Archive for month: January, 2018

Halifax screening picks—January 22-28

22 Jan
January 22, 2018

Two absolutely remarkable films have arrived in Halifax theatres —among the very best of 2017.

Phantom Thread, supposedly the final performance by Daniel Day Lewis (I choose not to believe that), would for sure have been in my top 10 of 2017 if I’d seen it in time. This is a film that will clearly reward repeat viewings… maybe I’ll watch it again this week.

Call Me By Your Name, which you may recall was in my top 10 and my top 5 at TIFF as well, features the perfect coupling of a James Ivory script with Luca Guadagnino’s direction, and maybe the best soundtrack use ever of both Sufjan Stevens and Psychedelic Furs.

As if that weren’t enough, Cineplex has two top-drawer film classics as well. Friday at Park Lane, it’s Powell & Pressburger’s sublime 1946 fantasy-war-romance film, A Matter of Life and Death—”its strangeness makes it a masterpiece.” (So far there is just one scheduled screening but perhaps more will be added.) And Sunday afternoon at Park Lane and Dartmouth Crossing, it’s Stanley Donen’s stylish, Hitchcock-inflected 1963 comedy thriller Charade, with an awkwardly-old Cary Grant and a dazzling, Givenchy-clad Audrey Hepburn delivering “the last sparkle of Hollywood.”

This week’s embarrassment of cinematic riches includes many excellent free screenings as well:

Halifax screening picks—January 15-21

15 Jan
January 15, 2018

On Tuesday this week, the Dal Art Gallery kicks off a year-long series of free screenings spotlighting the work of women filmmakers, going back before Triumph of the Will and Olympia to Leni Riefenstahl’s 1932 directorial debut The Blue Light, “a visual tone poem to the mountainside, best appreciated as a silent film with snippets of dialogue.”

The Central Library Wes Anderson retrospective continues this week with Zack Miller introducing Bottle Rocket on Thursday and a make-up edition on Sunday of the previously stormed-out screening of Rushmore, introduced by Kendra Barnes.

The latest from Steven Spielberg, The Post, with a powerhouse cast including Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks, is piling up rave reviews, but locally there is at least one dissenting opinion.

Halifax screening picks—January 8-14

08 Jan
January 8, 2018

Another notable film from the past fall’s festival season has arrived in Halifax in time for award-show season—I, Tonya, “Craig Gillespie’s raucous Tonya Harding biopic.”

A live-music accompanied screening of Fritz Lang’s classic 1927 film, Metropolis, is opening a lecture series and closing a music festival on Wednesday at U King’s College’s Alumni Hall. Your cinematic musical improvisors include Lukas Pearse, Amy Brandon, Steven Naylor and Brandon Auger.

We’re still four weeks away from the winter season of Carbon Arc but there are some nice free rep screenings to be had this week, including more Wes Anderson films at the Central Library, with Chris Campbell introducing The Grand Budapest Hotel Thursday evening, and Kendra Barnes cueing up Fantastic Mr. Fox Sunday afternoon. This evening (Monday) at the library you can also catch the Radical Imagination Project‘s presentation of Burn!, featuring Marlon Brando in Gillo Pontecorvo’s 1969 follow-up to The Battle of Algiers. Dr. Larry Haiven will facilitate a post-movie discussion.

Blade Runner 2049 will be released on various optical disc formats next week so tonight’s (Monday’s) screening at Park Lane is probably your last chance to see it on the big screen for some time to come.

Halifax screening picks—January 1-7

01 Jan
January 1, 2018

I finally saw The Shape of Water and I really enjoyed it, more than perhaps I expected and definitely enough to recommend it here. But I honestly just don’t get Guillermo del Toro’s fixation on gore. By his standards, there isn’t much of it here, but there are still a couple of gross-out moments that serve no narrative purpose that I can see—they just add a directorial signature.

I usually only add films to my “recommended” list if I feel I can do so without significant reservation, but I’m adding Molly’s Game only because I really enjoyed the first two thirds of the film so much that the lapse into awkward dadsplaining in the final third didn’t ruin it for me. Reading various women’s responses to the film has been interesting—some like April Wolfe feel that the merits of the first two acts are decisive, while others like Manohla Dargis feel that the whole enterprise is undermined—I find myself alternately entertaining both perspectives.

The Central Library will kick off a series of free screenings of Wes Anderson films this Thursday with Carbon Arc programmer Kendra Barnes presenting Rushmore.

With Blade Runner 2049 being released on Blu-ray/DVD shortly, Park Lane has a couple of screenings this week back-to-back with the 2007 cut of the 1982 original.