Friday, February 25, 2022

Next Week in Tickets: Films playing Boston 25 February 2021 - 3 March 2022

A month away from the Oscars, and it's apparently the weekend when you start cramming.
  • MGM probably figured Cyrano would have more nominations than production design, but that's not how it happened, so Joe Wright's musical take on the classic tale with the awfully darn clever casting of Peter Dinklage in the title role, with Haley Bennett as Roxanne and Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Christian, and the songs of the National as part of the soundtrack. It's at The Coolidge Corner Theatre (including a Sunday masked matinee), the Somerville, West Newton, the Lexington Venue, Kendall Square, and Boston Common.

    The Oscar Nominated Shorts, meanwhile, are nominated by definition; the Live-Action an Animated Selections play at the Coolidge, Kendall Square, Boston Common, and the Embassy; the Documentary and Animated packages play the Luna on Saturday and The ICA has Animation Friday & Sunday with Live Action also playing Sunday, with more screenings over the next month. Interestingly, this is the first time I can remember that the animated package does not need to be padded out with runners-up. The Coolidge is also one of the theaters hosting Apple's weekend shows of CODA, which plays open-captioned for free from Friday to Sunday (though many showtimes have already been completely filled). Those of us without Netflix also have a chance to catch nominee Don't Look Up there, as Monday's Science on Screen selection, while Kendall Square has afternoon shows of The Hand of God.

    The Coolidge's Midnight shows this weekend are both playing on 35mm film, with The Love Witch up Friday and The Slumber Party Massacre on Saturday. There's also a Saturday matinee of the 2014 Annie starring Quvenzhané Wallis and Jamie Foxx
  • The next-biggest opening may also be a jukebox musical, I suppose, if the Foo Fighters ever break into song during Studio 666, which has the band recording their tenth album in a haunted mansion. It's at Boston Common, Fenway, South Bay, Assembly Row (including Dolby Cinema late shows).

    Butter, a teen romantic comedy about an obese teen who plans to "have his last meal" on New Year's Eve but is also presenting himself as someone else online to his pretty classmate (wait, don't we already have a Cyrano movie this week?), plays Boston Common. Fresh Pond, meanwhile, opens The Big Gold Brick, with Emory Cohen as a writer charged with ghost-writing a biography for a single father played by Andy Garcia, which may be full of tall tales; the cast also includes Oscar Isaac, Megan Fox, and Lucy Hale. It's in one of the very small rooms. Hotel Transylvania: Transformania also opens at the Capitol and Fresh Pond, a month after it arrived on Amazon Prime.

    The Dolby Cinema rooms at Boston Common, South Bay, and Assembly Row also have 50th anniversary screenings of The Godfather for one week. There are also "DC Presents Fan First" premiere shows of The Batman on the Imax screens at Boston Common, South Bay, and Assembly Row on Tuesday (ahead of the AMC "Investor Connect" shows on Wednesday and normal Thursday night shows of a movie that technically opens Friday).

    42 screens at Arsenal Yards on Monday.
  • The Brattle Theatre keeps the annual Bugs Bunny Film Festival going through Sunday. Their other annual February event, the Valentine's Day screenings of Casablanca had to be delayed, but they have it on 35mm Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday.

    The week also features two tributes to the recently departed. For Jean-Jacques Beiniex, they have Betty Blue on Friday evening and a 35mm print of Diva on Saturday and Sunday nights. For Monica Vitti, L'Avventura plays Wednesday and Red Desert on Thursday, both on 35mm film.

    In between, on Monday, they have the Everything Is Terrible! Kidz Klub Tour, a feature-length compilation of found/forgotten footage of material originally aimed at kids, presented as part of a live show. The description says "the adults can stay home" and "for kidz… by kidz!", but I'm not exactly sure how literally one is supposed to take that.

