Life, art and laughter: the week’s best films

– Like an unstoppable rage train, Jordan Peele’s film The Miseducation of Cameron Post is not just about a teenager learning to lose her virginity. Written, directed and narrated by Peele, the unconventional coming-of-age story explores an alternative subculture of homosexuality and follows the journey of a rebellious 15-year-old girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) who is sent to a supposedly Christian gay conversion therapy camp, much to the displeasure of her parents (John Gallagher Jr, Jennifer Ehle). Maddened and hungry for answers, Cameron’s coming-of-age story becomes an allegory for the innocence lost in today’s bullying culture, especially in the context of late-night internet trolling. Peele’s blending of humour, melancholy and anxiety is perfectly balanced, and you will cheer for the heck of it. (For an inside look at Peele’s methodology, watch his interview with Yahoo Movies.) In limited release.

– Producer Anna Boden and writer-director Ryan Fleck, who helped to break out Ryan Gosling on Half Nelson and Half Nelson 2, guide us on a rambling and distinctly messy road trip with Un Certain Regard documentary Finders Keepers. This tale of accidental treasure hunting stars Garrett Hedlund and Tye Sheridan, and the two actors, along with real-life treasure hunters, provide some wild and wonderful drama while the ticking clock of a hostage situation roars along behind them. Perfect for any grown-up with a knack for creative storytelling and a thirst for the unexpected. (Opening this week in select cities, rolling out into wider release throughout the summer.)

– Jonathan Green returns to Aussie screens this week in a new season of the critically acclaimed Man Ray: The Power, Prints, Ideas documentary. An illuminating portrait of the true man behind Yves Saint Laurent, the film probes his dreams, obsessions and uncertain place in history as we witness the past being remade by his art.

– Nicolas Cage is always fun to watch in a dramatic role, but film buffs will be pleased to know that this three-disc set of The Wild Guy & the Condor (1982) and The Naked Angels (1983) is just out on Blu-ray. These dramas from director Alejandro Jodorowsky, who goes by The Red One in these films, are their first pair of feature films and examine drug culture through a cross-gender lens.

– And Finally: For parents with girls who are super geeky, Danger Girl Comics co-founders Jenny Slate and Will Arntz present their new series SuperMansion, which features a digitally rendered cast of animated superheroes. But it’s also good to know that most of the visual style comes straight from 1987’s Danger Girl. (Available to own digitally through Comixology.)

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