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Goodbye, Kirk Cousins! Please Introduce Our Movie Listings In That Freakishly Normie Way of Yours.

Pretty much all the movies you can catch in Twin Cities theaters this week.

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As Minnesota bids farewell to the incredibly strange Kirk Cousins, let's remember our death-anticipatory QB's contribution to film criticism.

We are agreed, Kirk. We are so agreed.

Special Screenings

Thursday, March 14

Forty-Seven Days With Jesus (2024)
AMC Rosedale 14/AMC Southdale 16
"I know you guys are good friends, but really, don't you think it's time he found his own place?" $16.35. 7 p.m. More info here.

Repo Man (1984)
Grandview 1&2
Personally, I like ordinary fucking people. $12. 9:15 p.m. Saturday 11:59 p.m. More info here.

City Lights (1931)
The Heights
The ending gets me every time. $12. 7:30 p.m. More info here.

Castro's Spies (2020)
The Main
A doc about Cuban spies sent undercover in the U.S. in the '90s. $7-$10. 7 p.m. More info here.

Sun Seekers (1958)
Trylon
In this East German film, a young woman sentenced to work in a mine finds her place in society. Free. 7 p.m. More info here.

Friday, March 15

The Museum of Home Video, Live and in Person
Trylon
The found footage livestream presents two new edits: Ring, Ring: a Doorbell Cam Fantasia and Museum of Home Video’s Guide to Infomercials. $8. Friday-Saturday 7 p.m. Sunday 3 p.m. More info here.

Saturday, March 16

The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009)
Alamo Drafthouse
Guessing this is the one with the werewolf kid? $14. 6:30 p.m. More info here.

Jumanji (1995)
The Parkway
This game is out of control! $5-$10. 1 p.m. More info here.

The Movie Orgy (1968)
Trylon
Joe Dante and Jon Davision put together this wild found-footage edit, which was legendary but hard to find till recently. Free for Trylon Club Members only. 1 p.m. More info here.

Sunday, March 17

The Quiet Man (1952)
Alamo Drafthouse
John Wayne goes to Ireland. $10. 11 a.m. More info here.

The End of Evangelion (1997)
AMC Southdale 16/Emagine Willow Creek
Why didn't they just call it Evangeli-end? Also Wednesday. $11. 4 p.m. More info here.

Labyrinth (1986)
AMC Rosedale 14/AMC Southdale 16/Emagine Willow Creek
Bowie had a strange '80s. $16.35. 3 & 7 p.m. More info here.

Jurassic Park (1993)
Emagine Willow Creek
This movie is from back before they knew that bringing dinosaurs back was a bad idea. Also Wednesday. $11. 11:30 a.m. & 6:30 p.m. More info here.

Cop Land (1997)
Trylon
Crooked NYC cops live in Jersey, where the law can't reach them. $8. 5 & 7:15 p.m. Monday-Tuesday 7 & 9:15 p.m. More info here.

Monday, March 18

Suspiria (2018)
Alamo Drafthouse
It's no Suspiria (1977). $10. 6:15 p.m. More info here.

The Deadly Spawn (1983)
Emagine Willow Creek
A beloved low-budget monsters-from-space flick. $6. 7:30 p.m. More info here.

Tuesday, March 19

Above the Rim (1994)
Alamo Drafthouse
Tupac is a bad influence on a high school basketball player. $7. 6:15 p.m. More info here.

Wednesday, March 20

The Fugitive (1993)
Alamo Drafthouse
Harrison Ford is on the run! $10. 6:15 p.m. More info here.

The Ark and the Darkness (2024)
AMC Rosedale 14/AMC Southdale 16
Noah's flood—proven by science! $16.35. 7 p.m. More info here.

Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)
Grandview 1&2
These two young men certainly grew up well, didn't they? $12. 9:15 p.m. More info here.

Women's Adventure Film Tour (2024)
Riverview
Time for the annual film celebrating the feats of women. $7. 7 p.m. More info here.

The Big Lebowski (1998)
Showplace ICON
Never heard of it. $7. 7 p.m. More info here.

Tales of the Third Dimension (1984)
Trylon
A spooooky (and/or goooofy) horror anthology from the '80s. $5. 7 p.m. More info here.

Opening This Week

Follow the links for showtimes.

The American Society of Magical Negroes
Can a movie satirize racist movie tropes without just rehashing them? We shall see.

Arthur the King
A dog helps Mark Wahlberg out.

Glitter & Doom
An Indigo Girls jukebox musical about lovers named just guess & just guess? Thanks but that's a little too close to fine for me.

Love Lives Bleeding
The Kristen Stewart lesbian bodybuilder movie is here at last. Full review tomorrow.

One Life
Not to be confused with One Love.

