See it in theaters or stream it on Amazon Prime: 'Everybody’s Talking About Jamie'
English stage director Jonathan Butterell—in his feature film debut—helms this lively, heartfelt adaptation of the stage musical, which in turn took its material from the BBC doc Jamie: Drag Queen at 16. Max Harwood, another fresh face to the movies, takes on the title role: He's Jamie New, a British teenager who can't quite find his place, but dreams of drag queen stardom, overcoming considerable prejudice and bullying along the way. Harwood's backed by an excellent cast, including Sarah Lancashire, Lauren Patel and Richard E. Grant (an Oscar nominee in 2019 for Can You Ever Forgive Me?) as the more experienced queen who takes Jamie under his wing. Written by Tom McRae, who also penned the songs with Dan Gillespie Sells.
PLUS: We asked Max Harwood to put together a list of Jamie's favorite films. Check it out here.
Catch it in theaters: 'The Eyes of Tammy Faye'
Here's another doc adaptation arriving this weekend, this one directed by Michael Showalter (The Big Sick, Wet Hot American Summer). Academy member Jessica Chastain plays controversial televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker in a bravura, award-worthy performance, backed by fellow members Andrew Garfield—as her husband and fellow TV preacher, Jim Bakker—and Cherry Jones, plus Vincent D'Onofrio as an imposing Jerry Falwell. The original doc of the same name is a classic of the genre, narrated by RuPaul and released in 2000. In between the two films the titular Tammy Faye, whose complicated legacy includes a bravely defiant inclusiveness toward the LGBTQ community, passed away from cancer in 2007.
Catch it streaming on Peacock: 'My Son'
James McAvoy and Academy member Claire Foy star as a divorced husband and wife grappling with their child's disappearance in Christian Carion's remake of his own 2017 French film, My Son. Carion, who co-wrote and directed, imported an interesting strategy he employed the first time around: Although the film is largely scripted, lead actor McAvoy's contribution is improvised—he apparently did not know what would happen in each scene and reacted in real time to the drama unfolding around him. Filmed in Scotland, the movie features some gorgeous, sweeping shots of the green hills and highlands, generously captured by DP Eric Dumont.
See it in theaters: 'Blue Bayou'
A breakout at Cannes a few months back, Blue Bayou is director Justin Chon's fourth feature (Gook, Ms. Purple)—plus he also wrote it, co-produced and stars as Antonio LeBlanc, an adopted Korean-American immigrant tattoo artist living in Louisiana whose life takes a harrowing turn after he's placed in ICE custody and faces deportation. Also stars Academy member Alicia Vikander, Mark O'Brien and Linh Dan Pham. Chon developed the film based on real-life stories recounted by friends and acquaintances, as well as on broader research he conducted on Asian-American adoptees, particularly the case of Adam Crapser, a South Korean immigrant who was ultimately deported in 2016.