Friday August 25 – Thursday August 31

Featured Film:

70mm Festival at the Cinerama

Two terrific American indies open this week in wide release: Ingrid Goes West and Good Time, but we’d remiss not to highlight the latest version of the Cinerama’s festival of 70mm film. The calendar is packed with the usual suspects (Lawrence of Arabia, Vertigo, Aliens, Baraka), but if you’ve never had a chance to see them, the next two weeks will be something special. The highlight of the festival, outside the canonical classics, is undoubtedly Sleeping Beauty, which remains the best of Disney’s animated films. I’d also challenge anyone to only go see Khartoum and It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World while skipping everything else.

Playing This Week:

AMC Alderwood:

A Taxi Driver (Jang Hoon) Fri-Thurs
Vivegam (Siva) Fri-Thurs In Tamil & Telugu, Check Showtimes
Midnight Runners (Kim Joo-hwan) Fri-Thurs

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs

Central Cinema:

Thelma & Louise (Ridley Scott, 1991) Fri-Tues
South Park (Trey Parker & Matt Stone, 1999) Fri-Tues

Cinerama:

Lawrence of Arabia (David Lean, 1962) Fri-Sun
Khartoum (Basil Dearden, 1966) Fri Only
Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958) Sat Only
Aliens (James Cameron, 1986) Sat Only
Sleeping Beauty (Clyde Geronimi, 1959) Sun Only
Ghostbusters (Ivan Reitman, 1984) Sun Only
The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2012) Mon Only
Baraka (Ron Fricke, 1992) Mon Only
It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (Stanley Kramer, 1963) Tues Only
The Hateful Eight (Quentin Tarantino, 2015) Tues Only Our Review
Spartacus (Stanley Kubrick, 1960) Weds Only
Top Gun (Tony Scott, 1986) Weds Only
The Dark Crystal (Jim Henson & Frank Oz, 1982) Thurs Only
The Thing (John Carpenter, 1982) Thurs Only

SIFF Egyptian:

Patti Cake$ (Geremy Jasper) Fri-Thurs

Century Federal Way:

Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs
A Taxi Driver (Jang Hoon) Fri-Thurs
Midnight Runners (Kim Joo-hwan) Fri-Thurs
The Spy Who Loved Me (Lewis Gilbert, 1977) Sun & Weds Only

Grand Cinema:

Whose Streets? (Sabaah Folayan & Damon Davis) Fri-Thurs
Score: A Film Music Documentary (Matt Schrader) Fri-Thurs
Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs
The Little Hours (Jeff Baena) Fri-Thurs Our Review
The Bad Batch (Ana Lily Amirpour) Sat Only
Promised Land (Sarah Salcedo & Vasant Salcedo) Tues Only
Deconstructing the Beatles Sgt. Pepper (Scott Freiman) Weds Only

Grand Illusion Cinema:

Lemon (Janicza Bravo) Fri-Thurs
Attack the Block (Joe Cornish, 2011) Sat Only

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Vivegam (Siva) Fri-Thurs In Tamil & Telugu, Check Showtimes
Arjun Reddy (Sandeep Reddy Vanga) Fri-Thurs
Bareilly Ki Barfi (Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari) Fri-Thurs
Patti Cake$ (Geremy Jasper) Fri-Thurs
A Gentleman (Krishna D.K. & Raj Nidimoru) Fri-Thurs
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (Shree Narayan Singh) Fri-Thurs
The Spy Who Loved Me (Lewis Gilbert, 1977) Sun & Weds Only

Regal Meridian:

Gook (Justin Chon) Fri-Thurs Our Review
The Adventurers (Stephen Fung) Fri-Thurs Our Review
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (Shree Narayan Singh) Fri-Thurs
A Gentleman (Krishna D.K. & Raj Nidimoru) Fri-Thurs

Northwest Film Forum:

Whose Streets? (Sabaah Folayan & Damon Davis) Fri-Thurs
Chicagoland Shorts Vol. 3 Fri Only
Il Boom (Vittorio Di Sica, 1963) Sat & Sun Only
In Pursuit of Silence (Patrick Shen) Weds & Thurs Only

AMC Oak Tree:

Deep (Julio Soto Gurpide) Fri-Thurs

AMC Pacific Place:

Wolf Warrior 2 (Wu Jing) Fri-Thurs Our Review

Regal Parkway Plaza:

A Gentleman (Krishna D.K. & Raj Nidimoru) Fri-Thurs
Finally Found Someone (Theodore Boborol) Fri-Thurs
Kita Kita (Sigrid Andrea P. Bernardo) Fri-Thurs

SIFF Film Center:

The Girl Without Hands (Sébastien Laudenbach) Fri-Sun, Weds & Thurs

AMC Southcenter:

Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs

Regal Thornton Place:

In This Corner of the World (Sunao Katabuchi) Fri-Thurs Our Review

SIFF Uptown:

In This Corner of the World (Sunao Katabuchi) Fri-Thurs Our Review
Columbus (Kogonada) Fri-Thurs Our Review
Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs
The Trip/The Trip to Italy (Michael Winterbottom, 2010, 2014) Mon Only Double Feature

Varsity Theatre:

Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs
69 Kill (Trent Haaga) Fri-Thurs
Maudie (Aisling Walsh) Fri-Thurs

In Wide Release:


Baby Driver (Edgar Wright) Our Review
The Big Sick (Michael Showalter) Our Review
Wind River (Taylor Sheridan) Our Review
Good Time (Josh & Benny Safdie) Our Review
Leap! (Eric Summer & Éric Warin) Our Review
Ingrid Goes West (Matt Spicer) Our Review
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Good Time (Josh & Benny Safdie, 2017)

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The Safdie Brothers’ Heaven Knows What was one of the singular films of VIFF 2014, a harrowing, grimy, close-up look at the life of a homeless junkie and her estranged boyfriend, enlivened by a remarkable performance from Arielle Holmes, upon whose life the film was largely based. With a pounding score and aggressive handheld close-up images from cinematographer Sean Price Williams, the film delivered a kind of extreme realism, like a Neveldine/Taylor movie for the socially conscious art house crowd. The Safdies’ follow-up, which premiered at Cannes and opens at SIFF this week, is more explicitly a genre film, if only because instead of a real person playing the lead, they now have a bona fide movie star, Robert Pattinson. It’s a One Crazy Night story, with Pattinson digging himself ever deeper into trouble in the wake of a bank robbery he pulls with his brother, played by Benny Safdie. During the escape Benny is arrested, and later hospitalized after getting into a fight in jail. Pattinson tries to sneak him out of the hospital, which leads to the kinds of unanticipated snags and increasing lunacy that is the hallmark of this kind of film (the movie’s poster explicitly points to Martin Scorsese’s After Hours). As an exercise in suspense filmmaking, the movie is excellent, the music (this time by Oneohtrix Point Never) and Williams’s images perfectly suited to the manic nervousness and driving obsessions of the scenario. Pattinson is, as always, equal parts charismatic and deeply disturbing (would be interesting to pair this with his other great city film, David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis). The supporting cast as well is marvelously weird, headlined by Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Oscar nominee Barkhad Abdi, but also including newcomers like Taliah Webster, Eric Peykert, Peter Verby, and Buddy Duress (who was also in Heaven Knows What), who has rightfully drawn comparison’s to the great oddball character actor Timothy Carey. One performance though has me baffled, and that is Benny Safdie’s as Pattinson’s developmentally- and hearing-impaired brother. I don’t know what to make of the film’s bookends, with Benny in a hospital undergoing treatment, first answering free-association questions from his psychiatrist (Verby), later in a group exercise. It’s been a couple weeks and I still haven’t come up with a satisfactory explanation for these scenes, but they don’t feel right to me at all. But in-between them lies the most exciting American movie of the year so far.

The Legend of the Naga Pearls (Yang Lei, 2017)

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In what has been a strong summer for Chinese language releases here in Seattle (with Our Time Will Come, Wolf Warrior 2, Meow, Once Upon a Time, and The Adventurers following SIFF’s minifestival of Hong Kong films and their presentation of the restored Taipei Story last week), Legend of the Naga Pearls shrugs its way on screen for the last week of August. The latest in a string of fantasy films built around special effects and photogenic stars, it’s set in the universe of Novoland, which is apparently a popular fictional construction in China, home to more than thirty novels by various authors. This story follows 25 years after a war between humans and the villainous Winged Tribe. A gang of evil former Winged People are trying to assemble a weapon with which to unleash a horde of deadly flying tapirs (seriously) on the human population, which has built their city, Uranopolis, atop the ruins of the Winged Tribe’s city in the clouds. A rag tag team of adventurers unites to steal the key item first. They include the daughter of a good Winged Person, the callow son of a human prince, and a thief with a mysterious blue mark on his hand that turns out to be connected to the eponymous MacGuffin.

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