Friday August 23 – Thursday August 29

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Featured Film:

Apocalypse Now: The Final Cut at the Ark Lodge

The Ark Lodge is a cool theatre in an up-and-coming neighborhood, but it’s hard to make money showing movies these days and they could use some customers, so I’m gonna suggest that if you go see the new cut of Francis Ford Coppola’s masterpiece, you should do so in Columbia City. It’s playing at a handful of other theatres around town, but the Ark Lodge is right on the light rail line and there’s plenty of good places to eat right around there. And while you’re there, why not even head down the street and catch Safe or Bigger than Life or Poltergeist at the Beacon.

Playing This Week:

Admiral Theater:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Alderwood:

The Battle: Roar to Victory (Won Shin-yun) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
Apocalypse Now: Final Cut (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

A German Youth (Jean-Gabriel Périot, 2015) Fri-Sun 
Poltergeist (Tobe Hooper, 1982) Fri-Sun 
Bigger than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) Sat & Sun Only 
¡Las sandinistas! (Jenny Murray) Sun & Weds Only 
Safe (Todd Haynes, 1995) Mon & Tues Only 
The Living Dead at Manchester Morgue (Jorge Grau, 1974) Mon Only 
Over the Edge (Jonathan Kaplan, 1979) Tues-Thurs Only 
Possibly in Michigan: the Video Work of Cecelia Condit Thurs Only 

Central Cinema:

Big Trouble in Little China (John Carpenter, 1986) Fri-Weds 
UHF (Jay Levey, 1989) Fri-Tues 

Cinerama:

Sound & Vision Film Series Fri-Thurs 

Century Federal Way:

My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon

Grand Cinema:

Luce (Julius Onah) Fri-Thurs 
Luz (Tilman Singer) Sat Only 
The Chambermaid (Lila Aviles) Tues Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Cold Case Hammarskjöld (Mads Brügger) Fri-Thurs  
Apocalypse Now: Final Cut (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Sat & Sun Only 

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Gubbi Mele Brahmastra (Sujay Shastry) Fri-Sun 
Kousalya Krishnamurthy (Bhimaneni Srinivasa Rao) Fri-Thurs 
Nerkonda Paarvai (H. Vinoth) Fri-Sun
Thanneer Mathan Dinangal (Girish A.D.) Fri & Sat Only 
Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Batla House (Nikkhil Advani) Fri-Thurs 
Comali (Pradeep Ranganathan) Fri-Thurs 
Evaru (Venkat Ramji) Fri-Thurs 
My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988) Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon

Regal Meridian:

Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon

Northwest Film Forum:

The Garden of Secrets (Nathalie Attallah) Sun Only 
Ukrainian Shorts Showcase Sun Only 
So, I Married an Axe Murderer (Thomas Schlamme, 1993) Sun Only 
My Father Is My Mother’s Brother (Vadym Ilkov) Sun Only 
The Proposal (Jill Magid) Weds & Thurs Only 
The Souvenir (Joanna Hogg) Weds Only 

AMC Pacific Place:

Luce (Julius Onah) Fri-Thurs 
Line Walker 2: Invisible Spy (Jazz Boon) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Luce (Julius Onah) Fri-Thurs 
Indak (Paul Alexei Basinillo) Fri-Thurs 
Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Hello, Love, Goodbye (Cathy Garcia-Molina) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Seattle:

One Child Nation (Nanfu Wang & Lynn Zhang) Fri-Thurs 
Honeyland (Tamara Kotevska & Ljubo Stefanov) Fri-Thurs 

SIFF Film Center:

Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles (Salvador Simó) Fri-Sun 

Regal Thornton Place:

My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon

SIFF Uptown:

Mike Wallace is Here (Avi Belkin) Fri-Thurs 
Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 
Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock, 1954) Sat Only 

Varsity Theatre:

My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988) Sun & Mon Only Subtitled Mon

In Wide Release:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino) Our Review Our Other Review

Once Upon a Time in . . . Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino, 2019)

Rick Dalton dancing

**SPOILERS THROUGHOUT**

I. Prolegomenon: “Once upon a time,” Conservatism, and the Appeal of Nostalgia

This isn’t a review. (Here’s Sean Gilman’s review on this site.) It isn’t a judgment about whether a film is good or bad at a filmmaking level. Rather, it’s an attempt at a primarily thematic analysis. It’s an effort to answer some questions I have. 

