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7 Days in cinema

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PARTY GIRL The patron saint of loners, Nicholas Ray continues to cast a large shadow, as illustrated by this series at BAM. You may have seen “Rebel Without a Cause,” but that’s just the beginning; these Cinemascope classics are required big-screen viewing. Set in Prohibition-era Chicago, “Party Girl” (1958) focuses on the rough relationship between two outcasts: a prostitute (the stunning Cyd Charisse) and a limping lawyer for hire (Robert Taylor). Ray’s bold use of color and shadows makes this into a vibrant Technicolor film noir, with one impressive set piece after another. 99 min. new print! Mon., Sep. 19 at 4:30, 6:50, 9:15 p.m. Series continues through Sep. 26. $10, 718-777-FILM (theater ID #545), at bam.org, or at the box office. BAM Rose Cinemas is located at 30 Lafayette Ave. btwn. Ashland Pl. and St. Felix St. in Brooklyn. 718-636-4100 for information.

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ONE BRIGHT SHINING MOMENT Before Howard Dean, John McCain, John Anderson, and Jimmy Carter, there was George McGovern, the prairie populist who vowed an immediate end to the Vietnam War in his 1972 presidential campaign against Richard Nixon. But, Nixon, who had allowed tens of thousands of American troops to die since taking office in January 1969, had by mid-’72 convinced America, including a surprising number of its youth, that the war was winding down. McGovern’s peace candidacy became quixotic. The former senator himself comments for this Stephen Vittoria feature, as does Gore Vidal, Gloria Steinem, Warren Beatty, Dick Gregory, Gary Hart, and others. Opens Sep. 16, Quad Cinema.

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REMEMBERING SUSAN In tribute to Susan Sontag, the literary lioness who died last year, and on the eve of the New York Film Festival, whose selection committee she sat on for more than a decade in the ‘60s and ‘70s, the Film Society of Lincoln Center will screen two films she wrote and directed—“Duet for Cannibals,” a 1969 Swedish production, and “Brother Carl,” a 1971 film also made in Sweden. Walter Reade Theater, 165 W. 65th St., on the plaza level of Lincoln Center. Thu. Sep. 22 at 6:15 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. Tickets are $10, $6 for Film Society members. To reserve tickets in advance, call 212-875-5600.

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TARNATION Jonathan Caouette’s astonish family portrait of a troubled childhood, woven together from his own childhood Super 8 home movies and video diaries plus snap shots and movies and TV shows of the period is a moving and troubling testament to the difficulties, even in our enlightened age, of growing up gay. Premieres on Sundance Channel, Mon. Sep. 19 9 p.m. Also airs Sep. 22 12:30 a.m., Sep. 27 9:30 p.m., Oct. 1 11 p.m., Oct. 16 9 p.m.

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Recently Noted:

COTE D’AZUR Film farce is often thought of as a French import and with "Cote D'Azur" directors Olivier Ducastel and Jacques Martineau continue in that tradition. Ducastel and Martineau, lovers and collaborators, present their gayest work yet. Gay in both the old sense and the homosexual sense of the word. Unlike many French films of the past half-decade, "Cote D'Azur" is good, old-fashioned, ridiculous fun, putting a gay spin on the age-old plot device of sexual misunderstandings and people running around slamming doors behind themselves in vaudevillian style. Angelika, Chelsea Cinema, Clearview Broadway at 62 St. (Seth J. Bookey)

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THE CONSTANT GARDENER The many issues plaguing the African continent makes it a natural setting for conflict, both political and personal, and the new film "The Constant Gardener" skillfully combines both. The film is based on the John Le Carre novel, but the story of a diplomat's wife working to expose large pharmaceutical companies using Africans as guinea pigs does not play out at a potboiler plotted to turn pages; news like this could conceivably come out of almost any African country today. UA Union Square, UA Battery Park, Cobble Hill (Seth J. Bookey)

