Escapes (2017, Michael Almereyda)


Among the aspects most crucial to the creative success of a documentary is one that should be all too obvious: the subject. This isn’t necessarily to say that there are a preponderance of documentaries that fail because of their material, or that there are many topics that are ill-suited to the medium. But, as with narrative films, the right subject almost always must be paired with the right filmmaker in order for the venture to truly get started.

So it is with Escapes, one of two films premiered this year from the eclectic director Michael Almereyda, the other being his science-fiction drama Marjorie Prime. Though he is better known for his fiction works, including Hamlet and Experimenter, the filmmaker (from whom I’ve sadly seen no other film) has made several documentaries, including one with the late Sam Shepard, and he turns in something quietly spectacular, stylish, and moving.

Continue reading Escapes (2017, Michael Almereyda)”

Friday September 15 – Thursday September 21

Featured Film:

Columbus at the Grand Cinema and the Varsity Theatre

Kogonada’s debut feature continues its Seattle-area run this week, expanding to the Grand in Tacoma and the Varsity. The film, about two lonely people (John Cho and Haley Lu Richardson) bonding over the modern architecture of Columbus, Indiana, played here at SIFF before opening theatrically in August (and it will be playing next month as well at VIFF). It’s one of the year’s most striking American films, equal parts Ozu and Linklater, and one that isn’t easily dismissed. I liked it a lot more than my colleagues here at SSS (as we discussed on our SIFF podcast), but Nathan’s review, wrestling with its flaws and strengths, is a terrific read.

Playing This Week:


Admiral Theatre:

ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Weds Only

AMC Alderwood:

Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale & Kirk Wise) Fri-Thurs

Ark Lodge Cinemas:

Second Nature (Michael Cross) Fri-Thurs
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (Tobe Hooper, 1974) Thurs Only

Central Cinema:

Big Trouble in Little China (John Carpenter, 1986) Fri-Sun, Tues
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Frank Oz, 1988) Fri-Sun, Tues

Century Federal Way:

True to the Game (Preston A. Whitmore II) Fri-Thurs
ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Sun & Weds Only

Grand Cinema:

Columbus (Kogonada) Fri-Thurs Our Review Our Other Review
Rumble (Catherine Bainbridge & Alfonso Maiorana) Fri-Thurs
Babe (GChris Noonan, 1995) Sat Only Free Screening
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (Tobe Hooper, 1974) Sat Only
Pop Aye (Kirsten Tan) Tues Only
To Sir, With Love (James Clavell, 1967) Weds Only

Grand Illusion Cinema:

L7: Pretend We’re Dead (Sarah Price) Fri-Sun
The Teacher (Jan Hrebejk) Fri-Thurs

Cinemark Lincoln Square:

Lucknow Central (Ranjit Tiwari) Fri-Thurs
Thupparivalan (Mysskin) Fri-Thurs
Poster Boys (Shreyas Talpade) Fri-Thurs
Arjun Reddy (Sandeep Reddy Vanga) Fri-Thurs
Shubh Mangal Saavdhan (Rs Prasanna) Fri-Thurs
Do It Like an Hombre (Nicolás López) Fri-Thurs
Simran (Hansal Mehta) Fri-Thurs
Kathalo Rajakumari (Mahesh Surapaneni) Fri-Thurs
Magalir Mattum (Bramma G) Fri-Thurs
ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Sun & Weds Only

Regal Meridian:

Rebel in the Rye (Danny Strong) Fri-Thurs
Good Time (Josh & Benny Safdie) Fri-Thurs Our Review

Northwest Film Forum:

Lane 1974 (S.J. Chiro) Fri-Weds
Shadow of the House (Allie Humenuk, 2007) Weds Only
Lane 1974 (S.J. Chiro) Starts Thurs

AMC Pacific Place:

Twenty-Two (Ke Guo) Fri-Thurs
Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale & Kirk Wise) Fri-Thurs

Regal Parkway Plaza:

The Glass Castle (Destin Daniel Cretton) Fri-Thurs
Shubh Mangal Saavdhan (Rs Prasanna) Fri-Thurs

AMC Seattle:

Ingrid Goes West (Matt Spicer) Fri-Thurs Our Review
Rebel in the Rye (Danny Strong) Fri-Thurs

SIFF Film Center:

The Confessions (Roberto Andò) Fri-Sun Only
Napping Princess (Kenji Kamiyama) Sat & Sun Only Japanese Sat, English Sun

AMC Southcenter:

Because of Gracia (Tom Simes) Fri-Thurs
Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale & Kirk Wise) Fri-Thurs

Regal Thornton Place:

ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Sun & Weds Only

SIFF Uptown:

The Trip to Spain (Michael Winterbottom) Fri-Thurs
Beach Rats (Eliza Hittman) Fri-Thurs Our Review
The Midwife (Martin Provost) Fri-Thurs
The Nile Hilton Incident (Tarik Saleh) Fri-Thurs
May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers (Judd Apatow & Michael Bonfiglio) Tues Only
Heather Booth: Changing the World (Lilly Rivlin) Thurs Only

Varsity Theatre:

Marjorie Prime (Michael Almereyda) Fri-Thurs
Step (Amanda Lipitz) Fri-Thurs
Columbus (Kogonada) Fri-Thurs Our Review Our Other Review
ET: The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982) Weds Only

In Wide Release:

Baby Driver (Edgar Wright) Our Review
The Big Sick (Michael Showalter) Our Review
Wind River (Taylor Sheridan) Our Review
Leap! (Eric Summer & Éric Warin) Our Review