I want to consider Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in . . . Hollywood on two levels: 1) a thematic one, specifically focusing on its construction of, assumptions about, and implications about gender and race — though, as a white person, I am more uneasy about tackling this one, aware that my own complicity in whiteness will always cloud how I observe and understand race on screen — and 2) an emotional one, arguably difficult, subjective territory, but one I think I have to address, given my own overwhelming fury upon exiting the cinema after my first viewing of the film. 

First, then: what is the film saying or implying about gender? About men and about women? I believe Once Upon a Time in . . . Hollywood is, in essence, a conservative film. (And I credit my friend Ben Hynes for using this adjective in reference to the film in a conversation with me and thus, as aptly chosen words often do, doing much to illuminate and organize the clutter of details in the film I’d observed.) And by “conservative” I mean two things: first, a conservative stance is one that is, inevitably, backward looking. It looks to the past as a guide for the future and understands or uses the past to measure the present, which generally fails to measure up. A conservative viewpoint on some level idolizes the past — better days, better times, the good old days. It is inherently nostalgic. Second, the film is conservative in the sense that it not only looks to the past with longing, but it is itself rooted in what I would generally consider (particularly as relative to a “liberal” or “progressive” viewpoint) outdated, regressive understandings of the world and, more fundamentally, of the way the world should be. 

Continue reading Once Upon a Time in . . . Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino, 2019)”

Friday August 16 – Thursday August 22

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Featured Film:

Sound & Vision Festival at the Cinerama

It’s the nadir of blockbuster season, which I suppose means it’s time for the Cinerama to devote its laser projection to playing a bunch of popular sci-fi and action hits of the past 30 years. So if you haven’t yet seen Raiders of the Lost ArkBoogie Nights, or Back to the Future, or classics by Tim Burton or Wes Anderson, now’s your chance. They’ve also got the new cut of Apocalypse Now, which is also playing at the Grand Illusion.
I almost picked the Northwest Film Forum’s single screening of Big Trouble in Little China in this space, but the Central Cinema is playing that most of next week, and it plays fairly regularly around here. Great movie though. 
I suppose if I were a better cinephile, I should have named SIFF’s showings of Hedwig and the Angry Inch or Hyenas the Featured Film of this week, but I haven’t yet seen either of those, though I’m sure they’re great. And the Beacon too has another great week of programming: an Italian silent with a live score, an SNL movie, John Waters, Sofia Coppola, Tobe Hooper, and the original Invasion of the Body Snatchers, among other fascinating oddities.

Playing This Week:

AMC Alderwood:

The Divine Fury (Jason Kim) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

Filibus (Mario Roncoroni, 1915) Fri & Sat Only Live Score
MacGruber (Jorma Taccone, 2010) Fri-Sun 
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Don Siegel, 1956) Sat, Sun, Tues & Thurs 
Serial Mom (John Waters, 1994) Sun, Tues & Weds Only 
No Man of Her Own (Mitchell Leisen, 1950) Sun & Thurs Only 
Celia (Ann Turner, 1989) Mon Only 
The Funhouse (Tobe Hooper, 1981) Mon Only 
The Virgin Suicides (Sofia Coppola, 1999) Tues-Thurs Only 

Central Cinema:

The Dark Crystal (Jim Henson & Frank Oz, 1982) Fri-Weds
Do the Right Thing (Spike Lee, 1989) Fri-Weds 
Inglourious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino, 2009) Thurs Only 

Cinerama:

Sound & Vision Film Series Fri-Thurs 

Century Federal Way:

The Divine Fury (Jason Kim) Fri-Thurs 

Grand Cinema:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
The Goonies (Richard Donner, 1984) Sat Only Free Screening
Easy Rider (Dennis Hopper, 1969) Sat Only 
Ophelia (Claire McCarthy) Tues Only 
The Last Waltz (Martin Scorsese, 1978) Weds Only 
Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (Timothy Greenfield-Sanders) Thurs Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Ray & Liz (Richard Billingham) Fri-Sun
Apocalypse Now: Final Cut (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Mon, Tues & Thurs 
Best of SECS Fest – Shorts Program Weds Only  

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Batla House (Nikkhil Advani) Fri-Thurs 
Comali (Pradeep Ranganathan) Fri-Thurs 
Evaru (Venkat Ramji) Fri-Thurs 
Ranarangam (Sudheer Varma) Fri-Thurs 
A Boy Named Charlie Brown (Bill Melendez, 1969) Sun & Weds Only 

Regal Meridian:

Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 

Northwest Film Forum:

The Queen (Frank Simon, 1968) Fri-Weds 
The Proposal (Jill Magid) Sat & Sun, Weds & Thurs 
Big Trouble in Little China (John Carpenter, 1986) Sun Only 

