Friday, September 28, 2007

Now Playing (09/28)

Lust Caution opens in exactly one theater. Oh the withholding...not from director Ang Lee mind you. He doesn't pull punches in this one: there's graphic sex (in the service of a fairly gripping story) and even some disturbing violence. In tribute to this movie and since you can't see it yet I'm offering up three DVD recommendations of other racy dramas. Well, you can technically see it now if you live in NY but you'll have to risk cramped seating, sell out crowds and bad sightlines the latter of which is just ideal for a subtitled movie... sheesh. For reasons only the distribution gods know, it's the Lincoln Plaza Cinema that got it. How Lincoln Plaza and the Angelika (two of the worst venues in the city) continue to get great movies as exclusives is a mystery to me.
Outsourced -a man loses his job and travels to India to train his replacement. Somehow it's a comedy
Trade -Kevin Kline stars in this sex-trafficking drama. Given that it's being massacred by early reviews perhaps it'd be wise to rent Lukas Moodyson's earlier Lilja 4Ever instead. It covers the same general topic and is quite good

Feast of Love -Academy Award winning director Robert Benton and actors Morgan Freman, Gregg Kinnear, Radha Mitchell and a bunch of others (ensemble movie) investigate love in its many forms through several couplings
The Game Plan -Big lug's life altered by playing caregiver. Not a sequel to the Pacifier! Whatever happened to Vin Diesel anyway?
The Kingdom -Jennifer Garner, Chris Cooper and Jamie Foxx shoot 'em up in the Middle East. Something about using our current political nightmares for typical action thrills disturbs me but I haven't seen it so I'll shut up. Maybe it's better than that

Wes Anderson puts three brother on The Darjeeling Limited in India for some family bonding and art directed comedy. It opens the NYFF tonight before moving into regular theaters Saturday. It opens properly next week. In expansions In the Valley of Elah more than doubles its screen count so you can see what all the fuss is about Tommy Lee Jones (but doesn't it feel like Oscar buzz isn't really kicking in as expected for the movie itself?) and Warner Bros still doesn't want you to see The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. We may have to retitle it The Assassination of 'The Assassination of Jesse James by the Corward Robert Ford' by the Disapproving Warner Bros. In its second week it's only at 5 theaters. Talk about withholding


J.D. said...

re The Kingdom: It'a alot better than that. It's not really political, and it's lesson is incredibly pessimistic, but it gets scary realistic/brilliant in the third act. It's an excellently wowza popcorn movie, basically.

anything but poetry said...

I'm glad you said that about Angelika and Lincoln Plaza. They have this weird prestige (maybe because they do get the movies?), and I agree they're the two worst places to see movies. Particulalry Angelika. Every time I see that a movie is playing there, I just dread it.

Anonymous said...

As a cinema studies student new to the city, I'mwondering what theaters you would recommend, Nat. I've been to Lincoln Square (as far as I was aware, it was the only theater screening Eastern Promises), and it was smelly, dirty, and cramped as one would expect in a multiplex.


i don't reallly have big issues with LINCOLN SQUARE (though it isn't great). it's LINCOLN PLAZA that is the problem

Glenn Dunks said...

Was one of those the one you showed me in NYC? And you saw... Far From Heaven there? I remember that conversation vaguely.


william, i recommend EMPIRE 25 --though the crowd is sometimes disturbing... the big screens are BIG and there's zero problem with sightlines because it's so sloped.

i also love UNION SQUARE for that reason.

the best arthouse focused theaters are IFC and SUNSHINE... they're not convenient for me at all (grumble grumble) but they're the best. the other arthouse theaters tend to be tiny, cramped, and falling apart.

i might do a feature on NYC theaters if people are interested?

Anonymous said...

late to the game (ack, sooo much to read, sooo little time)...but I waited to see "Lust, Caution" specifically because it was playing at Lincoln Plaza. I saw "The Lives of Others" opening weekend at Lincoln Plaza, and I hated trying to read subtitles over someone 2 feet taller than myself.

I don't like the Angelika solely because of the herding policy before a movie.

I do like Empire 25 (although the location in Times Square makes me want to gag), and Union Square 14. The screens aren't the best, but I loooove the theater lobby in Lincoln Square 13 (all old Hollywood like).

Last time I was in Sunshine, I thought I was watching something on a big television (that being said, it's still a significant improvement over Angelika and Lincoln Plaza).