This Week in Movies
New psychedelic 80s sci-fi and kitschy 60s childhood romance on Austin screen
Ridley Scott's latest sci-fi opus takes over multiplexes and the bikers dominate downtown this weekend. Fortunately, the new independent film releases are rich in style and mood. Make the time to see an engrossing vision of an alternate 1983 and Wes Anderson's latest film.
This Weekend at the Drafthouse
At the Ritz for a limited run is Beyond the Black Rainbow, a psychedelic sci-fi/horror nightmare bred from the hyperactive imagination of its director, Panos Cosmatos, who used to browse the VHS covers of genre movies as a child.
In the film, a young girl named Elena is kept in a room in a research facility called Arboria under the watchful eye of Dr. Barry Nyle who is using her for some sort of drug trials. That's about the extent of the narrative thread. Beyond the Black Rainbow is not so much interested in presenting a thrilling story as it is in enveloping its audience in the nostalgia-bred feeling of the '80s, specifically that of home video releases kids then wouldn't be allowed to rent and midnight movies on cable.
With that aim, the film is a wild success- — one can imagine discovering Beyond the Black Rainbow on a dusty VHS in some dark corner of the video store. Fortunately for us, though, it's on the big screen to enjoy properly.
Wes Anderson (Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums) returns to theaters with his latest film, Moonrise Kingdom, a love story set on a small New England island in the 1960s.
Sam is a young, lonely boy scout and Suzy is a bored girl whose emotional detachment from her family is complete. Having met a year before and maintained a penpal relationship, the two concoct a plan to break away from their respective entrapments and run away. Their careful planning is only jeopardized by the efforts of Sam's boy scout troop (led by Edward Norton's Scout Master Ward), Suzy's parents (played by Bill Murray and Frances McDormand) and a host of other island characters to find the young pair.
Awash in 1960s kitsch and pop and featuring typical impeccably framed compositions, Moonrise Kingdom is yet another reminder why Wes Anderson is one of the most recognizable and popular auteurs working today. (Moonrise Kingdom also opens Friday at Violet Crown Cinema and Regal Arbor Cinema.)
Beyond the Weekend
Music Monday (6/11) will present a special screening of Jim Jarmusch's loving portrayal of the ghosts of American rock n' roll. Mystery Train tells three interconnected stories of travelers who stop in at the same Memphis hotel. It's a wonderful view of Americana through the lens of eyes that see it as something mythical, awaking something dormant but not forgotten in those that watch it.