Indie Roundup: ‘Uncle Boonmee’ and More

Movie Talk
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives Strand Releasing
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives Strand Releasing

This week's roundup of independent and foreign movies

features an award-winning movie from a Thai auteur, the directorial debut of a

sitcom star, and disturbing acts of violence from Korea.

Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

If you're one of those pasty-faced people called

cinephiles, then no doubt you've heard of Apichatpong Weerasethakul, even if

you can't quite pronounce his name. Weerasethakul has built a reputation for

making exquisite, hallucinatory, meandering tales that mix documentary with

fiction and dreams with reality. His latest movie, "Uncle Boonmee,"

which won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, is a similarly fragmented

and loopy affair featuring out-of-body experiences, monkey gods, and amorous

catfish. This is either your cup of tea or it's not, but adventurous viewers

might just find themselves enraptured


With Oscar season now solidly in the rearview mirror,

we're starting to see the first wave of movies from this year's Sundance fest

hitting theaters. "Happythankyoumoreplease," the preciously titled

directorial debut from Josh Radnor, the star of TV's "How I Met Your

Mother," is precisely the sort of movie you might think of when you think

"Sundance movie" -- a quirky "Seinfeld"-esque romantic comedy

about the lives and loves of brooding, attractive 20-somethings (and it has a

cameo from Richard Jenkins). The movie also stars Kate Mara, Malin Akerman, Zoe

Kazan, and Tony Hale.

I Saw The Devil

Also this week is another movie that premiered at Sundance,

though it's about as far away from "Happythankyoumoreplease" as you

can get. Choi Min-sik (Old Boy) plays a homicidal sociopath who happens to kill

the fiancée of secret agent Soo-Hyun (G.I. Joe). When Soo-Hyun vows revenge,

horrific violence soon ensues. Prior to making this movie, director Kim Ji-woon

was most famous for making such art house hits as "The Good, the Bad, the

Weird" and "A Tale of Two Sisters." This film is similarly

well-crafted, though definitely not for the weak of stomach.

See the trailers to this week's Indie picks: