Arts + Culture
If Will Forte’s MacGruber reminded us that five-minute Saturday Night Live sketches seem less than inspired when stretched to paper-thin feature length, Grown Ups, a nominal comedy starring SNL alumni Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, David Spade and Rob Schneider, is even more confounding.
Based on an original story by Sandler and former SNL writer Fred Wolf, the movie contains not a single imaginative minute, much less the five needed to kill time between late-night commercials. It is as lazily conceived as anything Sandler has done.
Cyrus, a warmly received selection at this year’s San Francisco Film Festival, is a comedy that aims to make audiences laugh but seems willing to settle for making them cringe. But if you can stomach its enfant terrible – a selfish, shamelessly manipulative man-child, desperate to sabotage his mother’s latest romance – you might appreciate the lighter side of his Oedipal obsession.
Frameline34 continues through Sunday's closing-night presentation of Howl – an revealing portrait of poet Allen Ginsberg's early years, starring James Franco – with a full slate of screenings scheduled at the Castro, Roxie and Victoria theaters. As always, here's a list of some of the finest films currently playing at an indie theater near you.
1. I Am Love
It's one of those depressing San Francisco summer mornings that make you want to hide under your covers and google pictures of Tahiti. But that didn't stop the masses from filing up to get some of the first iPhone 4s at Apple's flagship Union Square store. Although the thing was left in a bar a few months back (inducing a major proliferation of the hash tag #fail on twitter), the new iPhone is seriously covetable and already a hit. We're going to say this one warrants the line.
Bay views, Twin Peaks, a rainbow-hued array of sushi and lots of passion -- all crucial components in The Full Picture, a new SF indie by local filmmaker Jon Bowden. The writer and director poured everything he had -- his apartment, his personal history -- into the feature-film version of his play Big Mouth, a close look at one SF every-guy as he introduces his fiancee to his very dysfunction family, complete with caddish brother and a mother with a penchant for taking photos at extremely inconvenient moments.
Pavement, a cornerstone of Matador in the 90s—and a band one usually either loves, hates, or hasn't heard of—brings their much-awaited reunion tour to their hometown of Stockton this Thursday and to the Greek Theater in Berkeley on Friday. Scott Kannenberg (aka Spiral Stairs) and Stephen Malkmus formed the band in their later-to-be estranged drummer Gary Young's studio in Stockton in 1989. Rumor has it that Young will make at least an appearance at the Stockton show at the Bob Hope Theater and possibly pop up in Berkeley as well. Neither the Stockton show nor the Berkely show have sold out but plenty of people are trying to get rid of Greek Theater tickets on Craigslist if you're looking for a discount.
Richard Klein: The Professional
Richard Klein has mad connections. As founder and publisher of the design glossy Surface, the 43-year-old is an authority on the avant-garde scene. These days, Klein is making the most of his hard-won stature to bolster the success of an equally stylish set—his peers in the gay community.