Indie Film Release Guide: September 23rd [An ONTD Original]

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The only major studio release of the weekend is a film you are undoubtedly already familiar with as a person who reads this website with any frequency. Warner Bros is finally releasing Olivia Wilde’s second feature film Don’t Worry Darling, starring Florence Pugh and Harry Styles in his first leading role. If you’ve already tired of that film and its associated drama, Avatar is being rereleased in advance of its long-delayed sequel, and Moonage Daydream is expanding beyond IMAX theaters. Keep reading for even more suggestions for what to watch this weekend.

The films listed are from studios other than the “Big Five” - Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Warner Bros., Walt Disney Pictures, and Columbia Pictures.. 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: September 16th, September 9th, and September 2nd.

Meet Cute



Stars: Kaley Cuoco, Pete Davidson, Deborah S. Craig, Rock Kohli
Writer: Noga Pnueli
Director: Alex Lehmann
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
Plot: When Sheila and Gary meet, it’s love at first sight - until we realize their magical date wasn’t fate at all. Sheila’s got a time machine, and they've been falling in love over and over again. But when the perfect night is never quite enough, Sheila travels to Gary’s past to change him into the perfect man.
What you should know: This is writer Noga Pnueli’s first feature film.
Where to watch: Peacock



Sidney



Writer: Jesse James Miller
Director: Reginald Hudlin
Genre: Documentary
Storyline: Honors the legendary Sidney Poitier and his legacy as an iconic actor, filmmaker and activist at the center of Hollywood and the Civil Rights Movement. Featuring candid interviews with Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Robert Redford, Lenny Kravitz, Barbra Streisand, Spike Lee and many more.
What you should know: Premiered at TIFF 2022.
Where to watch: In theaters, and available on Apple TV+


Catherine Called Birdy



Stars: Bella Ramsay, Billie Piper, Andrew Scott, Lesley Sharp
Writer/Director: Lena Dunham
Genre: Adventure
Plot: A 14 year old girl in medieval England navigates through life and avoiding potential suitors her father has in mind.
What you should know: Based on the book by Karen Cushman.
Where to watch: Amazon Prime


5-25-77



Stars: John Francis Daley, Austin Pendleton, Colleen Camp, Neil Flynn
Writer/Director: Patrick Read Johnson
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Plot: Coming-of-age comedy inspired by the true story of a nerdy, alienated, hopeful filmmaker named Pat Johnson about growing up, falling in love, and becoming the very first fan of the movie that changed everything, Star Wars.
What you should know: Versions of the film were screened on the festival circuit in 2008 and 2013 but additional scenes were filmed in 2015 and 2016.
Where to watch: In theaters; available VOD October 11th


On the Come Up



Stars: Jamila C. Gray, Sanaa Lathan, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Lil Yachty
Writer: Zora Howard, Kay Oyegun
Director: Sanaa Lathan
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Music
Plot: 16-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Facing controversies and with an eviction notice staring down her family, Bri doesn't just want to make it, she has to make it.
What you should know: Based on the book by Angie Thomas
Where to watch: Paramount+


Nothing Compares



Writer: Eleanor Emptage, Kathryn Ferguson, Michael Mallie
Director: Kathryn Ferguson
Genre: Documentary
Storyline: The story of Sinéad O'Connor's rise to worldwide fame, and how her iconoclastic personality resulted in her exile from the pop mainstream. Focusing on prophetic words and deeds across a six-year period (1987-1993), the film reflects on the legacy of this fearless trailblazer.
What you should know: Picked up awards at several festivals on the 2022 circuit.
Where to watch: In theaters; streaming on Showtime September 30th


Athena



Stars: Dali Benssalah, Sami Slimane, Anthony Bajon, Ouassini Embarek
Writer: Elias Belkedder, Romain Gavras, Ladj Ly
Director: Romain Gavras
Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller
Plot: Hours after the tragic death of their youngest brother in unexplained circumstances, three siblings have their lives thrown into chaos.
What you should know: It’s in French
Where to watch: Netflix


Raven’s Hollow



Stars: William Moseley, Melanie Zanetti, David Hayman, Kate Dickie
Writer: Christopher Hatton, Chuck Reeves
Director: Christopher Hatton
Genre: Thriller
Plot: West Point cadet Edgar Allan Poe and four other cadets on a training exercise in upstate New York are drawn by a gruesome discovery into a forgotten community.
What you should know: Filmed in Latvia.
Where to watch: Shudder


Lou



Stars: Allison Janney, Jurnee Smollett, Logan Marshall Green, Ridley Asha Bateman
Writer: Maggie Cohn, Jack Stanley
Director: Anna Foerster
Genre: Action, Crime, Drama
Plot: A storm rages. A young girl is kidnapped. Her mother teams up with the mysterious woman next door to pursue the kidnapper, a journey that tests their limits and exposes shocking secrets from their pasts.
What you should know: Director Anna Foerster has primarily directed for television, including episodes of Westworld, Outlander and Criminal Minds.
Where to watch: Netflix


Carmen



Stars: Natascha McElhone, Michela Farrugia, Steven Love, Richard Clarkin
Writer/Director: Valerie Buhagiar
Genre: Drama
Plot: In a small Mediterranean village, Carmen has looked after her brother, the local priest, for her entire life. When the Church abandons Carmen, she is mistaken for the new priest. Carmen begins to see the world, and herself, in a new light.
What you should know: This is not the same Carmen that just premiered at TIFF.
Where to watch: In theaters, and available VOD


More New Releases

Don’t Worry Darling (Trailer) from Warner Bros
Bandit (Trailer)
Railway Children Return (Trailer)
Young Plato (Trailer)
Control (Trailer)
Blank (Trailer)
Grand Jeté (Trailer

New to Streaming

A Jazzman’s Blues (Trailer) on Netflix
Firestarter (Trailer) on Amazon
Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat (Trailer) on Hulu



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What have you been watching lately, ONTD? Seeing anything this weekend?