New and Noteworthy Week of 1/29/21

SUPERNOVA - Bleecker Street

The below are brief reviews of new releases I feel are worthy of recommendation. These films were reviewed from digital screeners. Screen and Stage encourages its readers to follow safety precautions outlined by health authorities.

Apollo 11: Quarantine (Dir. Todd Douglas Miller, In IMAX theaters now and on PVOD 2/5/21) - A delightful 23-minute companion piece to Todd Douglas Miller's jaw-dropping APOLLO 11, "Apollo 11: Quarantine" follows the astronauts' 21 days in quarantine after leaving the moon with unsurprisingly beautiful footage. As well-edited as its predecessor, "Apollo 11: Quarantine" is particularly interesting to watch in this day and age as so many of us are spending time in some kind of quarantine now. This short also serves as a testament to the teams who filmed the Apollo 11 launch and the subsequent quarantine period, as the amount of detail and coverage is amazing (there's a brief shot of pastry chefs decorating a birthday cake for Neil Armstrong who celebrated his birthday in quarantine) and an invaluable historical resource.

Supernova (Dir. Harry Macqueen, In theaters now and on digital 2/16/21) - Watching Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci in just about anything is a pleasure, as they elevate even the slightest of films, but watching them together, as a couple who go on a road trip after a dementia diagnosis, is an unrivaled pleasure in Harry Macqueen's feature directorial debut, SUPERNOVA, a work very much worthy of their estimable talents. Unsentimental while still enormously moving and sensitively-observed, SUPERNOVA serves as an impressive calling card for its writer/director and a showcase for Firth and Tucci, the latter of whom rarely is given leading roles. The chemistry between the two actors, friends in real life, is what gives SUPERNOVA its heart and soul. It's easy to believe that these two have been in a relationship for years, from the way that they love to the way that they argue, and Macqueen's emotionally deep and complex screenplay provides them with a strong foundation to shine. 4/4