Friday, December 25, 2020

Next Week in [Virtual] Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 25 December 2020 - 31 December 2020

Merry Christmas and welcome to the bizarre one of these things I've opted to write in this bizarre year. Stuff's crossing over between streaming services and theaters, one city has decided to shut theaters down for three weeks while another, just a few miles away, is saying "let's not be so hasty"; the extended Oscar deadline means that fewer heavy-hitters are opening when they usually would; the Coolidge isn't having one of those weird weeks where they're opening something that also plays the multiplexes and the Brattle isn't switching from holiday-adjacent stuff to a cool end-of-year repertory series. It's madness!
  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre instead picks up Love Sarah, a charming-looking film with Shannon Tarbet as a 19-year-old woman who determines to open the bakery her late mother always wanted in London's Notting Hill neighborhood, roping her grandmother (Celia Imrie) and mother's best friend (Shelley Conn) in. Cute British film is a genre and this looks smack-dab in the middle of it, which may not be the worst thing for those stuck at home over Christmas break. They also continue "The World of Wong Kar-Wai" (new restorations of As Tears Go By, Days of Being Wild, Chungking Express, Happy Together, Fallen Angels, Eros segment "The Hand" (from 48 to 56 minutes), and In the Mood for Love); plus The Emoji Story, Assassins, Sing Me a Song, Another Round, 76 Days, City Hall, and Martin Eden.

    As has often been the case, Goethe-Institut presentation Curveball gets held over (so to speak) for a second weekend; it's worth a look.
  • The Brattle Theatre hangs steady, continuing To the Ends of the Earth, Bright Future, Ikarie XB-1, Markie in Milwaukee, Another Round, Crock of Gold: A Few Rounds with Shane MacGowan, Mayor, Zappa, and City Hall.
  • I was planning to talk about how, because Landmark Theatres Kendall Square is winding up having to carry the load for the mainstream multiplexes that are open, it's a tight squeeze, but it turns out it's even tighter than that, because Cambridge is closing theaters for a planned three weeks on the 26th and Newton is re-opening them the same day. So the big Christmas movies like Wonder Woman 1984 are kind of a moving target. It's playing The West Newton Cinema (starting Saturday), Kendall Square (Friday only), Watertown (including CWX), and Chestnut Hill (starting Saturday); it's also the first of a number of movies Warner Brothers is playing simultaneously on HBO Max; shame it's not a more auspicious start to that deal.

    It's also opening weekend for News of the World, a western directed by Paul Greengrass featuring Tom Hanks as a man whose job is to bring said news to the frontier, who winds up paired with a young settler girl raised by Native Americans that he's charged with returning to her family. It's at Kendall Square (Friday only), Watertown, and Chestnut Hill (starting Saturday).

    There's also more award-targeted things opening this weekend, with Promising Young Woman, featuring Carey Mulligan as the lady in question who has turned to revenge after a college trauma, finally opening after a long delay at Kendall Square (Friday only) and Watertown. Documentary The Dissident looks at the murder of Washington Post reporter Jamal Khashoggi and plays Kendall Square (Friday only). The most recent Italian adaptation of Pinocchio, this one featuring Roberto Benigni as Geppetto rather than the title character and plays Kendall Square (Friday only); there is apparently an English dub in theaters, but I'm not sure of the original Italian.

    Watertown has 25th Anniversary shows of Clueless on Sunday and Monday.
  • The Regent Theatre closes out the year with seven hybrid performances with Jimmy Tingle's 2020 Vision playing Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday, with the 60-minute film followed by stand-up comedy and Q&A. Some in-person seating is available, but it will also be live-streamed. They also continue to stream Insert Coin and Jefferson Mays's one-man version of A Christmas Carol.
  • The Somerville Theatre remains closed but The Slutcracker is still streaming a version cut together from last year's performances; The Capitol in Arlington has the concession stand and ice cream shop open.
  • Theater rentals are available at the Brattle, the Coolidge, West Newtonthe Capitol, The Lexington Venue, the AMCs out in the suburbs, and the Majestic in Watertown for sure, and maybe Apple Fresh Pond (their site is confusing!) and the Belmont Studio (the rental page on their site is pre-lockdown), although it might be worth checking to see if any reservations made at the Brattle or Kendall are still active with the new restrictions. The Coolidge is showing slots available to reserve online through January 27th, and has added rental slots for the Screening Room as well as Moviehouse II, with "Premium Programming" including In the Mood for Love, Sound of Metal, Wolfwalkers, and Fleabag available along with the option to bring your own disc. The Brattle currently shows no open slots, even beyond Cambridge's restrictions. The independent theaters also have other fund-raising offers worth checking out.
I may try to hit the Kendall on Christmas and also go for Love Sarah and others.

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