Summer Movies 2009
By Ray Pride
June’s 5 Can’t-Miss Movies
Francis Ford Coppola shoots largely in black-and-white in the colorful city of Buenos Aires in his self-financed, self-produced, self-distributed roman-a-clef based on the creative lives of his father, brother and himself. With Vincent Gallo as “Porteño Boy.”
2 Away We Go
Sam Mendes directs a sharp comedy script from Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida: what’s it like in America today to be in your early thirties, expecting a child and not knowing home? Enter: road trip!
Christian Petzold’s quiet refashioning of “The Postman Always Rings Twice” to contemporary rural Germany has fierce implications throughout.
Low-fi sci-fi about a man’s self-discovery off-planet with a fine Sam Rockwell turn.
5 Whatever Works
Larry David steps his big sneakers into Woody Allen’s place in a 30-year-old script about… a misanthropic older man and a much, much younger woman.
July’s 5 Can’t-Miss Movies
1 Public Enemies
Michael Mann makes digital art of the Dillinger tale, shooting largely on Illinois locations.
2 The Hurt Locker
Kathryn Bigelow’s apparently made the explosive masterpiece everyone’s been waiting for since “Near Dark.” And could this be the Iraq-set movie that actually catches fire with audiences?
3 Three Monkeys
Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s latest fine-art enterprise is a heightened photographic beauty about bad intentions and troubled relationships: nothing new there.
4 Funny People
Judd L. Brooks? James L. Apatow? The director of “Knocked Up” writes and directs his two-and-a-half-hour-plus comic opera about comedy after life after fear of imminent death. With the usual Apatow boners (including Apatow spouse Leslie Mann), plus Adam Sandler and Eric Bana, who began as a stand-up.
5 Made In U.S.A/Two Or Three Things I Know About Her
Further 35mm restorations of Jean-Luc Godard’s bold-‘n’-bright 1960s output.
August’s 5 Can’t-Miss Movies
Miyazaki-san, still hand-drawn, still filled with wonder.
Austria’s foreign-language Academy Award nominee is a gritty neo-noir that tightens the screws again and again. Redemption does not always follow revenge.
3 The September Issue
R. J. Cutler goes to press with Vogue’s Anna Wintour: a biting look at the bitter fashion trade that may already be in the throes of obsolescence.
4 Paper Heart
Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera in a mock-doc about their deadpan real-life relationship. More twee than a teenage tweet?
5 Inglourious Basterds
If the finished product is anything like the script leaked onto the Internet (conceivably by Tarantino’s own minions), the results will either be beyond obseen or close to genious. Three hours of Jewish soldiers scalping Nazis alternating with sequences of French filmmaking under the Occupation? Pass the pipe.