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JUNEBUG There’s one great scene in this film, a moment worthy of John Ford. At a North Carolina church dinner, the pastor persuades George (Alessandro Nivola), who lives in Chicago with his wife Madeleine (Embeth Davidtz), to sing a hymn. At first, George sings alone, but two other men join in. Their passion is contagious. The lines of community are being drawn; they exclude Madeleine, who watches this surprise demonstration of faith, talent,and allegiance with a detached, anthropological gaze. Angelika, Lincoln Plaza. (Steve Erickson)

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LATIN BEAT The back to school season heralds the toniest of the city’s Latin American film festivals, the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s annual Latin Beat series of recent Latin American films, which runs through Sep. 21 at the Walter Reade Theatre. The 19 selections, predominantly from Argentina’s powerhouse industry but also including works from Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, and Bolivia, are rounded out with a tribute to the veteran Argentine star Federico Luppi. Of principal interest for queer audiences is the documentary by 30-year-old director Manuel Zayas, “Seres extravagan­tes.” Taking its title from the endlessly quotable Fidel Castro’s derogation for the queens who used to promenade in Havana’s La Rampa district, “Seres extravagan­tes” (screening Sep. 16 and 19) revisits the life of gay Cuban author Reinaldo Arenas (1943–1990), popularized by the recent screen adaptation of his memoir “Before Night Falls.” (Ioannis Mookas)

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PRETTY PERSUASION. Evan Rachel Wood pulls out all the stops in “Pretty Persuasion.” Teen sexuality is filmmaking mainstay—from the passively seductive saunter of “Lolita” to Christina Ricci’s Dede Truitt in “The Opposite of Sex. ” In this film, Kimberly Joyce (Wood) combines her prurient talents and devious mind to manipulate just about everyone in her orbit to get what she wants. Landmark Sunshine. (Seth J. Bookey)

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2046 Wong Kar-wai’s latest film is a film of blurs. More often than not, when two characters share the screen, one’s face is out of focus. Wong’s visual textures are dazzling, but beyond their poetic qualities, they reflect the characters’ power struggles by making it difficult to see two people clearly at the same time. Such images don’t exist simply for their own sake. Landmark Sunshine, AMC 25. (Steve Erickson)

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CAMPFIRE Joseph Cedar has what appears to be extraordinary luck as a movie director. His “Time of Favor” about a fictional young Israeli fanatic who wanted to blow up the Dome of the Rock, in Jerusalem, one of Islam’s most sacred sites, hit theaters in 2000 just about the time Ariel Sharon took it into his head to go for a stroll to the Temple Mount and Dome of the Rock, thereby pretty much blowing up whatever peace existed between Arabs and Israelis anyway. Now Cedar’s second movie, “Campfire,” which puts the private crises of a mother and her two daughters––including a teenage gang rape––within the framework of the Settlement movement of a quarter century ago, is opening in New York, just days after the same Ariel Sharon has enforced the evacuation of the very settlements in Gaza and the West Bank he once pressed into existence. Village East Cinema. (Seth J. Bookey/ Jerry Tallmer)

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TOUCH THE SOUND This documentary portrait of accomplished percussionist Evelyn Glennie, has an obvious hook, which is worth getting out of the way immediately. Having lost 80 percent of her hearing as a child, Glennie is essentially deaf. A road movie of sorts, “Touch the Sound” follows the musician to New York, Germany, Japan, her brother’s farm in Scotland, and Santa Cruz. In New York, she plays a snare drum to an enthusiastic crowd in Grand Central Terminal. All the while, she keeps her eyes open for potential new instruments. Thomas Riedelsheimer and his four sound designers create a carefully layered soundtrack––and not just during Glennie’s performances. He depicts urban life as a rhythmic cacophony. When Glennie walks down a New York street, we hear a symphony of construction workers banging on metal, drills, subway rumbles, people talking faintly on cell phones, and other everyday noises. These are the kinds of sounds most New Yorkers generally try to tune out, but Riedelsheimer sees potential beauty in them. IFC. (Steve Erickson)

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Updated 5:17 pm, July 20, 2018
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