Film Review

To Hellman and back

The cult director comes to town with his latest, plus some of his greatest

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arts@sfbg.com

FILM "Legendary" is a term often applied to artists distinguished by either ubiquity or scarcity. Monte Hellman definitely falls in the second camp — nearly 80, he's just made his first feature in 22 years, causing a flurry of interest in the sparse 10 he made during the prior three decades he was, relatively speaking, active — movies hardly anyone saw when they came out since none were more than a blip on the commercial radar.Read more »

Buggin' out

Michael Rapaport goes searching for A Tribe Called Quest

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Actor Michael Rapaport probably didn't set out to make a hip-hop Metallica: Some Kind of Monster (2004), but that's pretty much where his portrait of A Tribe Called Quest ends up. The first half of Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest is predictably worshipful, slathering on low angles and slow motion to cover mediocre live shows. More effectively, Rapaport traces the Queens group's brief incubation period and subsequent breakthroughs in what would later be called alternative or, more obnoxiously, conscious hip-hop. Read more »

Black and white and red all over

The San Francisco Silent Film Festival unearths a USSR classic

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Mikhail Kalatozov's career had a large hole in the middle, one that remains incompletely explained. Why were the two periods of his greatest work separated by roughly three decades? Why did he make almost nothing between? The answer definitely involved Stalin and his fickle cultural watchdogs, even if the full reason for such a long lull (or fall from favor) might never be known.Read more »

Smells like motherland spirit

Centre Forward peeks inside North Korean sports culture

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cheryl@sfbg.com

FILM When North Korea makes the news, it's usually under unpleasant headlines containing words like "nuclear" and "hostilities." What most Americans know of this secretive country is either drawn from these dire reports or formed via pop culture. Notable are Vice magazine's surprisingly illuminating North Korean travelogue, which "aired" online, and a pair of 2004 films: doc A State of Mind, about two girls training for the country's circus-on-a-terrifying-scale Mass Games, and, of course, Team America: World Police.Read more »

Down Mexico way

Noir series "Going South" finds dark stories under sunny skies

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In spite of himself

Steve Coogan plays a (hilarious) jerk named Steve Coogan in The Trip

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The faith and the fury

A night with the one and only Klaus Kinski

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The ballad of Peter and Raymond

FRAMELINE FILM FEST: A legendary local odd couple gets its due in Shut Up Little Man! An Audio Misadventure

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arts@sfbg.com

Once upon a time (1987 to be exact), two young men who were old friends moved to San Francisco from the Midwest to take in all the big city had to offer. Like many 20-somethings, Eddie Lee "Sausage" and Mitchell "Mitch D" Deprey didn't have a lot of money and wound up living in a somewhat derelict apartment in the Lower Haight with a bright pink exterior they dubbed "the Pepto Bismol Palace." The paint was peeling and the walls were thin but the rent was cheap.Read more »

Camp rocks

Director and star discuss the proudly un-PC Mangus!

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arts@sfbg.com

FRAMELINE The eponymous character in Ash Christian's Mangus! has a simple ambition: to be Jesus. That is, to play Jesus in the local production of Jesus Christ Spectacular. Mangus does get the part, but his dreams are crushed when a freak limo accident lands him in a wheelchair and his neighbors decide he's no longer cut out to play their Lord and Savior.Read more »

Father's day

Mike Mills' autobiographical Beginners traces one man's late-in-life liberation

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arts@sfbg.com

FILM The central figures in Mike Mills' Beginners — a grown son and his elderly, newly out father — share a relationship rarely featured on screen. But however unique the story seems, it's based on real events in the writer-director's life.

"I thought my dad coming out was the most awesome thing that ever happened in my life," Mills (2005's Thumbsucker) reflects. "What happened between us after he came out — it was the biggest story I had to tell. I like it when filmmakers make really personal stories."Read more »