Three Identical Strangers, released 30th November
It’s a story so remarkable, you wouldn’t believe it if it hadn’t happened to you. So says Bobby, one of the identical triplets, below, who were separated as babies and adopted into three different families, only to reconnect, by chance, at the age of 19, in 1980. There’s a forceful dramatic arc to this gripping documentary which, through archive footage and recreation, captures the giddy initial elation. But the film takes a darker turn, with the realisation that the boys had been used as guinea pigs in a covert psychological experiment.
Roma, released 14th December, in cinemas and on Netflix
Is there a modern director more instinctively in tune with his medium than Alfonso Cuarón? The Mexican director follows his Oscar-winning Gravity with an intimately personal study of middle-class life in 1970s Mexico City. The focus is on the family servant, Cleo, tugged between being seen as an employee and a family member. Shot in black and white, and featuring Cuarón’s trademark long, impeccably composed tracking shots, the film is, quite simply, a masterpiece.
Sorry To Bother You, released 7th December
The feature debut from Boots Riley is a prickly, inventive satire which launches a double-pronged attack on US racism and rapacious capitalism. His tool of choice is a surreal sci-fi spin on Oakland, California, in which the unemployed are persuaded to sign their rights away into a kind of slavery, neatly rebranded as becoming “Worry-free.” Lakeith Stanfield stars as a rising star telemarketer who discovers the persuasive power of using a “white voice.” Savage, funny and genuinely disturbing.