Although we’ve all gathered up our Milwaukee Film Festival programs and have begun to look ahead to that glorious two weeks, there are still plenty of great local events to tide us over until that buffet!
Wednesday, Sept. 11: The Road to Utopia
7 p.m. @ Charles Allis Art Museum ($7/$5/free for adults/seniors and students/museum members)
The Charles Allis Art Museum keeps our heads ringin’ (Bing ding dong, Bing-a-Bing-ding-ding-dong) with the latest installment in their summer Crosby retrospective, with this the second of the extremely popular and lucrative Road To… series. With Hope, Crosby and Lamour all entangled in a plot revolving around a much sought after map and hidden reserves of gold, this Academy Award nominated-screenplay is a great introduction into a golden age of Hollywood comedy.
Thursday, Sept. 12th: A Band Called Death
7pm @ UWM Union Theatre (FREE!)
A Searching for Sugar Man for the punk rock set, A Band Called Death has taken the festival circuit by storm (96 percent fresh!) and finally makes its way to Milwaukee for this one night only screening this upcoming Thursday. This doc follows the trailblazing Detroit-based group of the film’s title whose uncompromising nature led to their dismissal from the mainstream music scene. However, decades later their seminal work is discovered and this documentary is a tribute to the group’s focus on family and perseverance that led to this amazing re-discovery. If you loved this year’s Best Documentary Oscar winner, then you owe it to yourself to check out this head-banging companion piece that is every bit as inspirational and moving.
Friday, Sept. 13: Django Unchained
Dusk @ Discovery World (FREE!)
Django Unchained just might be the most recommended film during On the Marquee’s first year of existence so far (I can remember at least two prior recommendations to check it out) so it’s no surprise I would herald this screening, the last of the Point Brewery Fish Fry and a Flick series for 2013, as well worth attending. A gently inebriated, full-bellied audience of locals taking in Tarantino’s Oscar-winning latest seems like a recipe for some great communal film-going, the kind of experience that can’t be replicated in the comfort of your own home. Tarantino’s dialogue and unique pacing is as worthy of being savored as the goodies being served, so this is a near-perfect end of summer match.
Friday Sept. 13, Saturday Sept. 14 and Sunday Sept. 15: Computer Chess
9/13: 9 p.m., 9/14: 7 p.m. & 9/15: 5 p.m. @ UWM Union Theatre ($6/5/4)
Andrew Bujalski is the godfather of the mumblecore scene, with his previous features Funny Ha Ha, Mutual Appreciation and Beeswax proving to be exemplars of the subgenre (defined by amateur actors and naturalistic dialogue, covering a wide spectrum of filmmaking both great and garbage), and his latest uses some of the same tools of the trade towards an entirely different end. A period piece set in the nascent days of computing, at a computer chess tournament that pits multiple programmers against one another in an effort to see who can craft a chess program that can defeat all comers. Illuminating and fascinating (filled with shaggy tangents that go nowhere or everywhere depending on how you look at it), Bujalski’s latest might be his greatest and is well-worth checking out this week. Definitely one of the most original visions you’ll encounter in 2013.