The movie releases list this week is determined to put the conception that summer is only about the blockbuster to the test. There are documentaries, foreign films and small indies about local hot button issues that are all worth a viewing. This weekend should be all about escaping the humidity with a quality flick.
To get the mass market dreck out of the way first: Adam Sandler gets a universal remote to speed up and slow down his world in Click. Wanna bet he uses his powers for mischievousness instead of good and it all goes awry? Tyrese Gibson, the former model turned actor, opens up his can of whoop ass in Waist Deep. There's more L.A. underbelly exposing where that came from in Larry Clark's newest teen-sploitation movie Wassup Rockers about a bunch of skate punk kids from the wrong side of the tracks. Also, a docu for the music icon lover in your life, Leonard Cohen, I'm Your Man features live performances and worship from such luminaries as Rufus Wainwright, Beth Orton, Jarvis Cocker and Bono.
If you haven't caught any of the movies yet at the excellent Subway Cinema festival, the fest devoted to bringing a cornucopia of Asian cinema to New York, please take a moment to peruse the schedule. Selections run through this weekend at Anthology Film Archives and then begin at the ImaginAsian through next week. The movies are always top notch and often the screenings begin with free giveaways so you may walk away with an obscure DVD or poster or something.
Polish-American director Lech Majewski recently became the youngest filmmaker ever to have a MoMA retrospective. One of his most recent films, 2003's The Garden of Earthly Delights will have a one week run at the Pioneer Theater in the East Village. It's about death, Venice and obsessions with Bosch according to the good people at Pioneer.
You know when someone asks you what's your favorite flavor of ice cream and you have to tell them rocky road, mint chip and chocolate chip cookie dough because you love them all equally? This week's Gothamist Pick is just such a horrible Sophie's Choice with three intriguing films from three different stand out directors. Maybe you'll be able to be more decisive. Yoji Yamada's last movie, Twilight Samurai was totally gorgeous and heart-wrenching. Hidden Blade is his newest, also about a low ranking samurai during the declining years of the empire. Should be fascinating stuff. English director Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People, Tristram Shandy, 9 Songs) makes some of the most eclectic and intriguing movies coming out right now and his newest, Road to Guantanamo shouldn't be any different. Danny Leiner directed Ashton Kutcher to fame and fortune in Dude, Where's My Car but he brings his unique sensibility to post-9/11 Manhattan in his new movie The Great New Wonderful starring Maggie Gyllenhaal.
Production still from The Great New Wonderful.