John Lui Film Correspondent recommends

Film Picks: Beautiful Boy

Director Peter Jackson and his team have taken front-line footage of the period (above).
Director Peter Jackson and his team have taken front-line footage of the period (above).PHOTO: ANTICIPATE PICTURES, UIP, WARNER BROS
In Fabric (R21, starring Marianne Jean-Baptiste, above).
In Fabric (R21, starring Marianne Jean-Baptiste, above).PHOTO: SINGAPORE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Widows (starring Michelle Rodriguez, above).
Widows (starring Michelle Rodriguez, above).PHOTO: TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX


120 minutes/3 Stars

In this adaptation of two memoirs, one by writer David Sheff and the other by his son Nic, Steve Carell plays David, a middle-class man whose son (Timothee Chalamet) is a methamphetamine addict. In a flashback, Nic is shown as a boy who is sensitive, popular and loved by his family. He becomes a teenager who seeks to get high all the time. David's life is marked by a series of emergencies which find Nic either in a hospital or in police custody. In this gorgeously shot, quietly arresting portrait of a relationship that tests the limits of unconditional love - how much should a parent take before he cuts ties and walks away - everything rests on buying the idea that David loves his son and Nic is worthy of that love.

WHERE: The Projector, Level 5 Golden Mile Tower, Beach Road ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: Tickets and schedules at


British film-maker Peter Strickland has emerged as a master of stylised horror. For In Fabric (R21, starring Marianne Jean-Baptiste), he mixes the comic with the macabre and critics have called attention to his ability to maintain control of material that might otherwise have become too cartoon-like. A cursed dress brings misfortune to whoever wears it and, in a series of incidents, its various owners come to grief. Variety magazine calls it "a bespoke homage to ultra-stylised Italian thrillers, with a wickedly arch sense of humour all its own".

WHERE: Filmgarde Bugis+, Level 5 Bugis+, 201 Victoria Street MRT: Bugis WHEN: Tomorrow, 11.55pm ADMISSION: $12 from Sistic (call 6348-5555 or go to


131 minutes/4 Stars

The thrilling, emotional Widows is so satisfying because it not only does not skimp on the stuff that makes heist movies tick, but it also ups the ante. The crooks are women underdogs for whom the score is not so much about the money as it is an act of self-affirmation. And the film shows all that without overtly making it an ode to "sisters doing it for themselves".

In this crime thriller helmed by arthouse favourite Steve McQueen (12 Years A Slave, 2013), a criminal gang is wiped out during a botched robbery, leaving their female partners to pick up the pieces.

Despite how Veronica (Viola Davis), Linda (Michelle Rodriguez) and Alice (Elizabeth Debicki) are strangers, they are bonded by financial debt and grief. There is a way to fix their money problems, but they will have to crack a safe to get it.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 07, 2018, with the headline 'Film Picks'. Print Edition | Subscribe