New York. “Though Fire Island is the movie’s very recognizable locale, it is filmed in arcadianly remote aspects of sunlight, shade and water, and narrated simply on the solemn, picturesque, stark level of myth. . . . The world as filmed in Kodachrome never seemed more innocent, more natural or more obliging.” That’s Parker Tyler on Wakefield Poole’s Boys in the Sand (1971) from his 1972 book Screening the Sexes, as quoted by Melissa Anderson in her overview of On Fire Island, the Metrograph series that runs from Friday through Sunday and “salutes the lust that abounds on this strip of land parallel to Long Island’s south shore.”
For Caroline Golum at Screen Slate, “Sheila McLaughlin’s 1987 underground psycho-thriller She Must Be Seeing Things is a perfect synecdoche of downtown Manhattan in the 1980s; street art blooms on every brick wall and vacant lot, lofts are cheap and plentiful, and the Meatpacking District still lives up to its name. Woven into this rarefied milieu that includes pixie-haired film producers, shvitzing kibitzers, and late night jazz combos is an infinitely relatable, highly stylized story of new love and new neuroses.” Tonight at the Quad, where the week-long series The Beguiling Bujold, a tribute to “French-Canadian national treasure Geneviève Bujold,” opens tomorrow.
Andy Warhol’s Screen Tests are “the inspiration for Luke Willis Thompson’s film Cemetery of Uniforms and Liveries, in which he similarly zooms in on the faces of two black men from London,” writes Elisa Wouk Almino at Hyperallergic. “They, however, are not found lounging or smoking in an artist’s loft. Rather, their somber expressions are charged with a tragic shared reality: each has had a family member unjustly killed by Metropolitan police officers, who were not indicted.” Tomorrow at the Swiss Institute.
Los Angeles. “Self-mythologization was built into the story of the Zanzibar Group from the beginning,” writes Nick Pinkerton for Artforum. “A loose confederation of young amateur filmmakers joined together in the late 1960s by radical politics and the shared patronage of twenty-five-year-old heiress Sylvina Boissonnas, they were named retrospectively for a voyage undertaken by one of their number, Serge Bard, a dropout from the ethnology department at the university of Nanterre who had undertaken to cross the African continent to the revolutionary Maoist government of Zanzibar, making a film along the way. . . . The dream didn’t last long, going to pieces as revolutions have a tendency to do—including the bloodbath in Zanzibar—but it left behind a rich, combative body of work.” Jackie Raynal will be at Cinefamily for much of The Zanzibar Films, the series opening tomorrow and running through the end of the month.
And The History of the Midnight Movie rolls on at Cinefamily through September 1.
Throughout Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack’s King Kong (1933), screening Friday and Saturday at the New Beverly, “we side, sometimes gleefully, full of righteous indignation, with the monster,” writes Kim Morgan.
San Francisco. On Saturday at The Lab, Paul Clipson will be working with sonic artist Maggi Payne to project a multi-16 mm anamorphic moving image and sound experience as part of Other Forms of Light.
Austin. The Film Society presents Edmund Goulding’s Grand Hotel (1934) with Greta Garbo, John Barrymore, and Joan Crawford tomorrow. And then on Friday, it’s Bob Fosse’s Cabaret (1972) with Liza Minnelli and Julian Rosefeldt’s Manifesto (2017) with Cate Blanchett.
- Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s The Endless
- Bradley Buecker’s Juvenile
- Lukas Feigelfeld’s Hagazussa: A Heathen’s Curse
- Mike Flanagan’s Gerald’s Game
- Marwan Hamed’s The Originals
- Steffen Haars and Flip van der Kuil’s Ron Goossens: Low-Budget Stuntman
- Jimmy Henderson’s Jailbreak
- Yayo Herrero’s Maus
- Zak Hilditch’s 1922
- Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Killing of a Sacred Deer
- Jakob Lass’s Tiger Girl
- Aaron McCann and Dominic Pearce’s Top Knot Detective
- Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
- John McPhail’s Anna and the Apocalypse
- Marc Meyers’s My Friend Dahmer
- Takashi Miike’s Blade of the Immortal
- Steve Mitchell’s King Cohen
- Ruben Östlund’s The Square
- Alexandre O. Philippe’s 78/52, a study of the shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960) (image above)
- Kevin Phillips’s Super Dark Times
- Jesper Rofelt’s Dan Dream
- Stefan Ruzowitzsky’s Cold Hell
- Mohammed Shebl’s Anyab
- Pieter Van Hees’s Generation B
- S. Craig Zahler’s Brawl in Cell Block 99
Boston. Susan Seidelman’s Desperately Seeking Susan (1985), “starring Rosanna Arquette and Madonna, fits into multiple contexts besides ‘80s independent film, such as screwball comedy, women’s film, and stories of mistaken identity,” writes Nadia Clare Smith. Friday at the Brattle, where you can catch Penelope Spheeris’s Wayne’s World (1992) on Sunday. Greg Mucci: “Recalling her time working with the studio, Spheeris told Vanity Fair back in February, ‘I don’t think of the world as funny, but that’s maybe what makes the comedy in the films work.’”
Toronto. With the TIFF Cinematheque series Ida Lupino: Independent Woman on through September 2, Chandler Levack talks with Illeana Douglas “about how to place Lupino's work in the current canon, why she may have felt the need to downplay her directing accomplishments, and why watching a Lupino film in 2017 helps us understand where women in film are going.”
London. Jean-Pierre Melville: Visions of the Underworld, a season at BFI Southbank, is on through September 10, and the Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw goes long: “Melville is celebrated as a poet of lowlife crime and a master of style, the creator of a Gallicized American tough-guy aesthetic taken from the 1930s Hollywood gangster movies that he adored. Well into the 50s, 60s and 70s, Melville kept creating criminals and cops in snap-brim hats and trench coats, long after it was realistically plausible to do so, until it became an almost surreal mannerism.”
France. Buster Keaton - L'acrobate du rire, a program of three features and four shorts, is in select theaters.
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