There’s a lot of interesting stuff screening this week, especially at the New Mission, the New Parkway, and the old Roxie (old because it claims to be “the oldest continuously operated cinema in the United States”).
The Mother and the Whore, New Mission, Sunday, 6:00
I haven’t seen this 1973 French classic, which runs about 3 1/2 hours. It’s rarely shown theatrically , and the New Mission will screen what the theater is claiming to be the only 35mm print “on the planet.” Will it have subtitles?
Popcorn for Breakfast, Roxie, Saturday, 11:00am
14 short cartoons from the days when every movie program started with six or seven minute of surreal musical comedy. Betty Boop, Bugs Bunny, Flip the Frog, and penciled-drawn characters that even I haven’t heard of. Kids 12 or under free.
Jurassic Park, New Parkway, Thursday, 9:30
I remember 1993’s biggest hit as a moderately entertaining fantasy thriller with what at the time were cutting-edge special effects. Beyond being a major step in CGI, I don’t remember anything exceptional about this movie. If I remembered it well enough to grade it, that grade would probably be a B-.
A+ Taxi Driver, Balboa, Thursday, 7:30
When I think of the 1970s as a golden age of Hollywood-financed serious cinema, I think of Robert De Niro walking the dark, mean streets of New York, slowly turning into a psychopath. Writer Paul Schrader and director Martin Scorsese put together this near-perfect study of loneliness as a disease. It isn’t that De Niro’s character hasn’t found the right companion, or society has failed him, or that he doesn’t understand intimacy. His problems stem from the fact that he’s mentally incapable of relating to other human beings. This is a sad and pathetic man, with a rage that will inevitably turn violent. Read my Blu-ray review.
B+ Forbidden Planet, Roxie, Thursday, 7:00
Nothing dates faster than futuristic fiction. With its corny dialog and spaceship crewed entirely by white males, Forbidden Planet is very dated. But MGM’s 1956 sci-fi extravaganza still holds considerable pleasures. The Cinemascope and Eastmancolor art direction pleases the eye, Robby the Robot wins your heart, and the story—involving a long-dead mystery race of super-beings—still packs some genuine thrills. It’s also an interesting precursor to Star Trek.
B School of Rock, Balboa, Saturday, 10:00am.
When Richard Linklater decided to make a commercial, conventional comedy, it came out pretty darn good. Jack Black plays a struggling rock musician who steals his roommate’s identity to take a temporary position in a very staid and proper private school. Impressed by the kids’ strictly classical music skills, he turns the class into a rock band that he hopes will win an upcoming contest. Of course the story is silly and predictable, and it bows too much to star power (Black really should have stayed off-stage at the climax), but it’s fun and catches the rebellious spirit of all good rock.
Lebowskies (frequently-revived classics)
- Kiki’s Delivery Service (dubbed), New Parkway, Friday through Sunday
- Mystery Science Theatre 3000, ), New Parkway, Friday, 10:30
- Pulp Fiction, Clay, Friday and Saturday, 11:55pm
- Double Bill: Alien & Aliens, New Mission, Saturday, noon
- The Birds, Castro, Saturday. On a double bill with The Bird With the Crystal Plumage
- The Big Lebowski, New Mission, Saturday through Monday
- Princess Mononoke, New Parkway, Saturday through Thursday
- Blade Runner, Castro, Monday & Tuesday. MY THOUGHTS. On a double bill with The Hunger.