5 To See at The Virginia Film Festival

Festival season is in full swing, and with the Virginia Film Festival kicking off this week, now is a good time to make your final selections. If you’ve got some holes in your schedule, here are five films that are making the rounds on the festival circuit and are well worth your time.

Glass Onion Daniel Craig
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Story

Glass Onion: If you’re in the mood for a sure thing, then check out Rian Johnson’s sequel to Knives Out. Johnson leans heavier into the comedic elements that stood out in the first film, and somehow populates the story with even more quirky characters. It’s a fun mystery that pokes fun at the genre itself without coming across as dismissive. Even though this film hits Netflix at the end of the year, the cinematography and set design are so gorgeous that they’re well worth seeing on a big screen. It’ll have a very short theatrical run in a few weeks, so don’t be too upset if you can’t snag a ticket. Read That Shelf‘s review of Glass Onion from TIFF and watch the video review!

Broker: Hirokazu Kore-eda is one of the most talented filmmakers in Japan. When you couple him with Song Kang-Ho (Parasite, The Host), you really can’t go wrong. The film’s length allows the story to develop at a natural pace while giving meaningful screen time to all of the key characters. VFF may be one of your only chances to see this theatrically in the area.  Read That Shelf’s review of Broker from TIFF!

Good Night Oppy: This one will be coming Prime Video in a few weeks, but do you need to see it on a big screen. There’s plenty of original NASA imagery on display, but when VFX studio Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) works wonders by recreating the Martian landscapes that were originally captured by the Spirit and Opportunity rovers, the film really shines. Director Ryan Whitew (Ask Dr. Ruth) wonderfully anthropomorphizes the rovers and creates a fun documentary that the whole family can enjoy.

The Inspection: Elegance Bratton’s dramatic debut is what film festivals are all about: finding new talent and seeing what they’ve got before anyone else has a chance. This semi-autobiographical tale of the early days of the US military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy is simultaneously heartbreaking and inspiring. How so? You’ll have to see it for yourself to find out.  Read our review of The Inspection from TIFF.

The Lost King

The Lost King: If you thought fact that King Richard III’s remains were found in a parking lot was crazy, wait until you hear the rest of the story. Sally Hawkins is a joy to watch in this triumphant true tale about an amateur researcher eager to correct the narrative about one of Shakespeare’s great villains. Steve Coogan co-stars and co-writes the screenplay in this reunion with Philomena director Stephen Frears. Read our review of The Lost King.

VFF runs Nov. 2 – 6, 2022.