Film Friday: Slither-Franco
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Film Friday: Slither-Franco

2006_03_31_hotdocs.jpgThis week the Hot Docs box office has opened, and with luck we’ll soon have some early coverage of our picks of the festival to help you with your ticket buying decisions, advising you to find 37 uses for a dead sheep, perhaps?
Of course, if the schedule has got you all fired up for some documentaries, this week Cinematheque Ontario is exploring the documentary films of Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, the first North American public screenings outside of Montreal. Sunday’s screening is of When the Boat of Leon M. Went Down the Meuse River For the First Time, For The War To End, The Walls Should Have Crumbled [The Newspaper] and R… No Longer Answers (I’ve provided only the English translations of the titles so as not to double my word count, I’m afraid), with R… No Longer Answers a particularly interesting exploration of people linked by an international free radio service.
Wednesday’s showing features Look at Jonathan, a tribute to playwright Jean Louvet, followed by Lessons of a University on the Fly, reflections on life under Soviet rule from exiled Poles living in Seraing.
Cinematheque also continues its Peckinpah retrospective with a showing of absurdly violent war film Cross of Iron on Saturday, and begins a Cristi Puiu retrospective with a showing of The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, winner of the Un Certain Regard prize at Cannes, the comedic tragedy of a the slow and sad death of a near destitute widower on his trip through Romania’s uncaring medical system. (All showings at Jackman Hall, AGO, 317 Dundas W)
If your tastes remain French but your tastes lean away from documentaries, then a good bet is this week’s Cinéfranco festival, running until April 9th. Eye’s Jason Anderson has done an admirable job covering the highs and lows, with particular praise for Jaques Audiard’s The Beat My Heart Skipped, and particular scorn for Bertrand Blier’s How Much Do you Love Me? (Not much, clearly! All showing at the Royal Cinema, 608 College)
2006_03_31_slither.jpgOther releases include a wider release for Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s Three Times, which Glenn Sumi liked so much he’s reviewed it a second time (I think you can guess the punch line I was going to put here) and Slither, Troma alumnus and Dawn of the Dead writer James Gunn’s incredibly icky looking comedy horror film. The picture tells you more than enough for you to know if you should check it out or not, I’m sure.