A! Magazine for the Arts

A scene from House of Sand.

A scene from House of Sand.

Arts Array Films

December 19, 2006

The Winter Arts Array Film Series kicks off this month. Showings are Mondays and Tuesdays at 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at Abingdon Cinemall. $7.50 community admission. 276-739-2447.

  • Jan. 15-16: The U.S. vs. John Lennon, an impassioned documentary covering 1966-1976, tells the story of Lennon's transformation from beloved musical artist to anti-war activist to iconic inspiration for peace, and recounting the story of the U.S. Government's efforts to silence him. Because of the cooperation of Yoko Ono, the film has access to rare archival footage, photos and copious use of music - as well as interviews with Carl Bernstein, Angela Davis, Gore Vidal, George McGovern, and others. The film shows this was not just an isolated episode in American history, but that the issues and struggles of that era remain relevant today.
  • Jan. 22-23: Old Joy is the story of two old friends, Kurt (Will Oldham) and Mark (Daniel London), who reunite for a weekend camping trip in the Cascade mountain range east of Portland, Oregon. For Mark, the weekend outing offers a respite from the pressure of his imminent fatherhood; for Kurt, it is a part of a long series of carefree adventures. As the hours progress and the landscape evolves, the men move through a range of subtle emotions, enacting a pilgrimage of mutual confusion, sudden insight, and spiritual searching. As a male-bonding film, Old Joy is superior in its emotional range and depth to its recent predecessors, Sideways and Brokeback Mountain.
  • Jan. 29-30: House of Sand is one of those timeless masterpieces which occurs very rarely and features the two greatest Brazilian actresses, Fernanda Montenegro (the star of Central Station) and her real-life daughter Fernanda Torres. In 1910, in Maranhao, in arid northern Brazil, a young pregnant woman, her husband, and her mother move to a wilderness near a lagoon surrounded by shifting dunes. When the husband dies, the two women are left alone, without any resources. The film follows them and the granddaughter for the next 60 years as the shifting sands chart their lives, and the continuity of generations is reflected by the two actresses playing different women at different periods of those characters' lives.