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Movies This Week: February 27-March 5, 2015

27 February 2015 12:00 PM, PST

 

The biggest Austin Film Society event for this week (an advance screening of Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter) is already sold out, but It still has some gems on the calendar. The org is hosting a secret double feature at the Afs Screening Room on Sunday afternoon with Fred Frey, a film collector who specializes in European exploitation and crime films. He'll be screening two rare 16mm prints from his private collection.

On Wednesday night, Afs is teaming up with IndieMeme for Katiyabaaz (Powerless), a documentary about the Indian city of Kanpur and the limitations of their electrical grid to power over 3 million residents. Filmmaker Fahad Mustafa will be in attendance for a Q&A. Thursday night brings another installment of Essential Cinema. This month's theme "Children Of Abraham/Ibrahim 9: Films Of The Middle East Diaspora" and this week you'll get a 35mm print of the 1997 Miramax release My Son, »

- Matt Shiverdecker

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What's Streaming: Flawed But Still Very Very Funny

26 February 2015 12:30 PM, PST

With the slightest excuse, I can go on and on about how Some Like It Hot is truly the perfect comedy if not the perfect movie. Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond's script has a perfect symmetry -- every setup is paid off, every gag is repeated bigger, better and often with a kind of lyricism ("we have the same type blood, type O"). The timing of the maracas scene is breathtakingly brilliant. People like to gossip about director Wilder's difficulty in working with Marilyn Monroe but you see none of that onscreen. Most importantly, I've seen the movie countless times but it's still funny, every single time.

Recently I've been interested in -- and vastly entertained by -- comedies that aren't perfect, and that don't quite work for one reason or another. The thin, ridiculous plot is just an excuse for strings and strings of gags. You can see »

- Jette Kernion

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'5 to 7' Proves Romantic Comedy Still Exists

23 February 2015 9:30 AM, PST

I've never been particularly fond of romantic comedies on the whole. For me, it is the one genre of film that I've found to be the most blatantly straightforward and unsurprising. The standard setups, usual characters and typical obstacles are always present and accounted for, regardless of how some filmmakers try to dress things up. And while such romantic comedy blueprints have given vast amounts of joy to countless movie lovers for ages, it seemed that there was always something lacking for me within that world.

It's true, you may find a title or two in my DVD collection that bears the romantic comedy stamp, but those specific titles tell stories of love from different angles. Take for example the little-seen Til There Was You (1997), a small film about two adults who experience a number of failed romances over the course of two decades, only to finally meet each other »

- Frank Calvillo

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