• From left: Maggie's Plan, Il Divo, Under the Silver Lake, The Skin I Live In (SBS Movies)
Your guide to some of the stories from around the world, screening on Australia's own HD SBS World Movies channel (Digital channel 32).
By
SBS Movies

10 Feb 2020 - 5:42 PM  UPDATED 10 Feb 2020 - 5:48 PM

MONDAY 17 FEBRUARY

Maggie's Plan
7:35PM

M
USA, 2015
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Language: English
Director: Rebecca Miller
Starring: Ethan Hawke, Greta Gerwig, Julianne Moore, Bill Hader
What's it about?
Maggie's (Gerwig) plan to have a baby on her own is derailed when she falls in love with John (Hawke), a married man, destroying his volatile marriage to the brilliant and impossible Georgette (Moore). But one daughter and three years later, Maggie is out of love and in a quandary: what do you do when you suspect your man and his ex-wife are actually perfect for each other? From acclaimed writer-director Rebecca Miller (Personal Velocity).

'Maggie's Plan' review: A delightful screwball comedy for grown-ups

'Maggie's Plan'

Biutiful
9:30PM

MA15+
Spain, Mexico, 2010
Genre: Drama
Language: Spanish
Director: Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu
Starring: Javier Bardem, Eduard Fernández, Maricel Álvarez, Hanaa Bouchaib
What's it about?
This is the journey of Uxbal (Bardem, in an Oscar-nominated performance), a conflicted man who struggles to reconcile fatherhood, love, spirituality, crime, guilt and mortality amidst the dangerous underworld of modern Barcelona. As fate encircles him and thresholds are crossed, a dim, redemptive road brightens, illuminating the inheritances bestowed from father to child, and the paternal guiding hand that navigates life’s corridors. From Alejandro G. Iñárritu, director of BabelBirdman and The Revenant.

Bardem plays Biutiful on and off-screen

TUESDAY 18 FEBRUARY

A Birder's Guide to Everything
7:55PM

M
USA, 2013
Genre: Comedy, Family
Language: English
Director: Rob Meyer
Starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee, James Le Gros, Ben Kingsley, Alex Wolff
What's it about?
David Portnoy (Smit-McPhee), a 15-year-old birding fanatic, thinks that he's made the discovery of a lifetime. So, on the eve of his father's remarriage, he escapes on an epic road trip with his best friends to solidify their place in birding history.

Il Divo
9:30PM

MA15+
Italy, 2008
Genre: Drama, Biography
Language: Italian
Director: Paolo Sorrentino
Starring: Toni Servillo, Anna Bonaiuto, Giulio Bosetti
What's it about?
A chronicle of the character and career of the seven-time Prime Minister, Giulio Andreotti (Servillo), renowned for leading one after another of Italy’s rapid succession of administrations and surviving a major bribery and corruption investigation, while opponents and former allies mysteriously dropped dead around him. From Paolo Sorrentino, director The Great Beauty and The Young Pope.

Why You Should Watch: Il Divo

WEDNESDAY 19 FEBRUARY

The Best Offer
7:30PM

M
Italy, 2013
Genre: Drama, Romance
Language: English, Italian
Director: Giuseppe Tornatore
Starring: Geoffrey Rush, Donald Sutherland, Jim Sturgess, Sylvia Hoeks
What's it about?
Virgil Oldman (Rush) is a misogynist auctioneer and art collector who puts his friend Billy (Sutherland) in charge of purchasing works of art undisturbed. One day he receives a call from Claire (Hoeks), heiress to a sprawling villa full of paintings and antiques. She convinces him to evaluate her late parents’ property. From here begins a story full of passion and intrigue. From Giuseppe Tornatore, director of Cinema Paradiso.

The Best Offer: Giuseppe Tornatore interview
The Best Offer: Geoffrey Rush interview
The Best Offer review: A fine portrait of art and obsession

The Lovely Bones
9:55PM

M
USA, 2009
Genre: Drama, Fantasy
Language: English
Director: Peter Jackson
Starring: Stanley Tucci, Saoirse Ronan, Mark Wahlberg, Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon
What's it about?
Based on the best selling book by Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones is the story of a 14-year-old girl (Ronan) from suburban Pennsylvania who is murdered by her neighbour (Tucci). She tells the story and watches the effects of her death on her family from Heaven, as her parents (Weisz, Wahlberg) drift apart, her father becomes obsessed with vengeance and her sister grows into the woman she would never be. 

THURSDAY 20 FEBRUARY

Night Train to Lisbon
7:30PM

M
Germany, 2013
Genre: Romance, Thriller, Mystery
Language: English
Director: Bille August
Starring: Jeremy Irons, Charlotte Rampling, Lena Olin, Bruno Ganz, Mélanie Laurent
What's it about?
Raimund Gregorius (Irons) is a Latin teacher from Berne. When he encounters a book by the Portuguese poet and doctor Amadeu de Prado, he drops everything and takes the night train to Lisbon. He is determined to find out more about this writer who appears to have been obsessed by the very same questions that plague him: the purpose of human deeds and the unrealised potential of each and every life. From two-time Palme d'Or-winning director Bille August (The Best Intentions, Pelle the Conqueror).

