Friday, July 19, 2013

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 19 July - 25 July 2013

Since I'm not actually in Boston for the next few weeks and I write this in part to make my own plans... Well, let's make this quick, no matter how many things are opening back home:

  • First (literally, as I missed that it would be opening Wednesday) is Turbo, the second movie to come from DreamWorks animation this year (after The Croods) and the second kids' movie to feature talking snails (after Epic). In this one, a snail who loves auto racing somehow becomes part racecar and competes in the Indy 500. Not sure how that works, but it's got fun voices and looks cute. It plays the Capitol, Apple, Fenway, and Boston Common, generally alternating 2D and 3D shows.

    Two movies based on comic books open up: Red 2, like Red before it, takes a fairly basic idea from the Warren Ellis/Cully Hamner miniseries that inspired it, but that worked before and this one adds Anthony Hopkins, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Lee Byun-hun to the crew of Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren, and Mary-Louise Parker; I gather that Red 3 is already in the works in part because there are a lot of older actors who'd like to be in this sort of movie again but don't really see themselves as Expendables people. This one plays the Capitol, Apple, Boston Common, Fenway, and the SuperLux. The other comic-inspired movie is RIPD, in which cops who fell in the line of duty (Jeff Bridges & Ryan Reynolds) battle escaped spirits. The previews have a Men In Black vibe to them, although the reviews have been scathing. Fun fact: While the movie shot in Boston, members of the crew went to my regular comic shop, the Million Year Picnic, to pick up reference material. It plays in 2D and 3D at the Somerville, Apple, Fenway, Boston Common, and the SuperLux.

    Getting surprisingly great reviews? The Conjuring, a "true" ghost story involving the team of paranormal investigators that later be best-known for the Amityville hauntings. It was sold out at Fantasia last night and appears to have gotten an R rating for sheer intensity despite director James Wan's intentions of making something teen-friendly. It plays Boston Common, Fenway, Apple, and the SuperLux. In addition, Boston Common also opens Girl Most Likely and has $3 screenings of Olympus Has Fallen at 10pm starting on Monday.
  • Kendall Square also gets Girl Most Likely, which stars Kristen Wiig as a playwright who was briefly big news but is now returning home as her life an career falls apart. Her family, you won't be surprised to learn, is eccentric! They're also opening Born to Royalty at 7pm on Wednesday. The latter, from BBC Films, is a documentary on recent royal babies.
  • Somewhat surprisingly, The Coolidge is the only place opening Only God Forgives, the new action film that reunites director Nicolas Winding Refn and star Ryan Gosling, in what is apparently an insanely over-the-top action flick, saying something from the guys who made Drive. Maybe because it's doing the simultaneous VOD release; maybe because Kristen Scott Thomas is going over the top too. It splits time between the screening room and the bigger houses, although Drive itself will be playing midnights in 35mm on the big screen this Friday (tonight) and Saturday.

    After a run of the remake a few weeks ago, the original 1980 William Lustig Maniac will also play those midnights Friday & Saturday as part of the "New York City Psychos" series, which got a great write-up online this week, with part of the greatness being the successfully trolled New Yorker in the comments. It plays in 35mm, as will Monday night's Big Screen Classic, 2001: A Space Odyssey. The last time Kubrick's great, mind-blowing sci-fi movie had a booking in Boston, it was digital, so see it shown right.
  • This weekend, the Brattle Theatre has Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me & V/H/S/2 as the Weekend Special Engagement part of the "vertical" schedule. The former is a documentary on a Memphis band which is one of the claimants to the title of "best/most important rock group you've never heard of"; the latter is a first-person horror anthology that is better than the film which spawned it in almost every way. Both play from digital sources Friday to Monday, with V/H/S/2 at 9:30 and Big Star taking the rest of the schedule.

