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

New this week: Leave No Trace, Sicario 2, Dublin Oldschool, Patrick, The Endless

The official trailer for Leave No Trace, directed by Debra Granik. Video: Sony Pictures

 

LEAVE NO TRACE ★★★★
Directed by Debra Granik. Starring Ben Foster, Thomasin McKenzie, Jeff Kober, Dale Dickey. PG cert, limited release, 109 min
Teenager Tom (McKenzie) and her war veteran father, Will (Foster), live off the grid in a public park in Portland, Oregon. This small survivalist family subsides on foraged mushrooms and the money Will makes from selling his PTSD medication to other tent dwellers. They’re technically homeless, but only so they can stay away from “them”. When social services intervene, father and daughter are transferred to a northwestern logging community where Will finds work at a Christmas tree farm while Tom makes friends with a local rabbit-fancier. But settled life is anything but for Will. Granik’s atmospheric follow-up to Winter’s Bone is as thoughtful and well-observed as its predecessor. TB

SICARIO 2: SOLDADO ★★★
Directed by Stefano Sollima. Starring Benicio Del Toro, Josh Brolin, Catherine Keener, Christopher Heyerdahl, Matthew Modine, Isabela Moner. 15A cert, general release, 122 min

Murderous Mexican drug cartels have nothing on marauding US security forces in a film that could be called Team America: World Police. Trumpian images abound in an overture that begins with Isis terrorists mixing with migrants crossing the Texas border in order to blow up a Kansas superstore – helped by Somali pirates! So the black ops whizzes from the original Sicario (Del Toro and Brolin) are brought back into action. Italian director Sollima specialises in sleek, pacey entertainments (Suburra, Gomorrah) in which the bad guys are the good guys. Though politically we’re in murky territory, Soldado is as exciting as expected, if not nearly as heart-pounding as its predecessor. Full review TB

DUBLIN OLDSCHOOL ★★★
Directed by Dave Tynan. Starring Emmet Kirwan, Ian Lloyd Anderson, Seána Kerslake, Sarah Greene, Ciaran Grace, Mark O’Halloran, Liam Heslin, Stephen Jones. 16 cert, general release, 95 min

Tynan’s well-made adaptation of director Kirwan’s two-handed play hangs around encounters between Jason (Kirwan), an aspiring DJ, and Daniel (Lloyd Anderson), his heroin-addicted brother. Those sequences offer a convincing advertisement for the play, but the surrounding opened-out action feels chaotic and plotless. The language is steeped in a quasi-poetic romanticism that too often curdles on screen. For all that, Dublin Oldschool constructs a vivid portrait of the “sesh” life that many generations will savour. Full review/trailer DC

PATRICK ★★★
Directed by Mandie Fletcher. Starring Beattie Edmondson, Ed Skrein, Tom Bennett, Emily Atack, Jennifer Saunders, Gemma Jones, Adrian Scarborough, Bernard Cribbins, Meera Syal. PG cert, general release, 95 min

Sarah Francis (Edmondson, charming) is a recently dumped klutz who has dropped out of law school to become a teacher. As English screen singletons go, she’s not as man hungry (mungry?) as Bridget Jones or as goopy as a Richard Curtis love interest, but she is ditzy enough to make one fearful when, in an unexpected bequest by her late grandmother, she inherits a spoiled-rotten pug named Patrick. Family fun ensues. TB

THE ENDLESS ★★★★
Directed by Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson. Starring Aaron Moorhead, Justin Benson, Callie Hernandez, Tate Ellington, Lew Temple, James Jordan, Shane Brady, Kira Powell. 15A cert, limited release, 111 min

Deeply puzzling, delightfully intricate science-fiction thriller concerning two brothers who return to the weird cult in which they spent their adolescence. It steadily becomes clear – well, clearish – that the film is to do with being trapped in cycles. This might have seemed like an unsatisfactory payoff if the directors had not exploited their meagre resources with such skill. The cinematography is fluid, the performances cool and precise. The film itself is worth forming a cult around. Full review DC

KISSING CANDICE ★★★
Directed by Aoife McArdle. Starring Ann Skelly, Ryan Lincoln, Conall Keating, Ryan McParland, Catriona Ennis, John Lynch. 18 cert, limited release, 103 min

Interesting, infuriating drama of teenage life on the Irish Border. The excellent Skelly plays a young woman who, during a seizure, falls for an imagined character who eventually turns up in the flesh. Kissing Candice is sure to drive some viewers barmy. As the picture goes on, its refusal to settle into a rhythm becomes irritating. Still, individual shots stick firmly in the brain. Characters linger. The impressive sound design makes its own throbbing case. We need odd things. Full review DC

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