Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week

Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week


Inspired by the true story of Danny Greene, a onetime labor leader turned gangster who rose to fame during the summer of 1976 as the man Cleveland's Italian mafia couldn't seem to murder, Kill the Irishman arrives at the Century Centre 9 on Market Street today, bringing with it a stellar cast led by Ray Stevenson, Christopher Walken, Vincent D'Onofrio and Paul Sorvino. Elsewhere:

1. The Wizard of Oz Sing-Along

Where:Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., 415-621-6120
When: All Week
Sing-along hosts Laurie Bushman, Joe Wicht and David Hawkins will lead the Castro crowds through a week of interactive screenings featuring Victor Fleming's timeless 1939 fantasy, customized to include on-screen lyrics to all the Oz classics. Goody bags will be distributed to those in attendance, who are encouraged to dress as their favorite character from the film. Tickets cost $15, and can be purchased at the Castro box office or in advance through Ticketweb.

2. Win Win
Where:Bridge Theatre, 3010 Geary Blvd., 415-751-3213
When: All Week
Why: Thomas McCarthy (The Station Agent, The Visitor) returns to his hometown of New Providence, New Jersey, to capture the compelling trials and often laugbable tribulations of an elderly-law attorney (Paul Giamatti) and his burgeoning friendship with a gifted young wrestler, played by newcomer (and real-life Jersey state champion) Alex Shaffer. It's foolish to make such proclamations in March, but no matter: Win is one of the year's best.

3. Of Gods and Men
Where: Embarcadero Center Cinema, 1 Embarcadero Ctr., 415-352-0835
When: All Week
Why: Nominated for 11 César Awards including Best Picture, Xavier Beauvois' historical drama documents the lives of eight French Christian monks who share a monastery in the mountains of North Africa. When Islamic fundamentalists slaughter a crew of foreign workers, the monks refuse to evacuate, soon finding themselves stuck in an increasingly tenuous living situation and resigned to whatever fate brings.

4. Somewhere
Where:Red Vic Movie House, 1727 Haight St., 415-668-3994
When: March 27-28
Why: It’s hard to imagine a story much slighter than Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere, a running diary in the life of a Hollywood star – a life rife with malaise, superficial encounters and the occasional, frustratingly inconvenient reminder that he is something more than the sum of his celebrity. Some will accuse Coppola, who presumably knows this life well, of navel-gazing. But there is poignancy in Johnny’s desire to find meaning in a life of 24-hour entitlement. His is a simple story, simply told, but it gets the details right.

5. The Music Never Stopped

Where:Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, 1881 Post St., 415-929-4650
When: All Week
Why: First-time feature director Jim Kohlberg makes an impressively sure-handed debut with The Music Never Stopped, a Sundance audience favorite named for a long-running staple of the Grateful Dead's concert repertoire. Featuring Lou Taylor Pucci and the great J.K. Simmons, Kohlberg's adaptation of Dr. Oliver Sacks' essay The Last Hippie tells the story of an amnesiac who recaptures lost memories by listening to his favorite tunes.

6. Jane Eyre

Where:Embarcadero Center Cinema, 1 Embarcadero Ctr., 415-352-0835; Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, 1881 Post St., 415-929-4650
When: All Week
Why: Rarely before has a director seemed so eager to explore the darkness lurking in the subtext of Charlotte Brontë’s already grim early-Victorian novel, but Cary Fukunaga (Sin Nombre) dives right in, with an adaptation that is stylishly shot and, thanks in part to impassioned performances by Michael Fassbender and Mia Wasikowska, deeply moving.

7. The Illusionist
Where: Opera Plaza Cinema, 601 Van Ness Ave., 415-771-0183
When: All Week
Why: Adapted from a never-produced script written by French comedy icon Jacques Tati as a love letter to his daughter, Sylvain Chomet's melancholy, Oscar-nominated Illusionist is the story of an aging magician whose search for a stage leads to a most unexpected discovery: Alice, a teenager who idealizes him, applauds his every trick and ultimately comes to love him as a father.

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