Jan. 26: Jean of the Joneses

Thursday Jan. 26 @ 7:00 pm / GALAXY CINEMAS / Sault Ste. Marie

Director: Stella Meghie
Canada 2016
English / 82 minutes

The lives of Jean (Taylour Paige) and her multi-generational, middle-class family of strong-minded, stubborn women, come to an
arresting stop when the estranged patriarch of the family literally dies on their doorstep. Tensions rise, old conflicts come to a boil,
and chaos ensues as Jean seeks to uncover the family’s buried
secrets while at the same time coming to terms with her own
mistakes. A savvy comedy exploring three generations of vibrant and unforgettable women, Jean of the Joneses is one of the best-
written and most entertaining films of the year.

Introducing both a fresh new voice and a fresh new face to independent filmmaking, Jean of the Joneses is a crisply urbane comedy from first-time writer-director Stella Meghie, boasting a sparkling lead performance by Taylour Paige. Michael Rechtshaffen, Hollywood Reporter

Takes its cues from both Woody Allen’s self-indulgent worlds and the
literary panache of Zadie Smith, but remains original in its darkly funny perspective
. Julia Cooper, Globe & Mail

Highly visually controlled, snappily edited, and beautifully acted, Jean of the Joneses is a clever New York comedy about the Caribbean diaspora. Sean L. Malin, Austin Chronicle

Jan. 19: The Eagle Huntress

Thursday Jan. 19 @ 7:00 pm / GALAXY CINEMAS / Sault Ste. Marie

Director: Otto Bell
USA 2016
Kazakh with English subtitles  and English / 87 minutes

For centuries, the Kazakh people have hunted with golden eagles
in a tradition that has been handed down from father to son. This
riveting documentary follows Aisholpan Nurgaiv, a 13-year-old girl
that becomes the first female in twelve generations of her family to
become an eagle hunter. Featuring stunning  cinematography, this is
a rare look at one of the world’s last true wildernesses. Set against
the breathtaking expanse of the Mongolian steppe, this intimate
tale of a young girl’s quest has the dramatic force of an epic
adventure. An empowering story of an incredible journey.

Along with Aisholpan’s enduring spirit, The Eagle Huntress excels in portraying the beauty and respect the people here have for both the animals and environment. With Simon Niblett’s soaring cinematography, using a mix of eagle-mounted GoPro cameras and drone footage, there’s both an expansive and intimate sensory rush when we see Aisholpan in action. Jordan Raup, The Film Stage

The outline of a modern feminist epic is always there in the background. What’s surprising is how fresh and charming the movie manages to be. John Hartl, Seattle Times

Factor in the feel-good story, Bell’s bracing cinematography, and his meticulous observance of the villagers’ customs and environments, and the film becomes a multilayered exploration of dignity, perseverance, and progress. Leah Pickett, Chicago Reader

Winter films start January 19

We will be screening 10 films this winter, starting on January 19.

All films will be shown Thursdays at 7:00 pm at Galaxy Cinemas,
except for the film shown for National Canadian Film Day, which will be screened Wednesday, March 19.

We have settled on eight of the movies and are working on
confirming the last two.

Check our schedule page to see confirmed titles, and check back here in early January to see descriptions of upcoming films.

Nov. 10: Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World

Director: Werner Herzog
USA 2016
English / 98 minutes
Rating: PG

An eccentric, entertaining, and enlightening meditation on our
digital world, Lo and Behold investigates the internet’s integration
into every aspect of our lives. Through interviews with scientists
and entrepreneurs at the cutting edge of digital technologies,
Herzog considers the new possibilities opened up by the internet, and  speculates on how humanity and the world will be impacted
by these developments. But the promises of a bright future are
tempered by some darker realities. The film refrains from any final
judgments, leaving the viewer to consider the implications on their own lives and hopes for the future.

This documentary is one of Herzog’s best; it’s thoughtful yet entertaining, amusing yet heartbreaking, and sometimes simply beautiful. Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media

Herzog’s observations, however, are steeped in optimism, an embrace
of the mystic, and, even, good humor.
Ray Pride, Newcity

The shape of things to come is a subject very dear to the hearts of the high-tech evangelists Herzog talks to, and it accounts for the pulse of freakish comedy that beats through Lo and Behold. Anthony Lane, New Yorker

NOV. 3: Juste la fin du monde / It’s Only the End of the World

Director: Xavier Dolan
Canada/France 2016
French with English subtitles / 95 minutes
Rating: PG

Apologies for the technical difficulties.

After receiving a terminal diagnosis, Louis (Gaspard Ulliel) returns home, ending a 12-year absence. But his homecoming is tainted by lingering resentment. His attempts to inform his mother (Nathalie Baye), sister (Léa Seydoux), brother (Vincent Cassel), and sister-in-law (Marion Cotillard) of his illness are repeatedly sabotaged by the surfacing tensions between family members. Shot in intimate close-ups, the film is claustrophobic and oppressive, brilliantly conveying the characters’ dysfunction. Winner of the Grand Prix at Cannes, this is a thunderous drama about family roots.

