Just as winter is the season of Oscar hopefuls, the dog days belong to big-budget popcorn fare – star-studded comedies, explosive adventures and comic-book crusaders bent on saving humanity from imminent destruction. This June will be no different, with a strong crop of contenders mining for box-office gold, including:
Exposed on Film, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art's ongoing film series presented in conjunction with Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera Since 1870, returns to the Castro this weekend with Haskell Wexler's Medium Cool, a cinema verité-style exploration of social tension in America during the 1960s, and David Lynch's macabre fantasy Lost Highway. Elsewhere:
1. The Found Footage Festival
Where: Red Vic Movie House, 1727 Haight St., 415-668-3994
When: March 4-5
With Noir City 9 descending on the Castro for the next 10 days and San Francisco's 13th Independent Film Festival arriving in early February, the new year is already heating up for local cinephiles. Here, as always, are some of the finest selections currently playing at an indie theater (and, in this week's edition, a Loews cineplex) near you.
1. Barney's Version
Steven Russell is living a lie – several of them, in fact. Given up for adoption in his infancy by an indifferent mother, he is living a Norman Rockwell version of the American dream, with a worshipful, Jesus-loving wife, an adoring daughter and a quaint home in the Georgia suburbs. He even plays piano for the church choir.
But Steven is no angel, nor does he aspire to be. The family, the job, the evangelical zeal – it’s all a front for a shifty, rudderless man searching for an identity, bored by the simple life and hiding his homosexuality behind a studied veneer of old-fashioned American values.
You may recognize the sexy trio backing up blue-eyed indie-cutie Zooey Deschanel in this December's Jim Carrey comedy "Yes Man". It's San Francisco's own, Von Iva making their big screen debut and singing along Ms. Zooey in the fictional band Munchausen by Proxy. Von Iva also wrote the song "Yes Man" specifically for the film (it'll run over the end credits). This isn't the first time the ladies have contributed to a Hollywood production (see Showtime's The L Word or the 2008 Jerry O'Connell/Heather Graham movie Baby on Board), but it is the first time you can see them rocking the big screen. The film comes out December 19th.