By Joshua Albert
The 23rd annual Philadelphia Film Festival kicked off last week and runs until next Sunday. As we enter the second week, here are some suggestions on what to see (For more information about other films playing check out this handy official Philadelphia Film Fest guide). Movie descriptions via the Philadelphia Film Society.
(BONUS: On Saturday night there will be a secret screening at 9 pm at the RITZ EAST B. I can only hope they will reshow the new Bill Murray film St. Vincent that I missed)
8:00, RITZ EAST A, TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT
Run time: 95 min. | Belgium, France | Language: French
In this small-town drama with the feeling of an epic, Marion Cotillard is a mother who has one weekend to persuade her co-workers to keep her on the payroll rather than take the bonus they would receive if they let her go.
7:50, PRINCE MUSIC THEATRE, LAGGIES
Run time: 100 min. | USA | Language: English
Freaking out at the sudden encroachment of adulthood on her slacker lifestyle, a twenty-something woman, played by Keira Knightley, hides from her problems by crashing at the home of a teenage friend until she’s strong enough to face life.
10:00, RITZ EAST A, GABRIEL
Run time: 88 min. | USA | Language: English
In this powerful and engrossing drama, Rory Culkin shines as a mentally ill young man who will stop at nothing to be reunited with his first love as he struggles to transition from being institutionalized to rejoining life with his family.
10:00, PRINCE MUSIC THEATRE, BLUE VELVET
Run time: 120 min. | USA | Language: English
David Lynch’s infamously provocative 1986 erotic thriller follows a young man’s descent into the seedy, sexually charged criminal underbelly of the sleepy town where he was raised.
10:10, RITZ BOURSE, REVENGE OF THE GREEN DRAGONS
Run time: 94 min. | USA | Language: English
Martin Scorsese executive-produced this action-packed crime film about the Asian-American gangs who fought for supremacy on the mean streets of New York in the 1980s and ‘90s.
12:25, RITZ BOURSE, LOS ANGELES
Run time: 97 min. | Germany,Mexico | Language: Zapotec, Spanish
The American Dream beckons a young man in southern Mexico who must navigate both traditional customs and the specter of gang life in this gripping true-life drama.
2:15, RITZ EAST A, RUN
Run time: 100 min. | France, Ivory Coast | Language: French
The current cultural and political climate in the Ivory Coast is fascinatingly explored through this pulse-pounding, coming-of-age fable about an enigmatic adolescent, Run, who assassinates the country’s prime minister and must flee the city.
5:20, RITZ EAST A, THE GREAT INVISIBLE
Run time: 92 min. | USA | Language: English
When the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded on April 20, 2010, it became the largest offshore spill in American history, killing 11 people, unleashing hundreds of millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, and devastating surrounding fishing communities.
7:50, RITZ EAST A, ESCOBAR: PARADISE LOST
Run time: 120 min. | Belgium,France,Spain | Language: English, Spanish
The Hunger Games‘ Josh Hutcherson stars as a surfer drawn into the dangerous world of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, played with charismatic intensity by Benicio del Toro.
Noon, RITZ BOURSE, 10,000 KM
Run time: 99 min. | Spain, USA | Language: Spanish
Told almost entirely through the new ‘digital language of love’ (text messaging, video chatting, phone calls) 10,000 KM follows the long-distance relationship of lovers Sergi and Alex, one in Barcelona, the other in Los Angeles.
2:35, RITZ BOURSE, THIS TIME NEXT YEAR
Run time: 90 min. | USA | Language: English
This Time Next Year tenderly documents the residents of Long Beach Island, New Jersey, in the year following Superstorm Sandy, and the slow road to recovery after catastrophic devastation.
4:30, RITZ BOURSE, IMPERIAL DREAMS
Run time: 90 min. | USA | Language: English
After a stint in prison, an aspiring writer returns to the crime-ridden housing projects of Watts, Los Angeles, to try to make a better life for himself and his child in Malik Vitthal’s nuanced directorial debut.
6:45, RITZ BOURSE, THE TALE OF PRINCESS KAGUYA
Run time: 137 min. | Japan | Language: Japanese
Based on an ancient folktale, a princess is plucked from a magical bamboo stalk and, despite the expectations of everyone around her, determines her own destiny in this epic tale from legendary Japanese animation powerhouse Studio Ghibli.
