Don't let that comforting title fool you. GRANDMA is no sugary-sweet smoothie for viewers of a certain AARP age. Lily Tomlin stars as Elle who has just gotten through breaking up with her girlfriend when Elle's granddaughter Sage unexpectedly shows up needing $600 bucks before sundown. Temporarily broke, Grandma Elle and Sage spend the day trying to get their hands on the cash as their unannounced visits to old friends and flames end up rattling skeletons and digging up secrets. GRANDMA is a small film with huge things to say about the meaning of family and the value of living on one's own terms. Lily Tomlin is a wonder, the embodiment of a woman who isn't at all melancholy or remorseful as she slides into her golden years and she delivers an Oscar-worthy performance. With Judy Greer and the great Sam Elliot.
In the heat of the summer. A lonesome house in the countryside between woods and corn fields. A mother (Susanne Wuest) recovers from plastic surgery in an idyllic country retreat while her two fresh-faced young twin boys Lukas and Elias (Lukas and Elias Schwarz) frolic about the house and in the nearby cornfields. What at first seems like an idyllic country paradise, however, is quickly shown to be rotten just beneath the surface. The boys are at home in nature. They collect bugs, play with animals, like to roughhouse and get a little dirty. Their fastidious mother sits in icy, stark contrast, much like their sleek, sterile, modern home juxtaposes the rustic countryside in which it is plopped. Mom needs absolute calm for her recovery and becomes increasingly annoyed and borderline abusive with her free-spirited children. They in turn begin to suspect that something might not be altogether right with her since her procedure. Writers/directors Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala craft a deliciously intense and genuinely exhausting thriller that is distinctly their own. With slow-burning tension that excruciatingly ratchets tighter and tighter from first frame to final credits, Goodnight Mommy will leave you both exhilarated and exhausted.
The Pageant Theater kicks off its 'Cinematheque Presents' repertory film series of recently restored classic films with Satyajit Ray's APU TRILOGY screened over three weekends. Don't miss this rare opportunity to see these amazing films in the theater and look for more restored classic films in the weeks to come.
The release in 1955 of Satyajit Ray’s debut, PATHER PANCHALI, introduced to the world an eloquent and important new cinematic voice. A depiction of rural Bengali life in a style inspired by Italian neorealism, this naturalistic but poetic evocation of a number of years in the life of a family introduces us to both little Apu and, just as essentially, the women who will help shape him: his independent older sister, Durga; his harried mother, Sarbajaya, who, with her husband often away, must hold the family together; and his kindly and mischievous elderly “auntie,“ Indir—vivid, multifaceted characters all. With resplendent photography informed by its young protagonist’s perpetual sense of discovery, the Cannes-awarded Pather Panchali is an immersive cinematic experience and a film of elemental power.
Two decades after its original negatives were burned in a fire, Satyajit Ray’s breathtaking milestone of world cinema rises from the ashes in a meticulously reconstructed new restoration. The Apu Trilogy brought India into the golden age of international art-house film, following one indelible character, a free-spirited child in rural Bengal who matures into an adolescent urban student and finally a sensitive man of the world. These delicate masterworks—Pather Panchali (Song of the Little Road), Aparajito (The Unvanquished), and Apur Sansar (The World of Apu)—based on two books by Bibhutibhusan Banerjee, were shot over the course of five years, and each stands on its own as a tender, visually radiant journey. They are among the most achingly beautiful, richly humane movies ever made—essential works for any film lover.
“Never having seen a Satyajit Ray film is like never having seen the sun or the moon.” —Akira Kurosawa
Original Theatrical Version!
THE EXORCIST (1973) is the sensational, shocking horror story about devil possession and the subsequent exorcism of the demonic spirits from a young, innocent girl (of a divorced family). The Exorcist was notable for being one of the biggest box-office successes and one of the few horror films nominated for Best Picture. However, it was also one of the most opposed films for its controversial content. Originally X-rated, the film was finally released as an uncut 'R' rating, but some portions of the viewing audience fled from theaters due to nausea or sheer fright/anger, especially during the long sequence of invasive medical testing performed on the hapless patient. Its tale of the devil came at a difficult and disordered time when the world had just experienced the end of the Vietnam War and at the time of Watergate.
The film's screenplay - a horror-tinged western (and tale of good vs. evil), was faithfully based upon author William Peter Blatty's 1971 best-selling theological-horror novel of the same name. Academy-Award winning director William Friedkin created a frightening, horror film masterpiece, with sensational, nauseating, horrendous special effects. The film also featured the terrific acting debut of 12-year old actress Linda Blair, who played the helpless girl possessed by demons. The recognizable opening instrumental tune eventually became a #1 single. The controversial nature of the film's content - exorcism (accompanied by blasphemies, obscenities and graphic physical shocks), was supposedly based upon an authentic, nearly two-month long exorcism performed in 1949 on a 14-year old boy in Maryland by the Catholic Church.
THE EXORCIST gains its power from the way it mixes opposites: new-style realism and sexual radicalism, old-style horror and religion in a dark fairy tale about a parent whose child is experiencing a painful trauma. Don’t miss this screening of the original 1973 theatrical version that launched a new era in horror films remains one of the scariest films of all time.
Also coming October to THE LATE SHOW:
Friday 10/16 THE SHINING (1980)
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