In this week’s long review, Ben Sachs looks at Welcome to New York, the latest from Bronx bad boy Abel Ferrara (Bad Lieutenant, King of New York); it’s a fictionalized take on the rape case that toppled IMF director Dominique Strauss-Kahn. Elsewhere in the new issue, I review The Wrecking Crew, Denny Tedesco’s long-gestating documentary about his father, legendary session guitarist Tommy Tedesco, and the other studio players who defined the West Coast rock sound.
Opening this week and freshly reviewed in the Reader: Adult Beginners, a modest indie comedy with Nick Kroll as a fast-talking entrepreneur forced to move in with his sister’s family; Dior and I, a documentary about a young fashion designer readying a new collection for the French fashion house; Little Boy, a World War II period piece about a kid in a small California town who befriends a harassed Japanese-American man; The Mafia Kills Only in Summer, an Italian comedy about the mob’s influence on contemporary politics; The Water Diviner, with Russell Crowe (also making his directorial debut) as a man trying to reclaim his sons’ bodies after they’re killed in the Gallipoli campaign; and White Cop, a low-budget action spoof shot in Bucktown and the Near West Side, screening midnight Friday and Saturday at Music Box.
Best bets for repertory: Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1963), Friday through Sunday at University of Chicago Doc Films; Frank Tashlin’s The Girl Can’t Help It (1956), Sunday at Doc; Gene Graham’s The Godfather of Disco, next Thursday at Black Cinema House; producer David O. Selznick’s Gone With the Wind (1939), Monday at Doc; Lon Chaney in Laugh, Clown, Laugh (1928), Friday at the Patio with live organ accompaniment from Jay Warren; Ivan Dixon’s The Spook Who Sat by the Door (1973), Tuesday at Gallery 400 with a discussion hosted by youth organization Circles and Ciphers; and Jean Renoir’s The Woman on the Beach (1947) with Robert Ryan, Saturday and Sunday morning at Music Box.
Special events galore this week: shorts programs at Nightingale Cinema, Facets Cinematheque, and Oracle Theatre; the film-editing conference Cinemetrics Across Borders, beginning next Thursday at University of Chicago Logan Center for the Arts, Creative Music Summit, a panel discussion on “music, media, and social practice” with a screening of Oscar Micheaux’s Body and Soul (1925), Sunday at Museum of Contemporary Art; a University of Chicago screening of Kirby Dick’s The Hunting Ground with a postscreening discussion about campus rape; and Kartemquin Members’ Work for Hire, showcasing the commercial films of local documentary collective Kartemquin Films, Friday at Logan Center.