AMC Pacific Place:

Line Walker 2: Invisible Spy (Jazz Boon) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Mission Mangal (Jagan Shakti) Fri-Thurs 
Hello, Love, Goodbye (Cathy Garcia-Molina) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Seattle:

Honeyland (Tamara Kotevska & Ljubo Stefanov) Fri-Thurs 

SIFF Film Center:

Hyenas (Djibril Diop Mambéty) Fri-Sun 

Regal Thornton Place:

Millennium Actress (Satoshi Kon, 2001) Mon Only Dubbed

SIFF Uptown:

Hedwig and the Angry Inch (John Cameron Mitchell, 2001) Fri-Thurs 
Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 
The Women (George Cukor, 1939) Sat Only 
A Boy Named Charlie Brown (Bill Melendez, 1969) Sun Only 

Varsity Theatre:

Already Gone (Christopher Kenneally) Fri-Thurs 

In Wide Release:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino) Our Review 

Friday August 9 – Thursday August 15

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Featured Film:

Last Year at Marienbad and The ‘Burbs at the Beacon

This week the Beacon has one of the absolute classics of international cinema, and also the new restoration of Alain Resnais’s mystery film. Joe Dante’s The ‘Burbs is playing as part of their series of Suburban Nightmares, but it works just as well as a companion to Resnais’s film: both are about men who keep failing to convince the people around them of a truth only they are privy too. It’s such a great pair, I wish we’d done a George Sanders Show on them. They’re also playing John Carpenter’s Halloween, which is probably a better than either of them. Might as well see ’em all in a triple feature this weekend. Elsewhere around town, the Northwest Film Forum has a French film about infidelity, this one starring Laetitia Casta; and the Cinerama has a Summer Trip film series, featuring many movies, some of which take place in the summer and some of which involve trips and some of which are neither summer movies nor movies with trips in them. Oh and for some reason Millennium Actress is playing at a handful of Regal Cinemas on Tuesday.

Playing This Week:

Admiral Theater:

Woodstock (Michael Wadleigh, 1970) Thurs Only 

AMC Alderwood:

Exit (Lee Sang-geun) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

Last Year at Marienbad (Alain Resnais, 1961) Fri-Thurs 
The ‘Burbs (Joe Dante, 1989) Fri-Sun, Thurs 
Halloween (John Carpenter, 1978) Fri-Sun 
Saint Jack (Peter Bogdanovich, 1979) Sun, Weds & Thurs Only 
Suburbia (Penelope Spheeris, 1980) Mon-Weds Only 
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Chuck Russell, 1987) Mon Only 

Central Cinema:

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (Hayao Miyazaki, 1984) Fri-Weds
Point Break (Kathryn Bigelow, 1991) Fri-Weds Our Podcast 

Cinerama:

Summer Trip Film Series Fri-Thurs 

Century Federal Way:

Exit (Lee Sang-geun) Fri-Thurs 
Singham (Navaniat Singh) Fri-Thurs 
Chal Mera Putt (Janjot Singh) Fri-Thurs 
Hello, Dolly! (Gene Kelly, 1969) Sun & Weds Only 

Grand Cinema:

Sword of Trust (Lynn Shelton) Fri-Thurs 
Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
It (Andy Muschietti) Sat Only 
Return to Mount Kennedy (Eric Becker) Tues Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Piranhas (Francesco Di Napoli) Fri-Thurs 

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Ecco (Ben Medina) Fri-Thurs 
Jabariya Jodi (Prashant Singh) Fri-Thurs 
Kurukshetra (Naganna) Fri-Thurs 
Manmadhudu 2 (Shilpi Dasgupta) Fri-Thurs 
Nerkonda Paarvai (H. Vinoth) Fri-Thurs 
The Bravest (Tony Chan) Fri-Thurs 
Judgementall Hai Kya (Prakash Kovelamudi) Fri-Thurs 
Kalki (Prashanth Varma) Sat & Sun Only 
Hello, Dolly! (Gene Kelly, 1969) Sun & Weds Only 

Regal Meridian:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
Ecco (Ben Medina) Fri-Thurs 
Woodstock (Michael Wadleigh, 1970) Thurs Only 

Northwest Film Forum:

A Faithful Man (Louis Garrel) Fri-Thurs 
Cassandro, the Exotico! (Marie Losier) Fri-Sun, Weds & Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Hello, Love, Goodbye (Cathy Garcia-Molina) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Seattle:

Them that Follow (Brittany Poulton & Dan Madison Savage) Fri-Thurs 
Ecco (Ben Medina) Fri-Thurs 

