Opened March 31
Drama. Directed by Omori Mika. Kyoko (Satomi Kobayashi), a middle-aged woman who had left her family to work for a guest house in Chiang Mai, Thailand, receives a visit from her daughter, Sayo (Kana). To Sayo’s surprise, Kyoko is more than happy to be in the guest house, living with kindhearted employee Ichio (Ryo Kase), young Thai boy Bie (Sittichai Kongpila), and the owner of the guest house Kikuko (Masako Motai). Soon, it is revealed that Kukuko is suffering from a fatal disease and only has a few months to live. Sayo struggles to understand why her mother had to leave the whole family to be with such strangers in a foreign country. Yet as she discovers each character in the guest house deals with their own personal hardships, Sayo gets reveals her true feelings to her mother for the first time.
Paul (U.K., Spain, France, U.S.)
Opening April 7
Comedy. Directed by Greg Mottola. Graeme (Simon Pegg) and Clive (Nick Frost) are two British sci-fi nerds on holiday in America. After a trip to Comic-Con to meet their favorite author, Adam Shadowchild (Jeffrey Tambor), Graeme and Clive hit the road for a tour of some of the most famous UFO hotspots in the American Southwest. They believe we’re not alone in the universe, but won’t be satisfied until they get a firsthand glimpse of the famed Area 51. However, somewhere deep in the Nevada desert, the two UFO enthusiasts narrowly avoid crashing into a speeding car when they happen across a most unlikely hitchhiker. Paul (voice of Seth Rogan) is a pint-sized alien who has spent the last 60 years in Area 51. He’s been in the care of the U.S. Government for far too long, and he’s starting to get a little homesick. Though Graeme and Clive are more than willing to help their new friend get back to his mother ship, Special Agent Zoil (Jason Bateman) of the FBI is closing in fast.
Mother is a Whore (Korea)
Opened March 31
Drama. Directed by Lee Sang-woo. Thirty-eight-year-old, HIV-positive Sang-woo (Lee Sang-woo) lives alone with his mother in a small, secluded house. His father had abandoned them for a younger woman, leaving them with an utter sense of betrayal and in poverty. Sang-woo’s only source of income is his mother, who works as a prostitute at home while he brings her clients. Meanwhile, Sang-woo’s father lives with an overly-religious wife, a reclusive son who withdrew from social life, and a struggling teenage daughter who almost never attends her classes.
Antichrist (Poland, Germany, France)
Opening April 14
Horror. Directed by Lars Von Trier. While they make love in their apartment on a snowy winter afternoon, a husband and wife known only as “He” and “She” (Willem Dafoe and Charlotte Gainsbourg) fail to keep an eye on their young boy. In a horrific turn of events, the child wanders over to an open window, entranced by the snow cascading down, and falls to his death. Tormented by the tragic event, “She” gets hospitalized over a month and receives psychiatric therapy. Once she gets released from the hospital, she starts to blame her husband for his apathy over the death of his own son. “He” takes her to a forest to provide a relaxing, soothing environment. Though she seemingly grows calmer in the beginning, “She” soon begins to completely lose her mind, to a degree that she physically tortures herself.
Gnomeo & Juliet (U.K.)
Opening April 14
Animation. Directed by Kelly Asbury. Though Gnomeo (James McAvoy) and Juliet (Emily Blunt) belong to feuding garden-gnome families, they run into each other and fall in love. But the clan’s shared animosity gets out of control when Tybalt (Jason Statham) dies partly because of actions taken by Gnomeo to protect a friend whom Tybalt was attacking. After getting some useful advice from a statue of William Shakespeare (Patrick Stewart), Gnomeo attempts to set things right, and win the heart of the lawn ornament he loves.