Friday, September 17, 2021

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 17 September 2021 - 23 September 2021

Aw, yeah - I can hit a movie without getting on the T this weekend. Okay, I've been able to - I walked to Kendall Square a few times and have made a couple non-Brattle walks to Harvard Square and could probably get to Fresh Pond without much effort - but you know what I mean!
  • Which is to say - The Somerville Theatre re-opens on Friday, just under the wire for playing movies this summer. They are now a three-plex (or a three-plus-Micro), with the two upstairs screens now a ballroom that will be opening in October. The two downstairs screens were renovated a couple years ago, and a poke around the site shows that they have upgraded the main theater to 4K laser projection (although it is still quite capable of showing 35mm and 70mm film); no new images of the room itself or just how the lobby has been rearranged. They are also requiring customers show either proof of vaccination or a recent negative Covid test.

    The main film opening there this weekend is Cry Macho, the new one from nonagenarian Clint Eastwood in which he plays a former rodeo cowboy enlisted to get an old friend's son out of Mexico. It's been nearly 30 years since he made Unforgiven which seemed like a knowing way to wind down his career and sort of deconstruct his legend, and while that has not quite become half his career, it is nevertheless some amazing longevity. The film also plays Fresh Pond, West Newton, Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row, the Embassy (Friday-Sunday), Arsenal Yards, Chestnut Hill, and on HBOmax.

    The Somerville also opens IFFBoston selection Last Night in Rozzie, with Neil Brown Jr. as a lawyer returning to the rough neighborhood where he grew up to help his dying childhood friend (Jeremy Sisto) who has an unreasonable request or two. Director Sean Gannet, writer Ryan McDonough, and two other producers are scheduled to be on-hand for a Q&A after the Friday evening show. The third screen, meanwhile, gets Pig, a film whose ability to stick around various venues is genuinely impressive.
  • Also opening at the multiplexes is Copshop, a new one from Joe Carnahan which has him doing his brand of over-the-top action, with Gerard Butler and Frank Grillo as rival hitmen, Toby Huss as the target, and Alexis Louder as the cop whose jail becomes the site of the inevitable showdown. It's at Fresh Pond, Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row, and Arsenal Yards.

    Citizen Kane has 80th-anniversary shows Sunday and Wednesday at Fenway, South Bay (Sunday only), and Arsenal Yards. There are also Thursday-night screenings of Oasis Knebworth 1996, a concert film that reminds us that this group was huge 25 years ago at Kendall Square and Boston Common. Early Thursday shows of Dear Evan Hansen are including live Q&As at Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row, Arsenal Yards, and Chestnut Hill.
  • The Coolidge Corner Theatre gets two notable new releases this weekend. Justin Chon's latest is Blue Bayou, with Chon as a Korean-American facing deportation to a place he hasn't been since he was adopted as a toddler 30 years earlier, in part for being in the middle of a custody battle between his girlfriend (Alicia Vikander) and her cop ex-boyfriend. Other venues include The Capitol, Kendall Square, West Newton, and Boston Common.

    There's also The Eyes of Tammy Faye, with Jessica Chastain as the wife of televangelist Jim Bakker (Andrew Garfield), one of the early noteworthy prosperity gospel types, though she was notably less exclusionary about who she prayed for than most. It's got a Masked Matinee at the Coolidge on Sunday and also plays Kendall Square, Boston Common, West Newton, and the Lexington Venue.