Seattle Art Museum:

Mr. and Mrs. Smith (Alfred Hitchcock, 1941) Thurs Only 

SIFF Film Center:

Angels are Made of Light (James Longley) Fri-Sun 

Regal Thornton Place:

Hello, Dolly! (Gene Kelly, 1969) Sun & Weds Only 
Millennium Actress (Satoshi Kon, 2001) Tues Only Subtitled
Woodstock (Michael Wadleigh, 1970) Thurs Only 

SIFF Uptown:

The Reports on Sarah and Saleem (Muayad Alayan) Fri-Thurs 
Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 
Gilda (Charles Vidor, 1946) Sat Only 

Varsity Theatre:

Every Time I Die (Robi Michael) Fri-Thurs 
Woodstock or Bust (Leslie Bloom) Sun Only 
Hello, Dolly! (Gene Kelly, 1969) Weds Only 

In Wide Release:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino) Our Review 

Friday August 2 – Thursday August 8

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Featured Film:

Welcome to Wakaliwood at the Beacon

Sure they’ve got a killer Gena Rowlands/John Cassavetes series, and a new August program starting full of movies about the horrors of 1980s suburbia, but you won’t find anything more fun on Seattle Screens this week than the double feature of no-budget Ugandan action films playing Friday and Saturday at the Beacon. They’ve got 2010’s Who Killed Captain Alex? (which I haven’t seen yet) and 2016’s Bad Black (which I have and it’s amazing: the purest expression of the joy of making cinema that I’ve seen this decade). Don’t miss out.

Playing This Week:

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

Streetwise (Martin Bell, 1984) Fri, Tues-Thurs 
Who Killed Captain Alex?/Bad Black (Nabwana IGG, 2010/2016) Fri & Sat Only Our Review
Opening Night (John Cassavetes, 1977) Sat-Mon Only 
Love Streams (John Cassavetes, 1984) Sat, Sun & Thurs Only Our Podcast
Gloria (John Cassavetes, 1980) Tues-Thurs Only 
A Woman Under the Influence (John Cassavetes, 1974) Weds Only 
River’s Edge (Tim Hunter, 1986) Sun-Tues Only 
Demons (Lamberto Bava, 1985) Mon Only 

Central Cinema:

The Goonies (Richard Donner, 1985) Fri-Weds
Die Hard with a Vengeance (John McTiernan, 1995) Fri-Weds 

SIFF Egyptian:

Phantom Mary (Aniello De Angelis) Tues Only 

Century Federal Way:

Ardaas Karaan (Gippy Grewal) Fri-Thurs 
Chal Mera Putt (Janjot Singh) Fri-Thurs 

Grand Cinema:

Sword of Trust (Lynn Shelton) Fri-Thurs 
Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
Reservoir Dogs (Quentin Tarantino, 1992) Sat Only 
Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (Timothy Greenfield-Sanders) Tues Only 
Agave: The Spirit of a Nation (Nick Kovacic, Matthew Riggieri) Weds Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Luz (Tilman Singer) Fri-Thurs
The Fall of the American Empire (Denys Arcand) Fri-Thurs  

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Guna 369 (Arjun Jandyala) Fri-Thurs 
Jackpot (S. Kalyaan) Fri-Thurs 
Khandaani Shafakhana (Shilpi Dasgupta) Fri-Thurs 
Oh Baby (B. V. Nandini Reddy) Fri-Thurs 
Rakshasudu (Ramesh Varma) Fri-Thurs 
Dear Comrade (Bharat Kamma) Fri-Thurs 
Judgementall Hai Kya (Prakash Kovelamudi) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
I Love You (R. Chandru) Sat & Sun Only 
Sathyam Paranja Viswasikkuvo (Prajith Karanavar) Sat & Sun Only 

Regal Meridian:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 

Northwest Film Forum:

Jawline (Liza Mandelup) Fri, Sat & Weds Only 
California on Fire (Jeff Frost) Fri Only Director Q&A 
Aberdeen (Colton Van Til) Weds & Thurs Only 
Partners (Henry Horenstein) Thurs Only Director Q&A

AMC Pacific Place:

Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love (Nick Broomfield) Fri-Thurs 
Friend Zone (Chayanop Boonprakob) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 

Seattle Art Museum:

The More the Merrier (George Stevens, 1942) Thurs Only 

SIFF Film Center:

Rojo (Benjamín Naishtat) Fri-Sun 

SIFF Uptown:

Sword of Trust (Lynn Shelton) Fri-Thurs 
The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
42nd Street (Lloyd Bacon, 1933) Sat Only 
Kedi (Ceyda Torun) Thurs Only 

Varsity Theatre:

Airplane Mode (Dylan Trussell & David Dinetz) Fri-Thurs 
Madness in the Method  (Jason Mewes) Fri-Thurs 

In Wide Release:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino) Our Review 

Friday July 26 – Thursday August 1

theres-an-interesting-reason-why-bruce-lee-is-in-tarantinos-once-upon-a-time-in-hollywood-social
Featured Film:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood in Wide Release

The killer programming at the Beacon continues this week (now featuring air conditioning!), with the quintessential Seattle doc Streetwise and the start of a series of films by John Cassavetes starring Gena Rowlands that will continue into next week. Plus SAM’s summer comedy series features one of the all-time greatest screwball comedies, Leo McCarey’s The Awful Truth. But it’s been a long time since I’ve been as taken with a Quentin Tarantino film as I was with his new one, opening this week in wide release. I think it’s his best film since Jackie Brown and the first great film of 2019.

Playing This Week:

Admiral Theatre:

Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun & Mon Only Our Podcast 

AMC Alderwood:

The King’s Letters (Jo Chulhyun) Fri-Thurs 
Dancing Elephant (Lin Yu-hsien) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

Streetwise (Martin Bell, 1984) Fri-Thurs 
Return of the Living Dead (Dan O’Bannon, 1985) Fri Only Live Score by Cerebral Rot
Tiny: the Life of Erin Blackwell (Martin Bell, 2016) Sat, Sun & Weds Only Our Review 
Faces (John Cassavetes, 1968) Sat, Mon & Tues Only 
A Woman Under the Influence (John Cassavetes, 1974) Sat, Sun, Thurs & Next Weds Only 
The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (John Cassavetes, 1976) Sun, Weds & Thurs Only 
Night of the Comet (Thom Eberhardt, 1984) Mon Only 

Central Cinema:

The Neverending Story (Wolfgang Petersen, 1984) Fri-Tues
The Wicker Man (Neil LaBute, 2006) Fri-Tues 
The Prisoner of Azkaban (Alfonso Cuarón, 2004) Weds Only 

SIFF Egyptian:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Tues, Thurs 

Century Federal Way:

Ardaas Karaan (Gippy Grewal) Fri-Thurs 
Arjun Patiala (Rohit Jugraj Chauhan) Fri-Thurs 
Chal Mera Putt (Janjot Singh) Fri-Thurs 
Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon Our Podcast 

Grand Cinema:

Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 
Hampstead (Joel Hopkins) Fri-Thurs 
Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (Allen Arkush, 1979) Sat Only Our Podcast
Harry Potter Marathon Sat Only Then Spilt Up Mon-Thurs 
The Tomorrow Man (Noble Jones) Tues Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Bug Wars (Timothy Hines, 2000) Fri Only VHS
In the Aisles (Thomas Stuber) Fri-Sun 

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Thurs 
Arjun Patiala (Rohit Jugraj Chauhan) Fri-Thurs 
Dancing Elephant (Lin Yu-hsien) Fri-Thurs 
Dear Comrade (Bharat Kamma) Fri-Thurs 
iSmart Shankar (Puri Jagannadh) Fri-Thurs 
Judgementall Hai Kya (Prakash Kovelamudi) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Girlfriend (Upendra Sidhaye) Sat & Sun Only 
Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon Our Podcast 

Regal Meridian:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Dancing Elephant (Lin Yu-hsien) Fri-Thurs 
Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Our Podcast 

Northwest Film Forum:

A Bigger Splash (Jack Hazan, 1974) Fri-Thurs 
Barbara Rubin & the Exploding NY Underground (Chuck Smith) Fri-Sun Our Podcast
Nureyev – Нуре́ев (David Morris & Jacqui Morris) Sun Only 
Amazing Grace (Sydney Pollack) Weds Only 
Jawline (Liza Mandelup) Starts Thurs 

AMC Pacific Place:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Thurs 
Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love (Nick Broomfield) Fri-Thurs 
Looking Up (Deng Chao & Yu Baimei) Fri-Thurs 
Dancing Elephant (Lin Yu-hsien) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 

Seattle Art Museum:

The Awful Truth (Leo McCarey, 1937) Thurs Only 

SIFF Film Center:

The Third Wife (Ash Mayfair) Fri-Sun Our Review

Regal Thornton Place:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Thurs 
Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun, Mon & Weds Only Subtitled Mon Our Podcast 
Kathy Griffin: A Hell of a Story (Troy Miller) Weds Only 

