6 Indie, Foreign, and Documentary Picks for September

by IMDb-Editors | last updated - 5 months ago

This is the time of year in the U.S. when art-house theaters get inundated with indie, foreign, and documentary releases, some of which have awards season in their sights. This month, IMDb's editorial team highlight 6 six movies we cannot wait to see.

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Taryn Manning in The Vault (2017)

The Vault

With one of the more thrilling trailers I've seen in a while, The Vault positions Taryn Manning (Pennsatucky from "OITNB") and Francesca Eastwood as sisters who look to pull a bank heist against bank manager James Franco, whose vault looks to potentially be a barrier between the human and supernatural world. I'm hoping this is a solid B movie from The Signal director Dan Bush and his and his go-to screenwriter, Conal Byrne. — Arno

Opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, Sept. 1

School Life (2016)

School Life

I never tire of learning about larger-than-life, generous educators, largely because I'm blessed to have known some truly impactful teachers when I was kid. It's just one of the reasons I'm eager to give this documentary from Neasa Ní Chianáin a viewing. Another is that the two teachers at the heart of this film, the polymath husband-and-wife team of John and Amanda Leyden, are just the sort of real-life bohemian teaching wizards who we need to continue to shine a spotlight on. From their primary boarding school some 50 miles from Dublin, they're helping kids become their best selves, one imagination at a time. — Bret

Opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, Sept. 8

Nicholas Hoult in Rebel in the Rye (2017)

Rebel in the Rye

Normally when I hear that a film has gone through extensive re-editing after it underwhelmed on the festival circuit, I keep it at arm's distance. But in the case of Danny Strong's J. D. Salinger biography, which debuted at Sundance to little fanfare despite starring Nicholas Hoult as Salinger and Kevin Spacey as Whit Burnett, the writer/educator who helped shape the careers of Salinger as well as Truman Capote, Strong distilled the audience feedback and set about re-shaping his festival cut. This intrigues me, even if Strong apparently shies away from addressing Salinger's troubled relationship with women. — Arno

Opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, Sept. 15

Kirsten Dunst in Woodshock (2017)


I've always loved the narratives that Kate and Laura Mulleavy have told with their fashion label, Rodarte. (Did you know they famously — and controversially — created some of Black Swan's costumes?) Once I heard that the sisters were co-writing and directing a film starring Kirsten Dunst (a fashionplate in her own right), it didn't really matter what the subject might be — I was intrigued just by the thought of the collobaoration. After getting some hints at what the narrative might be from watching the trailer a few times, my hope is that the Mulleavy sisters bring out a new side of Dunst — something we began to see with her performance in Melancholia. — Arno

Opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, Sept. 22

Douglas Booth in Loving Vincent (2017)

Loving Vincent

Billed as "the world's first fully oil painted feature film," this movie about the life and death of Vincent van Gogh has intrigued me since I first heard about it in 2013. It has actually been in the making for more than six years with the help of 125 painters, who created 65,000 frames for the animation. The impressive cast includes Saoirse Ronan, "Game of Thrones" star Jerome Flynn, and Aidan Turner (The Hobbit) among others. It looks to be a cinematic experience like no other. — Michael

Opens in New York on Friday, Sept. 22, and Los Angeles on Friday, Sept. 29

Laird John Hamilton in Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton (2017)

Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton

There are few athletes across the globe who cast as big a shadow on their professions as Laird Hamilton, whose exploits on the water have made him a legendary figure in the surfing community and in some respects have helped him to transcend the sport. This documentary by Rory Kennedy offers a close-up portrait of a sports icon with a fearless passion for athletic challenges. Surfers will love a deeper dive into a charismatic and sometimes enigmatic idol. And casual viewers will gain appreciation for the connection between man and the ocean. — Bret

Opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, Sept. 29