Tuesday, May 31, 2011

An exciting early summer at the VIFC

As the Hollywood Theatre approaches demolition and video stores everywhere start selling off their stock, cinephiles in Vancouver should perhaps pause for a moment's gratitude that we have two great arthouse & repertory film theatres right downtown. I've written quite a bit about some of the fare playing in the next while at the Pacific Cinematheque - especially the must-see Machete Maidens Unleashed! - but there's also a really strong summer shaping up at the VIFC, aka the Vancity Theatre (1181 Seymour near Davie). There's always room for David Lynch, whose Blue Velvet and Eraserhead will play soon, but the "Surreelists" series, coinciding with a major exhibition of surrealist works at the Vancouver Art Gallery, is most exciting to me for the short selections (June 28th - momentarily not on their website, but double billed with Belle De Jour) and the chance to see two great Jodorowskys projected, El Topo (projected from Blu-Ray) and his under-valued Santa Sangre (from 35 mm!). Their music series includes interesting-sounding docs on Miles Davis and Nina Simone, and there's a whole series of Terence Malick films, programmed just in time for Malick's win of the Palme D'Or for The Tree of Life. I'm probably ready to re-visit The New World - a film that disappointed me on first blush that I have come to appreciate quite deeply. The Thin Red Line, Badlands, and Days of Heaven are all films I watch every few years. There are also two inspired surprises, films I myself have not seen, deeply connected to Malick but not often remarked upon: Pocket Money (with Paul Newman and Lee Marvin; this film I knew about, from reading the box on a VHS copy that kicked around Maple Ridge for awhile, at a Mega Movies) and a film I had never even heard of, The Dion Brothers, AKA The Gravy Train. I think that's the one that will draw the really hardcore film freaks out of the woodwork...

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