Friday, April 03, 2020

Next Week in Virtual Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 3 April 2020 - 9 April 2020

I'm kind of thinking that the smaller distributors and theaters like The Coolidge are going to keep the "virtual screening room" thing going for a while even after theaters open back up, not just because people are going to be slow to come back, but because it seems like a pretty good deal for everyone to have things branded and curated like this before they hit the big streaming sites.

  • Of course, there's no end in site, and that The Coolidge Corner Theatre has removed the end dates from their virtual screening room page probably reflects that. Saint Frances, Bacurau, Fantastic Fungi, Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band, and The Whistlers all look to be there for a while now.

    They do have three new additions this week. Ken Loach's Sorry We Missed You opened Wednesday, and seems particularly timely, following a family that works in the "gig economy", including food delivery, and I don't imagine Loach has much good to say about the people at the top. Two others which had their runs skipped or truncated before the lockdown get second chances in the virtual room - And Then We Danced is the story of a gay dancer coming of age in the very conservative country of Georgia, while Ireland's Extra Ordinary is the very funny story of a psychic driving instructor (Maeve Higgins), a shop teacher (Barry Ward) still abused by his dead wife, and an American one-hit wonder (Will Forte) aiming to make a deal with the devil.

    They also continue to post staff recommendations, and have another "Coolidge Education" seminar this week, this one for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Register this weekend and they will send you a link to a pre-recorded lecture by Tuesday. Then watch the movie - if you for some reason don't have a copy on your shelf, JustWatch shows it streamable/rentable in various places - and then come back on Thursday the 9th for a Zoom-based post-film discussion.
  • The virtual repertory series at The Brattle Theatre this week is Virtual Vacation, starting in New York with The Cruise & She's Gotta Have It on Friday; heading to California for Los Angeles Plays Itself, The Green Fog, and Tangerine on Saturday; staying in San Francisco for The Last Black Man in San Francisco & Medicine for Melancholy on Sunday; pairing Miami Blues & Mystery Train on Monday; Ferris Bueller's Day Off & Singles on Tuesday; Columbus & Paterson on Wednesday; and concluding with Lady Bird & Desperately Seeking Susan on Thursday. Or do the double features on different days, or mix and match - you're not limited by a single screening room!

    The DocYard's No Data Plan presentation continues through Sunday, and they continue two series of day-of recommendations: Y'Know, For the Kids! is everyday, with today's entry the delightful A Town Called Panic, while #BreakYourAlgorithm comes Wednesday and Thursday, with the latest entry Party Girl.
  • The Somerville Theatre and The Capitol in Arlington are obviously still closed, but if they're your neighborhood theaters (as the Somerville is mine), you can simulate going out a little bit and help keep their inventory from spoiling by going to their Popcorn Pop-Up Events, where you call and pay via credit card, stop by the theater, and have authentic movie-theater snacks for your night of streaming or pulling things off the shelf. The Somerville's is today (Friday the 3rd) from 5pm to 9:30pm, and offers popcorn, soda, and candy; The Capitol's is Saturday from noon to 5pm with popcorn, candy, and four flavors of ice cream.

    And though there's no official page for it on their site, the Somerville is a "virtual cinema" option for Magnolia's The Whistlers and Once Were Brothers; visit their virtual cinema page to rent those movies and support that neighborhood theater.
  • Emerson has sent its students home and closed the Paramount Theater, but the Bright Lights program has adapted, selecting movies to watch on your favorite streaming service (so long as it's Netflix, for the most part) before signing into a Zoom discussion on the program's regular days. On Tuesday, disability scholar David Koci will lead a discussion on Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution, while Uri Aviv of Tel Aviv's International Festival for Science, Engineering, and Future Visions will talk about I Am Mother on Thursday.
Of the "new releases", I can certainly recommend Extra Ordinary, and I'll likely catch Sorry We Missed You and maybe Saint Frances at the virtual Coolidge this weekend. I'll probably fire up Disney+ for the first time since The Mandalorian ended for Onward, since its brief release wound up coinciding with my vacation. Bummer that means I almost certainly missed my only chance to see it in 3D.

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