Thursday, March 14, 2013

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 15 March - 21 March 2013

Still just me for this screening of The Brass Teapot? C'mon, folks, this looks like fun! Show it some of the same love you're showing Veronica Mars!

As for this week... Hey, did you realize that by the end of the month, there will likely be two movies starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in theaters, and two produced by WWE Films, with no overlap?

  • Seriously, what's up with that? After not scoring with Colin Farrell and Noomi Rapace, they go with Halle Berry and Abigail Breslin in The Call. Berry's a 911 dispatcher who hears a serial killer murder a caller; Breslin is his latest potential victim who manages to get through to her. It seems like a couple of decent actors in service of a powerfully silly idea, and plays at Boston Common, Fenway, and Fresh Pond.

    Those theaters plus Somerville get a movie that at least seems to be doing that on purpose: The Incredible Burt Wonderstone stars Steve Carrell as the titular magician whose star has fallen, with Steve Buscemi as his partner, Jim Carrey as the guy whose stunts are overshadowing proper illusion, as well as Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin, James Gandolfini and others.
  • Kendall Square is back to turning movies over fairly quickly, with three new ones opening this week. The most anticipated is likely West of Memphis, Amy Berg's exhaustive documentary on the West Memphis Three, a trio who were convicted of murder as teenagers eighteen years ago, though evidence has long suggested they were innocent.

    It's got a one-week booking, as does Like Someone in Love, the new film by Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, who this time travels to Japan to tell the story of an octogenarian professor and a student paying her bills with escort work. It's potentially the second-oddest relationship among the films being released, as Upside Down stars Kirsten Dunst and Jim Sturgess as star-crossed lovers who live on neighboring planets - as in, they share an atmosphere, and the inhabitants of one can look up and see the other.
  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre picks up a couple movies that opened at the Kendall last week, but Stoker is definitely worth seeing in 35mm, and Lore (which splits time between film and video screens, as does The Gatekeepers) looks like it may be as well. Tuesday's 7pm screening of Lore is an "Off The Couch" screening, with members of the Boston Psychiatric Society introducing the film and discussing it afterward. The theater also opens A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III, in which Roman Coppola directs Charlie Sheen having a fictional nervous breakdown, with Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, and Patricia Arquette as friends and family. It opens in the GoldScreen.

    John Dies at the End is having a pretty nice run as a midnight movie, held over a second time for another couple shows in the screening room. It's joined by "cult cut" Repo Man on screen one on Friday and Saturday, with the monthly screening of The Room in moviehouse 2 on Friday.

    Sunday morning's Talk Cinema screening is Ginger & Rosa, Sally Potter's coming-of-age film with Elle Fanning & Alice Englert in the title roles and some pretty nice character actors in supporting parts; it seems like I've been seeing trailers for this forever. On Monday, it's "Science on Screen", where This Is Spinal Tap will be followed by a discussion of spontaneous human combustion (kidding; Dr. Christopher Shera will discuss the physics and biology of sound and hearing). And Thursday features a special screening of Xavier Dolan's Heartbeats, presented by the Quebec Government Office in Boston.
  • The Brattle is having what you might call an interesting week. Most afternoons and evenings are part of The Lubitsch Touch series, a tribute to the exceptional director of romantic comedies, Ernst Lubitsch. A new 35mm print of Ninotchka plays Friday and Saturday, with The Shop Around the Corner on Sunday, a double feature of Bluebeard's Eighth Wife & Angel on Monday, and the pairing of Trouble in Paradise & Design for Living on Wednesday.

    Something quite different, The ABCs of Death plays at 10pm, with a pretty great set of directors from around the world inclining me to believe the Austin-enhanced hype on this anthology of 26 short films. In between, you've got the Chlotrudis Society Awards on Sunday afternoon, with special guest Christopher Abbot, and a special preview of Shane Carruth's Upstreem Color with Carruth in person to discuss his first movie since his twisty debut Primer. Thursday is a special Rock Band Night, with the game's maker Harmonix hosting a live contest on the eve of PAX East.
  • The Harvard Film Archive kicks off a two-weekend tribute to King Hu and the Art of Wuxia, mostly featuring his post-Shaw Brothers work. It's a rare chance to see classic Hong Kong-style action in 35mm, including a new print of Dragon Inn (Friday & Monday evenings), his late film All the King's Men (Friday night), a new print of three-hour epic A Touch of Zen (Saturday evening), Classic Come Drink with Me (Sunday afternoon), and thriller The Fate of Lee Khan (Sunday evening).
  • The MFA's film programming is mostly New Latin American Cinema, including La Sirga (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday), Post Tenebras Lux (Friday), Thursday Till Sunday (Friday, Saturday, Wednesday, and Thursday), Jonathas' Forest (Sunday), and Clandestine Childhood (Sunday and Wednesday). On Thursday, they segue into The 12th Annual Boston Turkish Film Festival with director Zeki Demirkubuz presenting his award-winning film Inside.
  • ArtsEmerson's film program focuses on female filmmakers: Jessica Yu's In the Realms of the Unreal (Friday evening), Lisa Cholodenkko's High Art (Friday night), Kathryn Bigelow's Blue Steel, Point Break & The Weight of Water (Saturday afternoon, evening, and night), and Ava Duvernay's Middle of Nowhere (Sunday afternoon, followed by a live remote interview with the director). All but Middle of Nowhere screen on DVD, which is shown on Blu-ray. The Bright Lights presentations are Rubin & Ed on Tuesday and a talk by Kanen Flowers about online production.
  • This month's All Things Horror Presents show is at the Somerville Theatre at 8pm on Saturday, the locally-produced zombie movie The Battery, with writer/producer/co-star Jeremy Gardner on-hand to introduce and answer questions afterward. There's also a short and passes to a sneak preview of the new The Evil Dead. It's in the micro-cinema, so getting tickets early might be advised. They also have their monthly installation of Faith Soloway's Lesbian Cinema Schlock Treatment, this time featuring 2006's The Gymnast. To make a bit of room, Identity Thief moves over to the Arlington Capitol, which also picks up Amour and Beasts of the Southern Wild as they leave Kendall Square.
  • Last chance for 2012's Oscar-nominated Shorts at the ICA on Sunday, with animation at 11am and 5pm and live action at 2pm.
  • The Regent Theatre has one "film" program, with a February performance of Great Expectations from London's West End presented on Thursday night.

My plans? As much King Hu as I can manage, half-cursing the Chlotrudis awards for keeping me from more. I've already purchased by tickets for Ginger & Rosa and Upstream Color, and I'll probably try and fit The ABCs of Death and maybe The Battery in there as BUFF warm-up. Who knows what I can cram into the rest of the week?

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