John Lui Film Correspondent and Yip Wai Yee Entertainment Correspondent recommend

NUS Arts Festival 2017 Screenings, A Yellow Bird, and more

PHOTOS: GOLDEN VILLAGE PICTURES, JOSEPH NAIR AND AKANGA FILM ASIA, NUS ARTS FESTIVAL, THE PROJECTOR

NUS ARTS FESTIVAL 2017 SCREENINGS

This year, the theme is Brave New Worlds so the team has picked two acclaimed anime titles with a science fiction-fantasy bent - Mamoru Hosoda's The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (PG, 98 minutes, 2006, main photo) and Satoshi Kon's Paprika (NC16, 90 minutes, 2006).

Neither film gained the worldwide popularity that a work from Studio Ghibli might have won, but their ideas and images still influence film-makers around the world.

WHERE: Ngee Ann Kongsi Auditorium, 01-25 Stephen Riady Centre, NUS U Town, 2 College Avenue West MRT: Kent Ridge WHEN: March 17 and 18, 7.30pm ADMISSION: Free with registration INFO: For schedule and registration, go to www.nus.edu.sg/cfa/NAF_2017

John Lui


A YELLOW BIRD (M18)

111 minutes/3.5 stars

This slice of raw social realism, Singapore-style, is back for a limited run at The Projector, with an appearance tomorrow by its director, K. Rajagopal.

Ex-convict Siva (Sivakumar Palakrishnan, above) is the pugnacious anti-hero, a man frustrated at every turn by bureaucracy, petty criminality and prejudice.

The movie was selected for the International Critics' Week at last year's Cannes Film Festival.

WHERE: The Projector, Level 5 Golden Mile Tower, 6001 Beach Road MRT: Nicoll Highway WHEN: Tomorrow, 8pm, with a discussion with film-maker Rajagopal ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: Tickets from theprojector.sg

John Lui


AMERICAN HONEY (R21)

163 minutes/4.5 stars

British writer-director Andrea Arnold has made a visually beautiful coming-of-age story, propelled by a great rock and dance soundtrack. It picked up a Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize, and a British Academy of Film and Television Arts nomination for Best Picture.

Star (newcomer Sasha Lane, above), escaping a sexually abusive father, is recruited into a "mag crew" - nomadic teen groups selling magazine subscriptions - by older guy Jake (Shia LaBeouf). The outfit is run by Krystal (Riley Keough), who lets her charges party as hard as they like, as long as they follow the iron rule: Earn or be kicked out.

WHERE: The Projector MRT: Nicoll Highway ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: Tickets from theprojector.sg

John Lui


A GIFT (PG)

144 minutes/3.5 stars

The lives of six people in Thailand are portrayed in three separate but loosely connected parts: a romance blooms between two college students (Naphat Siangsomboon and Violette Wautier); a young woman (Nittha Jirayungyurn, above left) copes with her father's worsening dementia; and two colleagues (Chantavit Dhanasevi and Nuengthida Sophon) are eager to start a musical band in their strait-laced office.

Through stories inspired by several of late King Bhumibol Adulyadej's musical compositions, the film pays loving and heartfelt tribute to his art as well as his seven-decade reign.

Yip Wai Yee

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 10, 2017, with the headline 'Film Picks'. Print Edition | Subscribe