This week’s repertory options want to take New York moviegoers around the world and back again via the silver screen. But spring has finally sprung like so many daffodils in the new theatrical releases category as well, so there are lots to see all over the city this weekend.
Aaron Eckhart, an actor who’s been building his career on playing delightfully dimpled bad guys continues his dastardly trend with the tobacco industry satire, Thank You For Smoking. Eckhart plays Nick Naylor, a tobacco lobbyist doing his darnedest to keep America smoking and the flick also features performances by Marie Bello, Rob Lowe, Katie Holmes and Sam Elliot as the Marlboro Man. Director Wim Wender’s newest, Don’t Come Knocking was written by and stars Sam Shepard as an actor drowning his self-loathing in alcohol, drugs and young women. For more mainstream fare, Amanda Bynes clowns it up as a cross-dressing teen in She’s The Man and Vin Diesel put on 35 pounds to play a silly gangster on trial in Find Me Guilty.
To go around the world in 80 minutes: Beautiful City, an Iranian film confronting the consequences of gender inequality in their country’s Muslim judicial system, begins a two week run at Film Forum. It’s “a tale of vengeance, labyrinthine judicial procedure and the concept of “blood money.” according to the good folks at FF. So it should be heart-wrenching but in a good way. The Canadian Front 2006 series at MoMA celebrates cinema from our neighbor to the North and features 7 films by directors from all over Canada, most of which are getting their U.S. premieres.
Symphony Space on the Upper West Side has two intriguing films on their afternoon bill this Sunday and next, Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Conformist and Eric Rohmer’s Triple Agent. Both films are set in the ‘30s, with the Conformist showing at 2 pm examining sex, violence and great architecture in Fascist Italy and Triple Agent screening at 4:45 pm solving a mystery of the loyalties of ex-pat Russians in Vichy Paris. Both are by consummate auteurs of the highest order and shouldn’t be missed. If that’s still not enough international cinema, the popular series of Gallic films, Rendez-Vous With French Cinema concludes this weekend. So if you haven’t made time yet to don your black beret and smoke some gauloises head down to the IFC Center while you can.
Call us a sucker all you like but Gothamist is eagerly awaiting a screening of V is For Vendetta. Sure, producers the Wachowski brothers let us all down with Matrix parts 2 and 3 but Hugo Weaving in a Guy Fawkes mask enacting terrorist style vengeance around futuristic London looks like it could be a real good time at the movies. Plus those Weimar retro graphic posters and a newly bald, self-mocking Natalie Portman further peaks our interest aesthetically. There definitely will be those in the audience disappointed with the adaptation of Alan Moore’s beloved comic but frankly, Gothamist likes watching stuff get blown up. Don't you?