It’s literally snowing in New York City today, but as far as studios are concerned, April is summer – this month’s slate includes another Avengers movie, a movie starring The Rock and a giant ape, and an inexplicable remake of Overboard. But this month’s indie line-up features some of the best movies we’ve seen this year, including thrilling new efforts from Lynne Ramsay, Andrew Haigh, and Claire Denis; here are our recommendations.
You Were Never Really Here
RELEASE DATE: April 6
DIRECTOR: Lynne Ramsay
CAST: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov, Judith Roberts,
At home, Joe (Phoenix) is a caretaker and mess-cleaner to his elderly mother; out in the world, he’s something of a freelance brutalizer, who can hurt or worse for the right price. This sounds like the set-up for a million empty genre movies, but Lynne Ramsay is no hack; in fact, she often chooses to blink during the violence rather than revel in it, and focus more on the pain in Joe’s eyes than the pain he’s inflicting. Here is genuinely unnerving, particularly as Ramsey lets us see more and more of the images he’s desperate to get out of his head – but it’s also full of transcendent compositions, human moments, and little unexplained touches. It’s stylish and sorrowful and strange, and a rewarding ride for those who are up to it.