Series/Festivals

Week of June 5, 2002

Trembling Before G-d. Sandi Simcha DuBowski. If you think being gay or lesbian and being an Orthodox Jew is an irresolvable contradiction, then DuBowski's documentary will be a real eye-opener. In fact, even if the subject has no particular objective resonance with you, this sensitive, passionate and beautifully made film provides an overwhelming emotional and intellectual experience. Nearly five years in the making and shot on locations encompassing half the world, DuBowski's film might be likened to an adventure in ethics both personal and political. And it's an adventure no one, Jew or gentile, can afford to miss. Plays at 8 p.m. June 13. (DE)

Reel Late Midnight Movie Series. The Tivoli Theatre presents a summer series of classic and destined to be classic films. This week features Terry Gilliam's Brazil (1985). A black-comic knock-off of 1984 whose sharp-edged comedy provokes more thought than laughter, Brazil earns progressive stripes by promoting the admirably humanist view that individualism persists -- and prevails -- even in the face of monolithic societal repression. But it's as a visual, not political, statement that the ceaselessly inventive, hallucinatory Brazil qualifies as revolutionary. The movie's would-be hero, Sam (Jonathan Pryce), inhabits a '50s-as-future tomorrowland of black industrial landscapes and decaying high-rise tenements, of disturbingly organic ductwork and ever-present TV tubes, of random violence by both urban terrorists and the terrorist state. An unambitious drone in the Ministry of Information, Sam plods the straight-and-narrow in life but soars, kites and wheels in his flight-filled reveries as a winged knight who battles to free his ethereal love (Kim Greist) from earthly bondage. Although trapped in a gray world of totalitarian oppression, Sam's mind wanders the verdant, exotic land evoked by the film's enigmatic title and haunting signature tune. Like a latter-day Buuel, Gilliam reconstitutes and thereby clarifies everyday reality. Also playing this weekend as part of the series is Wes Anderson's Rushmore.. Both play at midnight June 7-8 at the Tivoli. (CF)

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