NOON, RITZ BOURSE, CHARLIE’S COUNTRY
Run time: 108 min. | Australia | Language: Yolngu, English
David Gulpilil won the Best Actor prize at this year’s Cannes for his role as Charlie, an aging Aboriginal who abandons his remote community in order to live a traditional lifestyle and must find his way back home.
2:30, RITZ BOURSE, WHEN ANIMALS DREAM
Run time: 84 min. | Denmark | Language: Danish
In a remote seaside town in Northern Denmark, a young woman with an independent spirit begins to display troubling signs of her heritage of werewolfism in this restrained supernatural thriller.
5:00, RITZ BOURSE, FAULTS
Run time: 89 min. | USA | Language: English
Shifting between dark comedy and psychological thriller, Faults provides a captivating look at the power, seductiveness, and mind-bending nature of religious cults.
6:10, ROXY B, 52 TUESDAYS
Run time: 114 min. | Australia | Language: English
In this moving Australian drama, 16-year-old Billie struggles to understand her own sexual identity as she supports her mother through a gender transition and is forced to move in with her estranged father.
8:40, ROXY B, GUEROS
Run time: 108 min. | Mexico | Language: Spanish
Three young men ramble around Mexico City in search of a fabled folk singer in this freewheeling comedy that won Best First Feature at the Berlin Film Festival.
6:40, RITZ EAST B, THE WAY HE LOOKS
Run time: 96 min. | Brazil | Language: Portugese
The feature version of Daniel Ribeiro’s award-winning short, The Way He Looks is the simple, sweet story of a blind teenager trying to gain independence from his family while nursing his secret crush on a boy in his class.
9:30, ROXY A, THE MIRAGE
Run time: 42 min. | USA | Language: English
A behind-the-scenes look into the world of car design, construction, and the politics behind it, The Mirage is a compelling documentary on the near-success of a modern rarity: the independently manufactured sports car that almost was.
4:00, RITZ EAST, ’71
Run time: 100 min. | UK | Language: English
One of the most captivating and tense films of the year, ’71 is an action-thriller centered on a rookie British soldier separated from his squad and lost in enemy territory in Northern Ireland.
6:30, PRINCE MUCIC THEATER, TOMORROW WE DISAPPEAR
Run time: 84 min. | USA | Language: Hindi
Delhi India’s famed Kathputli Colony has been home to magicians, puppeteers, snake charmers, and acrobats for decades, but when the government sells the land to developers, the street performers must fight to save their culture from becoming the next disappearing act.
9:00, RITZ EAST B, SECRET SCREENING!!!!
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9:45, ROXY A, THE MULE,
Run time: 103 min. | Australia | Language: English
An impressive fusion of a dark, clever comedy and a brutal thriller, The Mule tells the story of a suspected drug mule who engages in a battle of wills and bodily fortitude with the police detectives waiting for the evidence that will incriminate him.
12:15, RITZ EAST B, LISTEN UP PHILIP
Run time: 108 min. | USA | Language: English
Independent provocateur Alex Ross Perry casts a jaundiced eye on New York artists and intellectuals in this comedy about a narcissistic, self-righteous author and the people he alienates.
12:30, RITZ EAST A, GIRLHOOD
Run time: 112 min. | France | Language: French
Girlhood is the story of shy French teen Marieme, who learns to assert herself with the help of three girls who lure her into a gang.
2:45, ROXY A, THE OVERNIGHTERS
Run time: 100 min. | USA | Language: English
In this intimate, troubling documentary, a small-town pastor strives to bridge the gap between his wary North Dakota community and the influx of unemployed hopefuls chasing a broken American Dream.
5:25, RITZ EAST A, POINT AND SHOOT
Run time: 83 min. | USA | Language: English
Point and Shoot is the incredible true story of Baltimore native Matthew VanDyke, who left behind his girlfriend, his family, and the comforts of his American life to join the Libyan rebel army.
7:20, RITZ EAST A, THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY
Run time: 101 min. | UK | Language: English
In this audacious, visually sumptuous recasting of Eurocinema erotica, the relationship between a lesbian lepidopterist and her younger handmaiden is fraught with questions of love, desire, and control.
9:25, RITZ EAST B, IN ORDER OF DISAPPEARANCE
Run time: 115 min. | Norway | Language: Norwegian, Swedish
Nils Dickman (Stellan Skarsgård), is a respected community leader and snow plow driver who is awarded “Citizen of the Year” for his efforts, but when his son is found dead, Nils suspects foul play and resolves to take matters into his own hands.