April is fast approaching, and that means the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival needs to be on every Minnesota cinephile’s radar.
An urban legend from the snowy, desolate plains of Minnesota was the catalyst that led to “Kumiko: The Treasure Hunter,” a new, haunting film from brothers David and Nathan Zellner.
The filmmaker who re-imagined Batman in the beloved Dark Knight trilogy will be in Minnesota this spring to talk about his films as part of a Walker Art Center anniversary celebration.
Going to the movies sounds particularly good when 9 inches of wet, heavy spring snow falls in late March.
The best thing about “Spring” is that it wears its weirdness on its sleeve
A few days ago, the list of features for this year’s Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival dropped. There are more than 170 movies in the lineup, and, as you can imagine, there’s a lot to look through.
Since there was no “This Week’s Best Bets,” there’ll be a “Weekend’s Best Bets.” So while you’re out enjoying the spring-like temps, consider popping by one of the events listed below. They include a DVD and estate sale, as well as back-by-popular demand screenings of Godard’s latest, “Goodbye to Language.”
Director Paolo Virzì’s multi-sided moral fable Human Capital took home the Best Picture award last year from the equivalent of the Italian Oscars, managing somehow to best Paolo Sorrentino’s The Great Beauty, which happened to bag an actual Oscar. While Virzi’s film isn’t half as good as Sorrentino’s, it must be said that “Human Capital” is pretty, gripping and has the aura of greatness, even if it does come off a little too much like another Oscar winner, 2006’s Crash.
The days are growing longer, the breezes don’t quite feel as arctic, and a crop of new movies is in season. Just last week, I reviewed the clever vampire comedy “What We Do In The Shadows,” and this Friday the new movie from District 9 director Neill Blomkamp is at the Minnesota Zoo’s IMAX theatre.
Only have patience for one vampire movie in 2015? Make it this weird, silly, pitch-perfect mockumentary from New Zealand. “What We Do In The Shadows,” created by one of the minds behind “Flight of the Conchords,” has big laughs before the opening credits roll, and it goes on to take vampiric tropes, place them in a modern Wellington cityscape, and twist them into wonderful B-movie jokes.
A taste of la dolce vita is at the St. Anthony Main Theatre in Minneapolis this weekend as the seventh annual Italian Film Festival takes to screens with works from new talents and cinematic titans.
The Oscars are over. And while we’re still applauding Patricia Arquette’s acceptance speech and wondering what John Travolta was doing with Idina Menzel’s chin, it’s refreshing to look ahead and consider what movies to watch without all the awards hype in the background.
If “50 Shades Of Grey”looks impossibly boring to you, this might be the antidote. Peter Strickland’s “The Duke of Burgundy” is an avant-garde experience of the sensual and the psychological. While it’s gorgeous and kinky, it’s also a smart study of a complicated relationship, one that both flourishes and withers inside the walls of an elegant, sun-ripened European home.
More Oscar stuff this week, as you might have expected. And among the offerings are some fresh nominee screenings. One of the most exciting is that of Timbuktu, which is nominated for a best foreign film Oscar.
To call Beloved Sisters a romantic, historical epic about a threesome with a German poet is wrong. While the scenes are set gorgeously, with meticulously detailed costumes and props, and the story centers on the possible love life of the monumental Friedrich Schiller, there lacks a certain something when the characters’ passions flare and fists meet the table. The silverware rattles, but not much else.
With the Academy Awards still looming large on the horizon, it’s hard not to post up a handful of nominees again this week. A few of the big contenders — such as Birdman, Selma, Boyhood and American Sniper – are showing at several metro screens, and the Oscar-nominated shorts are also still going strong over at the Lagoon and the Riverview.
Bill Pohlad, known for producing such powerful films as 12 Years a Slave, Tree of Life and Brokeback Mountain, will have a director credit on a film slated to cap off this year’s Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival.
Now that the Super Bowl is behind us, let’s talk about a different type of spectacle, The Oscars.
The Walker Art Center’s beloved Internet Cat Video Festival is becoming something of a Minnesota summer tradition, and this year it’s coming to St. Paul.
Like “The Tale of Princess Kaguya,” one of my favorite films from last year, “Song of the Sea” is a gorgeously-rendered visual experience wrapped around a folktale narrative. Also like “Kaguya,” “Song” is among those films nominated for Best Animated Feature in the up-coming Academy Awards. Yet while my vote would probably still go to the anime, “Song of the Sea” is not to be ignored.
In the rear-view mirror, the movies of 2014 look exhausting. So many of them kept us in our seats for well over two hours, and just as many failed to reach their creators’ lofty ambitions. Yet while the giants struggled this year, others flourished.
What makes the Australian horror movie The Babadook so spookily satisfying is that it isn’t so much about a shadowy monster terrorizing a single mom and her little boy as it is about the psychological health of a family devastated by loss.
To call Princess Kaguya pretty wouldn’t do it justice. The watercolor animation from Studio Ghibli (Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke) is at once airy and abundant, simple and sublime. For those depressed by winter’s early arrival, this film is a spring breeze, a breath of life.
Acclaimed and prolific documentarian Frederick Wiseman has turned his lens to a museum – and not just any museum. Works of Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt, Velazquez, Titian, and Rubens are among the thousands of classic paintings that fill the halls of London’s National Gallery, and Wiseman, in his observant and meticulous way, captures the struggles and joys of keeping the celebrated and venerable institution at such an exulted state.
Sweet Lord in heaven, what a movie. This tough, tragic documentary by filmmaker Jesse Moss is one of the year’s best, and it should probably be required watching for anyone in the Midwest.