Friday, November 19, 2021

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 19 November 2021 - 23 November 2021

It's the short week before Thanksgiving, so you've got your franchise family adventure, your award contenders, and probably 2021's top-grossing film worldwide, which likely plays for just five days at weird times.
  • The weekend's big, long-delayed opening is Ghostbusters: Afterlife, in which the events of the first couple movies have apparently become just a weird thing that happened thirty-five years ago that's mostly been forgotten, at least until Egon's grandkids apparently discover where he buried the containment unit, which is about to burst. It's kind of weird that the sequel to one of the biggest comedies ever didn't really have any jokes in the trailer, but Ghostbusters is kind of an ancestor of today's adventure-with-jokes movies. It's at The Capitol Theatre, Fresh Pond, Boston Common (including Imax Xenon/Dolby Cinema plus a Friday night "fan event"), Fenway, South Bay (including Imax Xenon/Dolby Cinema), Assembly Row (including Imax Xenon/Dolby Cinema), Arsenal Yards (including CWX), the Embassy, Chestnut Hill, and CinemaSalem.

    Also opening is King Richard, featuring Will Smith and Aunjaune Ellis as Rihard & Brandy Williams, parents of Venus and Serena, with Richard particularly important in training them to become the players they are. It's at the Capitol, Fresh Pond, West Newton, Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row, Arsenal Yards, the Embassy, Chestnut Hill, and on HBOmax.

    Boston Common gets a few one-offs: India Sweets and Spices is a comedy in which Sophia Ali plays a college student who discovers that there's more to her parents than she knows; The First Wave a documentary on the New York City health-care workers pushed to the limit when Covid hit; and The Youngest Evangelist, about a kid in the 1980s who feels the call to preach. They also have "Clint Eastwood Legacy" screenings of Gran Torino and Dirty Harry (Saturday-Tuesday). And, of course, the Saturday night Rocky Horror Picture Show.

    Gintama: The Very Final, the last film in the anime adaptions of the popular manga, plays Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row, and Arsenal Yards on Sunday (dubbed in the afternoon, subbed in the evening) and Monday (subbed)
  • Landmark Theatres Kendall Square, the Embassy, and Boston Common get Julia, a documentary on famed Cantabridgian Julia Child from the directors of RBG.
  • The year's likely worldwide box office champion is The Battle at Lake Changjin, a Chinese National Day blockbuster that stars Wu Jing, Jackson Yee, Duan Yihong, and more, with a murderer's row of credited directors in Dante Lam, Tsui Hark, and Chen Kaige (plus three less-credited co-directors), which I'm sure was a completely organic arrangement. I'm guessing that this three-hour Korean War epic is complete anti-American propaganda and a mess, with that box office in large part driven by the officials saying "you've gotta see this - no, seriously, we mean you have to see it".

    Apple Fresh Pond opens Hindi-language romantic caper comedy Bunty Aur Babli 2, with Rani Mukerji and Saif Ali Khan as thieves coming out of retirement to catch copycats, as well as Tamil-language comedy Sabhaapathy and Kannada-language thriller Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana. They also keepKurup and Sooryavanshi (as does Boston Common).

    My Hero Academia: World Heroes Mission continues at South Bay (subbed/dubbed).
  • Jane Campion's latest opened Wednesday; The Power of the Dog features Benedict Cumberbatch as a rancher making life miserable for his brother (Jesse Plemons) and his new family (Kirsten Dunst & Kodi Smit-McPhee). The Coolidge Corner Theatre and Kendall Square will have it for two weeks total before it hits Netflix.

    The Coolidge has two by Alex Proyas at midnight this weekend, with The Crow on Friday and a 35mm print of Dark City as part of Noirvember; The Room also plays Friday at midnight. There's a Sunday Masked Matinee of Spencer, a "Stage & Screen" show of 10 Things I Hate About You, and a 35mm Noirvember show of Kiss Me Deadly on Tuesday.
  • If it seems like The Brattle Theatre has been unusually quiet during Noirvember, they don't mess around, closing the month out with a couple weeks of classics celebrating their 75th Anniversaries. They include Gilda (Friday), Notorious (Saturday on 35mm), Green for Danger (Sunday on 35mm), The Stranger (Sunday), The Locket (Monday on 35mm), Black Angel (Monday on 35mm), So Dark the Night (Tuesday on 35mm), and The Verdict (Tuesday on 35mm).

    They also have a new restoration of Arrebato, a cult horror classic from Spain playing the late show Friday to Sunday on newly restored 35mm prints. Detention continues in The Brattlite, their virtual screening room.
  • The Boston International Kids Film Festival is a mostly-virtual event this year, with many shorts and a few features available to stream from Friday evening through Sunday (and probably Monday in most cases), some with live Q&As at various times. There are also two in-person shows at The Regent Theatre: Opening night feature Yung Punx: A Punk Parable at 7pm Friday and a package of FC Academy and Student-Made films at 1pm Saturday.
  • The Boston Jewish Film continues its virtual program through Sunday, with a final live conversation that afternoon featuring Persian Lessons director Avner Shavit.
  • The West Newton Cinema has King Richard, Belfast, Eternals, The French Dispatch, and No Time to Die. The Lexington Venue has Spencer and The French Dispatch Friday through Sunday, still apparently down to one screen - although they once again have a coupon code on their website for anyone taking in the virtual offerings of DOC NYC through the 28th.
  • The Museum of Science returns "Rocky Mountain Express" to its Omni screen rotation, with the Friday/Saturday night screenings of Dune apparently all sold out. With Christmas approaching, short films based on The Polar Express and Thomas the Tank Engine are added to the 4-D theater's mix.
  • Cinema Salem has Ghostbusters: Afterlife, Spencer, Eternals, and The French Dispatch (all but Spencer have open-caption shows Monday afternoon), a Night Light screening of Possession on Friday, and a Cinema Sounds screening of To Kill a Mockingbird on Sunday with Richard Guerin delivering an introduction highlighting composer Elmer Bernstein.

    The Luna Theater continues "A24 Month", with Midsommar on Friday, plus a masked matinee of The Farewell, The Last Black Man in San Francisco, First Cow, and Saint Maud on Saturday. Spike Lee Sunday is Crooklyn. There's a surprise free-to-members show on "Weirdo Wednesday".
  • This weekend's virtual "Devour the Land" show from The Harvard Film Archive is The Airstrip, available from Friday to Monday. Heinz Emigholz film evidently examines modernist architecture and its militaristic roots.
  • For those still not ready to join random people in a room for two hours, theater rentals are available at Kendall Square, The Embassy, West Newton, the Capitol, The Venue, and many of the multiplexes.
Up for Ghostbusters 3, Lake Changjin, King Richard, Power of the Dog, and maybe some film noir and catching up with Belfast and The French Dispatch .

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