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Katrine Philp’s Moving Docu ‘Beautiful Something Left Behind’ Debuts; Sundance Winner ‘The Reason I Jump’ Premieres – Specialty Preview

The past year — and even the events of the past week in this country has been a struggle for a lot of people. More specifically, the pandemic and Covid-19 has claimed the lives of over 360,000 people and there are thousands of families in mourning. They are grieving — and this includes children. The virtual release of Katrine Philp’s documentary, Beautiful Something Left Behind speaks to this exact topic.

Beautiful Something Left Behind was filmed long before the pandemic and debuted at SXSW in 2020 where it won Best Documentary Feature under the title An Elephant in the Room. The film from MTV Documentary Films is timeless as it puts a heartbreaking spotlight on the lives of several young children who have recently lost one or both parents.

The Good Grief community in New Jersey focuses on a holistic approach to mourning, where children can give in to rage in “the volcano room” or say goodbye to a dying teddy bear patient in “the hospital room”. In the docu which is a gut-punch to the soul, Philp follows Kimmy, Nicky, Peter, Nora, Nolan and Mikayla for a year as they grieve and attend their weekly group meetings at Good Grief, practice small rituals to remember their loved ones, and go about the daily work of living.

For anyone who has ever lost anyone in their lives, the grieving process is a different journey for everyone, Philp chronicles the process through the lens of children. While it is sometimes deeply sad, it’s also at times humorous to experience questions about life and death through their open and curious minds.

Watch the trailer below.

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The Kino Lorber docu The Reason I Jump dives deep into a topic that is often overlooked: neurodiversity. The film will open in select theaters and virtual cinemas starting today January 8.

Based on the book by Naoki Higashida and directed by Jerry Rothwell (How to Change the World), the docu debuted at Sundance in 2020 where it won the World Cinema Documentary Audience Award. It also went on to snag nominations at the IDA Awards for Best Picture and Best Director.

The Reason I Jump takes a look at neurodiversity through the lens of nonspeaking autistic people from around the world. Rothwell combines Higashida’s insights into autism — which were when he was 13 years old — with intimate portraits of five remarkable young people. It opens a window for audiences into an intense and overwhelming, but often joyful, sensory universe.

Moments in the lives of each of the characters are linked by the journey of a young Japanese boy and narrated passages from Higashida’s writing as it reflects on what his autism means to him and others. His perception puts shine on how his perception of the world differs and why he acts in the way he does. In other words, he gives us the reason why he jumps.

Watch the trailer below.

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Vertical Entertainment is set to release If Not Now, When? in theaters and on digital and on demand starting today. The ensemble drama marks the directorial debut of Meagan Good and Tamara Bass, who also star in the pic.

Written by Bass, the movie also stars Meagan Holder (Pitch), Mekia Cox (The Rookie), Niles Fitch (This Is Us), Lexi Underwood (Little Fires Everywhere), Edwin Hodge (Six) and Kyle Schmid (Six).

If Not Now, When? follows four friends who were bonded by an event in high school. When one of them suffers from a crisis, the quartet of friends are forced to reunite and the result is a story of love, forgiveness and the incredible bond between women.

The VW Scheich-directed Stars Fell on Alabama follows successful  Bryce (James Maslow) a successful Hollywood agent and up-and-coming actress, Madison (Ciara Hanna).

Bryce is the epitome of the Hollywood dream. He moved to California 15 years ago leaving his past behind in Alabama. He keeps in touch with a small circle of his best friends from high school and as he prepares for his 15-year high school reunion, he is getting judged by his classmates for not being married with children. As a result, he tells a little lie and says that Madison is his girlfriend. He convinces her to pretend to be his girlfriend to escape questions from his friends… and hilarity ensues.

Samuel Goldwyn Films will release the romantic comedy on digital and VOD starting today. The movie also stars Mike Bash, Lesa Wilson, Johnnie Mack, Justin Clark and Taylor Hicks.

There are a handful of films hitting digital, streaming and/or VOD today after their limited theatrical release including the Lionsgate thriller Fatale starring Hilary Swank and Michael Ealy, which drops on PVOD today. In addition, Amazon Prime Video will serve the streaming debut of Phyllida Lloyd’s Herself while Kornél Mundruczó’s drama Pieces of a Woman starring Vanessa Kirby is currently available on Netflix.

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