And So It Goes
See review this issue. Various Theaters.
"Never rub another man's rhubarb!" Academy Theater.
What can we say about Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore's Blended? Well, let's start with the obvious: It's fucking terrible and will make you wish you were dead. ELINOR JONES Various Theaters.
See review this issue. Cinema 21.
The Dance of Reality
Alejandro Jodorowsky's first feature in 23 years, and evidence that he's lost precious little of his curve. A kinda-sorta autobiography (puppets feature heavily), the film follows the director back to the mining town of his birth for a glimpse at the beginnings of his signature obsessions. Even at its most arrestingly bizarre, however—beware the hungry gulls—the main attraction remains Jodorowsky himself, an intensely charismatic, charmingly egotistical figure who remains utterly confident in the belief that his art can change the world. ANDREW WRIGHT Hollywood Theatre.
The Dark Crystal
How are you guys not sick of this yet? Hollywood Theatre.
The Dark Side of Dr. Seuss
Film historian Dennis Nyback's collection of 16mm films made by Theodor Seuss Geisel during his time in the army, consisting of "gung-ho propaganda and army training films." Hollywood Theatre.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Bare minimum—minimum—Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is a movie that features monkeys firing machine guns while riding on horses. By any reasonable measure, that fact alone makes Dawn a very special film—but director Matt Reeves and writers Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, and Mark Bomback have gone a step further. They've gone and made an outstanding war movie. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.
Edge of Tomorrow
A fun, funny action movie with science-fiction smarts, deft satire, a nail-biter of a plot, and lots of cool explosions. If you see a better popcorn movie this summer, it's going to be a very good summer indeed. NED LANNAMANN Various Theaters.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
In The Grand Budapest Hotel, doom and death are all but unavoidable: The film is set largely in Eastern Europe in the 1930s, and just outside the hotel's doors lies the barbaric slaughterhouse we know as humanity. It's a big cast and a big story, and as an adventure and a caper, Grand Budapest is so tremendously, ridiculously fun that it would exuberantly fly off its rails if it weren't for Wes Anderson's confident touch and Fiennes's remarkable performance. If anyone tells you Grand Budapest isn't hilarious, they're dead inside, but so is anyone who thinks it's merely a screwy comedy: The darkness that peeked from the corners in Anderson's earlier films is starting to crawl out. Even with all its fantastical affectations, the film has an ominous weight. ERIK HENRIKSEN Academy Theater, Laurelhurst Theater.
Two irony-clad hipsters—a straight woman and her gay best friend—fall for the unselfconscious charms of a hot new country boy. Insightful look at modern romantic mores, or highbrow camp? Does it matter? ALISON HALLETT Fifth Avenue Cinema.
Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul and the '90s' Juliette Lewis star in Kat Candler's drama, in which a couple of brothers who're up to no good (Josh Wiggins and Deke Garner) start making trouble in their Texas neighborhood. Child protective services gets involved, their can't-get-it-together dad (Paul) keeps drinking anyway, and a downward spiral of lower-class suffering continues its endless swirl. The first few minutes of Hellion make it pretty clear that shitty situations rarely get better; with stone-faced seriousness and increasing violence, that message is thuddingly repeated for the next hour and a half. ERIK HENRIKSEN Living Room Theaters.
This movie has a secret. Its secret is revealed in the first five minutes of the movie, but it's nowhere in the trailer. I don't think I can really talk about the movie without revealing this secret. So for those of you who want to see the movie with all its secrets unrevealed, here's a non-spoiler review of the film: It's really boring and it's probably not worth your time. For everyone else: All those giant monsters Hercules is fighting in the trailer? They're not really in the movie. They exist in a fantasy sequence in the first two minutes of Hercules, when a young storyteller is regaling some soldiers with an account of the Twelve Labors of Hercules. But the Hercules in Hercules is a legend, not a demigod. He's a normal (but incredibly strong) human man who allows his legend to be spread so he can intimidate his foes and earn a better living as a mercenary. So this is the Hercules story with all the larger-than-life mythology and magic stripped out. That is to say, it's a Hercules story that takes out all the interesting and exciting parts of the Hercules story. PAUL CONSTANT Various Theaters.
Brian DePalma and Robert DeNiro teamed up at the dawn of the '70s to make this collection of satirical vignettes about a Vietnam vet trying to reintegrate into society. Fifth Avenue Cinema.
The Holy Mountain
An LSD-emulating vision quest that still feels like one of the oddest things to ever hit a screen. Alejandro Jodorowsky's 1973 film remains a compulsively watchable mélange of sexed-up robots, hysterically deadpan dialogue (the line about "hyper-sexed brown native vampires" is far from the weirdest thing to be said), and unforgettable scatological alchemy. After seeing it, be prepared to laugh like a hyena whenever one of those Cash4Gold commercials comes on. ANDREW WRIGHT Hollywood Theatre.
How to Train Your Dragon 2
One more rousing success like this and How to Train Your Dragon will be the second-best animated trilogy in history. (Nothing's gonna touch Toy Story, sorry.) ERIC D. SNIDER Various Theaters.
See review this issue. Fox Tower 10.
Remember when Steve Martin was funny? Yeah, I know, it's been a long time—before most of us were alive, I'm thinkin'. But when he was on, the guy was unstoppable. In 1979's The Jerk, he plays Navin R. Johnson, a huge moron that was "born a poor black child." Only he's white—incredibly so. It's dead-on hilarious slapstick, social commentary, and—most of all—shows Martin's comic skills chopping like a damn Ginzu knife. Just lava-hot funny. Insert cliché about the mighty falling here. ADAM GNADE Laurelhurst Theater.
The NW Film Center's animation fest is a mixed bag, as notable for what's missing—anything from Disney—as for what's there. Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira is even more stunningly gorgeous than you remember, although the plot, condensed from a 2,000-page manga, still doesn't make a lick of sense, and France's surreal, painterly sci-fi fable Fantastic Planet is a must-see on the big screen. But there are also selections like the dreadful Fritz the Cat; its shock value long since faded, Fritz is just an ugly, off-color joke that goes on for far too long. NED LANNAMANN Whitsell Auditorium.
See review this issue. Various Theaters.
Mending the Line
A documentary that follows Frank Moore, a 90-year-old WWII veteran and world-renowned fly fisherman, as he returns to Normandy to fish in the same rivers he once saw as a soldier. Whitsell Auditorium.
A Million Ways to Die in the West
Maybe it's best to think of Seth MacFarlane as the guy in class who copies your homework. He's shrewd enough to find a way to pass the class, but he hasn't done any original work all semester. NED LANNAMANN Academy Theater, Mission Theater.
A Most Wanted Man
See review this issue. Various Theaters.
Neighbors pits cranky-old-man Mac (Seth Rogen), his wife Kelly (Rose Byrne), and their shockingly adorable baby Stella (some baby) against the shenanigantastic fraternity next door, led by frat president Zac Efron. It's sort of annoying that Neighbors thinks it has to have any sort of moral, but there's some Serious Business about growing up crammed into the end. Spoiler: It's not the worst thing in the world! Babies are cute! If you need someone to explain those facts to you while you laugh at some dick jokes, then Neighbors is the middle-of-the-road comedy for you. ALISON HALLETT Various Theaters.
Obvious Child will always be known, first and foremost, as "the abortion comedy." That's the pitch, the premise, and the novelty of writer/director Gillian Robespierre's great new film: It's about a young woman who has an abortion and doesn't feel bad about it. In defiance of every film trope about abortion, which insist that soul-searching and guilt must necessarily accompany a legal medical procedure, there's no equivocating about whether terminating a pregnancy makes sense for Obvious Child's main character. She doesn't agonize over her decision; she doesn't feel guilty; she doesn't pledge to write a letter to her aborted fetus on its birthday every year. She's single, unemployed, and ambitious. Of course she's going to get an abortion. But Obvious Child isn't content to simply portray abortion as the medical procedure that it is: Here, the consequences of an unprotected hookup essentially provide the "cute" in a topsy-turvy millennial meet-cute where drunken sex, pregnancy tests, and Planned Parenthood waiting rooms all come before deciding if you really even like someone. ALISON HALLETT Hollywood Theatre.
Only Lovers Left Alive
It would be dumb to recommend a new vampire flick without acknowledging that the genre has been awful in recent years. We agreed not so long ago as film-going people that vampires were over. Luckily, Jim Jarmusch didn't get the memo, and Only Lovers Left Alive is totally different, weird, and fantastic. ELINOR JONES Laurelhurst Theater.
The Purge: Anarchy
With The Purge—which took place on a day when citizens are encouraged to take full advantage of an annual legalization of murder and mayhem—writer/director James DeMonaco flung open the door on middle-class ultra-violence. With his sequel, he turns his eye to how the inner city deals with the urge to Purge. An economical and tense thriller, with echoes of John Carpenter's work. COURTNEY FERGUSON Various Theaters.
A film series sponsored by In Other Words Feminist Community Center. This week's film: The Motherhood Archives. More at cstpdx.com. Clinton Street Theater.
To spice things up, married couple Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel make a—you guessed it—sex tape. Naturally, due to some iPad-ex-machina, the tape is soon all over town, with the shamed couple running through all kinds of madcap follies. I won't spoil the end for you (director Jake Kasdan does a great job of that himself), but I will say that at end of the movie, in the not-so-grand tradition of The Hangover, yes, they finally show the scandalous tape. These idiots were right to be ashamed! I've never been less turned on by two healthy, naked people. Rock Hudson and his beard made more titillating movies in the '50s. BRI PRUETT Various Theaters.
Bong Joon-ho's latest—a sci-fi movie set on a superfast futuretrain—is filmmaking as allegory, agitprop, and adventure, and it's also a film in which Chris Evans uses an ax to fuck up a whole lot of people. Come for the fantastic performances, the stunning visuals, and Bong Joon-ho's startling vision. Stay for a few handy tips on how to start a revolution. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters, On Demand.
The Rover's apocalyptic wasteland—a sprawling, sun-strangled Australia, "10 years after the collapse"—is a less-than-ideal place for anyone without a car. And Eric (Guy Pearce) will do anything to get his back—including taking hostage Rey (Robert Pattinson), a younger man who might know where the car is headed. Thus, a brutal sort of buddy flick: Eric and Rey traverse this dusty, bloody outback, by turns avoiding and exploiting the few tattered remnants of civilization. Early on, it's easy to find things to compare The Rover to—Cormac McCarthy's The Road, George Miller's Mad Max, Kutcher & Scott's Dude, Where's My Car?—but one of the many stunning things about the latest from David Michôd is how quickly his film crystallizes into a hard-edged, nerve-wracking thing all its own. ERIK HENRIKSEN Laurelhurst Theater.
Top Down: Rooftop Cinema
The NW Film Center's rooftop screening series, taking place on top of the Hotel deLuxe's parking garage. Screening on Thursday, July 24 is Alfred Hitchcock's Notorious; screening on Thursday, July 31 is Wes Anderson's Bottle Rocket. Hotel deLuxe.
The Portland Latino Gay Pride Festival presents a documentary about trans Latina activist Bamby Salcedo. Hollywood Theatre.
Wes' World: Wes Anderson and His Influences
Rushmore is at the top and The Darjeeling Limited is at the bottom, or so the thinking goes, with the rest jockeying for spots in the middle. Ask people to rank Wes Anderson's movies and you'll find their answers reliable indicators of whether you should keep talking to them, ignore them forever, sleep with them, or feed them to a jaguar shark. For what it's worth, Darjeeling is better than people remember, and more than a few of Anderson's other films give Rushmore a run for its money. And there's no better chance to reevaluate—and enjoy—Anderson's work than at the NW Film Center's "Wes' World: Wes Anderson and His Influences" series, which pairs all of Anderson's films (with the exception of his latest, The Grand Budapest Hotel) with films that influenced Anderson and his co-creators, including works from Hal Ashby, François Truffaut, Robert Altman, and Werner Herzog. Anderson is famous for his polished, fully formed clockworks; here's a chance to see how the gears fit together. More at nwfilm.org. ERIK HENRIKSEN Whitsell Auditorium.
Who Is Dayani Cristal?
Gael García Bernal stars in a film about the death of an unknown man near the Arizona border. Screens as a fundraiser the Portland Central America Solidarity Committee. Clinton Street Theater.
Wish I Was Here
See review this issue. Various Theaters.
MEANS WE RECOMMEND IT. Theater locations are accurate Friday, July 25-Thursday, July 31, unless otherwise noted. Movie times are updated daily and are available here.