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Last Year at Marienbad
Delphine Seyrig in Last Year at Marienbad by Alain Resnais

Of the movies in theaters and newly available on DVD this weekend, here's what I like, with links to my reviews, if any. I haven't seen any of the new films opening this week, although I am going to catch Drillbit Taylor. Will report back. Meanwhile ...

Continuing in Theaters

In preferential order:

  • 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days [trailer]
  • The Unforeseen [trailer, see also: my review in the April issue of Paste]
  • There Will Be Blood [trailer, brief comments on the podcast]
  • Taxi to the Dark Side [trailer]
  • Paranoid Park — [trailer, my podcast comments from New York and J. Robert's from TIFF, see also: my chat with Van Sant in the March issue of Paste Magazine]
  • Persepolis [trailer, J. Robert's interview with the director on the podcast]
  • Snow Angels — [trailer, listen to my chat with Green on this weekend's podcast, see also: my review in the March Paste]
  • Funny Games — [trailer, review (link soon)]

Minor Amusements

No Thanks

New on DVD

Nothing particularly interesting this week, although last week I overlooked:

  • Antonio Gaudi — Hiroshi Teshigahara's meditation, now on a Criterion DVD, is the closest I've ever been to Gaudi's amazing architecture in Barcelona, but it made me want to book plane tickets.

Where I'll Be This Week (Bay Area)

It's a great week for a couple of favorite French filmmakers, and it also includes a hair-pulling conundrum for progressive film fans, on the 27th. I'll be at some combination of the following:

  • all week: Last Year at Marienbad (Resnais) at the Castro. Alain Resnais's trio of Hiroshima, mon amour (1959), Last Year at Marienbad (1961), and Muriel (1963) are among my all-time favorite head-scratchers, and since this new print is showing five minutes from home, I may stop in to see it more than once.
  • all week: The Duchess of Langeais (Rivette) at the Clay.
  • March 22: Sholay (Sippy) at the SFMOMA. I've long been curious about this film, one of Girish's earliest signposts. Here are Michael Guillen's factoids from 2006.
  • March 22 (maybe): Flight of the Red Balloon (Hou, SFIAAFF) at the PFA. Hou Hsiao-hsien is among my very favorite filmmakers, and his latest film is wonderful. I'd love to see this again, but it's sold out. If it were in town, I'd probably wait in the rush line.
  • March 23: Macbeth and Othello (Welles) at the PFA. I'll probably hit just one of these.
  • March 24 or 25: War Made Easy (Earp) at the Red Vic.
  • March 27: Confidential Report aka Mr. Arkadin (Welles) at the PFA.
  • March 27 (alternate): The Unforeseen (Dunn) at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. I'll opt for something else, since I've seen it, but I wanted to list it here as a worthy option anyway.
  • March 27 (alternate): The Embassy (Marker) at the Artists' Television Access, playing with other shorts in a program called "REGIME CHANGE: when governments fall what happens to people?" I normally would build the week's schedule around a Chris Marker screening, but this week I will probably opt for ...
  • March 27: Before the Revolution (Bertolucci) at the PFA. It's Bertolucci's second film, and I'm embarrassed to say that I've discussed and written about his much more recent film The Dreamers without having seen this classic. Here's Dave Kehr.
Posted by davis | Link | Other Weekends
Reader Comments
March 21, 2008, 04:47 AM

Rob, I dig this weekly feature of yours, surveying and alerting us to film-cultural happenings both local and larger. What a cool idea.

Here are a couple of new DVD releases this week that I'm eager to see: Alberto Lattuada's Mafioso (1962) and Marlon Riggs's Tongues Untied (1989).

March 21, 2008, 09:46 AM

Ah, thanks for the tip, Girish. I noticed those two on the release calendar, but I haven't seen either one. I have a stack of unwatched DVDs at home, and I have to admit that I've just been skimming the new releases.

March 21, 2008, 12:16 PM

Rob, great shot from Marienbad (love the use of the mirror in that scene). I didn't know there was a new print. Good news! I had to order the R2 DVD just to have a decent quality image. I hope that print makes the rounds to Southern Califonia. I'd go to every screening if it were possible.

March 21, 2008, 04:45 PM

Rob, do you think I'd enjoy Taxi to the Dark Side? It just opened at our one art theater?

March 21, 2008, 04:58 PM

I'm not sure if enjoy is the word, but I think you'd appreciate it.

As a film, it's mostly a standard TV-style documentary. But I've been trying to see all of the Iraq-related movies, and this is one of the best, earning points for thoroughness, sheer amount of information, and the elegant way it connects dots. It's maybe a little overwhelming, but I liked it better than No End in Sight (which is pretty good, too), because I learned a lot of things that I hadn't heard elsewhere.

Of course it's infuriating. You should probably check it out if you feel like getting your ire up.

March 21, 2008, 07:45 PM

Darren, I think you'd like Taxi a lot. It's genuinely thought-provoking. Unlike Rob, I didn't find myself getting angry as much as I was just terribly sad at the end. No End in Sight made me angry, in a good way.

March 23, 2008, 02:17 AM

I feel quite remiss not having mentioned it on my own blog, but tonight's Film on Film Foundation screenings of two Jonas Mekas features is not on the PFA calendar. I'm hoping to go; we'll see if hopes pan out.

March 23, 2008, 10:55 AM

Wow, I haven't heard of this group. Here's a link. Looks like they have screenings at the Roxie sometimes, too. Seems like a good calendar to monitor.

I won't make it to tonight's program, though. Rats.

March 23, 2008, 02:28 PM

I've been to one of their Roxie screenings (a well-attended program of Isadore Isou's Venom & Eternity and Christopher MacClaine's The End, and have mentioned a few others on my blog. I'm waffling over tonight. I haven't seen a movie all weekend though, so I may end up leaning that way...