Film Club: Pineapple Express, Man on Wire, The Last Mistress, Vicky Christina Barcelona, Baghead
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
PINEAPPLE EXPRESS : Pineapple Express is both a stoner comedy and a spoof of action movies. It's written by the guys who wrote Superbad and produced by Judd Apatow, who directed Knocked Up . Seth Rogen stars as Dale, a stoner who witnesses a murder committed by a drug lord and a crooked cop. As a result, he and his equally stoned friend Saul, played by James Franco, have to go on the lam. The term Pineapple Express refers to high grade marijuana that is very rare. Judd Apatow has had a lot of success with the lovable losers at the center of his comedies; let's find out if this one succeeds.
Pineapple Express opens in area theaters today.
MAN ON WIRE : In 1974, a group of foreign nationals snuck into the World Trade Center carrying equipment that included heavy grade wire and a bow and arrow. They worked all night preparing for what would happen when daylight arrived. Come morning, Philippe Petit, a French tightrope walker and street performer, walked across a wire suspended between the two towers 110 stories above the ground. He remained on the wire for 45 minutes, attracting a crowd of onlookers on the street below, and finally was taken away by police. The new documentary Man on Wire tells the story of Philippe Petit and his grand caper through interviews with the Petit and his team, reenactments of events, and archival footage.
Man on Wire opens at Landmark's Hillcrest theaters this Friday.
THE LAST MISTRESS : The Last Mistress is a costume drama written and directed by the French director Catherine Breillat, who is best known for the provocative films Romance and Fat Girl . The Last Mistress is set among the French aristocracy in the 1900's and tells the story of a passionate affair between a young woman named Veillini and a penniless nobleman named Ryno, who has just married an innocent heiress. Because of his marriage, Ryno has to end his affair, and this doesn't sit so well with Veillini, who is strong-willed and tempestuous.
The Last Mistress opens at Landmark's La Jolla Village Cinemas this Friday.
VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA : It's another Woody Allen movie, with a couple of interesting back stories. There's another of "those kisses"...and Scarlett Johansson's e-mail relationship with Barack Obama. The movie is set in Barcelona. It's about sexual attraction, and what to do about it, with whom.
Vicky Cristina Barcelona opens on August 15 in area theaters.
BAGHEAD : Two couples go off to spend the weekend in an isolated cabin in the middle of nowhere so they can write a screenplay. But, alas, their efforts are foiled by a guy with a paper bag over his head. This is the basic plot of the horror movie/relationship drama called Baghead. Baghead was written and directed by Jay and Mark Duplass, otherwise known as the Duplass Brothers. Their 2005 movie Puffy Chair was an indie favorite. In this movie, they spoof independent film festivals, moviemaking, and horror movies.
Baghead is currently playing at Landmark's Hillcrest Theaters and tonight's your last night to see it - or rent it on DVD in a couple of months.
Beth Accomando , KPBS film critic.
Scott Marks, author of the film blog Emulsion Compulsion