Reporting Eric Henderson
I always say March is the roughest month for Minnesotans, as far as weather goes. Here you are, thinking you’ve made it through the long winter and expecting a period of one progressively warmer week after another. And it just refuses to happen.
OK, maybe last year kicked off early, but this year looks like the sort of Minnesota March I’ve grown to loathe — gloomy skies and cold, wet ground.
Rather than bask in the dark, why not … well, bask in the dark of a movie theater? Here are five great options for you to consider this week.
Monday, March 11 & Tuesday, March 12: Two Years at Sea (Trylon Microcinema)
Presented in gloriously grainy 35mm (blown up from 16mm), this week’s Twin Cities premiere at the Trylon Microcinema boasts a monochromatic sheen that matches up solidly with our own atmospheric malady. But try to imagine spending years in this naturalist morass. In Ben Rivers’ documentary, a grizzled man named Jake spends his days plunged deep into the heart of the wilderness, pitching tents in the woods, kicking back in a raft on a gloomy lake, sleeping in trees, counting the bristles, living the dream he declared for himself years back.
Wednesday, March 13: OK, Enough, Goodbye (Walker Art Center)
The 2013 Twin Cities Arab Film Festival kicks off this Wednesday at the Walker Art Center with a screening of Rania Attieh and Daniel Garcia’s Lebanese late-coming-of-age OK, Enough, Goodbye. The unnamed protagonist of the film is, not unlike Ernest Borgnine’s Marty, a bit of a momma’s boy. His problems begin when mom leaves for Beirut and doesn’t come back, essentially abandoning a 40-year-old child. How does he even begin to fend for himself? With its somewhat documentary-like approach, some say the movie subtly points up some of the issues with masculinity affecting modern Lebanese men. More on the Arab Film Fest later this week.
Wednesday, March 13: Sound Unseen: Special Secret Sneak Preview (Trylon Microcinema)
I’ve no clue what movie is playing, so I yield to their description: “For the first time in Sound Unseen’s monthly series history, we’ll be showing a film without revealing the title until the moment the film hits the screen. We couldn’t pass up this offer of screening a film about a classic, still current rock star who’ll have a new album coming out soon. The film is also screening at SXSW next month, and you could be thrilled, disappointed, or a huge fan, but if you don’t take a chance, you’ll never know what we showed.”
Thursday, March 14: Leprechaun (Theaters at Mall of America)
It may not be the most culturally sensitive way to mark St. Patrick’s Day, but the latest in Theaters at Mall of America’s series of holiday-specific horror movies should give those not inclined to wish the top o’ the morning to anyone this Thursday a pot o’ gore. (What’s next? A revival of Troll 2? … Oh, right.)
Friday, March 15: The 400 Blows (Trylon Microcinema)
François Truffaut’s first feature film The 400 Blows may not have been as trend-setting as French New Wave teammate/rival Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless, nor has it proven as influential. But anyone with a soft spot for nostalgic portraits of childhood that steer clear of the saccharine will find much to love in this, the first Antoine Doniel adventure. Played with astonishing élan by Jean-Pierre Leaud (for my money, it’s maybe the most accomplished child performance ever caught on film), Antoine experiences life with Proustian attention to detail, but also can’t keep himself out of trouble with his testy, sparring parents or his authoritarian teacher, all of whom are heartbreakingly quick to label him a juvenile delinquent. Every frame of it radiates with the twin pleasures of youth and cinema.