I feel a little like Dom DeLuise’s Nero in Mel Brooks’ History of the World Part I. Only when he yelled, “More wine! More women!” I’m instead yelling, “More horror!” Yes, another October week with a number of scary screening options around town. In addition to some of the ones I list below, you can still catch Dead Snow 2 at the St. Anthony Main Theater, in addition to the new Nick Cave whatsit 20,000 Days on Earth, which Jonathon Sharp reviewed last week. (The latter’s not technically horror, but worth the consideration anyway.) Here are some of the other great options to consider this week.
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Tuesday, Oct. 14: Repulsion (Trylon Microcinema)
Catherine Deneuve’s precision, diamond-bit beauty was never given a more vicious counterpoint than Roman Polanski’s Repulsion, the first of his unofficial “apartment trilogy,” short perhaps only of Luis Buñuel’s subsequent Belle de jour. Both movies dismantle her ice princess, neo-Buster Keaton stone face to look for the cracks in the façade, but Polanski’s movie literalizes them. The portrait of a woman well beyond the verge of a nervous breakdown, Repulsion‘s subjectivity is at times almost unbearable. I often go back and forth about whether I prefer this, Rosemary’s Baby or The Tenant most of the trilogy, but there’s little denying that this one is the most intensely subjective.
Thursday, Oct. 16: The Gold Rush (Walker Art Center)
The Walker Art Center is pulling out all the stops to celebrate its 75th anniversary. In addition to free admission, extended hours, live music and craft beers, there are also going to be a number of free movie screenings. All are worthy, but this Thursday’s selection is certainly the most crowd-pleasing. You won’t believe just how many classic Charlie Chaplin routines came from The Gold Rush. In fact, of the four Chaplin movies that figured into AFI’s list of the 100 funniest American films ever, The Gold Rush ranked the highest.
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Thursday, Oct. 16: How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying (Heights Theater)
Robert Morse got a memorable send off in the most recent season of Mad Men, doing a little soft shoe (or, rather, soft sock) in Don Draper’s imagination. To that end, this week’s screening of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying offers the Heights Theater’s most explicit connection to its month-long theme of movies about 1960s “mad men.” Energetic and filled with jazzy numbers, see if it doesn’t make a salesman out of you yet.
Friday, Oct. 17 & Saturday, Oct. 18: A Nightmare on Elm Street (Uptown Theater)
The original A Nightmare on Elm Street, if you haven’t seen it in a while, seems a lot more brutal and humorless than anyone who’s suffered some of the series’ dippier later entries. (And it does so without being totally preoccupied and dour like the recent reboot that stunk up the joint.) Freddy Krueger is more of a concept than a character in Wes Craven’s 1984 original, which makes him a lot more scary than the punchline-quipping, pseudo-Crypt Keeper that he’d later become.
Sunday, Oct. 19: Decasia: The State of Decay (Walker Art Center)MORE NEWS: Child Tax Credit: How Much Money Will The IRS Send You Each Month?
As I said when I interviewed director Bill Morrison last year, “Forget George A. Romero. Bill Morrison is the foremost zombie movie filmmaker, albeit one who works exclusively in avant-garde form. Morrison could technically be called a “found footage” artist, though his archival discoveries are less focused on scarcity and more on something that’s likely all too prevalent among the already few films from motion pictures’ first few decades. His work is fascinated by the decomposition of ancient prints. If the monumental symphony of audio-visual destruction Decasia is his Citizen Kane, it’s worth noting that he has a whole body of shorter works that dance around the many forms of death cinema is capable of not only simulating, but full-out embodying.” Decasia is screening for free as part of the Walker’s 75th anniversary celebrations.