FilmWatch Weekly: Jews, Geniuses, Raiders, and Devils

The 24th Portland Jewish Film Festival goes into high gear, a documentary examines the greatest fan film in history, and more!

24th Portland Jewish Film Festival: The Northwest Film Center once again provides cinematic proof of the diversity of Jewish culture, with films ranging from raunchy comedy to sober documentary to unsettling drama. (Northwest Film Center) READ MORE

“Genius”: This star-studded drama tells the story of editor Maxwell Perkins (Colin Firth) and his collaboration with novelist Thomas Wolfe (Jude Law). Nicole Kidman and Laura Linney co-star, and Ernest Hemingway (Dominic West) and F. Scott Fitzgerald (Guy Pearce) pop in as well. (Regal Fox Tower) READ MORE

“Raiders! The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made”: In 1982, three 11-year-old boys in Mississippi started making a shot-by-shot remake of “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” They didn’t finish it for over thirty years. This is their story. (Hollywood Theater) READ MORE

Chantal Akerman: An ongoing series, schedule to run sporadically for the next year, pays tribute to the groundbreaking Belgian filmmaker who died in 2015. The first program in the series, a documentary about Akerman, plays this Friday. (Northwest Film Center) READ MORE

“Ma Ma”: Penelope Cruz brings all of her star power to bear on this Spanish melodrama about a single mom, diagnosed with breast cancer, who meets a man in the midst of his own struggle with tragic fate. (Living Room Theaters) READ MORE

ALSO OPENING:

 

“Finding Dory”: Sure to be delightful, this belated sequel to Pixar’s “Finding Nemo” finds everyone’s favorite clownfish on the trail of his missing, memory-impaired friend. (multiple locations)

“Vaxxed”: This film about the purported, but thoroughly debunked, link between childhood vaccines and autism was famously disinvited from this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. Which is probably the only reason it’s getting any sort of legitimate release. (Cinema 21)

“Our Last Tango”: Maria Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes were Argentina’s most beloved tango dancers for decades, and in this documentary they tell the story of their tumultuous relationship for the first time. (Living Room Theaters)

“Central Intelligence”: Gargantuan Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson and diminutive Kevin Hart team up as mismatched secret agents in this action-comedy. (multiple locations)

“The Clown”: A loving father is transformed into a vicious killer after he dons a cursed clown costume that won’t come off. (Kiggins Theatre)

“Honeyglue”: A terminally ill young woman discards her conventional life and allows a gender-bending artist to show her the beauty of life in this indie drama. (Clinton Street Theater)

 

THE WEEK AHEAD:

 

Friday, June 17:

“Down a Hard Hole”: The final program of the season from Cinema Project consists of an outdoor screening of a selection of avant-garde shorts that “explore the hard realities of our world.” (8:30 pm, 612 NE Thompson)

“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”: Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor go at it in director’s Mike Nichols’ astonishingly acted and shot (by Haskell Wexler) first feature. (6:30 pm, repeats through Thursday, plus 1 pm on Saturday & Sunday; Laurelhurst Theater)

“Back to the Future”: DeLorean time machines, Libyan terrorists, and the notion that a white kid from small town America invented rock & roll—boy, the 1980s were something, weren’t they? (11:40 am, 4:05 pm, 9:40 pm, repeats through Thursday; Academy Theater)

 

Saturday, June 18:

“The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension”: One of the greatest cult films of all time, this 1984 action/scifi/comedy/romance stars Peter Weller, John Lithgow, Jeff Goldblum, and a whole lot more. (2:30 pm & 9:30 pm, repeats Sunday; Hollywood Theatre)

“The Internet Cat Video Festival”: Because nothing brings people together like watching a bunch of cute and hilarious YouTube clips in public, this annual event organized by the Walker Art Center makes its fourth visit to Portland. (7 pm, Hollywood Theatre)

 

Sunday, June 19:

“Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine”: This 2014 documentary looks at the life of Shepard, murdered in 2008 as part of an infamous anti-gay hate crime, through the words of those who knew him. (7 pm, Hollywood Theatre)

 

Tuesday, June 21:

“The Devils”: The only known 35mm print of the uncut version of Ken Russell’s notorious 1971 film, in which Oliver Reed plays a 17th-century French cleric who sparks a wave of witchcraft trials in a convent. (7:30 pm, Hollywood Theatre)

 

Wednesday, June 22:

“Ballets Russes”: This 2005 documentary presents the history of the famous dance troupe, which had its heyday in pre-World War II Paris. Oregon Ballet Theater artistic director Kevin Irving, who studied for years under one of the dancers profiled in the film, will lead a pre-film discussion. (7 pm, Hollywood Theatre)  

“Pink Narcissus”: It was thought for years that Andy Warhol may have directed this 1971 underground classic, which depicts the various fantasy lives of a male prostitute as he lounges between clients. It wasn’t, but that gives you an idea of the movie’s dreamy, surreal, queer sensibility. (8 pm, Church of Film at Clinton Street Theater)

 

Thursday, June 23:

“The Accidental Exorcist”: Director Daniel Lipnicki stars in this horror film about a man with an inborn gift for fighting evil. (9:15 pm, repeated Friday at 10:30 pm, Clinton Street Theater)

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