Miss Granny (Korea)
Opening Jan. 22
Comedy. Drama. Directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk. Oh Mal-soon (Na Moon-hee), a 70-something grandmother, lives with her son and his family. She is controlling and shameless, and has a difficult relationship with her depressed daughter-in-law. She is proud of her son, who is a university professor, and that she managed to raise him by herself against all odds. One day, Mal-soon’s daughter-in-law gets hospitalized after suddenly collapsing, and doctors strongly advise that she live away from Mal-soon. On the day she is told by her son that she is being sent to a nursing home, Mal-soon suddenly recovers her physical appearance of her 20s, after visiting a mysterious photo studio.
Blue is the Warmest Color (France)
Opening Jan. 16
Romance. Drama. Directed by Abdellatif Kechiche. Adele (Adele Exarchopoulos), an ordinary high school girl, falls for a woman with blue hair while walking on the street one day. The two run into each other again at a lesbian bar, and Adele learns that the blue-haired girl’s name is Emma (Lea Seydoux) and that she is a college student majoring in fine art. Adele, who has never dated a woman before, eventually moves into Emma’s place, stating a relationship with her. When her family visits her in their shared apartment, however, Adele does not introduce Emma as her girlfriend. Instead, she presents Emma as her friend and a tutor. The film is the winner of the Palme d’Or at the 2013 Cannes International Film Festival.
Finding Mr. Right (China)
Opened Jan. 1
Romance. Comedy. Directed by Xue Xialou. Jiajia (Tang Wei), a pregnant woman from Beijing, arrives in Seattle to have her rich, married lover’s baby. Upon her arrival in the U.S., she heads to an illegal but comfortable maternity house run by a Taiwanese lady, where she intends to stay until the baby is born. For the first few months, Jiajia continues to enjoy her lavish lifestyle, thanks to her “unlimited” credit card provided by her lover back in China. But everything changes when her boyfriend is imprisoned for a white-collar crime in Beijing, and all of his property is confiscated by the authorities. Penniless, alone and pregnant in the foreign city, Jiajia gets hired as a maid in the maternity house, and forms a genuine friendship with Frank (Wu Xiubo), a gentle, kindhearted driver and a single father who used to work as a physician in the past.
Shirley ― Visions of Reality (Austria)
Opened Dec. 26
Drama. Directed by Gustav Deutsch. Shirley is an emerging actress who likes to watch films and appreciates the arts. She also enjoys listening to the radio, questions conventional relationship roles and reflects on the roles of theater and politics. The film features 13 paintings by the legendary Edward Hopper, including “Western Motel,” “Office at Night” and “A Woman in the Sun,” and deftly weaves them into the life of Shirley, the fictional character, from the 1930s to the 1960s. Her personal history also overlaps with some of the most significant events in American history, including the Great Depression and World War II.
Like Father, Like Son (Japan)
Opened Dec. 19
Drama. Directed by Hirokazu Koreeda. Tokyo-based architect Ryota lives with his loving wife Midori and their 6-year-old son Keita in a comfortable apartment. One day he finds that Keita was switched at birth with another baby and that he is not his biological child. He and Midori meet Yudai, a laid-back electrician living in a rural town, and his wife, who have been together raising Ryusei, Ryota’s biological son. The film was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.