    And while it's not until late March, The Boston Underground Film Festival will be returning to in-person shows at the Brattle this year, and limited badges are on sale via the Brattle's site. Buying them now (including pairs which you'll need to sit next to each other) gives you the chance to lock in attendance when the schedule is announced in a week or two.
  • Hindi-language Gangubai Kathiawadi, starring Alia Bhatt in the title role, a woman who becomes a crime kingpin, is Sanjay Leela Bhansali's new film. It plays Boston Common and Apple Fresh Pond. Fresh Pond also continues to play Tamil-language action/adventure Valimai and Telugu-language Bheemla Nayak.

    The newly-restored Goodbye, Dragon Inn has a full slate of shows at Fenway this week, A more recent Chinese film, Too Cool to Kill continues at Boston Common.

    Fenway also screens Russian comedy Disobedient, starring Viktor Khorinyak as a guy making online prank videos in the church where an old friend works, on Sunday afternoon.
  • The Somerville Theatre has their first silent film since re-openings, with a version of Snow White from 1916, long believed lost but said to have been a great influence on Walt Disney, playing Friday night with composer/harpist Leslie McMichael and her sister Barbara (on viola) providing a live score.

    They also play a different sort of recovered "classic" this week: New York Ninja was shot but abandoned during production in 1984, with the good folks at Vinegar Syndrome reconstructing the film 35 years later, including a completely new soundtrack (all sound material was lost). It plays on 35mm Friday to Sunday; "re-director" Kurtis M. Spieler will be on-hand for the 10pm show on Friday.

    On Tuesday, they kick off their Spring "Face/Off: Travolta vs Cage" series of double features with what seems like a fair fight of teenage supporting roles: John Travolta co-starring in Carrie and Nicolas Cage dating a Valley Girl, both on 35mm film.

    Their friends at The Capitol pick up Licorice Pizza with all that going down in Davis; the Capitol also has more shows for kids and parents during the last weekend of school vacation, with Minions, Kung Fu Panda, and Shrek playing Friday to Sunday.
  • Boston Jewish Film is streaming They Ain't Ready for Me, a documentary about an African-American woman studying to be a rabbi, through Sunday, with the stream including a one-hour Q&A featuring subject Tamar Manasseh and director Brad Rothschild.
  • The Regent Theatre has their last night the Banff Mountain Film Festival on Friday, with the "Maple" package playing at 7pm.
  • ArtsEmerson will be hosting the 9 in-person screenings of the Boston Baltic Film Festival in the Paramount Theater's Bright Screening Room, as well as a panel discussion including the Estonial, Latvian, and Lithuanian filmmakers whose work is included. The festival will also be screening some of these films and others through March 13th.

    The stream of documentary Curtain Up! as part of their "Projecting Chinese American Experiences", in partnership with The Boston Asian-American Film Festival, continues through noon on Monday (although it appears you must claim "tickets" by 10pm on Sunday; a post-film discussion is part of the presentation.

    Bright Lights will have the Bright on Thursday, with this week's presentation of The Faithful including a discussion with director Annie Berman, who spent 20 years working on her film about devotees of Pope John Paul II, Elvis Preseley, and Princess Diana. Tickets free on the day of the show.
  • The West Newton Cinema is closed Friday, but when it reopens Saturday in will have Cyrano in addition to Uncharted, Drive My Car, Parallel Mothers, Sing 2 (Saturday/Sunday), Licorice Pizza, Spider-Man, West Side Story, and Encanto (Saturday/Sunday); The Lexington Venue has Cyrano, The Worst Person in the World, and West Side Story this weekend.
  • The Luna Theater has the Animated and Documentary shorts on Saturday afternoon and evening, with Who We Are: A Chronicle of Racism in America playing Saturday night. Malcolm X plays Sunday. No Weirdo Wednesday show this week, apparently.

    Cinema Salem is still renovating, but plans to reopen with The Batman next weekend.
  • 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.
My plans include Snow White, New York Ninja, Cyrano, and maybe The Big Gold Brick, Casablanca, Don't Look Up, and other Oscar catch-up.

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