Friday, August 03, 2012

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 3 August 2012 - 9 August 2012

What's the last stuff playing Boston while I'm in Montreal? Let's find out!

  • Did you know they're remaking Total Recall? It's true! In all seriousness, I'd heard talk about it, but until seeing posters up here, I really had no concrete evidence of it. No trailers, news stories, or promotion of any kind. Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel, and Len Wiseman try to top the Schwarzeneggar/Verhoven version at Somerville, Fresh Pond, Fenway, and Boston Common. Another thing that came about pretty much under my radar, though more for me not being the target audience at all, is Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days, the third adaptation of the popular children's book series in as many years, this one featuring the title character finding trouble during the summer months. It plays the Arlington Capitol, Fresh Pond, Boston Common, and Fenway.

    Boston Common fills a couple of other screens with independent-ish stuff. China Lion brings Girlfriend Boyfriend (or GF*BF) to the US at about the same time as it opens in Taiwan. It's about three people from the same small town who start out as part of a high school love triangle (Aaron loves Mabel loves Liam loves Aaron) and grow up during the 1980s and 1990s as Taiwan changes with them. Also opening is Ruby Sparks, in which a frustrated writer played by Paul Dano creates a character that speaks to him - literally, as she appears in the real world, played by writer Zoe Kazan. They've also got their first Saturday midnights of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, with the same live cast as used to perform in Harvard Square, and a one-night 3D presentation of Nitro Circus: The Movie on Tuesday the 7th; it appears to be an extreme sports stunt show.

    Also, Hope Springs opens on Wednesday the 8th at the Capitol, Boston Common, and likely other places; it features Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones as a retired couple trying to rekindle the spark in their marriage. Well, Streep is; Jones mostly looks grumpier than usual.

  • In addition to Ruby Sparks, Kendall Square opens up IFFBoston alumnus Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, a documentary on the Chinese artist and activist that does quite the nice job of presenting him both heroically and as an interesting individual. Theyve also got a Swedish thriller, Easy Money, about a Stockholm man who gets involved with the Serbian mafia and winds up facing trouble from multiple directions.

  • Maybe the best indie/foreign thing hitting the screen this weekend, though, is Klovn: The Movie (renamed "Klown", but I suspect that looks stupid in both English and Danish), which features Danish comics Frank Hvam can Casper Christensen on a hilariously crude canoe trip with a 12-year-old boy in tow. It plays 9:45 and midnight Friday to Sunday (no midnight on Sunday), with a reissue of Celine and Julie Go Boating, a three hour surreal epic by Jacques Rivette that does not parallel Klovn's story like the title would suggest, instead involving a haunted house, a love triangle, and magic.

    The vertical calendar kicks back in on Monday, with episodes 9 & 10 of The Story of Film playing a double feature with Performance, a 1970 film with gangster James Fox hiding out with rock star Mick Jagger only to have identities blur. Note that they only play matinees on Tuesday, as that night is a Balagan presentation, "Flesh", a bunch of 16mm shorts that "present vivid portrayls of life and death, food, sexuality, and the human body in surprising and unexpected ways".

    Wednesday's "Recent Raves" series present two stories of young women in love, Goodbye, First Love has a boy break a 15-year-old girl's heart and then come back later; Turn Me On, Dammit! features a girl overcome by her new sexuality in the way that usually gets reserved for boys on-film. Interestingly, it's also playing Fantasia this weekend, but as "Turn Me On, Goddammit!". Thursday night is a double-shot of International Asskicking from Thailand, with the films that first brought two stars to international notice: Tony Jaa in Ong Bak, and Jeeja Yanin in Chocolate

  • The Coolidge picks up Beasts of the Southern Wild, mostly putting it on screen #1, and The Queen of Versailles, which plays on the wee Goldscreen, pushing To Rome with Love (mostly) to the screening room. The Midnight movie for the weekend is The Lost Boys, from back when Joel Schumacher was good, vampires didn't sparkle, and Coreys Haim and Feldman weren't punchlines. It plays Friday and Saturday in the big house. Also playing the big screen, on Monday evening, is Woody Allen's Manhattan, as part of their Big Screen Classics series in beautiful black-and-white 35mm.

  • Hey, new Bollywood at Fresh Pond! Jism 2 appears to be one of those sequels in name only with an entirely different cast, including American-born Sunny Leone playing a porn star (not exactly a stretch) recruited by a government agent to help trap her ex-lover. Note that "Jism" means "Body" in Hindi, so though it's still in erotic thriller territory, it's not quite what you'd think. Scattered shows of avenging-man-reincarnated-as-fly movie Eega continue to not have English subtitles, though I say that's leaving money on the table.

  • The Harvard Film archive continues Buñuel's Mexico with the director's Wuthering Heights (Friday 7pm), Illusion Travels by Streetcar (Saturday 9:30pm), and Mexican Bus Ride (Sunday 5pm). It continues to split the screen with 100 Years of Paramount Pictures, which featuers some great stuff: Billy Wilder's The Lost Weekend (Friday 9:30pm), Humphrey Bogart in The Desperate Hours (Saturday 7pm), a Sunday night screwball double feature of Midnight andHands Across the Table (both directed by the relatively forgotten Mitchell Leisen and featuring the likes of Claudette Colbert, John Barrymoore, Carole Lombard, Fred MacMurray, and Ralph Bellamy), and John Frankenheimer's Seconds on Monday.

  • The MFA presents an "International Short Film Program" as part of their family-friendly Free Fun Friday series, and then has more of the UCLA Festival of Preservation, with scattered screenings on Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday of The Forgotten Village, Come Back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean, Cry Danger, Sleep, My Love, and a selection of Holocaust stories from This Is Your Life.

  • There's a bit of second-run shuffling going on, as The Intouchables leaves Kendall Square but pops up at the Arlington Capitol.

My plans? Well, of the above, likely just Turn Me On, Dammit!, though at a different time and place. Maybe GF*BF or Chocolate depending how exhausted/movied-out I am after taking the overnight bus Wednesday and heading straight to work on Thursday. In the meantime, plenty more Fantasia reportage to come.

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