SIFF Uptown:

Sword of Trust (Lynn Shelton) Fri-Thurs 
The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
Mildred Pierce (Michael Curtiz, 1945) Sat Only 
Ghost Fleet (Shannon Service & Jeffrey Waldron) Tues Only 

Varsity Theatre:

Three Peaks (Jan Zabeil) Fri-Thurs 
Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki, 1989) Sun & Mon Only Our Podcast 
The Muppet Movie (James Frawley, 1979) Tues Only 
Kathy Griffin: A Hell of a Story (Troy Miller) Weds Only 

In Wide Release:

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino) Our Review 

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino, 2019)

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood can be seen, as most of the best Quentin Tarantino movies can, as a collection of short stories (along with Pulp Fiction, Inglourious Basterds and Kill Bill; Jackie Brown is a novel; Reservoir Dogs, The Hateful Eight and Death Proof are plays; I have no idea what Django Unchained is–I haven’t seen it since it was first released and I’m as baffled by it now as I was then, but I suspect it’s a movie). He’s best when he’s building out of small, discreet scenes, rather than trying to follow a single thread through various permutations. The approach allows his movies time to breathe, and lets his actors do their thing. Hollywood is, for its incredible first two-thirds, a series of sketches around two days in the life of three characters: former TV Western star Rick Dalton, played by Leonardo DiCaprio; Dalton’s longtime stunt double and best friend, played by Brad Pitt; and Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie, the young actress who has just moved in next door to Dalton on Cielo Drive with her husband, Roman Polanski. It’s February of 1969, and we know, but they do not, that the night of the Manson Family murders is only six months away.

Hints of that fateful night to come, one of those events that has transcended its own tragedy, like the Stones at Altamont, to become a symbol of the End of Something (Old Hollywood, the 60s, Innocence), abound through this first two-thirds: we see Manson’s young followers digging through trash and hitch-hiking through Hollywood; Charlie himself shows up looking for the former resident’s of Tate’s house; Pitt even takes a trip out to the Spahn Ranch with one of the Manson girls (played by Margaret Qualley, from Fosse/Verdon). But more time is spent away from them, with each of the principals going about their day. Tate takes a trip into town where she spots a movie theatre playing her latest movie, the Dean Martin Matt Helm vehicle The Wrecking Crew. Pitt works on DiCaprio’s house and reminisces about the time he beat the crap out of Bruce Lee while working on Green Hornet (Mike Moh does a very funny Lee impression). DiCaprio works on a TV western pilot, where he tries his best to act despite a hangover and depression over the state of his career (he’s considering an offer from Al Pacino to go make Westerns in Italy). It’s these stories, which have nothing to do with Manson but everything to do with Hollywood and Tarantino’s vision of it, that make the movie something special.

I’m toying with the idea of seeing them as three parts of a whole theory of Hollywood. DiCaprio as its heart: as an actor he’s highly emotional, it’s what allows him to achieve greatness in his performances, but it also sends him into rages and funks when he fails. Robbie’s Tate is all wonder and joy, a dream of youth and beauty and exuberance. Her sitting in a dark theatre, listening to the laughs her performance gets is maybe the warmest, happiest moment Tarantino has ever filmed. Pitt is all technique and skill, the muscle that makes it possible for DiCaprio to function (in work as well as life: he’s his driver and does odd jobs around his house, like fix the TV antenna). Supremely aware of himself and his own capabilities, he has all the quiet confidence in himself that the other actors (including the preening Lee) lack. He’s the Marlboro Man, a masculine ideal. And not so hidden within him is the threat of violence. He’s naturally attractive, but absolutely capable of murder, an uncomfortable dichotomy which will be put to the absolute test in the film’s final third.

Quentin Tarantino is the best director of actors of his generation. In any other hands, a movie like this, packed with famous names playing famous names, steeped in a historical place and time marked by wild behavior and wilder fashions, would degenerate into farce. Think of the wig acting of a movie like American Hustle, where brilliant performers are buried beneath a whole lot of noise and nonsense. Tarantino understands quiet as well as any mainstream American director. He has the patience to let the camera rest on an actor while they work, taking us inside DiCaprio’s head as he shows us the difference between mediocre acting and great acting. This might be my favorite Brad Pitt performance, at least since True Romance. He gets the swagger of a man who isn’t needy enough to be a movie star, who loves his dog but will without hesitation break your nose if you wrong him, exactly right.

There’s much more to say about Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, but it can wait until sometime later, after everyone has a chance to see it. Suffice it to say that I think it’s Tarantino’s best since Jackie Brown, and, going by imdb dates, it’s without a doubt the first great movie of 2019.

