Noted documentary filmmaker Joe Berlinger, whose Paradise Lost movies delved into the West Memphis Three case and were integral in eventually helping to overturn those verdicts, is set to tackle his first scripted true crime tale in the form of Facing the Wind. And, per the Wrap, Alessandro Nivola, Evan Rachel Wood, Vera Farmiga, Rita Wilson and Jennifer Beals have all signed on for the film, penned by Richard Stratton. Shooting will commence later this year in and around New York City; Fabrication Films will begin shopping the project to international buyers at the Cannes Film Festival later this month.
A classily mounted period piece that oscillates between interestingly plotted societal drama and somewhat stuffy and predictable Jane Austen-style handwringing, director Amma Asante’s Belle leans heavily on the unique intrigue that results from a protagonist caught up between different worlds — black and white, rich and disfavored. Never quite content to cast its lot with a grittier and more ambitious tone, this polished and engaging but emotionally gauzy and at times downright frustrating film slugs its way through a lot of dutifully passionate speechifying en route to a conclusion of scrupulously manufactured uplift. For the full, original review, from Paste, click here. (Fox Searchlight, PG, 105 minutes)