Your Weekend in Film

These people go forth by going for broke

A host of characters this weekend, to complete their tasks, will have to muster every ounce of their passion and strength. Naturally, obstacles are in the way. Read on to find out whose journey is worth co-embarking on, even if one in particular is a head-first dive into disaster.

This Week’s Pick: The Disaster Artist

Oh hai, the film about the making of a film considered to be one of the worst ever made and a “classic” among viewers! Steve Davis: “Multihyphenate James Franco is far less clueless both behind and in front of the camera in The Disaster Artist, a fanboy valentine that affectionately chronicles the making of Wiseau’s train wreck achievement in relatively straightforward fashion, without a smidgen of irony.” 3.5 stars.

Also Reviewed

Blade of the Immortal. Takashi Miike’s 100th film follows an unkillable samurai helping a girl avenging her father. Based on the manga series. Richard Whittaker: “Purists may find issue with what [screenwriter Oishi] leaves in and takes out … Yet, it’s hard to find fault with the end result.” 3.5 stars.

The Breadwinner. To help her family, an 11-year-old girl in Afghanistan must disguise herself as a boy. Danielle White: “There’s a multi-faceted significance in the act of storytelling, though some of the dialogue is delivered in a sleepy monotone that doesn’t always feel quite appropriate.” 3 stars.

Psychopaths. According to the serial killers in this horror film, no time can be more perfect like tonight for a killing spree. Richard Whittaker: “[Director Keating] paints his fever dream in lurid greens and arson reds, as each titular psychopath crosses paths and inflicts their cruelest fetishes on each other.” 3 stars.

Roman J. Israel, Esq. Denzel Washington stars as a legal defense attorney who must assumes his superior’s role after the latter’s passing. Long-buried secrets then emerge. Marc Savlov: “You can’t take your eyes off of [Washington] and not just because he’s in virtually every scene.” 3 stars.

Thelma. Sensual horror from Norway focuses on the titular student discovering she has supernatural powers. Josh Kupecki: “And while comparisons to Carrie will most likely dominate the conversation here, Trier’s film seeks a more nuanced tone, and the results yield one of the most striking films of the year.” 3.5 stars.

Special Screenings

Were it not for the Indian setting and satirical nature, Newton would have been a reflection of our country right this moment in which democracy, and its yearnings, are under fire. This Best Foreign Language film export trails a man fighting for a free-and-fair general election while looking out for forces that jeopardize it. Get your tickets to the screening next Tuesday, and afterward attend a Q&A session featuring the director, Amit Masurkar.

Anyway, how's your Room knowledge? Be better prepared for The Disaster Artist with a screening of the film that inspired it, a downright abysmal yet crazily watchable dramedy from “New Orleans”-born filmmaker – and writer, and actor, and producer – Tommy Wiseau when it screens Friday and Saturday.

Maravilloso Mariachi, times three. Arid air, billowing hair, fiery action, and funky music – see the components that make Robert Rodriguez’s Mexico Trilogy a keeper Saturday with a screening of El Mariachi, Desperado, and Once Upon a Time in Mexico. After-party featuring the director’s band, Chingon, to follow.

Grinch away. ‘Tis great that none of the screenings for Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas happen at 4pm this Saturday and Sunday since everyone is self-wallowing at that time. Screening is free for kids.

Check out the Chronicle's Film Listings for daily showtimes, reviews, and Special Screenings.

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