Film Critics

Music Box Films

If preparations for Monday's total solar eclipse kept you from planning for the perfect weekend, don't fret! Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have you covered. While the movies they recommend might not be as dramatic as watching the moon blot out the sun for minutes at a time, they're still worth watching.

Steve Walker

Paramount Pictures

If the "fire and fury" of this week's political tension has you seeking relief, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have suggestions for the perfect movie to keep your mind off earthly crises. Well, except for the first item on the list which, coincidentally, is about Earth's environmental problems (it's still worth watching though!)

Steve Walker

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power, PG

Roadside Attractions

Some people believe they were born in the wrong era. If you just can't seem to find your place in the age of Big Data, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a set of recommendations to take you back to your spiritual time span. Whether you're pining for the Victorian 1850s or the bullish 1990s, take a break this weekend from push notifications and iPads, and enjoy the simplicity of bygone days.

Steve Walker

Landline, R

John Platt / IFC Midnight

Your local theater has a slew of cinema to choose from right now — from a romantic camping trip gone horribly wrong to a gritty documentary focused on the rising costs of prescription drugs.

A24

Did you know July is National Anti-Boredom Month? (No, we're not kidding.) If you're looking back in remorse at an uneventful last four weeks, it's time to get off the couch and get into your local theater! Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics are back to recommend the least-boring flicks playing now. Finish off the month in style with a movie that's sure to keep you entertained.

Cynthia Haines

Score: A Film Music Documentary, Not rated

Epicleff Media

As the summer heat stretches on, fatigue sets in. If you're getting a little exhausted from road trips, swimming pools, or just hiding at home in the air conditioning, why not watch a movie? Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few suggestions to keep this weekend from going stale. 

Steve Walker

Maudie, PG-13

IFC Films

The ancient Greeks divided storytelling into two major pillars: drama and comedy. Thousands of years later, Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics continue to apply their wisdom to the movie reviewing process. Whether it's a movie that will leave you crying from laughter or sobbing genuine tears, you won't want to miss these films.

Steve Walker

Band Aid, Not rated

Johan Voets / A24

The Fourth of July has passed and the fireworks have died down, but you can still simulate the experience of watching glowing stuff in the dark. How, you ask? Why, with a visit to a local movie theater! Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics offer their top movie picks, sure to bring some sparkle to your weekend.

Steve Walker

The Big Sick, R

Netflix

You can never have too many movies about genetically-engineered super-pigs! Today, Up To Date's Film Critics return with to review the indie, foreign and documentary offerings now on Kansas City screens, including The Hero, The Beguiled, Okja, Beatriz at Dinner, The Exception, Megan Leavey, Paris Can Wait and Book of Henry.

Wilson Webb / TriStar Pictures, Inc.

In between your barbeque duties and watching fireworks light up the night sky, wouldn't it be nice to cool off with a hot flick? Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have some recommendations for what to watch between your Fourth of July festivities. Give one or more of them a crack — it's sure to be a blast!

Cynthia Haines 

The Exception, R

Netflix

Summer has officially arrived. While the heat has been tame so far, Kansas City natives know it likely won't stay that way for long. This weekend, Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have a whole new set of movie recommendations, just in case you're already hankering for the air-conditioned comfort of a local independent theater.

Steve Walker

The Exception, R

Jacob Yakob / Dogs of War LLC

If the father figure in your life has more than enough golf clubs, tools and those weird plaques adorned with plastic singing fish, why not consider giving him the gift of great cinema? Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics are here with a new batch of movie recommendations that any dad would enjoy.

Cynthia Haines

I, Daniel Blake, R

Joss Barratt / Entone Group

If you're tired of all the politics on television this week, you may want to try watching something on a different, slightly bigger screen. Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics are here with a new batch of weekend suggestions. They're sure to get you off that mind-suppressing couch and into an enthralling local independent theater. 

Steve Walker

I, Daniel Blake, R

Norma Productions

June has arrived, liberating children from schools all over Kansas City and vexing adults with the impossible task of keeping them entertained. If you're looking for a mental escape from this annual phenomenon, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics suggest sheltering your mind in the safety of a good movie.

Steve Walker

The Wedding Plan, PG

Music Box Films

What do America's first celebrity chef, a poetry biopic and a heavyweight boxing drama have in common? Hint: They are your weekend plans, courtesy of Up To Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics. With an extra day off from work comes more time to lay low and take in a film — or four! It'll be well worth your while.

