Six of the best films to see at the cinema this weekend

If you're looking for quality this weekend, look beyond the blockbusters to the lower-key releases

In 'Heal The Living' three stories are connected to each other via an accident in an audacious new movie by French director Katell Quillévéré.

 

HEAL THE LIVING ★★★★
Directed by Katell Quillévéré. Starring Tahar Rahim, Emmanuelle Seigner, Anne Dorval, Bouli Lanners, Kool Shen, Monia Chokri, Alive Taglioni, Karim Leklou 12A cert, lim release, 104 min 
Drifty, mesmeric tale of a teenager’s death and the woman who profits from the donation of his organs. Heal the Living is not heavy with plot. The opening act drifts slowly towards its resolution without laying on the melodrama. The characters are rarely explicit in their expression of fears and aspirations. Featuring a lovely score by Alexandre Desplat, Quillévéré’s film succeeds as a melancholy celebration of the invisible threads that bind us. Worth seeking out. DC Review/Trailer

LADY MACBETH ★★★★★
Directed by William Oldroyd. Starring Florence Pugh, Cosmo Jarvis, Paul Hilton, Naomi Ackie, Christopher Fairbank. Cert 16, gen release, 89mins
Stirring, kinetic adaption of Nikolia Leskov’s 1865 novella Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk, concerning a young woman who fights back violently after being sold into a loveless marriage. Oldroyd relocates the stort to Northumberland with windy, effective results. Pugh, who made such an unforgettable debut in Carol Morley’s The Falling, is remarkable as the variously carnal, ruthless, suffering, pitiable, monstrous anti-heroine. Imagine the fur and feathers Angela Carter would spit out if she chewed up Downton Abbey. TB Review/Trailer

HANDSOME DEVIL  ★★★★
Directed by John Butler. Starring Fionn O’Shea, Nicholas Galitzine, Moe Dunford, Andrew Scott, Michael McElhatton, Ruairi O’Connor, Amy Huberman. 15A cert, gen release, 94 min
Butler’s lovely follow-up to The Stag stars O’Shea as an artistic young fellow coping badly at a posh, rugby-obsessed school. Galitzine plays the jock with whom he gradually learns to connect. Set in a deliberately uncertain period, with contemporary fashions scored to 1980s musical references, Handsome Devil is proudly traditional in its storytelling. Setbacks come at just the right moments to prepare us for the next outburst of fist-in-the-air relief. A cracker. DC Review/Trailer

THEIR FINEST  ★★★★
Directed by Lone Scherfig. Starring Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin, Bill Nighy, Helen McCrory, Jack Huston, Richard E. Grant, Rachael Stirling, Henry Goodman, Jeremy Irons. Cert 12A, gen release, 117mins
A varied team of film-makers shoot a patriotic drama in England during the second World War. Arterton, who plays the writer, does tremendous work, bringing a rare vulnerability to a Blitz-era heroine where a lesser thespian might have opted for full-blown Stiff Upper Lip. Picture Brief Encounter’s Celia Johnson with a Welsh lilt. The production makes charming use of the no-budget film-within-the-film and of its talented, likeable ensemble. Funny, moving and cast in depth. TB  Review/Trailer

THE HANDMAIDEN  ★★★★ 
Directed by Chan-wook. Starring Kim Min-hee, Kim Tae-ri, Ha Jung-woo and Cho Jin-woong . Cert 18, limited release, 145 mins
Lovely, sexually explicit Korean adaptation of Sarah Walters’s Fingersmith. This is easily the most lavish period piece of the past year, composed of striking, bewitching tableaux that could often pass for ancient scrolls or woodcuttings. The tricksy plot streamlines and improves the final, messy section of the source novel to mislead even the most astute viewer. Not the grand, bloody spectacle we were expected from the Stoker director, but a grand, bloody spectacle, nonetheless. TB  Review/Trailer

SUNTAN  ★★★
Directed by Argyris Papadimitropoulos. Starring Makis Papadimitriou, Elli Tringou, Milou Van Groessen, Dimi Hart, Hara Kotsali, Marcus Collen, Yannis Tsortekis  Club, lim release,104 min 
When Kostis, a sad-sack fortysomething doctor, takes a post on the Cycladic Greek island of Antiparos – population 800 – he keeps to himself, until summer brings armies of nubile party animals and hedonists to the local nudist beaches. One day, a group of good-looking, loud-mouthed free spirits descend on the physician’s clinic. Embarrassment ensues. A raw comedy that revels in awkwardness and social unease. TB Review/Trailer

  • For reviews of all films currently on release, 
    see our Film Reviews page
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