    Well, except on Monday, when there's a 4pm matinee of Birdman of Alcatraz as part of the Burt Lancaster Centennial. If you can't leave work early, don't fret; it also plays at 7pm on Tuesday as a double feature with The Killers (both in 35mm). Wednesday's "Recent Raves" is Beyond the Hills, a slow-burner from Cristian Mungiu about two young friends whose reunion at a rural monastery goes horribly wrong. Thursday is Shintoho Films day, featuring the "ghost" part of "Guns, Girls & Ghosts" with a double feature of Ghost Story of Yotsuya and Ghost Cat of Otama Pond
  • The Harvard Film Archive joins in the Burt Lancaster Centennial, playing Sweet Smell of Success Friday at 7pm, Brute Force Saturday at 9pm, and The Rose Tattoo Sunday at 4:30pm. In between, there's more of The Complete Alfred Hitchcock. Hitchcock Nine films include The Pleasure Garden (Saturday 7pm), The Farmer's Wife (Monday 7pm), and Easy Virtue (Thursday 7pm). Talkies include Rope (Friday 9pm) and a Sunday evening double feature of the sound version of Blackmail & Juno and the Paycock, his second sound feature.
  • Third Saturday of the month means All Things Horror has a screening in the micro-cinema at the Somerville Theatre, this month featuring A Measure of the Sin, a 16mm-shot psychological horror movie about women kept hidden in the house of a sadistic master. Tiny theater, so buy ahead of time or get there will before the shorts start at 8pm. Cinema Slumber Party has a more conventional bit of horror that night, showing Larry Fessenden's latest, Beneath at midnight. It's not the main midnight show, though, as Pitch Perfect gets the main screen on both Friday and Saturday nights (and it really does seem like a perfect midnight movie of the singing-along stripe). The $2 DisneyNature series takes a break this week.

    The Capitol continues John Hughes movies on the night shift of "Summer Rewind" this weekend, with Ferris Bueller's Day Off playing at 10:30pm on Friday and Saturday; the original Ralph Macchio/Nukiyori "Pat" Morita version of The Karate Kid plays at 11am on Saturday and Sunday.

    Apple Cinemas has "Madagascar 1,2,3" on the list of free summer movies on their front page for the 20th, but the actual schedule doesn't list it. Not sure what that means (no movies, Saturday marathon, and a surprise screening of Madagascar, Madagascar 2, or Madagascar 3 depending on what day a kid shows up at 11am from the 20th to 26th)
  • Did anyone hit Gathr Preview Presents... this week? The Regent Theatre has the last movie in their July series this Tuesday; The Artist and the Modelhas a nice cast (Jean Rochefort, Aida Folch, Claudia Cardinale) in the story of a sculptor creating one last masterpiece during World War II. Interestingly, Gathr's website doesn't show the series beyond that, but Regent's shows it returning on 13 August. In my head, they're waiting for me to get back.
  • The MFA's film program is all about their 18th Annual Boston French Film Festival. My being slow this week means Just a Sigh's last show has already started, but a set of short documentaries "Celebrating the Tour de France" and features Camille Claudel 1915, Almayer's Folly, Granny's Funeral, Tenderness, Aliyah, You Will Be My Son, Day of the Crows, and The Dandelions will be playing at various times on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday.
  • If you like the Hindi movies with English subtitles at Apple Cinemas, you might want to act quick on Ramaiya Vastavaixa, a colorful film starring Sonu Sood, Shruti Hassan, and Girish Taurani in a story about a wealthy man who must grow more crops than a lovely country girl's brother to win her hand. It is, of course a musical, but iMovieCafe only shows it running through Tuesday (though Apple's listings show Wednesday screenings as well).
  • Free and outside: Bye Bye Birdie at the Boston Harbor Hotel's Music & Movie Fridays, Wreck-It Ralph at the Hatch Shell's Free Friday Flicks (also at the Prudential Center on Saturday night); Singin' in the Rain at Christopher Columbus Park on Sunday; Back to the Future at the Bloc 11 Cafe in Someville on Monday; Monsters Inc. at Sennott Park in Cambridge on Wedesday; Sleepless in Seattle at Conway Park in Somerville, Field of Dreams at Brookline's Devotion School, and Monty Python and the Holy Grail at the Lyman Estate in Waltham on Thursday. (Joe's Boston Free Films is a great resource for finding those screenings.)

My plans? Well, Fantasia. Maybe catch something if I find myself at loose ends when I can't fit things in or have already seen V/H/S/2. I do hope some of this stuff hangs around until I get home.

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