First, apologies for behind-the-scenes issues which have prevented more frequent posting, mostly having to do with a mysterious slowdown by my publishing system (WordPress.com), at least on my one available machine, a dying laptop that has been jury-rigged to run Linux. (For the record: Not a combination that I recommend.) Onward: to the movies!
One week after the tragedy of The Dark Knight Rises shooting, another wide release affected by the national news arrives, along with the fourth entry in a series that will not quit, and our indie highlight of the week, which is set in India but hails from England.
Trishna stars Frieda Pinto (Slumdog Millionaire) as a young woman from the lower classes who meets and falls in love with a young British businessman (Riz Ahmed). Complications ensue in this romantic drama, the latest from prolific director Michael Winterbottom. Reviews have been generally favorable. It opens exclusively today at Angelika Dallas.
Holdovers at Angelika Dallas include Moonrise Kingdom, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Safety Not Guaranteed, and The Intouchables — all recommended, and in that order — as well as Neil Young Journeys (not seen) and Magic Mike (a very indie feeling for a low-budget wide release from a major studio, and recommended).
Over at Landmark Magnolia, Bernie continues its successful run, along with Take This Waltz (frustrating and distancing, but fascinating), Woody Allen’s To Rome with Love (routine), and the summer’s biggest indie success: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.
Meanwhile, the Texas Theatre serves Oak Cliff well by presenting The Dark Knight Rises in 35mm — Christopher Nolan would be proud! — and sprinkles in parties, a discussion of literature, a screening of Shrek 2 in Spanish (at Memorial Crawford Park on Sunday at dusk), and so forth and so on.
As for retrospective and special screenings, the venerable The Room returns for its monthly midnight engagement at Landmark Inwood, tonight and tomorrow.
The Watch and Step Up: Revolution are the two wide releases this week. The former is a comedy about suburban dads who deal with an alien invasion and has garnered almost entirely negative reviews; the latter is the fourth in the street dancing series, of which I’ve seen none, but fans of the series say it’s the best, most craziest yet. I missed the advance screenings for both, due to other issues, but, frankly, I didn’t kill myself to get there, which tells you a little something about my level of enthusiasm.
Next week we get Ruby Sparks (very good, unexpected, non-traditional romantic comedy), Killer Joe (William Friedkin’s grotty NC-17 thriller, starring Matthew McConaughey), Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (documentary about the Chinese activist, said to be very inspiring), The Graduate (45th anniversary engagement of Mike Nichols’ classic), Farewell My Queen (French period drama, said to be quite good), plus the wide releases of the Total Recall (possibly only for junk food fanatics, but who knows yet), so it’s a good weekend to catch up on any holdovers you might have missed.