Keepin’ it Reel: Never Let Me Go

Verdict: See it

Never Let Me Go is a dystopian alternate history drama set in a Britain where cloned children are born and bred to be harvested for their organs. The film, based on a novel of the same name by Kazuo Ishiguro, centers on three children in a slightly off-kilter boarding school (think Hogwarts meets The Village) who develop a love triangle as they slowly discover their true identities and come to terms with their truncated lives.

The movie is nothing short of gorgeous Continue Reading

Keepin’ It Reel: The Social Network

It feels significant that The Social Network and the other most important movie of the year, Inception, both end with a question. However, unlike the latter, which only encourages you to dig deeper into Chris Nolan’s vainly labyrinthine Matrix redux, there is no wobble here. The intent of the final scene is clear and humiliating: “What have we come to?”

But first: The Social Network is probably the film of the year. Whatever generic glow-stick rave you planned on painting your face or ironing your shirt for this weekend, drop it. Continue Reading

Keepin’ It Reel: Devil

As far as movies about being trapped in an elevator with Satan go, Devil is pretty good.

When it comes to fear, M. Night Shyamalan – who provided the idea and the funding for the film – has always favored the psychological. Certainly, the anonymity of the actors, the tight camerawork within the elevator, and the plays on expectations create a very human tension. Sartrean influences are evident. (Obvious inspiration and plot cues are taken from No Exit, but if you’re looking for existentialism, Cube probably does it better.) But while the “Hell is other people” theme is played out well, have no doubt: there is a very real supernatural threat here. Continue Reading

Keepin’ it Reel: Restrepo

©Tim Hetherington

“Restrepo,” the companion documentary to Sebastian Junger’s best-selling book War, diligently follows a US platoon during their 15 month deployment in the Korangal Valley, which had been considered as perhaps the most dangerous posting in the US military. Fittingly so, Restrepo is ugly. Yes, the cinematography is nothing short of beautiful, especially considering the circumstances. One can almost feel the pull of the choppers taking off, the pulse of the guns as they fire. But sharing the hell that these soldiers underwent daily for 15 months, and the contrivances they had created to distract themselves, indeed fills one with awe at just how human war can be; it’s the moments in-between the fighting – somberly strumming a guitar, shuffling through pictures of family, swapping stories about old friends who won’t make it home – that are when the real struggle takes place.

It’s difficult to walk out of Restrepo with much hope for our situation in Afghanistan. Continue Reading

Keepin’ it Reel: Taking a Look at the New Cable Car Cinema and Cafe

Local moviegoers are rejoicing this week at the grand re-opening the Cable Car Cinema and Cafe, of one of Providence’s hidden gems and what has been called one of the ten “Coolest Movie Theaters in America.” Just a quick walk down South Main (only 5 minutes from Keeney, ’14ers) puts you at the doorstep of the independent cinema which, after having been closed for the summer, opened its doors again with a brand new redesign on September 1.

Remaining are the generous leather couches that are so accommodating to couples, the throwback popcorn machine, and the friendly atmosphere. New are the elegant swerving counter-top, increased indoor space, and an idiosyncratic scuba mural on the side of the theater area itself, painted by a local artist and RISD grad. As the improved sound system is still undergoing some tweaking, you’ll have to wait until September 11 for the re-inaugural showing. But, if you’ve got a craving for equal parts mocha and music documentary, heading down to the Cable Car next weekend is a great way to get your fix.   Continue Reading