers the story.