Dolan has made a film that is at once his most restrained and withholding work while still being remarkably indulgent. A whole film told in tight close-ups on anguished faces. Grace Sharkey, 4:3

Dolan has found a way to exasperate and exhaust his audience, but he has also achieved a completely unexpected catharsis at the end of an
agonizing hour and a half.  Standing there on the grave of dreams, he knows why the caged bird sings.
Peter Debruge, Variety

It’s not an easy film to watch – and it doesn’t try to be. Pablo Villaça, Cinema em Cena

Oct. 27: Our Little Sister

Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda
Japan 2015
Japanese with English subtitles / 128 minutes
Rating: PG

The Koda sisters have been on their own since their mother
moved away shortly after her husband left her for another woman. Now in their twenties, the three sisters still live together. When they
receive news of their father’s death, they’re surprised to discover that they have a 13-year-old half-sister, who gratefully accepts her sisters’ offer to live with them. The presence of the girl, for whom the loss of her father is still a fresh wound, stirs long-dormant
memories of their father. This tender and restrained film is a subtle but deeply affecting meditation on absence and loss.

Kore-eda makes thrilling the rich inner lives of four young women trying to navigate rocky emotional terrain in the wake of their father’s death. Barbara Van Denburgh, Arizona Republic

If you succumb to Kore-eda’s slow rhythms – the climbs up a hill to find a magnificent view, the walks along the beach, the simple peace of a shared meal – this is the kind of movie that will leave you feeling restored, maybe a little misty-eyed as well. Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

Our Little Sister is a tender and restrained feature that flows by like a gentle stream, lulling you with its melodic cadence and drawing you into its beauty. Bob Bloom, Journal & Courier (Lafayette)

Oct. 13: Captain Fantastic

Director: Matt Ross
USA 2015
English / 120 minutes
Rating: R (brief nudity and language)

Ben (Viggo Mortensen) and his wife have raised their six kids deep
in the forests of the Pacific Northwest, away from the modern world. But when tragedy strikes, Ben and his clan are forced to leave their counterculture paradise. Both heartbreak and hilarity ensue as the kids face some of their first social interactions with the wider world. Best known for his heavy-duty dramatic roles, Mortensen
reveals a wonderful gift for comedy and his interactions with the children yield some truly laugh-out-loud moments. A delightfully offbeat and heartwarming tale.

He bears the nickname of a comic book hero, the brains of a scholar,
the soul of a rebel.  His story is a richly rewarding film experience.
Mara Reinstein, US Weekly

It’s a rare movie that asks such big questions – about parenting, about family, about modern-day America – and comes up with answers that
are moving and meaningful, that make you laugh and cry.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

A fiercely original, pleasantly unpredictable character piece. This is a gang of outsiders with something valuable to say about the world we
live in.
Helen O’Hara, Empire Magazine

Sept. 29: Mustang

Thursday Sept. 29 @ 7:00 pm / GALAXY CINEMAS / Sault Ste. Marie

Director: Deniz Gamze Ergüven
France/Germany/Turkey/Qatar  2015
Turkish with English subtitles / 97 minutes
Rating: PG (mature perspective strongly advised)

In a remote Turkish village on the Black Sea, five free-spirited
teenaged sisters splash on the beach with their male classmates. Though their games are innocent, a neighbor reports what she
considers to be illicit behavior to the girls’ family. The family reacts by removing all “instruments of corruption” such as cell phones and computers. Their home is progressively transformed into a prison and instruction in homemaking replaces school. As the eldest sisters are married off, the younger ones resolve to avoid the same fate. Ergüven’s debut is a powerful portrait of female empowerment.

Mustang is astonishing; staying with you long after viewing.
Blake Howard, Graffiti with Punctuation

Part of a welcome international wave of films made by women directors that focus on girls growing up in worlds of men – and on what they look like when no one’s looking. Ty Burr, Boston Globe

The filmmakers approach their characters not as political objects but as rare humans grappling with that unique moment when childhood gives way – painfully but sometimes beautifully – to brutal realities.
Noah Gittell, Washington City Paper

Extra draw on Sept. 15

Along with our regular draws of two free tickets to any AIF film screened during the season, this week there will be a draw
for a free pass to the Soo Film Festival taking place this weekend (Sept. 16-18) in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

Be sure to arrive before the 7:00 draw, and keep your ticket stub
until after all the draws have been won.

Sept. 15: Love & Friendship

Thursday Sept. 15 @ 7:00 pm / GALAXY CINEMAS / Sault Ste. Marie

Director: Whit Stillman
Ireland/Netherlands/France/USA 2016
English / 92 minutes
Rating: PG

In this sharp-tongued and riotously funny adaptation of Jane
Austen’s novella, Lady Susan, the beautiful and cunning Lady
Susan Vernon (Kate Beckinsale), a recent widow, engineers all
manner of wonderfully devious plots to bend the world to her
will and land herself a wealthy new husband. Taking up residence
at her in-laws’ estate, she sets her sights on the dashing Reginald
De Courcy (Xavier Samuel). However, her plans are derailed when her beautiful daughter Frederica (Morfydd Clark) turns up. If you’re looking for a smart, fun, and scruple-free romp, Love & Friendship is definitely your cup of tea.

 Love & Friendship is quick, clever and delightful, very funny and hugely entertaining. Liz Braun, Toronto Sun

Following many staid and contrived Austen adaptations, this sublime
period romp adds a thrilling splash of bemused, acidic humor.
Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

 Austen did like to have fun with her characters to show the stranger sides we all have. Watching this classy adaptation of one of her lesser-known works will remind you of that, and make you laugh.
Stephen Romei, The Australian