Each week here at indieWIRE, five recommendations for theatrical viewing pleasure are being offered up, tackling everything from new releases, to film festivals, to curated series, and events around North America. This week, a slew of Halloween related cinematic events that are occurring across North America, and four new theatrical releases, including Claude Charbol’s last film and the final entry in the Swedish “Millennium Trilogy,” make up those five best bets:
1. Halloween-Related Cinema Events Across North America
What better way to spend your Halloween weekend then taking in some cinematic classics? That’s an easy option in most major cities across North America, with film societies and repertory cinemas pulling out all the stops There’s “Psycho” at the Film Forum, “Buffy The Vampire Slayer” at the IFC Center and the fourth “Scary Movies” series at the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York; Los Angeles is offering “Ghostbusters” at the Egyptian Theater; AFI Silver in Silver Springs, MD is putting on a Halloween on Screen series; Austin-based Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas has a bunch of Hallowe’en-themed films on tap; San Francisco’s The Castro is screening “Poltergeist” with actress JoBeth Williams live in person; and Toronto’s Bell Lightbox is kicking off its first Hallowe’en with loads of events and screenings, including award-winning composer, musician and bandleader Andrew Downing appears live with his ensemble on October 29th to perform their original score for the silent German Expressionist classic The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. And there are probably 100 similar events not noted here. So just check local listings and get into the Halloween spirit.
2. Inspector Bellamy (criticWIRE page)
Pay your respects to one of cinema’s greats with the very last film from French director Claude Chabrol. “Inspector Bellamy,” which had its premiere way back in February 2009 at the Berlin International Film Festival, is coming to U.S. theaters (and on demand) this weekend care of IFC Films. Charbol’s 50th and final film (he passed away last month), teams him up with another French great, Gerard Depardieu. Depardieu plays the titular character, a detective on vacation with his wife when he stumbles upon the case of a man who faked his own death, while at the same time dealing with his down and out brother. Check out the trailer below:
3. Welcome To The Rileys (criticWIRE page)
The best 2010 film starring Kristen Stewart, “Welcome To The Rileys” was saved from a distribution nightmare when Samuel Goldwyn picked it up from original and now defunct distributor Apparition. And with good reason: The film was warmly received at its Sundance premiere, and Stewart alongside James Gandolfini and Melissa Leo make for quite the cast. Leo and Gandolfini play Lois and Doug Riley, a couple dealing with the death of their teenage daughter. She isolates herself in their suburban home, while he messes around with a local waitress. When the waitress dies of cancer cancer, Doug escapes to New Orleans on a business trip. It’s there he meets Mallory (Stewart), a stripper who will end up salvaging both Doug and Lois’s lives.
“Satisfyingly moving if not particularly groundbreaking, ‘Rileys’ was one of two Stewart vehicles at Sundance this year,” Eric Kohn writes in his indieWIRE review. “The other, a loud, messy Joan Jette biopic called ‘The Runaways,’ implied Stewart had lost the capacity for serious dramatic roles. “Rileys” counteracted that presumption, proving that the actress does her best work when toning it down, not turning it up.” Check out the trailer below:
4. Monsters (criticWIRE page)
A more timely option given this weekend’s holiday is Gareth Edwards’ “Monsters.” A hit when it premiered at SXSW earlier this year, the film depicts a world where NASA had discovered the possibility of alien life within our solar system, sending a probe to collect samples. But when the probe crashed over Central America, new life forms – big, monstrous ones – began to appear and half of Mexico was quarantined as an “infected zone.” The film follows a jaded U.S. journalist who agrees to find his boss’ daughter, a shaken American tourist, and escort her through the infected zone to the safety of the U.S. border. Director Edwards shared a scene of the film with indieWIRE earlier this week, and discussed his approach to making it.
5. The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest (criticWIRE page)
Music Box Films hopes to keep the momentum of the “Millennium Trilogy” going this weekend with the third and final film in Daniel Alfredson’s take on Stieg Larsson’s intensely popular novel series, “The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest.” Noomi Rapace returns as Lisbeth Salander, who this time around is recovering in a hospital and awaiting trial for three murders when she is released. In Swedish with English subtitles, it will be the third “Millennium” movie released during an eight month period. The first two have a combined gross of roughly $20 million, a very impressive number for a duo of foreign language films in today’s marketplace, though David Fincher and company might want to up that ante when the big budget English-language adaptation of the series begins hitting theaters next December. The trailer for “The Girl Who Kicked The Nornet’s Nest,” which many are regarding as the series’ best film: