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Cinema stuff for the week of November 9

Our first post-election cinema roundup begins at Grand Illusion Cinema, where Saturday night the sparkly indie-pop press Three Imaginary Girls presents Seattle Grunge: A Dream of the 90s. The evening includes a grungy collection of clips from Scarecrow's archives, a lightning round of grunge trivia, and a screening of Hype!, Doug Pray's definitive documentary of the era and its impact on our region. Don your best flannel and head down for early 90s nostalgia.

The surreal Czech masterpiece Daisies opens at the GI this week. Director Vera Chytilová's 1966 story of two young women's misadventures is an "aesthetically and politically adventurous film that’s widely considered one of the great works of feminist cinema." Miami Connection makes an encore appearance in the Late Night spot on Friday & Saturday. Mere words cannot describe this film, but the GI's description does quite well: "The year is 1987. Motorcycle ninjas tighten their grip on Florida’s narcotics trade, viciously annihilating anyone who dares move in on their turf. Multi-national martial arts rock band Dragon Sound have had enough, and embark on a roundhouse wreck-wave of crime-crushing justice." You DO NOT want to miss this new 35mm print of this now-legendary film. Then on Thursday, there's a screening of the Alien knockoff Xtro, which friend-of-Scarecrow and Alamo Drafthouse employee Zack Carlson says, "is a goddamn masterpiece, with more inventiveness and chaos than any other movie of its type and/or time." Zack is a man of his word. We recommend you see this film.


The fifth annual Couch Fest Films festival takes place Saturday, November 10 at various inviting homes around town. Couch Fest consists of acclaimed short films from Sundance, SXSW and SIFF, all enjoyed in your fellow film fan's living rooms/dens/home theaters. Their website proclaims "watching short films in strangers' houses = Awkwardly Awesome" and you'll find it's true! Visit their website to find out how to attend Seattle's events and what will be playing.


SIFF Cinema welcomes the Seattle Shorts Film Festival to the Film Center on Saturday, featuring a collection of 25 films from around the world. Visit their schedule page for the full list. SIFF Cinema Uptown is also hosting screenings of The Stranger's amateur adult film showcase HUMP! on Friday and Saturday. Tickets for these screenings are always in hot demand so get yours soon--and make sure to check the age restrictions for each show.

Tom Tykwer and the Wachowski's dazzling cinema labyrinth Cloud Atlas opens this week at SIFF Cinema for either your amazement or bewilderment. Either way, the film, based on the novel by David Mitchell, is one you'll be pondering long after its long run time is over. Ben Affleck's Argo, based on the true story of a life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis, done by disguising the rescue team as a film crew, continues its SIFF Cinema run this week as well, while A Liar's Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman in 3D, an animated story telling some truths about the life of the late Python member, ends its run on Tuesday, November 13.

Scarecrow favorite The Wizard of Oz makes an encore appearance as SIFF's Films4Families matinee this Saturday and Sunday. Friday through Sunday, there's Head Games, Steve James's (Hoop Dreams) documentary on concussions in sports and the pressure to perform versus the need to stay safe. Sunday evening you can see early film classic Man with a Movie Camera with a live score by musician and International Fountain DJ James Whetzel. On Monday, SIFF's ACTION! Cinema series presents The Invisible War. This "powerful examination of the epidemic of institutionalized rape and the social consequences that arise" follows women serving in our nation's military who experienced sexual assault at the hands of a fellow solider or superior officer and won the Audience Award for Best Documentary at both SIFF and Sundance. On Wednesday, SIFF hosts a screening of Psycho followed by a special advance screening of the biopic Hitchcock starring Anthony Hopkins. Then on Thursday, the Seattle Italian Film Festival begins with the Opening Night tragi-comedy Reality.


Northwest Film Forum continues their amazing Universal Pictures: Celebrating 100 Years series this week with a different classic film on 35mm each day--films like Jaws and Pillow Talk and Do The Right Thing. Visit the NWFF calendar for the full schedule. We Won't Grow Old Together, director Maurice Pialat's 1972 autobiographical, heartbreaking tale of a deteriortating relationship, plays all week at NWFF on lovely 35mm. On Saturday, you can check out a rough cut of Howdy Pardner--Tales of The Cowboy Hat, "a documentary film that chronicles the rise, fall and rebirth of the cowboy hat as a symbol of the American spirit."


Central Cinema this week has beloved 80s fantasy The Neverending Story (go ahead, sing it) and acclaimed 90s manifesto Fight Club. Monday's screening in Hecklevision with your humorous additions to the Fight Club rules and other witty observations appearing on-screen via text message. CC's Night & Day series continues Wednesday with Alex Proyas's neo-noir Dark City. Then on Thursday, there's the usual Cartoon Happy Hour, followed by the wonder that is Dolph Lungren as He-Man in Masters of the Universe. We're still sad the sequel they promise at the end never came to be.



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