    Among the special events, the Coolidge welcomes The Card Counter cinematographer Alexander Dynan for a post-film Q&A on Friday night. "Marty After Midnite" continues with The Last Temptation of Christ on Friday (at 11:30 because it's long) and Cape Fear on Saturday, both on 35mm. Monday's "Science on Screen" show is a 35mm print of Tenet, with Harvard physicist Jacob Barandes talking about entropy and the nature of time before the movie twists them into pretzels. Tuesday's 35mm "Wes World" show is Rushmore. The Wednesday Panorama presentation is Civil War (or, Who Do We Think We Are), with filmmaker Rachel Boynton joining a number of guests for a post-film discussion that expands on the topics of her film, which itself is about how the Civil War is taught in various parts of America.
  • On top of the things playing the Coolidge, Landmark Theatres Kendall Square gets a couple streaming services' films for their theatrical runs. Prime's My Name Is Pauli Murray comes from the directors of RBG and tackles the life of a Black and non-binary civil rights attorney and activist whose career predates many others in their own words. The Starling is headed for Netflix, and features Melissa McCarthy as a woman drifting apart from her collapsing husband (Chris O'Dowd) after a loss and battling a small bird in her garden, with Kevin Kline as the shrink-turned-vet she is recommended to.
  • The Brattle Theatre will be spending much of the next week on "The Fictions of Werner Herzog", including his early collaborations with Klaus Kinski where they would often voyage to the jungle and find madness. The slate includes Aguirre, the Wrath of God (Friday); Cobra Verde and Fitzcarraldo (Saturday); Woyzeck and The Enigma of Kasper Hauser (Sunday); Heart of Glass and Even Dwarfs Started Small (Monday); Fata Morgana and Where the Green Ants Dream (Tuesday); Stroszek (Wednesday); and Nosferatu the Vampire (Thursday). All are new digital transfers, and days with two films appear to be separate-admission ticketing.

    There's also one last "Tale of the Muppet Diaspora", with The Great Muppet Caper playing early matinees on Saturday and Sunday, both on a 35mm print.

    The Brattlite link from the main site adds Eyimofe (This Is My Desire), a second chance to see the Nigerian film which played on the big screen last week. It joins What We Left Unfinished and Witches of the Orient as at-home options.
  • The big action/comedy at Apple Fresh Pond this week is Gully Rowdy, starring Sundeep Kishan and "Bobby" Simha; there are also Tamil-language screenings of Thalaivii on Saturday & Sunday.

    Boston Common gives some of its Imax showtimes to a restored edition of the original Ghost in the Shell anime, which I swore already did this last fall ahead of the new 4K disc, but maybe not. Anime fans can also catch a return of Promare in Japanese on Sunday at Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, and Assembly Row.
  • Emerson's Bright Lights series is going to be "at Home" for another semester, with the fall season kicking off with On These Grounds, a documentary which digs deeper into an infamous viral video of a school cop attacking a student. As with the last couple semesters, slots are free (but limited to 175) with the film available to view for 24 hours starting Wednesday at 7pm, with a Zoom discussion including director Garret Zevgetis, cinematographer Christopher Lewis Dawkins, and subject Vivian Anderson at 7pm Thursday.
  • The West Newton Cinema has times listed through Sunday and squeezes 12 movies onto its six screens with The Eyes of Tammy Faye, Blue Bayou, Cry Macho, Malignant, Shang-Chi, Searching for Mr. Rugoff (Sunday), On Broadway (Saturday), Respect (Friday), Roadrunner (Friday/Saturday), Space Jam 2 (Saturday), Summer of Soul (Saturday), and In the Heights (Friday/Sunday).

    The Lexington Venue is also open through Sunday, packed tight with The Eyes of Tammy Faye, CODA, and Respect, plus weekend matinees of Space Jam 2.
  • Cinema Salem has Shang-Chi, Candyman, and Cry Macho Friday to Sunday. The Friday late show is Sion Sono's Antiporno, and they're also showing Rear Window on Thursday evening.

    The Luna Theater shows The Green Knight on Friday and Saturday; All the Streets Are Silent: The Convergence of Hip Hop and Skateboarding (1987-1997) (masks required) and The Year of the Everlasting Storm on Saturday; The Fifth Element on Sunday, and "Weirdo Wednesday".
  • The Harvard Film Archive looks to be the last going concern in hibernation, although they have recently announced a virtual series for October. Theater rentals are available at Kendall Square, The Embassy, West Newton, the Capitol, The Venue, and many of the multiplexes.
Plans include Cry Macho, Copshop, The Alpinist, Blue Bayou, and then seeing how to best balance the Herzog stuff with other possibilities like The Eyes of Tammy Faye and The Card Counter.

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