• From left: Black Narcissus, Mug, Ex Machina, A Ghost Story (SBS Movies)
Next week's highlights on SBS World Movies include 2018 Polish black comedy Mug, 2015's modern sci-fi classic Ex Machina, Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara in the haunting non-horror of 2017's A Ghost Story, and 1947 classic Black Narcissus, kicking of a season of films by trailblazing British directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger.
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SBS Movies

31 Oct 2019 - 9:14 AM  UPDATED 7 Nov 2019 - 5:00 PM

MONDAY 4 NOVEMBER

Toast
7:30PM

PG
UK, 2010
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Language: English
Director: S.J. Clarkson
Starring: Helena Bonham Carter, Freddie Highmore, Ken Stott, Victoria Hamilton
What's it about?
An adaptation of celebrity chef Nigel Slater's bestselling memoir, 'Toast' is the ultimate nostalgic trip through everything edible in 1960's Britain. Nigel's mother (Carter) was always a poor cook, but her chronic asthma and addiction to all things canned does not help.

Mug
9:15PM

MA15+
Poland, 2018
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Language: Polish
Director: Małgorzata Szumowska
Starring: Mateusz Kosciukiewicz, Agnieszka Podsiadlik, Malgorzata Gorol
What's it about?
Jacek (Kosciukiewicz) loves heavy metal, his girlfriend and his dog. His family, his small hometown, his fellow parishioners all see him as an amusing freak. He works at the construction site of what it is supposed to become the tallest statue of Jesus in the world. When a severe accident disfigures him completely, all eyes turn to him as he undergoes the first facial transplant in the country. Winner of the Silver Bear (2nd place) at the 2018 Berlin Film Festival.

TUESDAY 5 NOVEMBER

Black Narcissus
7:30PM

PG
UK, 1947
Genre: Drama
Language: English, Hindi
Director: Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Starring: Deborah Kerr, David Farrar, Flora Robson, Kathleen Byron, SABU
What's it about?
This Powell and Pressburger (The Red Shoes, A Matter of Life and Death) classic is set in a community of nuns high in the Himalayas. Their spiritual aims are hampered by the arrival of a beautiful native girl (Kerr) and a young general (Farrar). As the two elope together, the nuns are left attributing blame to each other and, when a young child dies in their care, tensions begin to increase. 

David Stratton on Michael Powell and Eric Pressburger (The Movie Show, 1988)

A Ghost Story
9:20PM

M
USA, 2017
Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Romance
Language: English
Director: David Lowery
Starring: Casey Affleck, Rooney Mara, Will Oldham, Liz Cardenas Franke, Sonia Acevedo
What's it about?
Recently deceased, a white-sheeted ghost (Affleck) returns to his suburban home to console his bereft wife (Mara), only to find that in his spectral state he has become unstuck in time, forced to watch passively as the life he knew and the woman he loves slowly slip away. From David Lowery, director of Ain't Them Bodies Saints and The Old Man And The Gun.

'A Ghost Story' Haunts Without Scaring (Sundance Review)

Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara in 'A Ghost Story' (2017)

WEDNESDAY 6 NOVEMBER

The Straight Story
7:30PM

G
USA, 1999
Genre: Drama
Language: English
Director: David Lynch
Starring: Richard Farnsworth, Sissy Spacek, Harry Dean Stanton
What's it about?
A retired farmer and widower in his 70s, Alvin Straight (Farnsworth, in an Oscar-nominated performance) learns one day that his distant brother Lyle (Stanton) has suffered a stroke and may not recover. Alvin is determined to make things right with Lyle while he still can, but his brother lives in Wisconsin, while Alvin is stuck in Iowa with no car and no driver's license. Then he hits on the idea of making the trip on his old lawnmower, thus beginning a picturesque and at times deeply spiritual odyssey.

Interview with David Lynch, director of The Straight Story (The Movie Show, Episode 08, 2000)
Margaret and David review The Straight Story (The Movie Show, Episode 08, 2000)

Our Time Will Come
9:35PM

M
China, Hong Kong, 2017
Genre: Drama, History
Language: Chinese
Director: Ann Hui
Starring: Xun Zhou, Eddie Peng, Wallace Huo, Tony Leung Ka-Fai
What's it about?
1941. Hong Kong is under Japanese occupation. During the three-year-and-eight-month occupation, the Japanese military pillaged homes and arrested cultural figures living in Hong Kong. The anti-Japanese Dongjiang guerilla unit is tasked with rescuing these cultural figures and extracting them from the besieged city. The occupation transformed Hong Kong from a prosperous city into a barren land with no food or water. From Ann Hui, director of A Simple Life (2010).

'Our Time Will Come' leads Hong Kong Film Awards

THURSDAY 7 NOVEMBER

Rafiki
7:30PM

M
Kenya, South Africa, 2018
Genre: Drama, Romance
Language: Swahili, English
Director: Wanuri Kahiu
Starring: Samantha Mugatsia, Sheila Munyiva, Neville Misati, Nice Githinji
What's it about?
Kena (Mugatsia) and Ziki (Munyiva) long for something more. Despite the political rivalry between their families, the girls resist and remain close friends, supporting each other to pursue their dreams in a conservative society. When love blossoms between them, the two girls will be forced to choose between happiness and safety.

