CINEMA CHAT – JULY 26TH 

Listen to this week’s Cinema Chat from WEMU 89.1 with David Fair at http://wemu.org/post/cinema-chat-dont-worry-he-wont-get-far-foot-eighth-grade-hot-summer-nights-and-more

OPENING DOWNTOWN

At the Michigan: In Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot John Callahan (played by Joaquin Phoenix) ends in a catastrophic car accident after an all-night drinking bender, but the last thing he intends to do is give up drinking. However, when he reluctantly enters treatment with encouragement from his girlfriend and a charismatic sponsor (played by Jonah Hill), Callahan discovers a gift for drawing edgy, irreverent newspaper cartoons that develop an international following and grant him a new lease on life. Critics Consensus: Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot avoids inspirational biopic clichés thanks to sensitive work from writer-director Gus Van Sant and the admirable efforts of a well-chosen cast.

At the State: This year’s Cinetopia Film Festival opening night film Eighth Grade follows thirteen-year-old Kayla who endures the tidal wave of contemporary suburban adolescence as she makes her way through the last week of middle school, the end of her thus far disastrous eighth grade year before she begins high school. Critics Consensus: Eighth Grade takes a look at its titular time period that offers a rare and resounding ring of truth while heralding breakthroughs for writer-director Bo Burnham and captivating star Elsie Fisher.

At the State: Blindspotting stars Daveed Diggs as Collin, who must make it through his final three days of probation for a chance at a new beginning. He and his troublemaking childhood best friend, Miles (played by Rafael Casal), work as movers, and when Collin witnesses a police shooting, the two men’s friendship is tested as they grapple with identity and their changed realities in the rapidly-gentrifying neighborhood they grew up in. Longtime friends and collaborators, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal co-wrote and star in this timely and wildly entertaining story about friendship and the intersection of race and class set against the backdrop of Oakland. Critics Consensus: As timely as it is overall impactful, Blindspotting blends buddy comedy with seething social commentary, and rises on the strength of Daveed Diggs’ powerful performance.

SPECIAL SCREENINGS DOWNTOWN

SavCo Hospitality Summer Classic Film Series returns with more selections than ever celebrating generations of filmmakers and their nostalgic treasures. The Michigan Theater will have screenings every Sundayat 1:30 PM and Tuesday at 7:00 PM. Finishing off the summer is a James Bond retrospective Double-O Summer will be Casino Royale, which will play Sunday, July 29 at 1:30 PM. James Bond sets out on his first mission as 007, and must defeat a private banker to terrorists in a high stakes game of poker at Casino Royale, Montenegro, but things are not what they seem. On Tuesday, July 31 at 7:00 PM Skyfall willplay, where James Bond’s loyalty to M is tested when her past comes back to haunt her. When MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.

This Saturday’s Midnight at the State feature will be the Oscar-winning horror masterpiece Get Out where a white girlfriend invites her black boyfriend for a weekend getaway to meet her parents, but as the weekend progresses a series of increasingly disturbing discoveries lead him to a truth that he could have never imagined. Midnights are also only $8 screenings!

CONTINUING DOWNTOWN

At the State: In Three Identical Strangers three strangers are reunited by astonishing coincidence after being born identical triplets, separated at birth, and adopted by three different families. Their jaw-dropping, feel-good story instantly becomes a global sensation complete with fame and celebrity, however, the fairy-tale reunion sets in motion a series of events that unearth an unimaginable secret – a secret with radical repercussions for us all.

At the State: Sorry to Bother You, which takes place in in a dystopian, not-too-distant future Oakland, California. Black telemarketer Cassius Green (played by Lakeith Stanfield) discovers a magical key to professional success, which propels him into a macabre universe of “powercalling” that leads to material glory.

Moving to the Michigan from the State: Won’t You Be My Neighbor takes an intimate look at America’s favorite neighbor: Mister Fred Rogers. A portrait of a man whom we all think we know, this emotional and moving film takes us beyond the zip-up cardigans and the land of make-believe, and into the heart of a creative genius who inspired generations of children with compassion and limitless imagination.

At the Michigan: And RBG is an intimate portrait of an unlikely rock star: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. With unprecedented access, the filmmakers explore how her early legal battles changed the world for women.

OPENING AT THE MULTIPLEX

One of Cinetopia Film Festival’s Secretopia films this year Hot Summer Nights opens this Friday, July 27 in theaters. It is a story of Daniel Middleton (played Timothée Chalamet), a likable but socially awkward recent high-school graduate, who is spending the summer before college visiting Cape Cod. Neither a “townie” nor a wealthy “summer bird” dropping in for the season, Daniel struggles to find his place-until he meets Hunter, the local bad-boy who peddles marijuana to well-off vacationers when he isn’t protecting his younger sister from overzealous male suitors. Sensing an opportunity, Daniel persuades Hunter to go into business, dealing weed up and down the Cape together as the summer heat intensifies. That’s all for this week. See you at the movies!

From Russell B. Collins
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Director, State & Michigan Theaters – Ann Arbor
Founder/Director, Art House Convergence – Utah
Artistic Dir. /Founder, Cinetopia Festival Detroit/A2

Strengthening communities with persistent creativity