Violent gunfights, visceral takedowns, high-drama interrogations and even angrily tossed metal chairs -- all are absent from Police, Adjective.
Yet this determinedly downtempo, absurdly mundane and undeniably smart (and subtly black-humored) film is another example of the rebirth of cinema in Romania -- Cristian Mungiu’s award-winning 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days was only one low-budget example of the bracing and critical intelligence of the country’s filmmakers. Call this an anti-Heat, an anti-Departed, a police procedural suspicious of its own process.
It's finally here! The SFMOMA's highly anticipated 75th Anniversary Show kicked off last weekend. We checked out the media preview and are here to distill all the great artwork into 30 must-sees for your initial visit. Without further ado...
1. Andy Warhol, National Velvet
2. Jackson Pollock, Guardians of the Secret
3. Matthew Barney, Transexualis
Tennessee Williams always had a way with indelibly memorable female protagonists -- and Fisher Willow, the diamond-hard, proto-feminist, flapper heart of The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond, a lost Williams screenplay now found, is no exception.
While evoking no less than the fragile embodiment of Southern womanhood, Laura Wingfield of Williams’ The Glass Menagerie, Fisher also conjures up other aspects of Williams’ earthy and ethereal goddesses: the languid longing and steely sensuality of Elizabeth Taylor’s Maggie the Cat, the tough, passionate power of Anna Magnani’s Serafina delle Rose, and the love of fantasy and touch-and-go grasp of reality found in Vivian Leigh’s Blanche DuBois.
Who would have thought a perfectly adorable actress like Amy Adams would divide people so? Is it Adams’ button-bright perkiness, which irked a vocal crew when it came to Julie & Julia? Is it the puppy-dog-desperate desire to please that she often injects into everygirl roles like Sunshine Cleaning? Adams exudes the old-school, bright-eyed beauty of a Hollywood studio-system ingenue -- in full display in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day -- yet much like Renee Zellwegger, the Leap Year star tends to divide an audience into love-her and hate-her camps.
I feel Michael Cera's pain.
In the mood for some weird science, somewhere over the rainbow where the underground meets the overground? Or “garage” sounds of the most unexpected sort?
SFMOMA hosts a series of installations/events/concerts on Saturday, Jan. 9 -- an event that appears to be tapping into the same spirit as those experimental music/noise shows that used to happen nearby on Tehama alley at the old Clitstop space. The event: “The Hex Inverter and Kimber Lite and the Pipes” by Max Lawrence, a so-called mechanical mad scientist and “electric conductor.”
It’s a First Thursday kind of week -- and though everything in the SF arts world goes into hibernation around this time of year, there are still a few shows worth checking out.
“American Pastiche: Choose Your Own Adventure”
Jose Arenas and Phillip Hua look at relationship between immigration and identity, commerce and the environment, as part of an homage to a children’s book series. Reception Jan. 7, 6-8 p.m. Hang Art, 567 Sutter St., SF. (415) 434-4264.
“Leonor Fini: Une Grand Curiosite”
The Argentine lady surrealist gets her largest North American showing right here. Weinstein Gallery, 301 Geary St., SF. (415) 362-2230.
Care for a New Year’s Eve toast with a soupcon of global flava? Look to all parts of the Bay for sounds that move to south-of-the-equator riddims.
Get on the Latin funk express with Trinidadian rhyme-slinger MC Fresh4Life. The acclaimed Non Stop Bhangra crew open up with a good dose of banging South Asian beats. Also slated are the Pleasuremaker Live Band as well as special guests and, one hears, treats. 9:30 p.m., $15-$25. Elbo Room, 647 Valencia, SF. (415) 552-7788, www.elbo.com
Whoa, as usual there’s far too much is going down on New Year’s Eve in the hard-partying SF. The major and simply awesome DJ nights to snatch? Consider this just the first of many dispatches on the eve’s bashes and mash-ups.
Sea of Dreams NYE