We'll begin our round-up of the week's cinema events right here at Scarecrow Video, where on Wednesday (Feb. 27) we'll welcome indie filmmaker and Troma co-founder Lloyd Kaufman back to our store. He'll be here at 4:30pm to chat with fans before heading up the street to Grand Illusion Cinema to introduce a 35mm print screening of The Toxic Avenger at 6:30pm (it's recommended you get advanced tickets online). We'll see you there and here!
The GI also has a week-long run of Mumia: Long Distance Revolutionary, a documentary on writer/journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal who has spent over 30 years in jail after being convicted of murdering a police officer in Philadelphia. "Through prison interviews, archival footage, and dramatic readings, this riveting film explores Mumia's life before, during and after Death Row—revealing, in the words of Angela Davis, 'the most eloquent and most powerful opponent of the death penalty in the world...the 21st Century Frederick Douglass.'" Producer Noelle Hanrahan will be in attendance for Q & A during the Friday and Saturday evening shows.
On Saturday the Sprocket Society presents another Saturday Secret Matinee, which features a different thrilling classic film each week from now through March. February's theme is Exotic Lands, featuring "far rebellions, secret cults, and other breath-taking journeys into Terra incognita!"
SIFF Cinema welcomes Noir City, a week of "dark and dangerous" double features hosted by Czar of Noir Eddie Muller. It starts Friday night with a "black carpet" premiere and two Cy Endfield movies: Try and Get Me! (1951) and Hell Drivers (1957). Both will be shown from proper 35mm prints. The series continues on with a full roster of excellent films, many of which aren't available on DVD like High Tide (1947) and the rare 1951 adaptation of Native Son. Check out the festival schedule page for the full list and save money by getting a series pass.
Saturday and Sunday, SIFF Film Center hosts the first South Asian Documentary Film Festival. Tasveer, who also produce the South Asian Film Festival, state that their new festival "aims to provide our community with quality documentaries that speak directly to the issues relevant to South Asia." The inaugural lineup covers a diverse range of subjects from around the region. Visit the SAID schedule page for the full list of films.
Continuing their SIFF runs this week are multi-Academy Award®–nominated Silver Linings Playbook and Steven Soderbergh's Side Effects, a psychological, pharmaceutical thriller starring Rooney Mara, Jude Law, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Soderbergh MVP Channing Tatum.
At Northwest Film Forum it's American Film Week, which celebrates the best "under-the-radar" indie films. It starts Friday night with Arcadia, a somber family drama starring John Hawkes as a father struggling to move his two daughters cross-country while dealing with their difficult mother. Director Olivia Silver will be in attendance. Get a series pass and check out the rest of the featured films for the week. We're especially looking forward to The Bitter Buddha, a documentary on comedian Eddie Pepitone (with him and director Steven Feinartz in attendance) on Saturday and Tuesday's screening of Sun Don't Shine, a relationship road movie from director Amy Seimetz (who you may recognize as the star of Megan Griffiths' The Off Hours).
Also this week at NWFF, there's Nothing But A Man, a 1964 film adapted from a 1933 play which "tells a story whose realism and universality needs no embellishment. Duff Anderson, a black railroad worker, falls in love with and marries schoolteacher Josie, but their marriage is threatened by Duff’s struggle to keep a steady job while fighting for his dignity in a world of economic and racial inequality." For more, we refer you to Charles Mudede's review in The Stranger.
Central Cinema this week explores social structures in rodent communities with The Secret of Nimh and the ramifications of angering a pimp with True Romance (Is that movie really twenty-years-old? Cripes.). On Sunday afternoon you can gather with fellow award show enthusiasts to watch the Oscars (see more on the Oscars at the end of this post). On Thursday there's the usual Cartoon Happy Hour, then that evening Jinkx Monsoon hosts a screening of Waxie Moon in Fallen Jewel. Local director Wes Hurley's gender and genre-bending celebration musical comedy follows diva Waxie Moon's search for love amongst our lovely city and its lovely, talented people.
Last but certainly not least, the Academy Awards are Sunday, February 26, with red carpet action at 4pm and the show starting at 5pm. There are several viewing parties going on around town, including the aforementioned one at Central Cinema; a party at the new Musuem of History and Industry hosted by The High Bar's Warren Etheredge; and Three Dollar Bill Cinema and Gay City Health Project's annual bash up at The Social on Capitol Hill. There's a more extensive list of parties around the region on the CBS website. Wherever you choose to watch the show or whatever films/actors you're rooting for, let's all hope that Seth MacFarlane proves to be a worthy host.
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