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 on the official site links.
IN THEATERS (LIMITED RELEASE):
The Frame: We respect Ink under wraps, so suffice it to say it involves a thief, a paramedic, and an alternate universe. Playing now in the Winan’s hometown of Denver, or it can be downloaded directly from the movie’s homepage. Look for a review soon. The Frame official site.‘s desire to keep the details of this long-gestating fantasy followup to 2009’s Certified Weird
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night: An Iranian vampire romance set in a depraved urban netherworld, stylistically influenced by Spaghetti westerns. Shocked, but delighted, that this Middle Eastern oddity is getting an actual release in the States (thanks to Vice Magazine’s venture into film distribution). Look for a review from us as soon as next week. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night official site.
The King and the Mockingbird (1980): A mockingbird takes it upon himself to thwart an evil king. This classic (and reportedly somewhat surreal) French animation was begun in 1948 and not completed until 1980; then, due to squabbles over the rights it was never released in the United States—until now. The King and the Mockingbird official site.
Story of My Death: The scenario is simply stated: it’s Casanova meets Count Dracula (literally). Another foreign vampire film we never thought we’d see on commercial U.S. screens (however limited, because as far as we know Anthology Film Archives in NYC is the only place it’s playing). Story of My Death at Anthology Film Archives.
NEW ON DVD:
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920): A traveling mesmerist and his somnamulist show up in a German town, and murder follows. Kino restores an all-time Expressionist classic, just like last year’s excellent Nosferatu release. Buy The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.
Christmas Evil (1980): Read our review. Vinegar Syndrome brings the best and most unusual movie in the “killer Claus” subgenre back in time for the holidays with this lavish Blu-ray/DVD combo pack complete with three commentary tracks (including one from Evil champion John Waters). Buy Christmas Evil [Blu-ray/DVD combo pack].
Mauvais Sang (1986): As a social disease is ravaging Paris, a young card shark becomes involved with a gangster’s daughter and her father’s plot to steal microbes. Leos Carax‘ films just kept (keep) getting weirder, and he’s already pretty bizarre in this second outing. The second disc of the two discs contains Mr. X, is a documentary on the pseudonymous Carax. Buy Mauvais Sang.
NEW ON BLU-RAY:
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920): See description in DVD above. At the time of this writing the Blu-ray edition was actually listing for $2.50 less than the DVD. Buy The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari [Blu-ray].
Christmas Evil (1980): See description in DVD above. Buy Christmas Evil [Blu-ray/DVD combo pack].
Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989): A 13-year old witch starts a broomstick-based delivery service. One of Hayao Miyazaki‘s more conventional outings, but his animations are always inspiring for fans of the weird. Buy Kiki’s Delivery Service [Blu-ray].
Mauvais Sang (1986): See description in DVD above. Buy Mauvais Sang [Blu-ray].
Princess Mononoke (1997): A young warrior tries to intercede in a war between humans and forest spirits in this fantasy parable. Disney is getting close to the end of their Miyazaki Blu-ray upgrades, though we’re still awaiting Spirited Away. Buy Princess Mononoke [Blu-ray].
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014): See description in DVD above. The Blu-ray pack includes a DVD and a 3D disc (that almost no one has the hardware to play). Buy Frank Miller’s Sin City: A Dame to Kill For [Blu-ray].
David Lynch/Patti Smith conversation: BBC’s “Newsnight” runs a series called “Encounters,” which I’ve never heard of before but which apparently involves bringing two celebrities/experts together for a conversation. The pairing of punk poet Patti Smith and neo-Surrealist icon David Lynch is inspired. They discuss creativity, Pussy Riot, Blue Velvet (the song and the movie), and “Twin Peaks,” and there are Eraserhead clips. Must see webcasting. Patti Smith and David Lynch talk Twin Peaks, Blue Velvet and Pussy Riot and BBC.co.uk.
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.