Pitch People (1999)
For whatever reason, Emagine theaters are showing this old doc about celebrity endorsers like Ed McMahon and infomercial regulars like Ron Popeil (the "but wait, there's more" guy) all week.

Snack Shack
Two teens take over a pool's snack bar, but their friendship is threatened by the arrival of a hot girl lifeguard.

They Shot the Piano Player
The story of how Brazilian bossa nova pianist Francisco Tenório Júnior fell into the hands of government thugs in '70s Buenos Aires is worth telling. But this ain't how. The interview subjects may be choice (Caetano Veloso, Milton Nascimento, Gilberto Gil) but (merely serviceable) animation can't gussy up a rote talking heads doc. And I don't care how much you love Jeff Goldblum, who stands in here for the music journalist who originally did the legwork on this story—his familiar, unvarying vocal cadences sure do wear over the long haul.
C+

YOLO
In this comedy, a Chinese woman decides to start boxing.

Ongoing in Local Theaters

Follow the links for showtimes.

American Fiction
Jeffrey Wright never misses (his brief turn as Adam Clayton Powell Jr. was a highlight of last year's by-the-numbers Bayard Rustin biopic, Rustin), and he's reliably hilarious as an intellectual Black novelist who dumbs down to write a book in "realistic" hood style. Once My Pafology becomes a bestseller and a hit with the literati, Wright's Thelonious "Monk" Ellison has to get in character as its thug author to promote the book. Meanwhile, Monk has to live his real life: dating a neighbor, mourning his sister's death, dealing with his mother's dementia, and clashing with his newly out brother. Phew! The suggestion is that we, like the fans of Monk's Black stereotypes, will only watch a movie about an upper-middle-class Black family if we're hooked by a more sensational story. But for that clever bait-and-switch to work, you need to tell a much more interesting story about an upper-middle-class Black family. B+

Anyone But You

Argylle
Doesn't Sam Rockwell have better things to do? Are the visual effects trash because the team got lazy or on purpose, for, like, camp reasons? Why didn't Henry Cavill and John Cena kiss? Doesn't Bryce Dallas Howard have better things to do? These are just a few of the questions with which I distracted myself while waiting for meta-hack Matthew Vaughn's latest manic foray into ridic spyjinks to end, and in fact, I'm still not sure that a part of me isn't still back at the Showplace ICON, where I will remain forever, grimacing through one self-referential post-credits scene after another. Winking so hard you hope he'll sprain his stupid face, Vaughn hustles Howard and Rockwell through a plot that's about as fun to untangle as an extension cord; BDH writes spy novels that are so good real spies want her dead, and it just gets weirder and more hectic from there in that "everything's a joke and nothing's funny" post-MCU way. Wait, did I hear someone say "I hope there's a shitty CGI cat in this!"? How could there not be? C

Bob Marley: One Love
For me, the most forgivable music biopic cliché is the scene in the studio “where it all comes together,” usually after the genius has been struggling to articulate his vision to the band. At least in their clumsy way scenes like this try to understand where great music comes from. And so the best part of this rote retelling of the reggae great’s life, rigorously vetted by his family, comes during the Exodus sessions, where new guitarist Junior Murvin adds a rock tinge to the Wailers’ established sound. As for the rest, well, it’s not all as ridiculous as when Bob and his crew leave a Clash show and stroll blithely through London as riots break out behind them, or the singer’s flashbacks to his youth that occur while he’s performing on stage, but if you know anything about Bob Marley’s life, you’ll learn nothing new here. Lashana Lynch does what she can as Rita Marley, James Norton’s job as Chris Blackwell is to keep saying “I don’t know if that’ll work, Bob,” and Kingsley Ben-Adir has real screen presence but his charisma doesn’t suggest Bob’s own. Optimistically, I’ll take the movie’s success as a good sign that there’s real hunger to know more about one of the great international Black diasporan culture heroes, and I hope the curious don’t stop here. Read Chris Salewicz's Bob Marley: The Untold Story or Timothy White’s Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley or, hell, Marlon James’s A Brief History of Seven Killings, which fictionalizes Marley’s shooting. Watch any number of YouTube clips, including Marley’s 1977 set at the Rainbow. And definitely listen to the music. If you know Legend, which you probably do even if you’ve never listened to it on purpose, go back to Marley’s start at Island Records—Burnin’Natty Dread, and Catch a Fire. Sample the earlier Studio One recordings. And don’t stop there. C+

