Arts This Weekend at the Movies
posted by August 10 at 16:46 PMon
Documentaries are the stars this week—August is a dumping ground for mediocre big movies, so it’s a good time to experiment with cinemathèques and art houses.
In On Screen this week: the Iraq occupation doc No End in Sight (“From the initial invasion, to the months of looting, to the disastrous disbanding of the Iraqi military, de-Baathification, and the current[ly failing] troop surge, the film is a step-by-step guide to building an insurgency from the ground up,” says Lindy West)…
… the wacky but not quite fantacky Neil Gaiman adaptation Stardust (note to Stephen Holden: Gwyneth would have made an insipid star); another doc, Ghosts of Cité Soleil, about pro-Aristide gangsters in Haiti’s largest slum (“a flash of glamour too terrible and too politicized to burn very long,” I wrote); Daddy Day Camp (“Take your kids to see Ratatouille. Fuck, take ‘em to see Underdog! Just please, please, please do not take them to Daddy Day Camp,” begs Megan Seling); Live-In Maid (“an unusually sensitive and fascinating portrait of what money and work mean to women of a certain age,” says Jen Graves); Molière (“Because it’s a pure fantasy, the film offers the viewer no education; because it’s not a work of art, it offers the viewer’s soul no enrichment,” says Charles Mudede); Rocket Science (“The director of this wholly unoriginal indie flick, Jeffery Blitz, also made Spellbound,” Charles observes); and Rush Hour 3 (“lazy, lunky, and spectacularly stupid,” says Bradley Steinbacher).
For limited runs this week, which include the SIFF alums Bamako (a mild drama/heavy globalization thesis from the extremely interesting director Abderrahmane Sissako) and I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal (an interesting character, but the film doesn’t quite do him justice), Traffic (Jacques Tati’s penultimate film, and the last to be distributed theatrically), and Twisted Flicks: Cat-Women of the Moon (actually, I think I’d rather see this one with the original dialogue), see Get Out.