Friday July 19 – Thursday July 25

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Featured Film:

The Beacon Cinema’s Grand Opening Week

I can’t recall the last time a new theatre opening in the Seattle area was as exciting as this week’s launch of the Beacon in Columbia City. Maybe when SIFF bought the Uptown? It seems like all the news over the past decade has been beloved movie houses closing. It’s a small venue (only 50 seats), but hopefully that will make it more viable in the long run. And if the programming retains the spirit of what they’ve put together for their inaugural week of shows, we have a new favorite Seattle Screen. This week all the shows are free: no tickets, first come first served, and they’ve got a wild mix of art house (Duelle, High and Low) and mainstream (Speed Racer, Magic Mike XXL), classic (City Lights, Gold Diggers of 1933, To Be or Not To Be) and cult films (Django, Buddha’s Palm, Starcrash). I’m planning on going to five of the first six shows, and I’m wondering if I can sneak out of the house to catch a couple more later in the week. 

Playing This Week:

AMC Alderwood:

Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable (Aaron Lieber) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

The Beacon Cinema:

Gold Diggers of 1933 (Mervyn LeRoy, 1933) Fri & Thurs Only Free Screening
Magic Mike XXL (Gregory Jacobs, 2015) Fri & Thurs Only Free Screening
City Lights (Charles Chaplin, 1931) Sat-Mon Only Free Screening
To Be or Not to Be (Ernst Lubitsch, 1942) Sat & Sun Only Free Screening
Speed Racer (Lana and Lilly Wachowski, 2008) Sat & Mon Only Free Screening
Buddha’s Palm (Taylor Wong, 1982) Sat Only Free Screening
Duelle (Jacques Rivette, 1976) Sun Only Free Screening
Starcrash (Luigi Cozzi, 1978) Sun Only Free Screening
High and Low (Akira Kurosawa, 1963) Tues & Weds Only Free Screening
Django (Sergio Corbucci, 1966) Tues & Weds Only Free Screening

Central Cinema:

Ghostbusters (Ivan Reitman, 1984) Fri-Weds
Mandy (Panos Cosmatos) Fri-Weds 

SIFF Egyptian:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Tues, Thurs 
Artifishal (Josh Murphy) Weds Only Director, etc Q&A

Century Federal Way:

Ardaas Karaan (Gippy Grewal) Fri-Thurs 

Grand Cinema:

Echo in the Canyon (Andrew Slater) Fri-Thurs 
All is True (Kenneth Branagh) Fri-Thurs 
Space Jam (Joe Pytka, 1996) Sat Only Free Screening
The Hunger (Tony Scott, 1983) Sat Only 
To Dust (Shawn Snyder) Mon Only 
Ask for Jane (Rachel Carey) Weds Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Pulp Fiction (Qeuntin Tarantino, 1994) Fri-Thurs 35mm
In the Aisles (Thomas Stuber) Fri-Thurs 

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

The Farewell (Lulu Wang) Fri-Thurs 
Aadai (Rathna Kumar) Fri-Thurs 
iSmart Shankar (Puri Jagannadh) Fri-Thurs 
Kadaram Kondan (Rajesh M. Selva) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Oh Baby (B. V. Nandini Reddy) Fri-Thurs 
Article 15 (Anubhav Sinha) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Meridian:

Maiden (Alex Holmes) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Wild Rose (Tom Harper) Fri-Thurs 

Northwest Film Forum:

Blowin’ Up (Stephanie Wang-Breal) Fri-Sun 
Instant Dreams (Willem Baptist) Fri-Thurs 
Parallel Love: The Story of a Band Called Luxury (Matt Hinton) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Pacific Place:

The White Storm 2 (Herman Yau) Fri-Thurs 
Sea of Shadows (Richard Ladkani) Fri-Thurs 
Looking Up (Deng Chao & Yu Baimei) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Seattle:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

Seattle Art Museum:

Easy Living (Mitchell Leisen, 1937) Thurs Only 

SIFF Film Center:

For All Mankind (Al Reinert, 1989) Fri-Sun 

Regal Thornton Place:

Glory (Edward Zwick, 1989) Sun & Weds Only 

SIFF Uptown:

Diamantino (Gabriel Abrantes & Daniel Schmidt) Fri-Thurs Our Review 
The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Weds
Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (Timothy Greenfield-Sanders) Fri-Weds
Singin’ in the Rain (Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly, 1952) Sat Only 

Varsity Theatre:

