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Friday Flicks: ‘Hereditary’, ‘Hearts Beat Loud’, ‘Nancy’

Bejesus, what a week we’ve had. The landmark sexual misconduct trial of Harvey Weinstein has begun, with the disgraced movie mogul pleading not guilty to a number of rape and criminal sex act charges. Yikes! As it stands, Weinstein remains free on bail while he awaits the followup trial and is scheduled to return to court on September 20. Keep your eyes peeled for the verdict this fall.

On a lighter note, although you might feel you’ve only just recovered from Oscar fever, it’s now TV’s turn, as the 2018 Emmys race has officially commenced. Although it’s a little premature – nominees will be announced July 12 and the 70th Primetime Emmys are set for September 17 – discussions on predictions are already heating up. IndieWire named The Handmaid’s Tale & Game of Thrones as potential head-to-heads and forecasted Veep as out of the running of the comedy category following three straight wins. Of course, this is just speculation – there’s still plenty of time to ponder the nominees and make your pitch for David Lynch as FBI deputy director Gordon Cole in Twin Peaks: The Return. Let’s make this happen!

While we’re on the topic of TV, there have been a fair few season renewals this week, most recently S3 of Donald Glover’s surreal comedy Atlanta. Hip, hip, hooray! We’re also stoked Netflix took the decision this week to renew 13 Reasons Why for another round – even if it’s not your beat, it deserves praise for unabashedly levelling with its teen audience and covering some of the most significant issues facing young adults today.

But anyway, enough about weighty trials and Emmy predictions and TV renewals. We’re here for one thing and one thing only – FD’s picks of the best films to catch this weekend.

Hereditary (A24 Films)

on wide theatrical release now

Horror junkies, it’s time – Ari Aster’s Hereditary is finally hitting the theaters and to say we’re excited would be a huge understatement. We’re practically bouncing off the walls in anticipation! A storyline that is both unique and ambiguous, when the matriarch of the Graham family passes away, her daughter (Toni Collette) and her offspring start to unravel cryptic and increasingly terrifying secrets about their ancestry. Soon they must attempt to outrun the sinister fate they seem to have inherited, transforming a familial tragedy into something ominous and deeply upsetting.

Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist (Greenwich Entertainment)

on limited theatrical release now

God save the Queen! Director Lorna Tucker (Amá) is providing us with exclusive, unprecedented access into the life of punk icon Vivienne Westwood to encompass the remarkable story of Vivienne’s life, her fashion, her personality, her activism, and her cultural importance. Journey back to the birth of punk with Dame Westwood when she ignited the movement with ex-partner and Sex Pistols’ manager Malcolm McLaren before redefining British fashion for decades to come. The film blends archive footage with beautifully crafted reconstruction, and offers interviews with Vivienne’s network of collaborators, guiding us on her journey from a childhood in postwar Derbyshire to the runways of Paris and Milan.

Half the Picture (Gravitas Ventures)

on limited theatrical release now

Director Amy Adrion’s first feature is hitting the big screen this weekend, having seen success at this year’s Sundance Film Festival: ‘18 London. The documentary explores the question on the entertainment industry’s lips at this pivotal moment for gender equality in Hollywood: why are there so few female directors? Celebrating the groundbreaking work of women in film and investigating the systemic discrimination in Hollywood, Half the Picture consists of interviews with successful female directors as they tell the stories of their art, lives, and careers. Stars Ava DuVernay (Selma), Jill Soloway (Transparent), Lena Dunham (Girls), Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight), and Miranda July (The Future).

Hearts Beat Loud (Gunpowder & Sky)

on limited theatrical release now

Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation), Kiersey Clemons (Dope), Toni Collette (Little Miss Sunshine), and Ted Danson (The Good Place) star in this heartwarming dramedy that replaces fake uplifting clichés with intelligence and wit. Set in the hip Brooklyn neighborhood of Red Hook, single dad and record store owner Frank forms an unlikely songwriting duo with his daughter during the summer before she leaves for college. After their first song turns out to be an internet breakout, the two embark on a journey of love, growing up, and musical discovery.

Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (Focus Features)

on limited theatrical release now

What better way to put a smile on your face this weekend than to go and watch filmmaker Morgan Neville’s portrait of the nicest man on television – Fred Rogers? The beloved host of the popular children’s show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is the subject of this intimate look into the life of a man whom we all think we know, taking us beyond the zip-up cardigans and into the heart of a creative genius who inspired generations of children with compassion and limitless imagination.

Nancy (Samuel Goldwyn Films)

on limited theatrical release now

Christina Choe’s imposter thriller follows a troubled woman who catfishes internet users with elaborate identities under pseudonyms online in a bid to seek connection. However, when she meets a couple whose daughter went missing three decades ago, her reality starts to blend with fantasy as she convinces herself these strangers are her parents. As their bond strengthens, reasonable doubts give way to willful belief.

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