One-Night Stands 

Repertory film listings for April 17-23

Reviews by Michael Covino, Jonathan Rosenbaum, and Kelly Vance.

Thu., Apr. 17

Sullivan's Banks Heinz Emigholz' documentary on the buildings of architect Louis Sullivan (38 min., 2000). Followed by Maillart's Bridges (24 min., 2001). Emigholz in person. (PFA, 7:00)

Loos Ornamental Heinz Emigholz meticulously reveals 27 of Adolf Loos' buildings and interiors in Vienna, Paris, and the Czech republic (72 min., 2007). Emigholz in person. (PFA, 8:30)

Citizen McCaw Documentary about a journalism ethics battle at the Santa Barbara News Press (2008). Followed by panel discussion featuring director Sam Tyler, former News Press editor Jerry Roberts, San Francisco Chronicle page editor John Diaz, and UC Berkeley journalism professor Cynthia Gorney. (University of California Graduate School of Journalism, 6:30)

Fri., Apr. 18

Bachelor Flat Frank Tashlin's satirical dissections of American society — Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?, The Girl Can't Help It — are among the most original comedies to come out of this country, blending cartoonish slapstick with genuine bile to produce a harrowingly funny vision of life in the television age. In Bachelor Flat, Terry-Thomas is a retiring British archaeologist who takes a summer house in Malibu, coming face to face with youth culture rampant in the persons of a beefy Richard Beymer and a Lolita-like Tuesday Weld (91 min., 1962). (PFA, 7:00)

The Revolutionary Paul Williams' film capturing post-'60s unrest set "somewhere in the free world" and starring Jon Voight as an Army deserter known only as "A" (100 min., 1970). (PFA, 9:00)

California Independent Film Festival A program of three features: Broke Sky, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead, and Take. (V, 5:30)

Sat., Apr. 19

Queimada! Gillo Pontecorvo's loosely historical film is set in the mid-19th century on a fictional island of Portuguese-possessed sugar plantations. Marlon Brando stars (132 min., 1969). (PFA, 6:00)

Z This political thriller is all the more electrifying because of its proximity to actual events: the takeover by the colonels in Athens, 1967. A Greek leftist is assassinated, and the culpability becomes too much for an entire government to bear. Director Constantin Costa-Gavras has made a career out of translating terrorism of the state into stories of terrorized individuals, and Z is one of his best. Yves Montand, Jean-Louis Trintignant, and Irene Papas star, with music by then-banned Mikis Theodorakis (125 min., 1969). — K.V. (PFA, 8:45)

Bee Movie According to the press notes, Jerry Seinfeld finally agreed to make a movie — voicing the central character in an animated feature as well as co-writing and producing — after pitching just the title to DreamWorks' Steven Spielberg over dinner. If part of the premise is that zillions of bees can collectively run a honey factory or land an airplane, another part seems to be that that zillions of one-liners can add up to a narrative that works as an ecological parable while equating reality with brand-name recognition. ("My sweater's Ralph Lauren and I have no pants," the bratty hero proudly explains at one point.) The whole thing's pretty cute and breezy, but don't expect logic or coherence. Other voices include those of Renee Zellwegger, Matthew Broderick, John Goodman, and Chris Rock (88 min., 2007). — J.Ro. (EC, 3:00)

California Independent Film Festival A variety of programming throughout the day including children's films, shorts, and four features. (V, 10:00 a.m.)

California Independent Film Festival A variety of programming throughout the day including comedies, shorts, documentaries, dramas, and music videos. (Livermore Cinema, 10:00 a.m.)

Sun., Apr. 20

La Commune (Paris, 1871) Director Peter Watkins got non-actors to reenact the events surrounding the Paris Commune, with asides out of character commenting on the political meaning of it all. In French with English subtitles (345 min. plus intermissions, 2000). (PFA, 1:00)

Bee Movie See Saturday. (EC, 2:00)

California Independent Film Festival A mix of shorts and features throughout the day. (Livermore Cinema, 10:00 a.m.)

California Independent Film Festival A program featuring student films and audience favorites. (V, noon)

Tue., Apr. 22

Introduction to Anatomy A collection of shorts dealing with self, mind, body, and identity (total running time 66 min., 2007). Artists in person. (PFA, 7:30)

Wed., Apr. 23

Daughters of the Dust Writer-director Julie Dash's visually beautiful evocation of the uprooting of a turn-of-the-century Sea Islands African-American family is an original. As the clan gathers in celebration and farewell, they cook gumbo, reminisce, debate their ancestral heritage, and bemoan the loss of ritual magic. Dash doesn't tell a story so much as weave a series of interlocking images that wield an uncanny power and evoke the feeling that time on the islands passes differently from time on the outside. Lovely and compelling. With Cora Lee Day, Kaycee Moore, Ava Rogers, Adisa Anderson, Tommy Hicks, Barbara-O, and Cheryl Lynn Bruce. Shot by Arthur Jafa (96 min., 1991). — M.C. (PFA, 3:00)

Society of the Spectacle French intellectual Guy Debord, leading light of the Situationists, produced this example of "detournement" in 1973: a montage of detourned images from hither and yon designed to "subvert their embedded ideology." That'll teach 'em, Guy (87 min.). — K.V. (PFA, 7:30)

With God on Our Side Documentary on the Christian Right movement in US politics, from Billy Graham and Richard Nixon to Pat Robertson and George H. W. Bush. (Humanist Hall, Oakland, 7:30) 


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