Modest Reception (Mani Haghighi)
A rich Iranian couple travel over the harsh winter countryside handing out unexplained bags of cash to the needy.
But their motives and the definition of 'needy' morphs their interactions from blackly comedic to seat-squirmingly cruel.
To be honest, I came out having been immersed, but confused; having expected a twist/explanation for the 'charity'.
Too little story laid over the analogy for this bear of very little brain.
I Wish (Kore-eda Hirokazu)
Two young brothers deal with their parents' separation in different but universal ways: with friends, family, and octopus puffs.
A wonderful bunch of kids bring sweetness, comedy, and demonstrate that lovely ability that children have to just deal with all kinds of shit.
Hirokazu's nuanced adult characters are also in abundance.
Lovers on the Bridge (Leos Carax)
Alex is off his nut again and scraping his head against mid-lane bitumen when Michele enters his life.
Initially a nightmarish portrayal of everyday homelessness in Paris, full of broken mental furious awfulness.
Alex and Michele introduce the film as a gritty love story that then veers periodically into set pieces of violently chaotic whimsy and frowny-faced convenient magic.