Tramp Camp, Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum, Sunday, 4:00. Want to connect to your inner Charlie Chaplin? Movies will be screened, of course, and there will be lessons in imitating the tramp’s walk and style. I’m not sure how much it measures up to the Elsinore University of Hamleting, but it should be fun.
A Short Subject Night, Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum, Saturday, 7:30. The museum’s monthly collection of comic shorts offers some exceptional entertainment this week. “The Goat” is my all-time favorite Buster Keaton short, and “The Rink” shows Charlie Chaplin at the top of his game. If I recall correctly, “Movie Night” (with Charley Chase) is also quite funny. I haven’t seen the Laurel and Hardy selection, “Two Tars.” Frederick Hodges plays the piano.
A- Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Shattuck, opens Friday. Only Werner Herzog would ask a scientist about his dreams. But that’s precisely why Herzog wasthe perfect choice to make this documentary about very ancient cave paintings—amongst the earliest works of art in existence, and works that show significant talent. Herzog’s unique narrative voice, the eerie beauty of the caves themselves, and the haunting score by Ernst Reijseger combine to turn Cave into an homage to what makes human beings special: the artistic, creative spark. And yes, the 3D is justified. My press contact assures me that the Shattuck is installing 3D for this presentation. Read my full review.
A Streetcar Named Desire, Oakland Paramount, Friday, 8:00. It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen Eli Kazan’s film version of Tennessee Williams play—the film that made Marlon Brando a star—so I’m not giving it a grade here. I suspect it would get an A.
C- Roberta, Stanford, Friday. Generally considered an Astaire/Rogers musical, Roberta actually stars Irene Dunne. True, Fred and Ginger get billed above her love interest, Randolph Scott, but they’re not onscreen enough to turn this dull musical love story into a winner. On a double bill with Funny Face, which I haven’t seen.