Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Bayou Bijou Fall Film Schedule

I'm not sure there's a better way to spend a Monday evening and $3 bucks than to take in a foreign film at the Bayou Bijou on the UL campus. They put out their fall schedule and it looks like some good movies are coming. Season tickets are available and all show times are 4pm and 7pm. For more information, visit the Bayou Bijou website here.

2009 Fall Schedule:
Sept. 28: Tell No One
Guillaume Canet (France), 2006, 131 min. Not Rated.
Here’s faux Hitchcock as only the French seem willing or able to produce. The plot is appropriately labyrinthine (it treats a man who refuses to believe the evidence that his wife has been murdered), the acting is topnotch, and the direction is tense, economical, and intelligent. It was nominated for nine Césars (France’s highest film prizes), and won four of them.

Oct. 5: Waltz with Bashir
Ari Folman (Israel), 2008, 90 min. Rated R.
A most unusual documentary combining live-action dramatization with animation, treating Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon; winner of gobs of awards both in animation and in documentary, this is the first animated film nominated for the American Academy’s Best Foreign Language Film.

Oct. 12: Departures
Yôjirô Takita (Japan), 2008, 130 min. Rated PG-13.
Winner of Best Foreign Film for 2009, Departures tells the story of Daigo, a cellist, who, when his orchestra disbands, takes a job as Nokanshi—a professional who prepares the dead for burial. Sometimes comic, the film’s dark subtext creates a richly balanced depiction of the border zone between a life well lived and death respected.

Oct. 19: Sunshine
Danny Boyle (United Kingdom/United States), 2007, 107 min. Rated R.
It’s been a while since Bayou Bijou has done a real sci-fi, and this one (about a space team charged with rebooting our sun) by the director of Slumdog Millionare has gorgeous solar imagery and Michelle Yeoh and Rose Byrne and Cillian Murphy. Some of its plot tricks will go off most people’s deep end, but shouldn’t sci-fi kick us into another imaginative gear?

Oct 26: Halloween Double Feature
Let the Right One In - Thomas Alfredson (Sweden), 2008, 115 min. Rated R.
[REC] - Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza (Spain), 2007, 80 min. Rated R.
Two films that evoke seasonal scariness from opposite directions: Let the Right One In, a story of a bullied boy with a crush on the incredibly cute vampire who becomes his bodyguard, has become an international phenomenon for its austere, moody ambiance and sweet performances (and presumably sugary, carbonated blood); and [REC] (called by one critic a “stress test,” and he’s soooo right!) is a Spanish Blair Witch Project with a punk attitude and very sharp teeth.

Nov. 2: I’ve Loved You So Long
Philippe Claudel (France/Germany), 2008, 117 min. Rated PG-13.
Nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film, this is the story of Juliette (Kristin Scott Thomas), leaving prison after 15 years for killing her six-year-old son, as she tries to rebuild her relationship with her estranged sister, Léa, and acclimate to the world outside. Thomas (who also appears in Tell No One) delivers a performance that is a masterpiece of nuanced, confused emotions, and she’s supported by one of Europe’s extraordinary actresses, the wonderfully sad-eyed Elsa Zylberstein.

Nov. 9: Paprika
Satoshi Kon (Japan), 2006, 90 min. Rated R.
For those who think that Hayao Miyazaki is the only Japanese animator whose work can be appreciated by adults, Paprika should come as a great surprise. Like his other work (Paranoia Agent, Tokyo Godfathers Millennium Actress, Perfect Blue) this is multi-layered, dream-rich, deeply intelligent —both eye-spinning animation and vivid narrative.

Nov. 16: Goodbye, Solo
Ramin Bahrani (United States), 2008, 91 min. Rated R.
Bahrani made the excellent Chop Shop, Man Push Cart, and Strangers. This sensitive film concerns Solo, a Senegalese cabbie in Winston-Salem, whose unlikely relationship with a local man yields a powerful vision of race and culture in 21st-century America.

Nov. 23: Chocolate
Prachya Pinkaew (Thailand), 2008, 110 min. Rated R.
Delicate, pretty, autistic Zen spends her days watching Jackie Chan and Tony Jaa films and absorbing their martial arts skills: bad news for the bad guys when they try to muscle her mother! New action star Jeeja Yanin isn’t quite Tony Jaa, but with help from Pinkaew’s whipfast and witty direction, she’s the new princess of Muay Thai, and the best new thing in martial arts since Tony hit the screen.

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