Archive for month: October, 2016

Halifax film screening picks — October 31-November 6

31 Oct
October 31, 2016

It may be a tough watch but Lantouri, an “ambitious examination of the churning frustrations of Iran’s disenfranchised younger generation,” sure sounds like a compelling one. “The relentless final scenes… will have most of the audience cringing under their seats and asking themselves about the desirable limits of onscreen violence,” says Deborah Young of The Hollywood Reporter. Carbon Arc will screen it this Friday. That’s followed on Saturday with a director-attended documentary screening—Further Beyond is “exceedingly playful and intellectually stimulating,” says Leslie Felperin in The Guardian.

I have a clear favourite English-language Shakespeare adaptation and it’s the 1989 version of Henry V. Forget everything you think you know about Kenneth Branagh—and Shakespeare—and go see this “audacious, resonant, passionate” film, part of the Dal Art Gallery’s Wednesday evening free screenings of Shakespeare films. As a bonus, watch for a 15-year-old Christian Bale in the small but important role of Falstaff’s Boy.

Cineplex Park Lane this Friday has Sixteen Candles, which is now twice that number of years old after celebrating its 32nd anniversary this year. On balance you could say it’s aged well, despite the cringeworthy Long Duk Dong character. This Sunday, the Park Lane and Dartmouth Crossing Cineplex locations kick off some Classic Film Series screenings of The Sting, with Paul Newman and Robert Redford.

  • In theatres, critics’ top 3:
    1. Sully, Clint Eastwood, USA, 2016, 96 minutes [74] — Halifax showtimes
    2. Queen of Katwe, Mira Nair, USA, 2016, 124 minutes [73] — Halifax showtimes
    3. Deepwater Horizon, Peter Berg, USA, 2016, 107 minutes [68] — Halifax showtimes
  • Halifax area screening picks for this week:
    • Monday (Oct 31) — Scream, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. Wes Craven, USA, 1996, 111 minutes.
      — Halloween, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. John Carpenter, USA, 1978, 91 minutes.
    • Tuesday (Nov 1) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 3:45pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      — Oasis: Supersonic, Cineplex Park Lane, 6:45pm, $14.95. Mat Whitecross, UK, 2016, 122 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Nov 2) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 6:45pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      Henry V (1989), Dalhousie Art Gallery, 8pm, free. Kenneth Branagh, UK, 1989, 137 minutes.
      — Oasis: Supersonic, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:45pm, $14.95. Mat Whitecross, UK, 2016, 122 minutes.
    • Thursday (Nov 3) — Oasis: Supersonic, Cineplex Park Lane, 4:15pm, $14.95. Mat Whitecross, UK, 2016, 122 minutes.
    • Friday (Nov 4) — Lantouri, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Reza Dormishian, Iran, 2015, 120 minutes.
      Sixteen Candles, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:15pm, $6.99. John Hughes, USA, 1984, 93 minutes.
    • Saturday (Nov 5) — Further Beyond, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Joe Lawlor & Christine Molloy, Ireland, 2016, 89 minutes.
    • Sunday (Nov 6) — The Sting, Cineplex Park Lane & Dartmouth Crossing, 12:55pm, $6.99. George Roy Hill, USA, 1973, 129 minutes.

Halifax film screening picks — October 24-30

24 Oct
October 24, 2016

This week is chock-a-block with Halloween-themed movies, up to and including the John Carpenter classic Halloween, replete with its sources in Psycho, playing Cineplex Park Lane this weekend—as is Scream, now 20 years old, which fact makes me, and screenwriter Kevin Williamson, feel very old. The monthly Thrillema screening on Tuesday is a double bill of the cult horror anthology Trick ‘r Treat and the unassailable classic Evil Dead II, a film that combines gore and absurdity in an unprecedented way—thanks largely to an equally absurd path to production.

Carbon Arc joins the Halloween party with a new homage to the early- to mid-’70s occult thriller subgenre with The Love Witch, “a creepy and cunning examination of female fantasy.”

Also on Friday, Carbon Arc has the first film ever made in the indigenous Mayan language of Kaqchikel, the arranged-marriage drama Ixcanul—”the atmosphere is so tranquil that the whoosh of action in the final third is powerfully disorienting,” says Jeanette Catsoulis of the New York Times.

Dal Art Gallery’s Wednesday evening free screenings of Shakespeare films continue this week with the 1969 version of Hamlet directed by Tony Richardson (A Taste of Honey, The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner).

