Friday, October 02, 2020

Next Week in [Virtual] Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 2 October 2020 - 8 October 2020

Happy birthday to me, and my cousin, and my other cousin, and my late grandfather, and my aunt, and my niece, and her little sister, and, look, sometimes weird groupings like this just happen! Let's look and see what the theaters have opened so that we can… Ah. And the Embassy has joined the ranks of places that can't justify staying open until some new studio product comes out. Sorry, Waltham.
  • The Brattle Theatre has a pretty nice slate opening in their virtual room, though! The big thing is a new restoration of Native Son, a 1950s noir whose themes and black lead led to widespread censorship and thus difficulty in piecing together an uncut version. It likely pairs well with The Myth of a Colorblind France, which examines how many African-American artists would emigrate to Paris to escape American racism (including Native Son star Richard Wright), even if the country and city have their own issues.

    In a different vein, they also open Dead, a horror-comedy from New Zealand where a stoner discovers a drug that lets him see ghosts, who are naturally looking for some resolution. They also continue to stream Faust, Vinyl Nation, The Hole, and Son of the White Mare (in its final week).

    If none of those interest you, you can also help support them by voting in their DIY Poster Contest. Dozens of fans have recreated famous movie posters with things around the house, and you can vote by making a donation in the name of your favorite.
  • It's also a busy week at The Coolidge Corner Theatre, starting with two biopics. I Am Woman tells to story of Helen Reddy, who before recording the title song came to New York from Australia on the unhonored promise of a recording contract, while The Keeper focuses on Bert Trautman, a German POW who later becomes a soccer star in Manchester despite some well-earned hostility. The Disrupted, meanwhile, is more a contemporary documentary about people across America trying to keep above water despite an economy that often helps those at the top but makes things tighter for the rest. Sticking around are The Artist's Wife, Oliver Sacks: His Own Life, Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President, Killer of Sheep, and Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin.

    They're also streaming Pelican Blood as part of the regular Goethe-Institut series, though only through Sunday; featuring Nina Hoss as an adoptive mother and horse trainer who adds a new member to her family, and given that it's part of next weekend's Nightstream lineup, I'm guessing the new girl is at least somewhat spooky. Halloween programming continues with Jennifer's Body being the week's Coolidge Education title (rent/buy/stream it yourself, with a pre-recorded introduction and a Thursday night Zoom discussion with film writer Jordan Crucchiola), and tickets are already available for next weekend's presentations of a John Carpenter twin bill (The Thing & They Live) at the Medfield State Hospital (current onscreen in New Mutants!).
  • Over at Landmark Theatres Kendall Square, Sofia Coppola reunites with her Lost in Translation star Bill Murray for On the Rocks, where he plays the father of Rashida Jones, whose Laura recruits him to help her tail the husband she suspects is cheating on her It's listed as an Apple original, so who knows what sort of hole it will vanish into once its theatrical play is done.

    Also opening are A Call to Spy, featuring Sarah Megan Thomas, Stana Katic, and Radhika Apte as three women working with the French Resistance during World War II. It's the only new release there that's not New York-centric, as The Forty-Year-Old Version features writer/director/star Radha Blank reinventing herself as a rapper after years of looking for success as a playwright, while Save Yourselves! features a couple of Brooklynites who head upstate to disconnect from technology - apparently right before an alien invasion. That one also plays at Arsenal Yards in Watertown.
  • I'm not sure exactly where China is in terms of Golden Week and National Day, but they've got some blockbusters coming out and making their way to the USA, with this week's big release being Jiang Ziya: Legend of Deification, an animated fantasy from the producers of last year's hit Ne Zha, in which the title warrior must slay a nine-tailed fox in order to ascend to godhood, only to discover that it is bound to an innocent girl (yes, this is where what's going on in Lovecraft Country comes from). It's at Boston Common; Leap, with Gong Li as an inspirational Olympic volleyball coach, also continues there.

    If you favor Korean films, K-Pop doc Break the Silence: The Movie is still going strong at Boston Common, Fenway, and Revere, while Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula hangs around for a show or two per day at Revere. The re-release of Akira continues at Boston Common and Revere for those looking to Japan.
  • Also at the multiplexes, for those who balk at subtitles, the Halloween offerings start, with the biggest being a re-release of Hocus Pocus, which is playing at Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, Chestnut Hill, and Revere, despite it apparently being on TV a lot over the next few weeks and probably Disney+ to boot. Warner/New Line appears to be releasing the Conjuring movies chronologically, with The Nun & Annabelle: Creation returning to Boston Common and South Bay, while Revere just goes with the second.

