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London Film Festival top picks: ‘Laugh’

Time Out's critics select five films to look out for in the London Film Festival's ‘Laugh’ strand

Computer Chess

This has breakthrough written all over it: set in the early ’80s at an electronic chess tournament and shot on old-school video cameras, the film follows a young nerd as he attempts to navigate the twin perils of competitive gaming and burgeoning romance.

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Drinking Buddies

‘Drinking Buddies’ looks a lot like Joe Swanberg’s earlier films in content – it concerns a group of twentysomething friends who work at a brewery in Chicago – but the execution is a step up for this DIY master, with a decent budget and actors like Anna Kendrick and Olivia Wilde in the cast.

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Enough Said

Newly-divorced masseuse Eva (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) meets an unlikely new boyfriend at a party (a schlubby but kind-hearted James Gandolfini), only to find that one of her clients, poetess Marianne (Catherine Keener), is his embittered and loquacious ex-wife, whose relentless complaining about her ex makes her ‘like a human TripAdvisor’.

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Hello Carter

Charlie Cox (the lead in ‘Stardust’) stars as the titular Carter, who finds himself newly homeless, single, and unemployed. When he sees his ex-girlfriend Kelly (Jodie Whittaker) on the Tube on the 11-month anniversary of their break-up, he sets out on a mission to win her back, roping in some colourful characters to help him along the way.

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Our Sunhi

Who is Sunhi? Literally, it's actress Jung Yu-Mi, but the answer in the film isn’t quite so straightforward. As a bunch of men try to define the pretty young film studies graduate – she is alternately described as creative, reserved, smart, odd and artistic – Sunhi herself is only after a letter of recommendation from her former professor so she can apply to a post-graduate course in America.

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It’s the best medicine – and it’s also one of the most interesting strands at this year’s LFF. The mumblecore generation grows up in both ‘Computer Chess’ and ‘Drinking Buddies’, while we bid farewell to the late, truly great James Gandolfini in Nicole Holofcener’s witty ‘Enough Said’.