By Jonathon Sharp

It’s a busy week for movies here in the Twin Cities. We’ve got a massive festival for the internet’s beloved cats, two compelling documentaries hitting theaters, and a screening of a French New Wave classic.

Wednesday, Aug. 12: Internet Cat Video Festival (CHS Field)

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The festival that brings cat-lovers together like no other will take place for the first time in St. Paul’s Lowertown. The Walker Art Center, which puts on the festival, says it’s expecting 10,000 people to show up at CHS Field to see which online video is awarded the coveted Golden Kitty.

Tickets for the festival are still on sale, and there’s a bunch of activities planned before the screening. But if you just want to see the videos, the screening will start at dusk.

Tickets are $10 for adults, and no, unfortunately, you won’t be allowed to bring your cat.


Wednesday, Aug. 12: Cleo From 5 To 7 (Walker Art Center)

My fellow movie blogger Eric Henderson adores this film from Agnès Varda, whose work stands confidently alongside other French New Wave classics, like Breathless and The 400 Blows. The story is about a few hours in the life of a young pop star named Cleo as she awaits the results of a biopsy. Through incredible visual experimentation, Varda explores how Cleo’s perception of the world changes as the reality of her own mortality sets in.

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Friday, Aug. 14: Meru (Lagoon Cinema)

Meru is a unique and breathtaking cinematic accomplishment. Not only is it a look at one of the hardest alpine climbs ever completed, it’s also a deep examination of friendship, passion and the burden of dreams. Filmmaker Jimmy Chin documents his attempts to climb the “Shark’s Fin” on Mount Meru with his partners Conrad Anker and Renan Ozturk. Each of them as to overcome an incredible obstacle to get to where no one has ever gone before, and they all risk their lives in the process.

Expect an interview with the filmmaker, who is a Minnesota native, later this week.


Friday, Aug. 14: Kurt Cobain: Montage Of Heck (St. Anthony Main)

A must-see for Cobain fans, this documentary explores the life of the Nirvana frontman with loads of artifacts – home movies, recordings, journals, sketches, and photos — from his family’s archives. Director Brett Morgen meshes these all together brilliantly to provide a picture of the artist that’s nuanced and touching. Cobain comes off as a hyper-active, creative wonderkid whose childhood was marked by rejection and division. The paradoxes in his short life are explored, and we’re left in awe of all he accomplished despite his confusion and suffering.

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Jonathon Sharp