Friday, February 26, 2021

Next Week in [Virtual] Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 26 February 2021 - 4 March 2021

Whoa, but does February go by fast. It won't entirely be "Next Week in…" on this blog, but I've got to admit that I'm not really using this to plan my moviegoing week like usual. I have sort of become more of a crossword person than a movie person during the past year - the daily email aggregating the puzzles from both newspapers and independent blogs gives me something to get through, while combining the online offerings with my too-full shelves gives me full-on decision paralysis of not knowing what to watch next, especially since the days blending together means I'm seldom in the mood for anything specific., and I wind up either not watching anything or trying to keep ahead of the TV stuff building up on my DVR. It's a low-turnover week, though, so maybe I'll get to more.
  • The Brattle Theatre keeps busy, though, opening a few new releases. Sin stars Alberto Testone as Michelangelo, who is torn by commissions by successive popes who were each members of powerful rival families. For something more modern, documentary Un Film Dramatique follows the first class to attend a newly-constructed middle school in Paris, who also help director Éric Baudelaire put it together. They join Twilight's Kiss, Truth to Power, Demonlover, Lapsis, Crestone, What Happened Was…, Heartworn Highways, Mirror, and Atlantis in the Brattlite virtual theater.

    That area also features a one-week booking of Smooth Talk, courtesy of Strictly Brohibited; the new restoration of Laura Dern's breakout role was "at" the Coolidge a while a back. Another group of friends, The DocYard, starts their spring season with Downstream to Kinhasa, a documentary which follows a group of disabled veterans of Congo's 2000 Six Day War seeking reparations, combined with spoken-word pieces. Director Dieudo Hamadi will participate in a live Q&A on Monday afternoon.
  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre pretty much retains the same virtual lineup of Jumbo, Days of the Bagnold Summer, Test Pattern, Ruth: Justice Ginsburg in Her Own Words, Our Right to Gaze: Black Film Identities, Two of Us, M.C. Escher: Journey to Infinity, Some Kind of Heaven, and City Hall this week, although there's a few noteworthy things coming up. The week's Coolidge Education seminar is for Tod Browning's Freaks - sign up, get an introduction and a Zoom link sent to you, watch the film before and then join Indiewire editor Kristen Lopez at 8pm Thursday.
  • ArtsEmerson's Film Program has encores from their "Shared Stories" series through Sunday, with Our Right to Gaze, Savages, Servants, and Specialty Acts, and Alternative Facts: The Lies of Executive Order 9066 "Pick Your Price" features (with Our Right to Gaze and Alternative Facts including pre-recorded Q&As) and six short films being streamed for free.

    Also via Emerson, Duty Free is the week's selection from Bright Lights at Home. It streams for up to 175 from Wednesday at noon until 7pm Thursday, and follows a man and his mother traveling after she loses her job (at 75) and worries about her future. Both director Sian-Pierre Regis and mom Rebecca Danigelis will be on-hand for the discussion Thursday evening.
  • Landmark Theatres Kendall Square is open Friday to Sunday (and next Thursday) with three new releases. Julie Delpy writes, directs, and stars in My Zoe, playing a scientist trying to keep her daughter alive in some form after she suffers a massive brain hemorrhage, and I'm guessing the "in some form" is important. They also open Herself (which, interestingly for those following windows, has been on Amazon Prime for a month and a half already); it features Clare Dunne as a mother of two escaping an abusive spouse, looking to build a small place to live.

    Also opening is Night of the Kings, which I didn't get around to reviewing when it played as part of IFFBoston's Fall Focus, but it's a striking film from the Ivory Coast (its Oscar submission), set in a prison where the inmates are basically left to run things on their own, and a new arrival must make a story last through until dawn or be sacrificed.
  • The big opening at the multiplex is Tom and Jerry, a live-action/animation hybrid that functions as an origin story and has Chloë Grace Moretza and Michael Peña in there somewhere as well. It's at West Newton (through Sunday), Boston Common (including Dolby Cinema), South Bay (including Dolby Cinema), Chestnut Hill (through Sunday), and on HBO Max.

    Apple's documentary Billie Eilish: The World's a Little Blurry gets a Friday-evening screening in Imax at Boston Common, with the big screen still used for Nomadland for the rest of the week, with either Raya and the Last Dragon or Chaos Walking moving in on Thursday. South Bay has the Lord of the Rings films on their Imax screen through Wednesday, as well as one-offs of God's Compass (Friday), Get on Up (Saturday), and Boyz n the Hood (Sunday/Wednesday)
  • End Game and A Writer's Odyssey continue to play Boston Common for Lunar New Year.
  • The West Newton Cinema has spiffed up their website a bit, and offers Leona on Friday and Saturday in addition to having Tom & Jerry on two or three screens.
  • The Somerville Theatre is still closed but had construction permits in the windows when I last walked by, so maybe the upstairs theaters will have the same new look as the ones downstairs when they re-open. The site, though, is still just linking to The Slutcracker: The Movie. The Capitol has ice cream and snacks Wednesday through Sunday.
  • Theater rentals are available at the Coolidge, the Brattle, Kendall Square, West Newton, the Capitol, The Lexington Venue, and the AMC/Showcase multiplexes. The Coolidge is showing slots available to reserve online through the end of March for Moviehouse II, the screening room, and the GoldScreen, with "Premium Programming" including In the Mood for Love, Sound of Metal, and Wolfwalkers available along with the option to bring your own disc; the AMC app lists some "sold out" showtimes that are probably just meant to show the movies are available as part of rentals. The independent theaters also have other fund-raising offers worth checking out.
I've hit "buy" on Psycho Goreman and Jumbo, so I should probably watch those before time runs out (if I can - I'm stretching PG's availability badly), and I'll probably head to the Kendall for My Zoe and Blithe Spirit it it doesn't rain all weekend. And, well, lots of crosswords in between, including the Boswords Spring Themeless League; that starts Monday night and there's still time to join.

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