It sounds impressive, all this talk of universal logic, rule-following paradoxes and absolute certainties, rolling so melodically off the tongue of John Hurt, who could bring gravitas to a reading of the phone book. Yet even Hurt, cheerfully chewing the scenery as curmudgeonly Oxford professor Arthur Seldom, cannot save Álex de la Ingelsia’s arbitrary murder mystery from its own miscalculations.
Adapted from a novel by mathematical logician Guillermo Martínez, The Oxford Murders works best as a showcase for Hurt, who preaches the gospel of Wittgenstein before lecture halls packed with disciples, and Elijah Wood’s blue eyes, ablaze with earnest agitation even when his delivery falls flat.
With the second-ever Athiest Film Festival arriving at the Red Vic and the Sausalito Film Festival celebrating its opening night with the regional premiere of Ryan Piers Williams' The Dry Land, Bay Area cinephiles might find their dance cards full this Friday – and the rest of the week seems just as promising. As always, here's a list of some of the finest films currently playing at an indie theater near you.