As Oscar season approaches, FilmScene’s fall lineup is ripe for the picking

‘Them That Follow,’ currently showing at FilmScene, is the kind of film you look for in fall, fresh out of festivals: tense, pastoral, with hypnotic cinematography and great up-and-coming actors (Alice Englert, Kaitlyn Dever), as well as heavy-hitters (Olivia Colman, Walton Goggins). — film still

A Jeff Goldblum-led drama about a lobotomy-happy physician; a documentary on beekeeping traditions in Macedonia, and another chronicling the fraught one-child policy in China; a remake of a 2006 Oscar-nominated foreign film, starring Julianne Moore and Michelle Williams; a quiet thriller about a Pentecostal snake-handling cult in Appalachia, with Olivia Colman as its matriarch.

And those are just the movies currently showing at FilmScene.

Late spring/early summer may be peak blockbuster season, but fall brings a smorgasbord of indie film debuts, released to the public after weeks or months of festival buzz. Not all of these films are destined for Oscar glory, but, traditionally, most Academy Awards nominees are plucked from this September-through-December film harvest. Golden trophies notwithstanding, the variety of stories and artistic voices represented by this crop of flicks is always fascinating to behold.

Plenty of cinephiles will have to wait until 2020 to catch up on many of 2019’s finest, and by then, Redbox or streaming may be the only viewing options. But the Iowa City community has FilmScene, and FilmScene will soon have double the amount of big screens on which to show their limited-release acquisitions.

The new Chauncey building will open to public on Sept. 21, boasting three indoor screens as well as a park-lawn screen for special outdoor events. The original Ped Mall cinema will remain open as well, with its two indoor screens and rooftop screen. In addition to showing a range of recent and classic films as part of their series, special events and the Bijou student-run film program, here are the new, 2019 joints scheduled to screen at one of FilmScene’s two cinemas in the coming weeks:


‘Honeyland,’ directed by Tamara Kotevska and Ljubo Stefanov. — film still

Now showing at the Ped Mall location:

Them That Follow
One Child Nation
The Mountain
After the Wedding

‘Aquarela,’ directed by Viktor Kossakovsky, captures the power and beauty of ice around the world. — film still

Downton Abbey, opens Sept. 20, Chauncey
Official Secrets, opens Sept. 20, Ped Mall
The Parts You Lose, one show: Sept. 26 at 5:30 p.m., Ped Mall
David Crosby: Remember My Name, opens Sept. 27, Ped Mall
Aquarela, opens Sept. 27, Chauncey


Joaquin Phoenix stars in ‘Joker,’ directed by Todd Phillips and offering a dark, self-contained origin story for one of fiction’s favorite villains. — film still

Joker, opens in October (day TBA), Chauncey
This Changes Everything, opens Oct. 4, Ped Mall
Mister America, one show: Oct. 9 at 8 p.m., Chauncey
Monos, opens Oct. 11, Ped Mall
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, opens Oct. 11, Ped Mall
Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice, opens Oct. 18, Ped Mall
The Laundromat, opens Oct. 18, Chauncey

The documentary ‘Midnight Family’ follows the Ochoa family, who run a private ambulance service in Mexico City. Director Luke Lorentzen will attend FilmScene’s screening on Oct. 20 as part of the Vino Vérité series, co-presented by Little Village. — film still

Midnight Family, Vino Vérité: Oct. 20 at 7 p.m., Chauncey
Lucy in the Sky, opens Oct. 25, Chauncey
Dolemite is My Name, opens Oct. 25, Chauncey


Robert DeNiro as Frank Sheeran in ‘The Irishman,’ directed by Martin Scorsese. Anna Paquin, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci also star in this crime biopic, reflecting on the murder of Jimmy Hoffa. — film still

The Irishman, opens in November (day TBA), Chauncey

The see the full FilmScene schedule, pick up a copy of their InFocus calendar at the Ped Mall location, or at the Chauncey’s opening reception on Saturday, Sept. 21.

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