Under the Silver Lake
9:35PM

MA15+
USA, 2018
Genre: Mystery, Crime, Drama
Language: English
Director: David Robert Mitchell
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Riley Keough, Topher Grace, Grace van Patten, Zosia Mamet
What's it about?
Young and disenchanted Sam (Garfield) meets a mysterious and beautiful woman (Keough) who's swimming in his building's pool one night. When she suddenly vanishes the next morning, Sam embarks on a surreal quest across Los Angeles to decode the secret behind her disappearance, leading him into the murkiest depths of mystery, scandal and conspiracy. From David Robert Mitchell, writer-director of It Follows.

FRIDAY 21 FEBRUARY

Roman J. Israel, Esq.
7:30PM

M
USA, 2017
Genre: Drama
Language: English
Director: Dan Gilroy
Starring: Denzel Washington, Colin Farrell, Carmen Ejogo, Lynda Gravatt
What's it about?
Hard-nosed liberal lawyer Roman J. Israel (Washington, in an Oscar-nominated performance) has been fighting the good fight forever while others take the credit. When his partner George Pierce (Farrell) – the firm’s frontman – has a heart attack, Israel suddenly takes on that role. He soon discovers some unsettling truths about the firm – truths that conflict with his values of helping the poor and dispossessed – and finds himself in an existential crisis that leads to extreme actions. From Dan Gilroy, writer-director of Nightcrawler.

Elle
9:45PM

MA15+
Belgium, France, Germany, 2016
Genre: Drama, Thriller
Language: French
Director: Paul Verhoeven
Starring: Isabelle Huppert, Laurent Lafitte, Anne Consigny, Charles Berling
What's it about?
When Michèle (Huppert, in her first Oscar nominated performance), the CEO of a gaming software company, is attacked in her home by an unknown assailant, she refuses to let it alter her precisely ordered life. She manages crises involving family, all the while becoming engaged in a game of cat and mouse with her stalker. Directed by Paul Verhoeven (Black Book, Basic Instinct).

'Elle': Isabelle Huppert Stakes Claim As Greatest Living Actor

Isabelle Huppert in 2016's 'Elle'

SATURDAY 22 FEBRUARY

Turning Tide
7:30PM

M
France, 2013
Genre: Drama
Language: French
Director: Christophe Offenstein
Starring: François Cluzet, Guillaume Canet, Samy Seghir, Virginie Efira
What's it about?
Taciturn Breton, Yann Kermadec (Cluzet), is in luck after his friend Franck (Canet) breaks a leg, and Yann steps in to replace him as skipper on a high-tech yacht for the Vendee Globe, a strictly solo three month round-the-world yacht race. Yann has always dreamed of winning this race but early misfortune sees him bound to the Canary Islands for a while. When he finally rejoins the race he realises a stowaway has come on board, which Yann sees as yet another disruption to his journey.  

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
9:25PM

MA15+
China, UK, USA, 2016
Genre: Drama, War
Language: English
Director: Ang Lee
Starring: Joe Alwyn, Kristen Stewart, Chris Tucker, Garrett Hedlund, Vin Diesel, Steve Martin
What's it about?
Based on the widely-acclaimed, bestselling novel, the film is told from the point of view of 19-year-old private Billy Lynn (Alwyn) who, along with his fellow soldiers in Bravo Squad, becomes a hero after a harrowing Iraq battle and is brought home temporarily for a victory tour. Through flashbacks, culminating at the spectacular halftime show of the Thanksgiving Day football game, the film reveals what really happened to the squad - contrasting the realities of the war with America’s perceptions. From Oscar-winning director Ang Lee (Life of Pi, Brokeback Mountain and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon).

SUNDAY 23 FEBRUARY

Amelie
7:30PM

M
France, 2001
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Romance
Language: French
Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Starring: Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz, Rufus, Lorella Cravotta
What's it about?
Young Amélie Poulain (Tautou) works in a Paris café, lives alone and helps people, surreptitiously. Whether it's secretly returning the childhood treasures of a middle aged man, to matchmaking for the lovelorn, Amélie gives fate a helping hand. When Nino (Kassovitz) enters her world, her life takes a new and exciting turn. Nominated for five Academy Awards, including Original Screenplay and Foreign Language Film.

Amelie: Reviewed by David Stratton
Dinner and a movie: Watch Amelie & make crème brûlée

The Skin I Live In
9:45PM

MA15+
Spain, 2011
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Horror
Language: Spanish
Director: Pedro Almodóvar
Starring: Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya, Marisa Paredes, Jan Cornet
What's it about?
Ever since his wife was burned in a car crash, Dr. Robert Ledgard (Banderas), an eminent plastic surgeon, has been interested in creating a new skin with which he could have saved her. After 12 years, he manages to cultivate a skin that is a real shield against every assault. In addition to years of study and experimentation, Robert needed a further three things: no scruples, an accomplice and a human guinea pig. From legendary director Pedro Almodóvar (All About My Mother, Talk To Her), this film won the 2012 BAFTA award for Best Film Not in the English Language.