Friday, April 24, 2020

Next Week in Virtual Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 24 April 2020 - 30 April 2020

We're supposed to be knee-deep in IFFBoston right now (not a bad time to join/renew your membership so that they can put on a great festival when theaters reopen), and probably picking up the Brattle's Late Spring calendar while we're there. As I was saying on social media the other day, the good thing about the absolute chilly dreary sameness of the days running together is that at least each event missed or indefinitely postponed doesn't feel like an individual attack.

But, given that we should be seeing all that good independent film content, maybe it's an especially good week to hit the venues' virtual screening rooms as often as possible.

  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre is having a busy week in that regard, virtually opening three new films - Polish Oscar nominee Corpus Christi, documentary Beyond the Visible: Hilma Af Klint, and a return for Beanpole, which was at the Kendall before, well, everything. They hold over The Booksellers, Balloon, The Times of Bill Cunningham, and Fantastic Fungi. They also announced a series of documentaries by director Lee Grant, but the links for that do not seem to have gone live yet

    The After Midnight Crew has another instagram Q&A tonight (Friday) at 9pm, this time with Troma founder Lloyd Kaufman, and their friends from Haus of Oni aren't letting a lockdown prevent them from doing a drag-show introduction to a cult movie, streaming a Hellraiser-inspired performance at 9pm Saturday (you're on your own afterward). The week's Coolidge Education seminar focuses on Powell & Pressburger's I Know Where I'm Going! - register, get sent a link to a pre-show lecture by The Boston Globe's Ty Burr, watch the film, and then come back Thursday for an online Q&A session.
  • The Brattle Theatre has two new restorations in a virtual screening room, with Luchino Visconti's L'Innocente and Brazilian sex comedy Doña Flor and Her Two Husbands both available to rent and support the Brattle through Thursday. Their partners at The DocYard will also be running a virtual screening room for selection Crestone through Monday, with director Marnie Ellen Hertzler answering questions on her documentary about a hip-hop commune via Zoom on Monday evening.

    On top of that, they're keeping up the streaming/rental recommendations, with this week's program devoted to Screwball Comedy, with a list of outright classics to choose from whether you want to follow along or graze. That includes The Hudsucker Proxy, the movie that gave their "Y'Know, For the Kids!" its name. Those recommendations come (roughly) on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday, with the most recent A Hard Day's Night. They also attempt #BreakYourAlgorithm on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons, most recently highlighting Harold Lloyd in The Milky Way and Shelly Duvall in "Bernice Bobs Her Hair".
  • The Somerville Theatre would be IFFBoston central if the fest were on, and their virtual cinema adds an option to rent documentary Pahokee, which played the festival last year, to a selection that includes The Whistlers, Once Were Brothers, and The Roads Not Taken. They've also got another Popcorn Pop-Up on Saturday, so maybe call in and stop by for snacks to complete the experience. The folks at The Capitol have a virtual cinema of their own and add documentary Dying for Gold, telling the tale of South African miners who bring the country's largest class-action suit against their employers, to a lineup that already includes The Whistlers, Once Were Brothers, and Slay the Dragon.
  • The Regent Theatre has also set up a virtual screening room, with Fantastic Fungi running at least through Tuesday the 28th and The Mindfulness Movement playing through 5 May.
  • Emerson's Bright Lights at Home makes the jump from Netflix to Hulu for this week's selections, with director Alla Kovgan and faculty discussing dance documentary Cunningham on Tuesday while director Janice Engel, her producers, and faculty talk Raise Hell: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins on Thursday. That's the last of the programs they've got listed, right around when the term would be ending; hopefully they'll be back in the Bright come fall.

    (I've got no idea if Hulu streams in 3D, or how many have the capacity to watch it that way, but it's the best way to see Cunningham if you can.)
  • In addition to their virtual screening room programs - Earth, The Roads Not Taken, Best of CatVideoFest, Once Were Brothers, Slay the Dragon, and The Whistlers - and their GoFundMe campaign, West Newton Cinema is also offering a program where you can buy an advance ticket for when they open and they'll match it with one going to staff at the Newton Wellesley Hospital.
  • This weekend's GlobeDocs short documentary is "After Migration"; RSVP at their site and they will send you links to the film on Vimeo and a Zoom meeting at noon on Monday.
As much as I've let some of these things pass because it's hard to transition from work to after-work when your commute is just the other side of the house, I figure we might as well try and do something as festival-like as we can this week, so I'm planning to at least queue up The Roads Not Taken, Pahokee, Corpus Christi, Beanpole, and Doña Flor and Her Two Husbands, in addition to getting more discs moved between the "not seen" and "seen" shelves.

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