WEIRD HORIZON FOR THE WEEK OF 4/23/2010

A 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):

Best Worst Movie (2010):  This documentary on an unlikely subject—the making of the laughably inept 1980s horror Troll 2, a movie featuring vegetarian goblins—is an even more improbable critical favorite.  Premiering this week in Austin, TX at the famous Alamo Drafthouse; coming in future weeks and months to Warsaw, Poland; New York City; Los Angeles; Salt Lake City; San Francisco; Dallas; Seattle; Tuscon; Washington, D.C.; St. Louis; Atlanta; Minneapolis; and Cambridge, MA.  Best Worst Movie official site.

The Good, the Bad, and the Weird (2008):  Obviously, we have to mention this one because of the title, even though it refers to one of the characters rather than to the movie’s guiding principle.  A Korean tribute to the Sergio Leone classic set in the Manchurian desert; a cult buzz has been steadily building on this one as it blazed its way across the festival circuit.  Playing New York this week and Los Angeles the following week; hopefully it will make its way towards the middle of the country thereafter.  The Good, the Bad, and the Weird official site (Japanese).


Red Birds (2010): Apparently, the concept is that the director has selected various female artists, associated each with a particular bird, and allowed them to speak on random subjects while birdwatching footage of their avian plays.  New York movie critics who would normally lap up a feminist documentary have been moved to call it “irritating,” “tedious,” and to warn that “Eventually, the desire to scream ‘What, exactly, is going on here?’ will become overwhelming.” Playing to the director’s friends and family at Anthology Archives in New York City all week.   Red Birds at Anthology Film Archives.

IN POST-PRODUCTION:

Hamlet A.D.D.:  Hamlet is recast as a time-tripper with feet of clay who procrastinates from avenging his father’s murder through the ages, from the 1600s to the 1970s to the distant future.  A completed scene from this, featuring Kevin Murphy and Trace Beaulieu as the voices of two robots who perform “The Mousetrap” on a 1950s television broadcast, was included as an extra on the Mystery Science Theater 3000, Vol. XV box set, so we can verify that this is going to be cool and bizarre.  Hamlet A.D.D. official site.

FILM FESTIVALS – SUBMISSIONS WANTED:

“Pure Dreams,” an international festival of independent films, is seeking submissions for its thirteenth annual competition to be held in November in St. Petersburg, Russia.  The deadline for submissions is Oct 1.  More information can be found at the festival’s official site, and an application form (in English) can be downloaded here.

NEW ON DVD:

44 Inch Chest (2009): London gangster drama about an aging bad guy who kidnaps an enemy he believes slept with his wife and considers taking revenge while being egged on by his sleazy, foul-mouthed mates.  Includes fantasy sequences, which is why we mention it.  From the writers of Sexy Beast and the producers of Being John Malkovich and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Buy 44 Inch Chest.

The Lovely Bones (2009):  Read our capsule review.  Peter Jackson’s slightly weird, slightly disappointing tale of a murdered girl who tracks her killer from the afterlife. Buy The Lovely Bones.

Peacock (2010): Direct-to-DVD psychological thriller about a bank clerk in 1950s Nebraska with a split personality—the second personality being a woman named Emma who harbors some secrets. The sparse reviews are generally positive.  Starring Cillian Murphy with, Ellen Page, Bill Pullman Keith Carradine, and Susan Sarandon (who also appears this week in The Lovely Bones). Buy Peacock.

NEW ON BLU-RAY:

44 Inch Chest (2009): See entry in DVD above. Buy 44 Inch Chest [Blu-ray].

The Lovely Bones (2009): See entry in DVD above. Buy The Lovely Bones [Blu-ray].

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.

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