Film picks: Widows, Beautiful Boy and Singapore International Film Festival

Timothee Chalamet and Steve Carell star in Beautiful Boy.
Timothee Chalamet and Steve Carell star in Beautiful Boy.PHOTO: GOLDEN VILLAGE

John Lui

BEAUTIFUL BOY (M18)

120 minutes/3 stars

In this adaptation of two memoirs, one by writer David Sheff and the other from his son Nic, Steve Carell plays David, a comfortably middle-class man whose son (Timothee Chalamet) is a methamphetamine addict. In flashback, Nic as a boy is shown to be sensitive, popular and loved by his family. He becomes a teenager who seeks to get high all thetime. 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 theprojector.sg

SINGAPORE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

British film-maker Strickland has emerged as a master of stylised horror. For In Fabric (R21), 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: Various locations, including Capitol Theatre, National Gallery Singapore and National Museum Of Singapore MRT: Various WHEN: Till Dec 9 ADMISSION: $12 from Sistic (call 6348-5555 or go to www.sistic.com.sg)

WIDOWS (M18)


Michelle Rodriquez and Cynthia Erivo in Widows. PHOTO: 20TH CENTURY FOX

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, it ups the ante.

The crooks are women underdogs for whom the score is not so much about the money as 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 to one another, 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.