Cabrini

The Chosen Season 4: Episodes 7-8

Demon Slayer: To the Hashira Training

Drive-Away Dolls
In Joel Coen’s first effort without his brother, his wife played Lady Macbeth. Ethan Coen responds by writing a trashy little lesbian road trip flick with his wife, Tricia Cooke, that someone talked them out of titling Drive-Away Dykes. Does this contrast offer some insight into the sensibility that each brother brings to the table? Maybe, maybe not. But while the former could be enjoyed apart from the Coens’ collective oeuvre, the latter all but begs for comparison: This is Coens lite, with all the frenetic energy and silly accents but little of the inspired zaniness. Two young Philly lesbians (a bit too broadly Texan Margaret Qualley and a pitch-perfectly uptight Geraldine Viswanathan) agree to drop a car off in Tallahassee. Is there something in the trunk they don’t know about? Oh, there sure is, sister. Are the goons dispatched after these ladies comically inept? Funny you should ask. Does the plot revolve around Matt Damon’s penis? OK, that I didn’t necessarily see coming. Drive-Away Dolls is brisk and harmless, with Coen trading in fatalism for friskiness. But while it’s nice to see him working with younger actors, a little Beanie Feldman goes a long way, and an un-youthful Bill Camp, as a sour car rental clerk, gives the best performance here. B

Dune: Part 2 (read the full review here)
The first part of Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation was a well-crafted slog, occasionally spectacular but often merely studently, as the director seemed intent to prove that he deserved the assignment. But with all the power players set in place, Part Two does an awful lot right. Villeneuve distills the essence of the novel’s currents of deception and misdirection into a legible screenplay while generating some truly uncanny moments. And as Paul Atreides, Timothée Chalamet shows us a man who makes a pragmatic decision to exploit the dogmatism of his followers because he believes that every other choice will cause more death and destruction, or who at least rationalizes his motives that way. With IP-recycling now the culture industry’s standard cannibalistic practice, Villeneuve, like Paul, imagines himself the good guy in this scenario, respectful of the traditions placed in his care rather than merely exploitative. But also like Paul there are forces at play beyond his control. So what happens when Villeneuve’s hero threatens to become a butcher? Stay tuned for Part 3. B+

Imaginary

Killers of the Flower Moon
Martin Scorsese has always shoved the futility of a thug’s life in our faces, but in his later years he’s taken a longer, historicized view of the banality of crime. Participating in the attempted genocide of the Osage Nation under the delusion that he’s helping his family, Leonardo DiCaprio’s dim Ernest Burkhart is kin to Robert De Niro’s Frank Sheeran in The Irishman, a man who squanders his life as a goon in the service of powerful, violent men. But this film belongs to Lily Gladstone as Burkhart’s Osage wife Mollie. With her impassive gaze, a smile that reveals nothing while edging toward a smirk, and eyes that eyes can tease without mocking, rage with sadness, or go dead-blank with shock, she takes center stage here to represent all the people (and particularly women) that Scorsese pictures have happened to over the years. A-

Kung Fu Panda 4

Madame Web
OK, fine, I saw it. And no matter what you’ve heard, this lackluster mess is no camp classic. In fact, before Dakota Johnson clocks out entirely and starts delivering her lines like she’s reading an eye chart, her aloof frustration is entertaining, albeit in a way I wouldn’t exactly call great acting. And there’s a fun rapport between the three “teens”—uptight Julia (Sydney Sweeney), bratty Mattie (Celeste O'Connor), and brainiac Anya (Isabela Merced)—who Johnson’s Cassie Webb has to protect after she has visions of their death. Still, a mess it is. We’re shown that the three girls will have superpowers—but only in the future. (We’ve had so many origin stories on film, now we’re doing pre-origin stories?) And writer/director S.J. Clarkson, with help from the screenwriting brain trust behind Morbius, decides to keep reminding us that Sony has the rights to all Spider-Man characters except the important one—not only is Ben Parker Cassie’s pal, but we watch Emma Roberts give birth to (an unnamed) Peter Parker. Oops, almost forgot to mention the villain, probably because he’s so forgettable. You can distract yourself from the dull goings-on by spotting weird incongruities (when Cassie returns from a trip to Peru, she’s still driving the cab she stole earlier in the movie?) but if you get more than a few snickers from this, you’re way more desperate for crap than I am. C

Mean Girls (read the full review here)
The trailer promised that this wouldn't be "your mother’s Mean Girls,” but exactly whose Mean Girls it would be remained unclear. It also did its best to conceal the fact that it’s a musical by not featuring a big musical number, and that sure didn't bode well. Frankly, the very premise—a homeschooled American girl who grew up in Kenya as the daughter of a research zoologist not understanding how everyday U.S. teenage life works—feels misguided in 2024. In the real world, Cady would amass a huge online following after at least one video of a lion went viral, and then she’d get canceled when an old problematic tweet surfaced. Another big misstep is Reneé Rapp as the infamous Regina George. Now, obviously, in 2024, a PG-13 movie isn’t going to feature blatant homophobia or multiple uses of the R-slur, and I’m certainly not saying it should, but this film didn’t replace those examples of meanness with… well, anything. The new Mean Girls isn’t mean enough—and it isn’t good enough either.—Joel Swenson C+