Out of town, King’s Theatre in Annapolis Royal on Tuesday has the Michael Moore documentary Where to Invade Next (which is, yes, already on Netflix). Fundy Cinema in Wolfville continues its Wednesday documentary series with Konelīne: Our Land Beautiful, Best Canadian Feature Documentary award winner at Hot Docs 2016. On Sunday, Fundy is screening Mia Madre, the latest from Nanni Moretti (We Have a Pope).

  • In theatres, critics’ top 3:
    1. Sully, Clint Eastwood, USA, 2016, 96 minutes [74] — Halifax showtimes
    2. Queen of Katwe, Mira Nair, USA, 2016, 124 minutes [73] — Halifax showtimes
    3. Deepwater Horizon, Peter Berg, USA, 2016, 107 minutes [68] — Halifax showtimes
  • Halifax area screening picks for this week:
    • Monday (Oct 24) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 3:45pm, 9:25pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      — Shin Godzilla, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, regular pricing. Hideaki Anno & Shinji Higuchi, Japan, 2016, 120 minutes.
    • Tuesday (Oct 25) — Trick ‘r Treat + Evil Dead II, The Thrillema @ Museum of Natural History, 7:30pm, very limited free tickets at the door. Michael Dougherty, USA/Canada, 2007, 82 minutes; Sam Raimi, USA, 1987, 84 minutes.
      — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:25pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 26) — Hamlet (1969), Dalhousie Art Gallery, 8pm, free. Tony Richardson, UK, 1969, 117 minutes.
      — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
    • Thursday (Oct 27) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 3:45pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      Oasis: Supersonic, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $14.95. Mat Whitecross, UK, 2016, 122 minutes.
    • Friday (Oct 28) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 12:45pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      Ixcanul, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Jayro Bustamante, Guatemala/France, 2015, 100 minutes.
      Scream, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. Wes Craven, USA, 1996, 111 minutes.
      The Love Witch, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 9:15pm, $7. Anne Biller, USA, 2016, 120 minutes.
      Halloween, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. John Carpenter, USA, 1978, 91 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 30) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 1pm, regular pricing. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      — Shin Godzilla, Cineplex Park Lane, 4pm, regular pricing. Hideaki Anno & Shinji Higuchi, Japan, 2016, 120 minutes.
      — Halloween, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. John Carpenter, USA, 1978, 91 minutes.
      — Scream, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. Wes Craven, USA, 1996, 111 minutes.
  • Annapolis Valley screening picks for this week:
    • Tuesday (Oct 25) — Where to Invade Next, King’s Theatre (209 St. George St., Annapolis Royal), 7:30pm, $8. Michael Moore, USA, 2015, 110 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 26) — Konelīne: Our Land Beautiful, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 7pm, $9. Nettie Wild, Canada, 2016, 96 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 30) — Mia Madre, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 4pm & 7pm, $9. Nanni Moretti, Italy/France, 2015, 107 minutes.

Halifax film screening picks — October 17-23

17 Oct
October 17, 2016

I don’t know if I could put something like that together in such a way now,” says director James Ivory about his 1992 triumph Howard’s End, which screens in a “dazzling restoration” this weekend at Cineplex Park Lane.  One of the all-time great films, it is “of course lovely to look at,” says Roger Ebert in a classic review. “The old brick country house, not too grand, covered with vines, surrounded by lawns and flowers, is reached by big, shiny motorcars and occupied by people who dress for dinner. But this is not a story of surfaces.”

Speaking of all-time greats, Dal Art Gallery’s Wednesday evening free screenings of Shakespeare films continue this week with the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet directed by Franco Zeffirelli, who made the “crucial decision, in a film where almost everything went well… to cast actors who were about the right age to play the characters.

Last week I started pulling out the top three most critically-acclaimed films (as ranked by Metascore) that are playing in Halifax’s commercial cinemas. This week’s top 3 is unchanged from last week, except for adding a 4th film, Deepwater Horizon, which is now in a tie for 3rd because the Metascore for The Birth of a Nation has dropped a notch. But, as per usual, the most acclaimed new films aren’t at Cineplex—they are playing Carbon Arc, which screens two new documentaries. A new meditation on technology from Werner Herzog,  Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World, which recently played Fundy Cinema in Wolfville, gets a Friday screening, and on Saturday it’s Fire at Sea, “a documentary that looks like a neorealist classic,” looking at the life of desperate migrants from Africa and the Middle East arriving in Europe. The latter screening is co-presented with the Italian Canadian Cultural Association of Nova Scotia.

Out of town, King’s Theatre in Annapolis Royal will have director and Newfoundland native Stephen Dunn in attendance Tuesday for a screening of his coming-of-age/out-of-the-closet story Closet Monster, which also plays the next evening in Wolfville at Fundy Cinema (no word on whether he will also attend that screening).  Also on Wednesday, the Astor Theatre in Liverpool has Captain Fantastic. This Sunday in Wolfville you have another opportunity to catch Luca Guadagnino’s A Bigger Splash.

  • In theatres, critics’ top 3:
    1. Sully, Clint Eastwood, USA, 2016, 96 minutes [74] — Halifax showtimes
    2. Queen of Katwe, Mira Nair, USA, 2016, 124 minutes [73] — Halifax showtimes
    3. The Birth of a Nation, Nate Parker, USA/Canada, 2016, 120 minutes [68] — Halifax showtimes
      Deepwater Horizon, Peter Berg, USA, 2016, 107 minutes [68] — Halifax showtimes
  • Halifax area screening picks for this week:
    • Monday (Oct 17) — The Birds, Cineplex Park Lane & Dartmouth Crossing, 7pm, $6.99. Alfred Hitchcock, USA, 1963, 119 minutes.
      — Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
    • Tuesday (Oct 18) — Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 4:30pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 19) — Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
      — Shin Godzilla, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, regular pricing. Hideaki Anno & Shinji Higuchi, Japan, 2016, 120 minutes.
      Romeo and Juliet, Dalhousie Art Gallery, 8pm, free. Franco Zeffirelli, UK/Italy, 1968, 138 minutes.
    • Friday (Oct 21) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
      Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Werner Herzog, USA, 2016, 98 minutes.
    • Saturday (Oct 22) — Fire at Sea, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Gianfranco Rosì, Italy, 2016, 108 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 23) — Howards End, Cineplex Park Lane, 6:30pm, $6.99. James Ivory, UK, 1992, 140 minutes.
  • Annapolis Valley & South Shore screening picks for this week:
    • Tuesday (Oct 18) — Closet Monster, King’s Theatre (209 St. George St., Annapolis Royal), 7:30pm, $8. Stephen Dunn, Canada, 2015, 90 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 19) — Closet Monster, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 7pm, $9. Stephen Dunn, Canada, 2015, 90 minutes.
      — Captain Fantastic, Astor Theatre (59 Gorham Street, Liverpool), 7pm, $8. Matt Ross, USA, 2016, 119 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 23) — A Bigger Splash, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 4pm & 7pm, $9. Luca Guadagnino, Italy/France, 2015, 124 minutes.

Halifax film screening picks — October 10-16

10 Oct
October 10, 2016

Starting this week, I’ll regularly pull out the top three most critically-acclaimed films (as ranked by Metascore) that are playing in Halifax’s commercial cinemas. This week’s top 3 includes Clint Eastwood’s Chesley Sullenberger bio-pic Sully, Mira Nair’s Phiona Mutesi bio-pic Queen of Katwe, and a film that is being followed by overlapping criticisms of both the film and director, Nate Parker’s The Birth of a Nation.

If you’re like me and felt pretty let down by the way that 2014’s Gareth Edwards Godzilla reboot couldn’t really live up to its trailer, maybe you’re also clinging to hope that this year’s Japanese reboot attempt might actually be a fun watch. The early reviews for Shin Godzilla are fairly positive… Could it be?

Nocturne, the annual celebration of art at night, is back this Saturday, and Carbon Arc is participating with the “singular and strangely moving essay film” Stand By for Tape Back-Up, showing the 65-minute documentary five times over the course of Saturday night. Before that, on Friday, there is also a screening of the South Korean documentary My Love, Don’t Cross that River, documenting 15 months in the life of an inseperable married couple of 76 years.

Dal Art Gallery’s Wednesday evening free screenings of Shakespeare films has the 1953 heavily abridged (to 73 minutes!), staged by Peter Brook, Orson Welles starring, produced for television version of King Lear.

In the wake of Gene Wilder’s passing in August, Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein is back for some screenings, including three at Cineplex Park Lane this weekend.

Out of town this week, King’s Theatre in Annapolis Royal has last year’s successful Australian modernization of Ibsen’s The Wild Duck, The Daughter. I don’t believe that the latest from Palestine’s Hany Abu-Assad (Omar), The Idol, has played Halifax, but this Sunday in Wolfville, Fundy Cinema has two screenings. (When you have a spare moment, can someone please explain to me why no significant Arabic-language films are screened in Halifax, not even at the Atlantic Film Festival, despite the fact that Arabic is the third most spoken language in the city?) That’s preceded on Wednesday by the weekly documentary screening, Dark Horse.

