It is that time of year again, Christmas in October for Milton and me. Here in the Big Apple the New York Film Festival is underway for the 49th time.
Milton is a longtime member of the Film Society of Lincoln Center so we were able to purchase our tickets in advance in August. This year’s festival is packed with films that already have theatrical release.
For example, opening the festival today is Carnage directed by Roman Polanski (a guaranteed no show). This film is an adaptation of God of Carnage, Yasmina Reza’s smash hit play that won the Tony award in 2009. It stars Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz and John C. Reilly. We figure that most, if not all of them, will attend.
Milton and I were in complete agreement to pass on this one, not because we have issues with Polanski, the story, or the star-studded cast, but it will open theatrically in December. If we do not luck into a free screening, we’ll see it in a movie theater for $13, significantly less than the $250 opening night admission price (but it will screen three more times at the festival to the tune of $40 or $20). Milton and I are fine with waiting to see this one later in the year.
What we strive to see are films that have not scored distribution but we also indulge each other’s guilty pleasure. This year my GP is a screening of a two-part HBO documentary George Harrison: Living in the Material World. It’s directed by Martin Scorsese and will be broadcast on HBO next Wednesday and Thursday, October 5th and 6th, the day after our screening. I told Milton that since I can no longer afford to subscribe to HBO I’d like to see all 208 minutes of it in one sitting on Alice Tully Hall’s giant screen. Milton swallowed hard and said:
Milton (groaning deeply): Okay.
Milton’s guilty pleasure is The Turin Horse, possibly the last film by the Hungarian filmmaker, Béla Tarr. It’s shot in black and white, it runs 146 minutes with minimal action, and the little dialogue that is spoken is in Hungarian. My boss, Elsbeth, who is of Hungarian descent, wanted to get a ticket, too, but when she revealed this to me I discovered that it was already sold out. As fate would have it, the FSLC has posted the trailer online and voila! Tickets are suddenly available again. I cocked my head like Nipper the RCA dog and thought:
Me: Huh! How’d that happen?
Then, I watched the 45 second trailer. I urge all Lame Adventures readers to do so now:
Hm, I wonder if there might have been an onslaught of returns and Milton and I will have the theater all to ourselves? I’m debating whether or not to tell my superior that tickets are available again. I could sorely use a raise but I’m unsure if passing on this news will grant me one or get me fired.