Migration

Oppenheimer (read the full review here)
If you think it’s wild that so many people turned out this summer to see a three-hour biopic about a theoretical physicist, well, wait till you hear that they actually showed up for a three-hour movie about a commerce secretary nominee’s U.S. Senate confirmation hearing. A story of how figures who consider themselves world historical agents play the game and get played, with the final word on the matter delivered by none other than Einstein himself, Oppenheimer is vivid pop history told through anecdote, image, and aphorism, and its politics aren't entirely reprehensible or stupid. There are times, even, when it's as smart as BarbieA-

Ordinary Angels

Perfect Days
In Wim Wenders’s latest, Koji Yakusho is Hirayama, an elderly man who cleans public toilets in Tokyo with dutiful care. (Every American will leave this film envious of a city with such well-maintained public restrooms.) In his work and his free time, Hirayama hews to a routine so strict that every slight deviation over the course of the film feels seismic, to him and to us. He doesn’t exactly shrink from human contact—he bonds with his irritating young co-worker’s would-be girlfriend while listening to Patti Smith’s “Redondo Beach” and plays shadow tag with a dying man. But his existence is largely self-contained, and this is one of the rare films to show that a life lived alone is not necessarily lonely and certainly isn’t meaningless, though like any life it comes with its own regrets. Hirayama is open to beauty in every moment—during his breaks he photographs the way the sunlight hits the leaves—and so is Wenders. In fact, I would say that Perfect Days captures the unbearable joy of being alive if it didn’t make me sound like a pretentious sap. Fortunately, the closing sequence, as we watch an array of emotions flickering across Yakusho’s face, makes that point for me without using any words. A

Poor Things (read the full review here)
Yorgos Lanthimos is such a cheekily off-putting director it never occurred to me what his idea of crowd-pleaser might look like. But with Poor Things, he doesn’t just want to be admired; he wants to be loved. And in its own creepy, garish, oversexed, male-gazey way, Lanthimos’s arch fairy tale does have heart. An Eve who can’t wait to get the fuck outta Eden, Emma Stone’s Bella Baxter becomes Frankenstein’s monster as Candide in the world at large, indomitable because she has no shame. Bella’s sex-positivity is indubitably a man’s ideal of what it means to be a free woman, addressing fewer contradictions of femininity than Barbie does, but Stone inhabits her character so completely that you might even say she liberates Bella from her creator. A-

The Taste of Things
Trần Anh Hùng’s sumptuous tale of love in a rural French kitchen is a good old-fashioned movie—by which I mean, it could’ve been released by Miramax during the first Clinton administration. And while I might have found it a bore back when similar dinosaurs ruled the Earth, now it’s nearly as charming as a baby triceratops. Benoît Magimel is late 19th century gourmet Dodin Bouffant and Juliette Binoche is Eugénie, his cook of 20 years (and lover when she’s in the mood); he repeatedly courts her, while she remains aloof. But the love story feels like an excuse to linger in the presence of these gourmets and, more to the point, the lavish meals they prepare. The deliberate, patient efficiency with which Eugénie works just highlights how thoroughly TV has conditioned us to think of cooking as a hectic, nervous affair—here even gutting a fish becomes an elegant task. Cinematographer Jonathan Ricquebourg shoots Binoche’s wonderful ass as lovingly as he does the dishes she cooks, and he goes for the gold in every scene. While Dodin may hold forth on the notion of balance in a meal, this film hardly shares his aesthetic—it’s suffused with the summer light that Eugénie cherishes. Bougie as hell, mais oui, but any class warriors who don’t salivate over the fare on offer here don’t deserve a share in the spoils of the revolution. B+

Wonka
Even more unnecessary than most prequels, and I couldn't hum any of the tunes if you promised me a lifetime supply of chocolate as a reward. But the Dickens by way of Rowling characterizations and settings are distracting enough for a couple hours, and your kids have made you sit through worse. B

The Zone of Interest (read the full review here)
Jonathan Glazer's latest embeds itself in the quotidian routine of a Nazi family that lives on a gorgeous estate that just so happens to share a wall with a death camp. Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss (Christian Friedel) and his wife Hedwig (Sandra Hüller) have five children, including two younger kids who squabble and a perpetually wailing baby—they’re the exact sort of family Goebbels would want an Aryan Norman Rockwell to paint. Yet what do we accomplish by spending two hours in the company of these drab Nazis? After The Zone of Interest I knew what I was supposed to think about Herr and Frau Höss—Glazer’s forcedly aestheticized didacticism saw to that. But what was I supposed to feel, aside from horror at the systematic extermination of Jews, which, I hope, anyone going into this film already experiences? B-

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