'Rafiki' tells a candy-coloured tale of love

Daphne
9:00PM

MA15+
UK, 2017
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Language: English
Director: Peter Mackie Burns
Starring: Emily Beecham, Geraldine James, Tom Vaughan-Lawlor
What's it about?
Daphne (Beecham) is a young woman negotiating the tricky business of modern life. Caught in the daily rush of her restaurant job and a nightlife kaleidoscope of new faces, she is witty, funny, the life of the party – too busy to realise that deep down she is not happy. When she saves the life of a shopkeeper stabbed in a failed robbery, the impenetrable armour she wears to protect herself begins to crack, and Daphne is forced to confront the inevitability of a much-needed change in her life.

The Band's Visit
10:40PM

PG
Israel, USA, France 2007
Genre: Comedy
Language: Arabic, Hebrew
Director: Eran Korilin
Starring: Sasson Gabai, Ronit Elkabetz, Saleh Bakri
What's it about?
This warm, heartfelt movie about love, loneliness and cultural differences stars the late Israeli actress Ronit Elkabetz (Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem) in one of her most popular roles. It follows the members of the Alexandria Ceremonial Police Orchestra, led by the repressed Tawfiq, who after taking the wrong bus on their way to a cultural event, wind up on the doorstep of Dina, a free-spirited cafe owner in a remote Israel village. After informing them they will be stuck there until the next morning, Dina offers to put them up for the night, with help from other villagers. 

Why You Should Watch: The Band’s Visit
Dinner and a Movie: The Band's Visit

FRIDAY 8 NOVEMBER

Kill the Messenger
7:30PM

MA15+
USA, 2014
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Crime, Mystery
Language: English
Director: Michael Cuesta
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Michael Sheen
What's it about?
Based on the true story of Journalist Gary Webb (Renner), this film takes place in the mid-1990s, when Webb uncovered the CIA's past role in importing huge amounts of cocaine into the US that was aggressively sold in ghettos across the country to raise money for the Nicaraguan Contras rebel army. Despite enormous pressure not to, Webb chose to pursue the story and went public with his evidence, publishing the series 'Dark Alliance'. As a result he experienced a vicious smear campaign fuelled by the CIA, and was force into defending his integrity, his family, and his life.

Public Enemy Number 1 (Part 2)
9:35PM

MA15+
France, 2009
Genre: Biography, Crime, Thriller
Language: French
Director: Jean-Francois Richet
Starring: Vincent Cassel, Cecile de France, Gérard Depardieu, Gilles Lellouche
What's it about?
The story of legendary French gangster Jacques Mesrine (Cassel), who was active in the 1960s and 1970s, and came to be known as French Public Enemy Number 1. Infamous for his bravado and daring prison escapes, Mesrine carried out numerous robberies, kidnappings and murders in a criminal career that spanned France, Canada and the USA. Winner of three César Awards, 2009.

SATURDAY 9 NOVEMBER

Mojin: The Lost Legend
7:30PM

M
China, 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Action
Language: Chinese
Director: Wuershan
Starring: Kun Chen, Angelababy, Qi Shu
What's it about?
At the beginning of the 1990s, famous tomb explorer Hu Bayi (Kun Chen) decided to retire and move to the United States with his girlfriend Shirley (Qi Shu). But before his wedding, Bayi discovers his first love Ding Shitian (Angelababy), who supposedly had died in the "One Hundred Cave" 20 years ago, is actually still alive. Together with Shirley and his old exploration partner, Bayi unravels a terrible millennium-old secret.

Ex Machina
9:50PM

MA15+
UK, 2015
Genre: Science Fiction, Thriller
Language: English
Director: Alex Garland
Starring: Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander
What's it about?
From acclaimed writer and director Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Annihilation), Ex Machina is a chilling vision of the not-too-distant future of artificial intelligence. In the mountain retreat of a gifted internet billionaire (Isaac), a young man (Gleeson) takes part in a strange experiment: testing an artificial intelligence, housed in the body of a beautiful robot girl (Vikander). But the experiment twists into a dark psychological battle - a love triangle, where loyalties are torn between man and machine.

Ex Machina review: A stealthy gender inquiry

SUNDAY 10 NOVEMBER

The Piano
7:30PM

M
New Zealand, 1993
Genre: Drama
Language: English
Director: Jane Campion
Starring: Holly Hunter, Anna Paquin, Harvey Keitel, Sam Neill
What's it about?
Ada (Hunter), mute since birth, her nine year old daughter (Paquin), and her piano arrive to an arranged marriage in the remote bush of nineteenth century New Zealand. Of all her belongings her husband refuses to transport the piano and it is left behind on the beach. Unable to bear its certain destruction, Ada strikes a bargain with an illiterate tattooed neighbour (Keitel). She may earn her piano back if she allows him to do certain things while she play’s – one black key for every lesson. The arrangement draws all three deeper and deeper into a complex emotional bond.

Margaret & David review The Piano (The Movie Show, Episode 24, 1993)

My Brilliant Career
9:40PM

G
Australia, 1979
Genre: Drama, Romance
Language: English
Director: Gillian Armstrong
Starring: Judy Davis, Wendy Hughes, Sam Neill
What's it about?
Sybylla (Davis), a headstrong girl growing up in early 20th century Australia, has the opportunity of marriage to a wealthy young man whom she loves, but rejects it in order to maintain her independence, preferring to take a job as governess/housekeeper to the family of an illiterate neighbour to whom her father owes money. The debut feature from director Gilliam Armstrong (StarstruckThe Last Days of Chez Nous, High Tide, Little Women).

Gillian Armstrong talks to Marc Fennell.