  • In theatres, critics’ top 3:
    1. Sully, Clint Eastwood, USA, 2016, 96 minutes [Metascore: 74] — Halifax showtimes
    2. Queen of Katwe, Mira Nair, USA, 2016, 124 minutes [Metascore: 73] — Halifax showtimes
    3. The Birth of a Nation, Nate Parker, USA/Canada, 2016, 120 minutes [Metascore: 69] — Halifax showtimes
  • Halifax area screening picks for this week:
    • Wednesday (Oct 12) — The Birds, Cineplex Park Lane, 4pm & Cineplex Darmouth Crossing, 7pm, $6.99. Alfred Hitchcock, USA, 1963, 119 minutes.
      Shin Godzilla, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, regular pricing. Hideaki Anno & Shinji Higuchi, Japan, 2016, 120 minutes.
      King Lear, Dalhousie Art Gallery, 8pm, free. Andrew McCullough, USA, 1953, 73 minutes.
      — Three Stooges Fest: A Collection Of Shorts, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. Various directors, USA, 1934-1953, 109 minutes.
    • Friday (Oct 14) — My Love, Don’t Cross That River, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm, $7. Jin Mo-young, South Korea, 2013, 85 minutes.
      Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 9:30pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
    • Saturday (Oct 15) — Stand by for Tape Back-up, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 6pm, 7:15pm, 8:30pm, 9:45pm, & 11pm, free.
      — Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 4:30pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 16) — Young Frankenstein, Cineplex Park Lane, 7pm, $6.99. Mel Brooks, USA, 1974, 105 minutes.
  • Annapolis Valley screening picks for this week:
    • Tuesday (Oct 12) — The Daughter, King’s Theatre (209 St. George St., Annapolis Royal), 7:30pm, $8. Simon Stone, Australia, 2015, 95 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 13) — Dark Horse, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 7pm, $9. Louise Osmond, UK, 2014, 85 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 16) — The Idol, Acadia Cinema’s Al Whittle Theatre (450 Main Street, Wolfville), 4pm & 7pm, $9. Hany Abu-Assad, Netherlands/UK/Qatar/Argentina/Palestine, 2015, 100 minutes.

Halifax film screening picks — October 3-9

03 Oct
October 3, 2016

The Fits is the directorial debut of the significant new talent Anna Rose Holmer, one of the five best-reviewed films of 2016 so far, and a film that “transcends blunt, reductive categorization partly because it’s free of political sloganeering, finger wagging and force-fed lessons.”  Carbon Arc has two screenings this Friday evening.

Carbon Arc & Obsolete Records are partnering to bring you another featured director series of screenings at the Central Library, this time focusing on the American director Paul Thomas Anderson, who has followed parallel career paths as a director both of films and music videos. Tuesday’s free screening is hosted by Carbon Arc programmer Zack Miller and kicks things off with Hard Eight, a film with a complicated version history but which still holds up as a remarkable debut.

The latest from Mira Nair, Queen of Katwe, starring David Oyelowo and Lupita Nyong’o, has arrived at the Scotiabank Theatre in Bayers Lake. The NY Times’ A.O. Scott writes “if there is anyone out there capable of remaining unmoved by this true-life triumph-of-the-underdog sports story, I don’t think I want to meet that person.”

Speaking of Shakespeare, Dal Art Gallery’s Wednesday evening free screenings of Shakespeare films continues with Orson Welles’ low-budget, expressionistic Macbeth.

Out of town, on Wednesday, the Astor Theatre in Liverpool has Hell or High Water, which is still playing at the Oxford.

  • In theatres, new/notable:
  • Halifax area screening picks for this week:
    • Tuesday (Oct 4) — Hard Eight, Central Library (Paul O’Regan Hall), 6pm, free. Paul Thomas Anderson, USA, 1997, 102 minutes.
    • Wednesday (Oct 5) — Macbeth, Dalhousie Art Gallery, 8pm, free. Orson Welles, USA, 1948, 107 minutes.
    • Thursday (Oct 6) — Three Stooges Fest: A Collection Of Shorts, Cineplex Park Lane, 7:30pm, $6.99. Various directors, USA, 1934-1953, 109 minutes.
    • Friday (Oct 7) — The Fits, Carbon Arc Cinema @ the Museum of Natural History, 7pm & 9pm, $7. Anna Rose Holmer, USA, 2015, 72 minutes.
    • Sunday (Oct 9) — Three Stooges Fest: A Collection Of Shorts, Cineplex Park Lane, 4pm, $6.99. Various directors, USA, 1934-1953, 109 minutes.
  • South Shore screening pick for this week:
    • Wednesday (Oct 5) — Hell or High Water, Astor Theatre (59 Gorham Street, Liverpool), 7pm, $8. David Mackenzie, USA, 2016, 102 minutess.