Now Playing: FISH TANK, FARGO, and SEX MAGIC, plus more great films this week
This week we delve into our darkest fears and deepest desires with films about alienation, death, love, sex and… improper surgical techniques? Luckily, not all in the same film. Like this crazy month of December so far, our films are running hot and cold this week, from the blazing Arizona sun of SEX MAGIC to the North Dakota/Minnesota snow and ice of FARGO and points in between.
MOVIES WE LOVE LUST
Spend Sunday Nights with a film that reminds you why you love the movies.
Film noir has always been an aesthetic that reflects our darkest fears, and while the classic era of the 1940’s still gets the most talk (think DOUBLE INDEMNITY, FALLEN ANGEL or THE BIG SLEEP), noir has remained an important outlet for filmmakers to reflect our anxieties right up through today. The 1980’s saw more than its share of well regarded film noirs, including Joel and Ethan Coen’s BLOOD SIMPLE, David Lynch’s BLUE VELVET and this film right here: Alan Parker’s mix of psychological horror and the supernatural, ANGEL HEART. If you only know Mickey Rourke from recent work like THE WRESTLER, you’ll have a hard time believing this is the same actor.
Every week, watch a different award winning film from festivals around the globe. A series of contemporary hits and timeless masterpieces.
After toiling away for the previous decade (the aforementioned BLOOD SIMPLE, BARTON FINK, RAISING ARIZONA) but rarely reaching more than their own cult audience, Joel and Ethan Coen finally broke through and established themselves as masters of the modern film noir with FARGO. With a pitch-perfect take on the unique Scandinavian-bred culture of the upper midwest (“oh yah!”) and a white-out winter setting that’ll have you shivering in your seat, the Coens create a fascinating and distinctive backdrop for this “true story” of kidnapping gone wrong. Like many of the best Coen brothers films, FARGO is a morality tale at heart – an example of how a single bad decision can spiral into a web of lies, crime and death. Frances McDormand and William H. Macy also became household names for their portrayals of pregnant sheriff Marge Gunderson and kidnap conspirator/world’s worst husband Jerry Lundegaard, respectively.
ROBERT REDFORD PRESENTS
An insightful introduction into a diverse array of thought provoking films brought to you by the man who made it all possible… Mr. Robert Redford presents…
Andrea Arnold’s Cannes Jury Prize-winning FISH TANK is a story of alienation and rebellion in the exurbs of London. Teenager Mia has lost herself in the downward spiral between her and her mother, getting herself kicked out of school and spending her days up to no good. When her mother shags up with a new man, Mia attempts to seduce him.
Turn off the lights and lock the front door every Thursday at 10p as Sundance Channel brings you a unique thriller from genres across the board.
There’s probably nothing more nightmarish: waking up during surgery but being unable to move or speak. It’s a real-life (but thankfully rare) phenomenon known as “anesthesia awareness”, and it’s also the subject of AWAKE. The young Clay Beresford needs a heart transplant. During his surgery, he wakes up, in the process learning dark secrets about a plot to murder him for his money. Hayden Christensen stars as Clay; Jessica Alba plays Sam, his newlywed wife.
A night of uncut, uncensored, boundary-pushing fare sure to earn its TV-MA.
Now here’s something you’re not going to see on network television. Baba Dez is a “sexual healer” who uses sex as “magic” to bring about tangible desires – by his own count, he’s had sex with more than 1,000 women. When his true love Maya leaves due to his lifestyle, what’s his solution? Bring her back with more sex! This is a narrative documentary, in that it is a real-life love story, albeit an unconventional one. A word of warning and/or encouragement (depending on your view): if you haven’t figured it out already, this film is explicit.