Ten Movies to Watch in 2013

Categories: Film and TV

5. The Heat
opens April 5
A comedy that features Sandra Bullock as an FBI special agent might lead a reasonable viewer to worry that this will be Miss Congeniality 3. But The Heat is directed by Paul Feig, the helmer of Bridesmaids, which proved to all doubters that those with two X chromosomes can be funny. Also encouraging: That film's flat-capped comic genius, Melissa McCarthy, co-stars, playing a hotheaded Boston cop who teams with Bullock to take down a drug lord.

6. Something in the Air
opens May 3

Autobiographical yet never sentimental, Olivier Assayas's early '70s-set coming-of-ager centers on high school student Gilles (terrific newcomer Clément Métayer), born too late to take part in the insurrections of May '68 but still consumed with revolutionary zeal. He grows weary of political hair-splitting and soon devotes his life to other noble causes: art, sex, music, and cinema, passions that play out against a backdrop of perfect period detail.

7. Frances Ha
opens May 17
Noah Baumbach's latest, starring and co-written by his romantic partner, Greta Gerwig, is both a fizzy homage to the French New Wave and a sharp, witty entry into the long-moribund adrift-twentysomething genre. Gerwig's kinetic performance of the title role reveals her to be a nimble comedian, perfectly balancing mortification and bravado.

8. The Last Time I Saw Macao
opens summer TBD
Film noir meets Chris Marker-like cine-essay meets tranny fabulousness in this playful, poetic rumination on time, space, and memory, co-directed by João Pedro Rodrigues and João Rui Guerra da Mata. After Cindy Scrash lip-synchs to Jane Russell's "You Kill Me"--from Josef von Sternberg's Macao (1952), a key reference here--the film seamlessly shifts to a mystery story and to da Mata's wry offscreen recollections of growing up in the former Portuguese colony of the title.

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