John Lui Film Correspondent recommends

Film Picks: John Lui recommends Human Flow, artist Ai Wei Wei's documentary on the refugee crisis

Custody
CustodyPHOTO: ANTICIPATE PICTURES
AMERICAN ANIMALS
AMERICAN ANIMALSPHOTO: SHAW ORGANISATION
Human Flow
Human FlowPHOTO: THE PROJECTOR
The Tale
The TalePHOTO: HBO

CUSTODY (PG13)

94 minutes/ 5 stars

Miriam (Lea Drucker) and Antoine (Denis Menochet) are divorcing. She wants full custody of both children, suggesting that Antoine is abusive but offers no proof, so the judge offers the father weekend time with young son Julien (Thomas Gioria, far left). The bitterness of the separation evolves into something more sinister.

Writer-director Xavier Legrand's harrowing debut feature has reaped awards at festivals in Venice and Zurich, among many others, and deservedly so.

The screenings today and tomorrow will feature a dialogue with representatives from the Singapore Association of Women Lawyers and the Association of Women for Action and Research (Aware).

WHERE: The Arts House, 1 Old Parliament Lane MRT: City Hall WHEN: Now to Sunday, various times ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: custody.peatix.com


AMERICAN ANIMALS (M18)

117 minutes/ 4 stars

In this blackly comic and fascinating exploration of a real crime, four young upper-middle-class men with no history of criminal activity attempt one of the most audacious robberies in American history: the theft of rare books worth tens of millions from a university library in Lexington, Kentucky.

The people involved are interviewed on camera, while actors re-enact the events that occurred in 2004.

Warren (Evan Peters) is the fast-talking, charismatic one, who, in long, pot-fuelled monologues, convinces other well-to-do kids - Chas (Blake Allen), Spencer (Barry Keoghan) and Eric (Jared Abrahamson) - that they are at a crossroads: One path is glory, the other leads to the American rat race, as suggested in the film's title.


HUMAN FLOW (PG)

140 minutes

Artist Ai Wei Wei is a prolific maker of documentaries - he has made over 20 - and his latest sees him travel to more than 20 countries recording the refugee crisis on drones, phone cameras and anything else he can get his hands on.

Screened in competition at last year's Venice International Film Festival, it will be shown here to mark World Refugee Day on Wednesday.

The screening on June 24 will be followed by a dialogue with panellists from volunteer group Advocates For Refugees. WHERE: The Projector, Level 5 Golden Mile Tower, 6001 Beach Road MRT: Bugis/Lavender/Nicoll Highway WHEN: From June 21, various times ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: theprojector.sg


THE TALE (M18)

110 minutes

Now showing on HBO

3 stars

If one were sexually abused as a child, one would remember it as an adult and have the right emotional reaction to it, right? That is what Jennifer (Laura Dern) thinks.

But when her mother (Ellen Burstyn) finds letters she wrote as a 13-year-old, Jennifer starts to relook the time that she, as a teen, spent at a horse-riding camp. Is there more to her adolescent love affair than she remembers?

This is acclaimed documentary film-maker Jennifer Fox's tough, unsentimental fiction debut. In this semi-autobiographical work, Fox explores how the adult mind has a way of shielding itself from childhood trauma.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 15, 2018, with the headline 'Film Picks'. Print Edition | Subscribe