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Film (52)

How poetry heals — Documentary film 'The Revival' centers black women poets past and present

The Revival: Women & the Word follows the progression of a poetry tour of the same name, as we travel through seven cities with the poets, artists, and volunteers of The Revival. The film lays out in an intricately nuanced way that yes, the world unfolds to women of color when we spread out into it, when we press our bodies against it and heave. But it also holds a truth which many in this society don't wish to…

A Story of Fire and Gold — 'Dawson City' Shows the History of Film

Celluloid nitrate, the medium of the first motion pictures, is a direct descendent of a military explosive. Stored improperly, it spontaneously bursts into flame. Most of it has burned or been lost. But some reels in the Yukon have survived an improbable life, death and rebirth. Filmmaker Bill Morrison lets the film itself tell its story, in his ingenious, mesmerizing documentary, Dawson City: Frozen Time. Early on, the camera pans over sepia stills of shiny celluloid…

Giving In to The Lure: A Lush, Lustful Mermaid Film at SPACE Gallery

A Disney mermaid movie “The Lure” is not. “Help us come to shore,” sing its two young mermaid sisters, Silver (Marta Mazurek) and Golden (Michalina Olszanska), in dulcet duet to three drunk revelers on the shore, and then: “We won’t eat you yet.” We shift to a techno beat and a sparkly, boozy cabaret, where those revelers are the house band. In a back room, they examine their catch. “Smooth as Barbies down there,” one of them marvels.…

Love and Rage — Watching James Baldwin's I Am Not Your Negro

Some of the most acute and devastating insights on race in America came from African-American writer James Baldwin. He grew up in Harlem, moved to Paris to flee racism, and returned for a time during the American Civil Rights Movement; his analysis of the nation has the depth of a thinker who is at once native son and outsider. Director Raoul Peck places Baldwin at the center of a new film, I Am Not Your…

Stooges revisited: Jarmusch explores heady days of Iggy Pop

In the early eighties Jim Jarmusch was part of a wave of filmmakers inspired by punk rock. With its minimalist non-plot and stark, noir-ish texture, his first feature film, "Stranger Than Paradise," was emblematic of the same DIY qualities as the corresponding indie music movement. His first foray into rock filmmaking, "Year of the Horse," which followed Neil Young and Crazy Horse on their 1996 tour, might have seemed a bit incongruous for a street-punk…

Maine Cannabis Film Festival explores battles for medical pot across the globe

Next month, Mainers will vote on whether to legalize recreational marijuana for adults over the age of 21. The state legalized medical marijuana in 1999, but since then, several other ballot measures to let one light up without a pot license have failed.     The Maine Cannabis Film Festival, on Oct. 22 and 23 at the Empire in Portland, features 14 hours and 17 different takes on the topic, from documentary to comedy, education…

Food for thought: Sausage Party co-writer muses about crude humor, where to draw the line

Ariel Shaffir, one of the co-writers of the current R-rated, animated hit “Sausage Party,” first met Seth Rogen on a camping trip to the Holy Land in 1998. Years later, Shaffir befriended Rogen’s writing partner Evan Goldberg at McGill University. After Rogen and Goldberg found some success, Goldberg suggested Shaffir and his writing partner Kyle Hunter come work for him. Shaffir has been involved as a writer or a producer on several films, most starring…

Kinonik movie series revives classic screenings on Exchange

The marquee at the Movies on Exchange Street is lit back up, with a new nonprofit group taking over to bring movies on film to Portland again. The Kinonik movie series opened this past First Friday with “The Third Man,” Graham Greene’s story of World War II intrigue set in Vienna and starring Orson Welles, Joseph Cotton and Trevor Howard. The name of the film series comes from the old Kino Kabaret, an innovative filmmaking…

PMA’s big screen: Museum features revamped film series with dining options

Portlanders often bemoan the lost of the art movie house that once blessed Exchange Street, and add wouldn’t it be nice to order food and wine, sit in a comfy chair and watch amazing films otherwise only available at film festivals. But the Portland Museum of Art’s revamped film program offers to fill this urge for better entertainment, starting last week with the sold-out Portland premiere of Tumbledown, and following up this weekend with The…
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