    It's probably not a great sign that Ava, starring Jessica Chastain as an assassin on the run, is only playing Arsenal Yards in Watertown, but, dang, look at that cast - John Malkovich, Common, Geena Davis, Joan Chen, Colin Farrell.

    AMC also continues their series of DreamWorks part ones with the pretty great How to Train your Dragon at Boston Common and South Bay. Fenway brings back Magic Mike and Bridesmaids. Revere has 20+ screens so they have The Corpse Bride, The Lost Boys, and The Goonies playing the week (the latter also at Chestnut Hill), with one-offs of Mean Girls on Saturday, and Caddyshack on Sunday, the live-action Gintama on Monday, and Election (Reese Witherspoon, not Johnnie To) on Tuesday. The original Friday the 13th plays Sunday/Tuesday/Wednesday at South Bay and Revere.
  • The West Newton Cinema is at least open Friday through Sunday this week, with The Keeper opening as a new release and a few others joining the catalog rotation: A Fantastic Woman (Friday/Sunday), Kubrick's Lolita, and Clint Eastwood's The Bridges of Madison County. Also continuing are RBG (Saturday/Sunday), The Maltese Falcon (Friday/Sunday), Citizen Kane (Sunday), Tenet, 2001: A Space Odyssey (Sunday), and Casablanca (Sunday), with curbside popcorn pick-up as available on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
  • This week's Thursday Bright Lights at Home presentation is The Reason I Jump, a documentary about five young autistic people, based upon the book by Naoki Higashida, who himself started writing when he was a teenager. The producer and subjects will be on hand for a Q&A afterwards, co-presented by the Roxbury International Film Festival and ReelAbilities.
  • The main event of the Roxbury International Film Festival continues its virtual run through Monday 5 October, with films scheduled for a given day available from 10am to midnight, although it is suggested that one tries to line up with the schedule in order to have the live Q&As synched up. The GlobeDocs Film Festival is also currently happening online, running through the 12th, with many films available throughout but some timed (or featuring live Q&As).

    On Thursday, the focus shifts to Nightstream, an online combination of five festivals including The Boston Underground Film Festival; it's got their five short film programs plus 15 others, 42 features, special events, and more. From Fantasia, I can vouch for Bleed with Me, Detention, Dinner in America, Hunted, and Lapsis. If (like me), you pre-ordered a BUFF badge way back in January, you can start choosing your movies on Monday and stake your claim before the virtual tickets run out.

    The Boston Women's Film Festival also kicks off its virtual 2020 edition on Thursday with opening-night film Antigone.
  • The Regent Theatre ha screenings of this year's Manhattan Short Film Festival block on Sunday and Tuesday, limited to 25 people in the very large theater. They're live-streaming a 90s music night featuring Restless Souls from their stage on Friday, and switch up their weekly concert streams from a capella group Naturally 7 (running through Monday) to The Sharpe Family Singers (starting Tuesday).
  • You can still support The Somerville Theatre via their virtual screening room, which lists The Fight, Amulet, John Lewis: Good Trouble, the Quarantine Cat Film Fest, Pahokee, and Alice (no longer supporting the Somerville but still pretty good); The Capitol is open for ice cream and snacks, but there are two dead links on the page for their virtual theater, with the Cat Film Fest and The Surrogate still live but the latter no longer paying out to the Capitol.
  • The Brattle, the Coolidge, West Newton, and The Lexington Venue are all offering relatively reasonable rentals for groups of up to 20; information on rates, available slots, and what the rules on concessions and masking are are either on their websites (which often include other fundraising links) or by contacting them directly. The Venue looks like it has things booked for a re-opening on the 9th, while the Coolidge has slots open through the 17th and the Brattle is offering rentals all the way into November.

I may just treat myself to going out this weekend and beyond, but I also find myself fairly interested in the Brattle & Coolidge virtual line-ups with Nightstream just around the corner. And as always, if you haven't yet, go to Save Your Cinema to send a letter to your Congresspeople.

No comments: