Halifax film screening picks — June 26-July 2

The Atlantic (International!) Film Festival launched its absurd rebrand as “FIN” last week (in an act of sublime self-parody, launching the rebrand on the Harbour Hopper, and telling journalists that the festival damages itself by using the word “film”), and now moves into summer outdoor movies season with a Friday screening of Strange Brew, the most Canadian adaptation of Hamlet you will ever see.

Over the rest of this year, Cineplex will be showing six of anime giant Hayao Miyazaki’s films in one-off event screenings. The screenings will be offered in both English and Japanese audio, kicking off this Sunday with the “recommended gateway drug” of the Studio Ghibli universe, My Neighbour Totoro in English (the Japanese-audio version will screen the subsequent Wednesday).

The Featured Director series of free screenings of Richard Linklater films continues this week with School of Rock, which I’m pretty sure is the only Linklater film to spawn a Broadway adaptation. The screening will be introduced by local arts and entertainment journalist Tara Thorne.

This Sunday, Fundy Cinema in Wolfville has Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer, the latest from the brilliant New-York-born Israeli director Joseph Cedar, who is in familiar edgy territory here—”It’s less that Mr. Cedar blends realism with absurdity than that he refuses to acknowledge any distinction between them.

  • In theatres, notable:
  • Halifax screenings this week:
    • Tuesday (Jun 27) — School of Rock, Central Library, 6:30pm, free, introduced by Tara Thorne. Richard Linklater, USA, 2003, 109 minutes.
    • Friday (Jun 30) — Strange Brew, Halifax Public Gardens, 9pm, free, please bring food donations  for Feed NS. Rick Moranis & Dave Thomas, Canada, 1983, 90 minutes.
    • Sunday (Jul 2) — My Neighbour Totoro, Cineplex Park Lane & Dartmouth Crossing, 12:55pm, $12.95. Hayao Miyazaki, Japan, 1988, 86 minutes.
  • Annapolis Valley screenings this week:
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