Thursday, September 12, 2013

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 13 September - 19 September 2013

You know the Red Sox are just rolling when I look at how a cool movie event overlaps with a series against the Yankees, and I don't wring my hands over how impossible it will be to see both. The Sox just have this.

  • The cool event this weekend is Films at the Gate, the Asain Community Development Corporation's annual event where they set up a projector near the Chinatown gate and project Chinese movies for anyone who shows. It's fun - you stop to get some take-out in Chinatown beforehand, watch lion-dancing and martial-arts demonstrations, and then some cool flicks. This year, all three nights are at the Rose Kennedy Greenway rather than the vacant lot, and all look fun: Mismatched Couples on Friday (an early Donnie Yen film where he and Yuen Woo-ping are breakdancing as much as fighting), Shaw Brothers classic Heroes of the East on Saturday, and 2004 kung-fu fantasy White Dragon on Sunday. Come, it's fun!

    (You know what would make a ton of sense? If China Lion showed up with Tiny Tales 2 and passes for My Lucky Star, or Well Go USA did the same with The Rooftop and Ip Man: The Final Fight. Two mainstream Chinese movies in the USA opening next week, great platform for promoting them in Boston. Do that next year, guys!)
  • It's an easy walk from there to Boston Common, so I'll probably be doing some double features that way. One of those will likely include The Family, Luc Besson's new film about a mafia family headed up by Robert DeNiro and Michelle Pfeiffer relocated to France as part of the witness protection program, with Tommy Lee Jones as the officer looking after them. Hopefully Besson and the pretty-nice cast outweigh the DeNiro + comedy = laziness equation. It plays the Capitol, Apple, Fenway, Boston Common, and the SuperLux.

    Also opening wide: Insidious Chapter 2, the sequel to what I've heard was a pretty good horror movie, with most of the cast and the original writer & director returning. Good sign! This one's at Somerville, Apple, Boston Common, and Fenway. Funny thing: I had no idea whether I'd seen Insidious but missed Sinister or vice versa up until tonight.

    Boston Common also picks up Things Never Said, which features Shanola Hampton as an unknown poet out west who dreams of performing at a legendary New York venue, although her husband (Elimu Nelson) is holding her back and then some. Also, every place playing One Direction: This Is Us will be getting an "extended fan cut" this weekend.
  • Kendall Square gets three new independent movies this weekend, all comedies: Drinking Buddies is the new comedy from Joe Swanberg, in which two co-workers are perfect for each other but are already in other relationships. It's got his biggest-name cast yet - Olivia Wilde, Anna Kendrick, Ron Livingston, and Jake Johnson - and really puts this indie-oriented guy in the mainstream. Of course, he's so prolific that the film he made after this (24 Exposures) is already playing festivals.

    They've also got another American indie, Afternoon Delight, in which Katherine Hahn plays a bored wife who hires a stripper (Juno Temple) as her live-in nanny. The one-week booking is another comedy, this one from France: Populaire, which is a throwback to 1950s romances with Déborah François as an girl who can type at incredible speed despite otherwise being a terrible secretary, with Romain Duris as the boss who discovers there are competitions for such things. Bérénice Bejo of The Artist has a supporting role, too.
  • Woody Allen movies can just set up shop in the Coolidge so that there's no change there for like a month, aside from midnights. That's when the closest thing they've got to a new release, the infamous The Canyons, and that's apparently only in the screening room on Friday & Saturday nights. The big house, meanwhile, gets An American Hippie in Israel, a re-release of a 1972 psychedelic "classic". The Monday night "Science on Screen" selection, Memento, is listed as sold out, but they've also got a special screening of documentary Money for Nothing: Inside the Federal Reserve playing at the same time. Another doc, Letters to Jackie: Remembering President Kennedy, plays in the big room on Thursday night.
  • The Regent Theatre actually gets Letters to Jackie first, with two shows on Tuesday the 17th. That means the Gathr Preview Series screening of Zero Charisma is bumped to Monday. I wasn't fond of it, but a lot of people are. There are a couple more film screenings this week, as well: August to June: Bringing Life to School is the first in a series of documentaries presented by the National Institute for Student-Centered Education over the coming months, and Dream Theater: Live at Luna Park is a king-sized concert film (160 minutes) that plays Thursday night.
  • The Brattle Theatre continues Recent Raves this week with some smaller movies that one might have missed in a busy year: Friday night has a dobule feature of Frances Ha and The To Do List (35mm), while Saturday is Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing (though a Harvard Book Store event with Bob Odenkirk & David Cross makes the schedule a bit odd). Museum Hours plays Sunday, Leviathan on Monday, a double-feature of Byzantium (finally!) & Berberian Sound Studio on Wednesday, and Pedro Almodovar's I'm So Excited on Thursday. That leaves a whole on Tuesday, which is reserved for a Balagan presentation of Consuming Spirits, an animated film that Chris Sullivan (appearing in person) shot on 16mm over the course of fifteen years.
  • the Harvard Film Archive wound up one summer series last weekend, so they're starting something new on Friday: Nuvove Visioni: Italian Cinema Now, which (just like it sounds) focuses on contemporary movies from Italy. This week features Piazza Fontana: the Italian Conspiracy (Friday 7pm), The Mouth of the Wolf (Friday 9:30pm), The Interval (Saturday 7pm), and As the Shadow (Sunday 5pm). That leaves time for just one Complete Alfred Hitchcock picture, Spellbound at 9:30pm on Saturday. Sunday and Monday nights feature a tribute to Anne Charlotte Robertson, a local experimental filmmaker who passed away last year and whose collection is now part of the archive. And now that school is back in session, there are occasional free VES screenings, with this Tuesday featuring "The Baloonatic" and The Last Laugh.
  • The MFA continues to screen Portrait of Jason, with shows Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday. They've also got more of the Matías Piñeiro retrospective with Viola playing Friday, Saturday, Sunday, & Wednesday; Rosalinda on Friday, Saturday, & Sunday; and They All Lie joining the rotation on Thursday. Also popping up is The Wall, an Austrian film about a woman (Martina Gedeck of The Lives of Others who is suddenly and inexplicably cut off from the rest of humanity by a mysterious wall.
  • ArtsEmerson has another two screenings of Truth in Translation on Friday & Saturday as part of the Global Arts Project. They also re-start their Bright Lights program on Tuesday the 17th with alumnus Allison Gillette's documentary Cow Power (about a Vermont program to generate power from manure), while Thursday the 19th brings Ameer Got His Gun, a narrative about a Muslim Israeli citizen who joins the army.
  • iMovieCafe opens Grand Masti at Apple Cinemas this week; it's a sequel to a 2004 comedy that reunites the original writers, director, and actors playing three guys in another sticky situation. There's also shows of Telugu-langauge Kiss.
  • The Capitol will be showing Quentin Tarantino movies in the main theater through September, with Pulp Fiction playing Friday & Saturday at 10:30pm.

My plans? Films at the Gate, The Family, The Canyon, Drinking Buddies, Byzantium (which was supposed to pay Kendall Square back in July but never showed), maybe Things Never Said and a few other things.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

An 'anonymous' tip that you MUST see SHORT TERM 12 before it leaves town.