Indie Film Release Guide: March 15th [An ONTD Original]

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Captain Marvel is set for another week of box office domination, with its biggest competition coming from Paramount’s Wonder Park and Warner Brothers’ Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase. In addition to these major studio releases, there are a bunch of indies stepping out this weekend, and trailers & info for those are listed below.

The films listed are from studios other than the “Big Six” - Paramount, Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox, Universal, Columbia and Disney. Note that some of the movies listed are in their first week or two of limited release in the USA, so it may take them a few more weeks (or months) to show up in your local arthouse theater or on VOD. Check out the posts from the past few weeks for more movies that may have just opened near you: March 8th, March 1st, and February 22nd. And please feel free to add your Letterboxd UN in the comments.

The Mustang



Stars: Matthias Schoenaerts, Jason Mitchell, Bruce Dern, Gideon Adlon
Writer: Mona Fastvold, Brock Norman Brock, Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre
Director: Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre
Genre: Drama
Plot: A violent convict is given the chance to participate in a rehabilitation therapy program involving the training of wild mustangs.
What you should know: This is the director’s feature film debut, based on her short film Rabbit (2015). She developed the film through Sundance Labs
Opens in: Select cities



The Hummingbird Project



Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Alexander Skarsgård, Salma Hayek, Michael Mando
Writer/Director: Kim Nguyen
Genre: Thriller
Plot: A pair of high-frequency traders go up against their old boss in an effort to make millions in a fiber-optic cable deal.
What you should know: Premiered at TIFF 2018.
Opens in: Select cities


Yardie



Stars: Aml Ameen, Everaldo Creary, Sheldon Shepherd, Shantol Jackson
Writer: Brock Norman Brock, Martin Stellman
Director: Idris Elba
Genre: Crime, Drama
Plot: Years ago while growing up in Jamaica, D witnessed his brother's murder, before being taking in by a don. Years later, having been sent on a mission to London, the past catches up with him.
What you should know: This is Idris Elba’s directorial debut, based on the novel by Victor Headley.
Opens in: Select cities


Captive State



Stars: John Goodman, Ashton Sanders, Jonathan Majors, Vera Farmiga
Writer: Erica Beeney, Rupert Wyatt
Director: Rupert Wyatt
Genre: Sci-Fi, Thriller
Plot: Residents of a Chicago neighbourhood deal with life under extraterrestrial rule.
What you should know: Rupert Wyatt left Gambit (2020) to finish this film.
Opens in: Wide release


Five Feet Apart



Stars: Haley Lu Richardson, Cole Sprouse, Claire Forlani, Moises Arias
Writer: Mikki Daughtry, Tobias Iaconis
Director: Justin Baldoni
Genre: Drama, Romance
Plot: Seventeen-year-old Stella spends most of her time in the hospital as a cystic fibrosis patient. Her life is full of routines, boundaries and self-control -- all of which get put to the test when she meets Will, an impossibly charming teen who has the same illness. There's an instant flirtation, though restrictions dictate that they must maintain a safe distance between them. As their connection intensifies, so does the temptation to throw the rules out the window and embrace that attraction.
What you should know: The film partnered with Claire’s Place Foundation, a cystic fibrosis charity, and worked to depict realistic portrayals of people with cystic fibrosis.
Opens in: Wide release


Ash is Purest White



Stars: Tao Zhao, Fan Liao, Yi'nan Diao, Xiaogang Feng
Writer/Director: Zhangke Jia
Genre: Drama/Romance
Plot: Qiao is in love with her boyfriend Bin, a small-time gangster. During a fight between rival gangs, she fires a gun to protect him. Qiao gets five years in prison for this act of loyalty. Upon her release, she goes looking for Bin to pick up where they left off.
What you should know: The film premiered at Cannes 2018, and is in Mandarin.
Opens in: Select cities


The Aftermath



Stars: Keira Knightley, Jason Clarke, Alexander Skarsgård, Fionn O’Shea
Writer: Joe Shrapnel, Anna Waterhouse, Rhidian Brook
Director: James Kent
Genre: Drama, Romance, War
Plot: Post World War II, a British colonel and his wife are assigned to live in Hamburg during the post-war reconstruction, but tensions arise with the German who previously owned the house.
What you should know: Based on the book of the same name by Rhidian Brook.
Opens in: Select cities


The Highwaymen



Stars: Kevin Costner, Woody Harrelson, Kim Dickens, Kathy Bates
Writer: John Fusco
Director: John Lee Hancock
Genre: Drama, Crime, Mystery
Plot: A pair of police officers come out of retirement to catch the infamous outlaws Bonnie & Clyde.
What you should know: The film was originally set up as a collaboration between Paul Newman and Robert Redford, but Redford left the project after Newman’s death.
Opens in: Select cities, then on Netflix March 29th


Knife + Heart



Stars: Vanessa Paradis, Kate Moran, Nicholas Maury, Félix Maritaud
Writer: Yann Gonzalez, Cristiano Mangione
Director: Yann Gonzalez
Genre: Drama, Romance, Thriller
Plot: Anne produces third-rate gay porn. After her editor and lover Lois leaves her, she tries to win her back by shooting her most ambitious film yet with her trusted, flaming sidekick Archibald. But one of her actors is brutally murdered, and Anne gets caught up in a strange investigation that turns her life upside-down.
What you should know: The score for the film was composed by Anthony Gonzalez of M83, who is the director’s brother.
Opens in: Select cities


Starfish



Stars: Virginia Gardner, Christina Masterson, Eric Beecroft, Natalie Mitchell
Writer/Director: A.T. White
Genre: Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi
Plot: A unique, intimate and honest portrayal of a girl grieving for the loss of her best friend. That just happens to take place on the day the world ends as we know it.
What you should know: This is A.T White’s directorial debut; he wrote, directed and scored the film.
Opens in: NYC


Also opening: Mission of Honor (Trailer), Iceman (Trailer), Chimera Strain (Trailer), Combat Obscura (Trailer), Never Grow Old (Trailer), Finding Steve McQueen (Trailer)



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What have you been watching lately, ONTD? Seeing anything soon?