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All you need to do today is fixate your eyeballs on FD’s picks of the best films to catch this weekend. Get lost in “The Shimmer” with 'Annihilation'; search through the seedy underbelly of a futuristic Berlin in 'Mute'; and get caught up in a government conspiracy in 'Golden Slumber'.

Friday Flicks: ‘Annihilation’, ‘Mute’, ‘Golden Slumber’

Welcome to our end-of-week roundup Film Daily readers! It’s time to switch off your laptop, shut down that email, and say a massive F you to the entire office on your way out to freedom (for the next two days at least). TTIF, right?

No surprises in the box office this week, folks – DisneyMarvel’s epic superhero flick Black Panther dominated, opening with a $200 million domestic weekend and thus joining the ranks of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Jurassic World, and The Avengers.

Furthermore, it’s notched an A+ Cinemascore — becoming only the second Marvel film to do so — and basically is a must-see cultural phenomenon. People just can’t get enough of the Avenger’s new king.

Elsewhere, the 68th annual Berlinale unfolded in (you guessed it) Berlin, with hundreds of attendants hoping to nab the next hot stuff in indie film & TV. Wes Anderson’s new stop-motion picture Isle of Dogs led the pack after opening the festival, while other noteworthy flicks included Steven Soderbergh’s iPhone-filmed thriller Unsane, the controversial Human, Space, Time, and Human from Kim Ki-duk, and the compelling, albeit uncomfortable drama Shock Waves – Diary of My Mind.

We’re sure there’s something else to mention – some sort of lingering dark cloud . . .

Oh that’s right! The meaningless Oscar race is nearly at the finish line with only one week left until the meaningless event. You’d better brace yourself for a newsfeed full of red carpet fashion, smug acceptance speeches, and virtue-signalling in Versace – bet you can’t wait.

Anyway, you don’t need to worry about all that Hollywood halabaloo right now. All you need to do is fixate your eyeballs on FD’s picks of the best films to catch this weekend. Get lost in “The Shimmer” with Annihilation; search through the seedy underbelly of a futuristic Berlin in Mute; and get caught up in a government conspiracy in Golden Slumber.

Annihilation (Paramount Pictures)

on wide theatrical release now

The sci-fi innovator Alex Garland is back with a mind-bending journey into alien terrain. Natalie Portman (Black Swan) plays Lena – a biologist and former soldier who joins a mission to uncover what happened to her husband inside Area X a.k.a. “The Shimmer”. Once inside, her sanity is threatened as she discovers a world where the laws of nature don’t apply. Stars Oscar Isaac (Ex Machina), Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight), Tessa Thompson (Thor: Ragnarok), Gina Rodriguez (Deepwater Horizon), and Tuva Novotny (Eat Pray Love).

Are We Not Cats (Cleopatra Entertainment)

on limited theatrical release now

Xander Robin’s genre-bending indie flick incorporates romance, horror, comedy, and oodles of quirk, telling the story of two strangers who spark romance over their shared habit of compulsive hair eating. Are We Not Cats is a roller-coaster ride of emotions, lovingly balanced by two vulnerable characters, a pulsating soundtrack, and colorful cinematography. Stars Michael Patrick Nicholson (We Are Still Here), Chelsea Lopez (Novitiate), Michael Godere (Loitering with Intent), and Alice Frank (The Source).

The Cured (IFC Films)

on limited theatrical release now

Zombie movie fans rejoice! From director David Freyne comes the unique new horror detailing the lives of the undead in recovery. Set six years after a devastating virus that transformed humans into zombie-like monsters, the cured are haunted with the memories of their actions while infected. As some try to move past their affiliations, the growing unrest threatens to plunge the world back into chaos. Stars Ellen Page (Inception), Sam Keeley (Anthropoid), Tom Vaughan-Lawlor (The Infiltrator), and Stuart Graham (The Foreigner).

Golden Slumber (CJ Entertainment)

on limited theatrical release now

From director Noh Dong-seok (Boys of Tomorrow) comes this crime-action thriller about an assassination, a conspiracy, and a framed delivery guy named Kim Gun-woo (Gang Dong-won) who is forced to flee for his life. With evidence mounting against him, Gun-woo teams up with a former agent in an attempt to clear his name. Stars Han Hyo-joo (The Beauty Inside) and Kim Eui-sung (Train to Busan).

Mute (Netflix)

on limited theatrical release now

Duncan Jones is back with a noir sci-fi thriller he’s been trying to make ever since he put out Moon. Set in the seedy underbelly of Berlin, Mute follows Leo (Alexander Skarsgård) as he searches for his missing girlfriend through the Blade Runner-esque streets, frenzied plazas, and the full spectrum of the city’s shadow dwellers. Along the way he finds himself mixed up with Cactus Bill (Paul Rudd) and Duck (Justin Theroux) – a pair of irreverent U.S. army surgeons on a mission of their own. Stars Levi Eisenblätter, Rosie Shaw, and Eugen Bauder.

November (Oscilloscope Pictures)

on limited theatrical release now

Based on the best-selling novel Rehepapp by Andrus Kivirähk, November offers a mixture of magic, black humor, and romantic love. The audience is taken back to 19th century Estonia, where peasant girl Liina’s (Rea Lest) love for local village boy Hans (Jörgen Liik) is so strong, it turns her into a werewolf. Random! If you’re into furry moon lurkers, pagan mythology, and black & white cinematography, then be sure to check out Rainer Sarnet’s genre-bending flick this weekend.

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