Our weekly look at what’s weird in theaters, on hot-off-the-presses DVDs, and on more distant horizons…
Trailers of new release movies are generally available at the official site links.
It’s a lean week for cinematic weirdness, unless you happen to live in the NYC area (where you can always catch something odd). Stranger days are coming, hopefully…
FILM FESTIVALS – New York Asian Film Festival (New York City, NY, 6/30 – 7/16):
Now in its 16th year, the NYAFF (hosted by Lincoln Center) somehow finds high quality pan-Asian movies overlooked by other festivals. A number of strange-sounding features here, plus a surprise film (presented by a surprise guest) screening on July 15th to unofficially close the festivities. There’s a definite “memory” theme to this years offerings: at least three features involve the ability to remove or implant memories, usually via a helmet.
- Battle of Memories – Chinese sci-fi thriller about a novelist undergoing a future brain procedure who is accidentally implanted with a serial killer’s memories. Screens July 1st only.
- Happiness – A mysterious wanderer brings a helmet that allows the wearer to relive happy memories to a small Japanese town. Screening July 14.
- Jane – A transgender angel takes a misfit teen under her wing in this arty strangeness from South Korea. July 13, with the director and actors on hand for a Q&A.
- Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back – This fantasy/comedy spectacle is already out on DVD, but here’s a chance for New Yorkers to catch it on the big screen on July 8.
- KFC – The fast food giant won’t be using this “sick” Vietnamese omnibus film, featuring cannibalism, in its ads anytime soon. July 6.
- The Mole Song: Hong Kong Capriccio – Fest programmers are playing up the weirdness in ‘s latest (that’s a phrase we type about three times a year), calling it “delirious” and “WTF.” See it July 14.
- Suffering of Ninko – A Japanese Buddhist monk is cursed to be irresistible to members of either sex; Variety promisingly called it “beyond weird even by Japanese standards.” Screens July 9.
- Town in a Lake – A “Twin Peaks” like town in the Philippines hosts moral corruption while supernatural beings haunt the surrounding forest. Screening July 6.
- The Village of No Return – Period Taiwanese martial arts weirdness with multiple plot strands including a Taoist priest with a helmet that removes memories. Catch it July 2.
CERTIFIED WEIRD (AND OTHER) REPERTORY SCREENINGS:
- Chicago, IL, 6/30 – 7/6 – 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). At Music Box Theater.
- Los Angeles, CA, 6/30 (midnight) & 7/3 – Valerie and Her Week of Wonders (1970). At Cinefamily.
- Los Angeles, CA, 7/3 – 7/5 – Stalker (1979). At Cinefamily.
- New York City, NY, 6/30 – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004). At Videology Bar & Cinema.
- New York City, NY, 6/30 (midnight) – The Apple (1980). At Videology Bar & Cinema.
- New York City, NY, 6/30 – 7/6 – Stalker (1979). At IFC Center.
- Silver Spring, MD, 6/30-7/3, 7/6 – Mulholland Drive (2001). At AFI Silver Theater.
- Silver Spring, MD, 7/2-7/3, 7/6. Lost Highway (1997). At AFI Silver Theater.
The Salt Lake City band Visitors is anchored by the bass playing of one Cameron Jorgensen, better known in these parts as your dedicated Saturday Short curator. Visitors is on the move—they’re the first band on the new label Formant Records. They’re releasing the EP “Vortices, a Foreword” in July, with a full-length album tentatively scheduled for February 2018. “Mutineers” (video below) is the teaser single. If hard progressive rock is your bag, give ’em a listen (and a purchase). More Visitors songs and merchandise are available at Formant Records or their Bandcamp page.
Now prepare yourselves to rock.
What are you looking forward to? If you have any weird movie leads that I have overlooked, feel free to leave them in the COMMENTS section.