Movies on the Big Screen as They Were Meant To Be Seen.
Dir: Takashi Miike
Little Rantaro comes from a long line of ninjas, so when he leaves the family farm to enter ninja school himself he is determined to master star-throwing, explosives, and rock-climbing. But Rantaro’s first-year class is so inept that the headmaster declares an early vacation and sends them all home. The youngsters nonetheless earn their stars when they are challenged by a rival clan and must race to ring the bell at a mountaintop temple to save the school. Brilliant in its excess and bursting with energy from the infectious young cast, the film is loaded with non-stop visual gags, dopey villains, adorable ninja trainees … and easily earns all three exclamation points in its title! Recommended Ages: 8 and up. In Japanese with English subtitles.
Dir: Bibo Bergeron
A classic misunderstood-monster tale, this warm-hearted musical about the power of song features Django Reinhardt-style gypsy guitar and honey-toned vocals courtesy of Sean Lennon. Paris, 1910. The streets of the city are flooded. A mist-enshrouded Eiffel Tower looms over a temporary lake and the alleyways sport makeshift bridges so Parisians can go about their daily routines. But spirits are high for the citizens of this romantic city, including Emile, a lovelorn film projectionist, and his inventor friend Raoul, whose enthusiasm for breaking rules places him and Emile at the center of some unintentional mischief after they sneak into a scientist’s laboratory greenhouse and unwittingly let loose a monster onto the soggy streets. Yet this terrible monster turns out to have a sad and sensitive soul - as well as musical talent - and when cabaret singer Lucille discovers the beast hiding backstage at the music hall, he dons a cape and hat and joins her act, instantly wowing the crowd with his silky smooth voice and hot guitar licks. Despite his peaceful demeanor, the City of Lights is in a panic, as the rotten rogue of a mayor plunges his police force headlong into a chaotic monster hunt that uses both the sweeping backdrops of Paris and 3-D effects to the fullest. Recommended ages: 5 and up. In English.
Buena Vista Pictures,
Dir: Joel Cohen
Taking much of its inspiration from Homer’s The Odyssey, this Coen brothers comedy stars George Clooney, John Turturro and Tim Blake Nelson as escaped convicts in Depression-era Mississippi. On a wild goose chase for loot from a previous crime, the trio encounter bluesmen, bank robbers, Bible thumpers and politicos, and become unlikely hitmakers as the “Soggy Bottom Boys” (in real life, the film’s bluegrass-filled soundtrack topped charts and won three Grammys). Costarring John Goodman. The title is taken from the social-realist film-within-a-film Joel McCrea's character wants to make in Preston Sturges' SULLIVAN'S TRAVELS!