Friday, April 16, 2021

Next Week in [Virtual] Tickets: Films sort of playing Boston 16 April 2021 - 22 April 2021

I thought Regal Fenway was re-opening this weekend, but apparently it's still at least a week away. On top of that, it looks like ShowPlace Icon in the Seaport has shut down (not entirely surprising, as it was never really busy even before All This) and the parent company of ArcLight is talking like they're shutting the whole chain down, including the only-open-a-couple-of-months location on Causeway Street, though some speculate that this is hardball renegotiation of their leases. I don't expect either to stay closed forever - cinemas are a thing the folks who own the real estate will want, and even if the operators pull their equipment and furniture out, it takes more doing to make ten rooms of stadium seating into something else than to move another chain in there - but even with everybody able to get vaccinated starting next week, it looks like it's going to be some time before the Boston area is back up to the number of screens it was at before all this, even before you take into account the theater in Revere closing down (although, happily, it looks like CinemaSalem will re-open under new management).
  • Happily, it looks like the local institutions are going to make it through, with The Brattle Theatre teaming with Grrl Haus Cinema for program "Let's Have a Party", 11 short films centered around the party scene, available through Thursday. They also open Hope, a film from Norway starring Stellan Skarsgård and Andrea Bræin Hovig as a married couple with several kids from previous relationships that has grown apart, only to find they need each other when the wife is diagnosed with terminal cancer. Those join Małni – Towards the Ocean, Towards the Shore, This Is Not a Burial, It's a Resurrection, Center Stage, The Fever, The Inheritance, and Keep an Eye Out . Take-out concessions are available for pick-up through the weekend for those looking to make the experience a little more complete.
  • Hope also opens at The Coolidge Corner Theatre, alongside The Room, , Eric Rohmer's "The Tales of the Four Seasons", the three Oscar Nominated Shorts programs (Animated, Live-Action, and Documentary, Wojnarowicz, Stray, and City Hall. If you stream The Room this afternoon (Friday), you can join a conversation with co-star Greg Sestero at 8pm.

    Coolidge Education seminars return this week with critic Vikram Murthi discussing Jonathan Demme's I>Something Wild. Register, listen to the intro, find a stream, and circle back for a Zoom discussion at 8pm on Thursday. The Coolidge and Goethe-Institut also open next weekend's limited engagement a day early, with The Hidden Life of Trees starting on Thursday, the documentary focusing on forester Peter Wohlleben and play8ing through Sunday the 25th.
  • Add The ICA to the places that have virtual cinemas, with a three-pack of the Oscar-Nominated Short Films and a school vacation program curated by the Boston International kids Film Festival.
  • Wicked Queer has 22 features streaming through the 18th and 17 short film packages available through the 30th. The features don't entirely disappear after Sunday, as they start streaming Wojnarowicz for a week and a half starting Monday.

    As usual, Belmont World Film finishes one and starts another, with French cult-family drama The Dazzled running through Monday , when BU's David Frankfurter will lead a post-film discussion. Tuesday brings Sun Children, Iran's Oscar submission, with four kids who scrape by on petty street crime winding up going undercover in a school in hopes of finding a hidden treasure. As yet, no speaker has been announced for its Monday-night talk, although the website says there will be one.

    And don't forget, IFFBoston will be hosting its 2021 edition online in May. No films announced yet; but no harm in checking your membership and renewing if need be ahead of time, or at least signing up for updates.
  • ArtsEmerson's film program has the third and final weekend of the Boston Baltic Film Festival with Lithuanian romance I Want to Live playing Friday through Sunday, including a pre-recorded Q&A with filmmaker Justinas Krisiunas and cast member Deividas Breive afterward. They also have Shared Story presentation Eating Up Easter, a documentary from Rapanui filmmaker Sergio Mata'u Rapu that examines how his island home is being transformed by tourism. It plays with short film "Sky Aelans", which refers to the Sky Islanders of the Solomon Islands, who live in disappearing woodlands. It comes online Wednesday, with post-film discussion involving Rapu, "Sky Aelans" producer Dan Lin, and others "The Return of the Dragon" also continues on-demand, through the 27th.
  • The Regent Theatre is still streaming Long Live Rock: Celebrate the Chaos.
  • Landmark Theatres Kendall Square picks up Monday, which features Sebastian Stan and Denise Gough as two tourists who meet on vacation in Greece and impulsively change their lives to try and be together. They also re-open The Father (as does Boston Common)
  • After that fancy Netflix Rebecca remake last year, Ben Wheatley has gone back to his roots, whipping horror movie In the Earth out during a couple weeks of quarantine, with things getting freaky in the woods as a scientist and park ranger find something strange. It's at Boston Common. Over in Watertown, the theater at Arsenal picks up Malayalam thriller Nizhal.

    South Bay and Watertown have TCM/Fathom screenings of La Bamba on Sunday, Wednesday (South Bay only), and Thursday. Boston Common, South Bay, and Chestnut Hill will be picking up anime hit Demon Slayer the Movie: Mugen Train next weekend, but it gets a big, splashy premiere on Thursday night, including subtitled shows on Imax, Dolby, and regular screens (plus dubbed times) before shifting down to a smaller regular release.
  • The West Newton Cinema is open through Sunday, with Godzilla vs Kong, The Father (Saturday/Sunday only), Raya and the Last Dragon, Tom & Jerry (Saturday/Sunday only), and Nomadland all playing reasonably full schedules. They're also open for private rentals.
  • The Somerville Theatre and The Capitol are still not showing movies, though the Capitol has their ice cream shop and concession stand open.
  • Theater rentals are available at the Coolidge, the Brattle, Kendall Square, West Newton, the Capitol, The Lexington Venue, and the AMC/Majestic/Showcase multiplexes. The Coolidge has extended the slots available to reserve online through the end of April now offers early and late evening chances to rent Moviehouse II, the screening room, and the GoldScreen, with "Premium Programming" including Promising Young Woman, The Trial of the Chicago 7, The Father, Mank, Judas and the Black Messiah, Nomadland, Minari, In the Mood for Love, and Sound of Metal; 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, and Apple Fresh Pond has plans to re-open in May..
I am down for In The Earth, and want to catch up with The Father, French Exit, the Oscar shorts, Center Stage, Stray, and Keep an Eye Out, and the metric crap-ton of discs I've been ordering lately.

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