Bottom of the 9th (Raymond De Felitta) Fri-Thurs 
Glory (Edward Zwick, 1989) Weds Only 
The Muppet Movie (James Frawley, 1979) Thurs Only 

Rafiki (Dir. Wanuri Kahiu, 2018)

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Kenyan director Wanuri Kahiu’s marvelous, joyful Rafiki tells the story of two girls in love. It’s a story that has been told before, replete with obstacles en route to what we hope will be a happy ending, but two things set this film apart from the rest of the star-crossed crowd. One, the girls live in Kenya, where a colonial-era law marks out homosexuality as a criminal offense. Two, despite the seriousness of the dangers and challenges before our heroines, their story is wildly, vibrantly fun.

Continue reading Rafiki (Dir. Wanuri Kahiu, 2018)”

Friday July 12 – Thursday July 18

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Featured Film:

The White Storm 2 at the Pacific Place, the Meridian and the Lincoln Square

The first White Storm was a mediocre Hong Kong thriller starring Louis Koo, Nick Cheung and Lau Ching-wan. It was directed by Benny Chan, last seen here directing Koo in the space-cat family comedy MeowWhite Storm 2 is almost assuredly unrelated to the first film, in what is a Hong Kong tradition, and is directed by Herman Yau, which means it is certain to be significantly better. Koo is back, joined by Andy Lau. The last time Yau and Lau teamed up was in Shock Wave, two years ago, one of the better action films to come out of Hong Kong in recent years. I haven’t had a chance to see it yet, but it’s my top priority for this weekend. If it ends up being bad, just pretend I recommended Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (playing Thursday at the Uptown) in this space instead. That movie is a national treasure.

Playing This Week:

AMC Alderwood:

Wild Rose (Tom Harper) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable (Aaron Lieber) Fri-Thurs 

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

Central Cinema:

ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Fri-Tues
Kick-Ass (Matthew Vaughn, 2010) Fri-Mon 
Black Dynamite (Scott Sanders, 2009) Tues Only 
Face/Off (John Woo, 1997) Weds Only 

Century Federal Way:

Munda Hi Chahida (Santosh Thite & Deepak Thapar) Fri-Thurs 

Grand Cinema:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (Stephan Elliott, 1994) Sat Only 
Rafiki (Wanuri Kahiu) Tues Only 
The Queen (Frank Simon, 1968) Weds Only 

Grand Illusion Cinema:

The Shawshank Redemption (Frank Darabont, 1994) Fri-Thurs 35mm
Summer Night (Joseph Cross) Fri-Thurs 
Funan (Denis Do) Sat & Sun Only 

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

The White Storm 2 (Herman Yau) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable (Aaron Lieber) Fri-Thurs 
Oh Baby (B. V. Nandini Reddy) Fri-Thurs 
Article 15 (Anubhav Sinha) Fri-Thurs 
Dorasaani (K.V.R. Mahendra) Fri-Thurs 
NVNN (Caarthick Raju) Fri & Sat Only 
Konttho (Shiboprosad Mukherjee & Nandita Roy) Sat Only 

Regal Meridian:

The White Storm 2 (Herman Yau) Fri-Thurs 
Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 
Wild Rose (Tom Harper) Fri-Thurs 

Northwest Film Forum:

Too Late to Die Young (Dominga Sotomayor) Fri-Thurs 
Lumberjacks & Logrollers: Icons of Finnish Cinema Fri-Sun Full Program 
Stop Making Sense (Jonathan Demme, 1984) Weds & Thurs Only 

AMC Pacific Place:

The White Storm 2 (Herman Yau) Fri-Thurs 

Regal Parkway Plaza:

Super 30 (Vikas Bahl) Fri-Thurs 

AMC Seattle:

The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 

Seattle Art Museum:

Dick Dale: King of the Surf Guitar (Matt Marshall) Weds Only 
After the Thin Man (WS Van Dyke, 1936) Thurs Only 

SIFF Film Center:

The Silence of Others (Robert Bahar & Almudena Carracedo) Fri-Sun 

Regal Thornton Place:

Easy Rider (Dennis Hopper, 1969) Sun & Weds Only 

SIFF Uptown:

Halston (Frédéric Tcheng) Fri-Thurs 
The Last Black Man in San Francisco (Joe Talbot) Fri-Thurs 
Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (Timothy Greenfield-Sanders) Fri-Thurs 
Rock ‘n’ Roll High School (Allen Arkush, 1979) Fri-Thurs Our Podcast

Varsity Theatre:

Firecrackers (Jasmin Mozaffari) Fri-Thurs