Steve Walker

A Quiet Passion, PG-13

Helen Sloan / IFC Midnight

From a sci-fi drama about survival in a post-apocalyptic world to a documentary about the life of celebrity chef Jeremiah Tower, there's almost too many options now showing in theaters. Fear not! Up To Date's Film Critics are here to help curate the wild world of cinema.

IFC Films

City planning flare-ups, folk-rock, and a poetry biopic ... if these aren't movie topics appropriate for a public radio audience, nothing is. This weekend's recommendations from Up To Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics will give you the chance to revel in your nerdy-ness, and learn a little history in the process. We'd be lying if we claimed to be too cool for some popcorn and a well-crafted flick that features zero actual explosions.

Steve Walker

Well Go USA Entertainment

Chocolates and flowers are gifts you could give for Mother's Day. But how about a gift you should give? Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics suggest one of these movies for a date night with Mom (dinner plans not included).

Steve Walker

Hounds of Love, Not rated

Aidan Monaghan / LCOZ Holdings, LLC

Rest easy: You don't have to traverse the dense jungle of the Amazon to discover something worth watching this weekend. Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have already surveyed the untamed wilderness of the movie industry, and have emerged with recommendations you can watch from the comfort of your friendly local theater.

Cynthia Haines

Frantz, PG-13

Protagonist Pictures

What better way to spend a dreary weekend than taking in a few good movies at your local independent theater? If you have a hard time making up your mind, let Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics help out with their latest recommendations. They'll ensure your hair stays dry, but maybe not your eyes.

Steve Walker

Graduation, R

Transmission Films

It's not every day you can have a coherent conversation on topics ranging from "Seoul-crushing" monsters to daytime vampires and a movie about making a movie, but Up To Date's film critics manage to pull it off.

www.tommyshonour.com

Steve Walker

Cézanne et Moi​, R

  • Director Daniele Thompson's sumptuous account of the lifelong bromance between artist Paul Cezanne and writer Emile Zola adroitly captures the self-doubt and self-importance that shaped their artistic temperaments.

David Lynch: The Art Life, Not Rated

Kyle Espeleta / The Orchard

After your Easter plans for this weekend are done, gather the extended family together for some movie-binging. Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have recommendations for the whole clan — even that one weird cousin. (You know who we're talking about!) Pro tip: Use the spoils from the Easter egg hunt to save yourself some cash on candy at the theater.

Steve Walker

Tommy's Honour, PG

Toronto International Film Festival

With the Kansas City FilmFest going on this weekend, there's no shortage of great cinema to take in (not to mention the New York Dog Film Festival and Pooch Party). For those of us not lucky enough to get tickets to that event, though, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few recommendations that can fill the festival void.

Film Sience, and XYZ Films

This weekend's recommendations will have you tapping into a multitude of emotions. Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics are presenting educational and historical documentaries, melancholic dramas, and some very quirky — and at times very dark — comedies. 

Steve Walker

The Last Word, R

Platige Films

It's an exciting year for the Kansas City FilmFest. Today, we preview the high-profile guests coming to town, the inclusion of the Dog Film Festival, and the top Midwest films of the year, like Big Sonia.

Process Media

St. Patrick's Day Weekend is here! Wear your green proudly as Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critic Steve Walker leads you to a movie pot of gold at the end of the cinematic rainbow!

Steve Walker

Wolves, R

Typical sports movie clichés are superseded by a strong script, director, and cast (headed by Michael Shannon) telling a gritty story about a high school basketball phenom and his alcoholic, gambler father and enabling mother.

www.kedifilm.com

For the upcoming weekend, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics Steve Walker and Bob Butler, are in agreement about their movie recommendations. The picks are sure to appeal to ardent admirers of documentaries and drama. 

Kedi, Unrated

The documentary about the stray cats of Istanbul, Turkey demonstrates -- in vignettes both moving, and yes, even to a dog person, adorable -- why the city's residents feel like they are "on the same frequency" as their beloved felines.

Sony Pictures Classics

Plenty of people will be tuning in to a certain "big game" on Sunday but, for those looking for something off the beaten path, these recommendations from Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics could be just the ticket. There may be fewer cheerleaders and a lot less Lady Gaga, but on the bright side, there are fewer cheerleaders and a lot less Lady Gaga.

A24 Films

Academy Award nominations for this year were announced on Tuesday, so there's no better time to catch the selected movies you may have missed. This weekend's round of recommendations from Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics include movies nominated for best picture, best actor, best actress and plenty more. The clock is ticking: Cinephiles have just under a month before the Oscars are awarded on Sunday, February 26!

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