Director: Jacques Demy. With Catherine Deneuve, Jean Marais, Jacques Perrin. (100 min.)Skip to next paragraph
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Sterritt **** Restored version of the great Demy's consistently entertaining, subtly perverse fairy tale about a princess who disguises herself as a scullery maid in order to avoid marrying her royal father. Tuneful, colorful, delightful. In French with subtitles. Playing in limited release.
Directors: Oliver Axer, Susanne Benze. With archival footage of the Nazi era. (76 min.)
Sterritt **** A compilation of entertainment materials from the Nazi period, showing there really was a "Hitler with a song in his heart," to quote Mel Brooks's sarcastic phrase in "The Producers," and that ordinary Germans whiled away their leisure hours with sentimentalism and nostalgia even as their government committed one atrocity after another. Fascinating and revealing. In German with subtitles. Playing in limited release.
Director: Nick Palumbo. With Sven Garrett, Gunnar Hansen, Valerie Baber, Ed Neal. (105 min.)
Sterritt *** An interesting effort to make the ultimate horror movie by imitating modern classics of the genre in a systematic way, putting actors from the original "Texas Chain Saw Massacre" into the cast for good measure. Be warned that the results are in aggressively awful taste from beginning to end, though. Playing in limited release.
Director: Andreas Hoessli. With Richard Grasso, John Slade, Dawn Pisano, Ted Guttierez. (50 min.)
Sterritt ** Documentary about stock trading, with some vivid images but no clear perspectives or opinions on the material it presents. Shown with "Knock Off:
Revenge on the Logo," by Anette Baldauf and Katharina Weingartner, a documentary about product counterfeiting that has a similar lack of point of view. Playing in limited release.
Director: Geoffrey Sax. With Michael Keaton, Deborah Kara Unger, Ian McNeice, Chandra West. (98 min.)
Sterritt ** See review.
Director: Niels Mueller. With Sean Penn, Naomi Watts, Don Cheadle. (95 min.)
Sterritt **** Fictionalized account of a real-life businessman named Samuel Byck, whose frustration with getting nowhere led him to a mental breakdown and a crazy plot to kill the president in 1974. This is one of the rare movies to explore American materialism through the eyes of an all-too-ordinary person who isn't up to the challenges of everyday life. Penn gives the most engrossing performance of his career to date. Playing in limited release.
Director: Martin Scorsese. With Leonardo DiCaprio, Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin, Kate Beckinsale. (170 min.)
Sterritt *** Large-scale epic about the life and times of Howard Hughes, focusing on his experiences as a filmmaker, flyer, aircraft designer, and world-class eccentric. DiCaprio is excellent as Hughes and Blanchett is even better as movie star Katharine Hepburn, one of his lovers. The film largely lacks the personal, idiosyncratic touches that distinguish Scorsese's greatest work, though.
Director: Kevin Spacey. With Kevin Spacey, Brenda Blethyn, John Goodman, Kate Bosworth. (121 min.)