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Opening Friday: Another Round and Within Our Gates
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City Lights Cinema

Dear City Lights Fans,

In honor of Black History Month we offer, thanks to our friends at Kino, a building block from the earliest days of cinema with Oscar Micheaux’s Within Our Gates (1920), free for your exploration. Just click on the link below and sign-up with Kino for a free ticket. Micheaux was the most prolific African American filmmaker of all time, and this, his most seen feature, was shot over 100 years ago. Beautifully restored by Kino, with a new score by DJ Spooky, this is an important, enlightening, and entirely relevant examination of the injustices faced by the African American community—then and now.

Awards season is upon us--even in a pandemic year, there were a number of films available via streaming, limited theatrical, and in other novel ways, and plenty of good ones to boot. A nominee for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film is Another Round starring the amazing Mads Mikkelsen and directed by Thomas Vinterberg, who broke into the mainstream in 1998 with his incredible Dogma film, The Celebration. "In a year when much of the world has been stuck at home, day drinking, “Another Round” is a welcome shot of bitters with a warm cognac chaser, and a bracing/revealing renewal of a grand Danish partnership, Vinterberg and Mads his muse." Movie Nation. And Wall Street Journal raved, "This is a movie about the joys of friendship, among many other things, and the possibility of change—for the better, not only for the worse, and not only through blood-alcohol adjustment." 

We're turning on the popcorn machines and heating up the coconut oil for our weekly Curbside Popcorn. Don't let the inclement weather deviate from your concession dreams (OK, I might be reaching there). We might need to fashion some kind of waterproof butter wrapping for Alex tonight. We'll be there 4-7pm tonight and tomorrow. Have a fantastic weekend. 


Michael

COMING SOON TO VIRTUAL CINEMA
THE PEOPLE VS. AGENT ORANGE: NR, 55m 
The Agent Orange catastrophe did not end with the Vietnam War. Today, a primary chemical of the toxic defoliant causes deformed births and deadly cancers. Two heroic women fight to hold the manufacturers accountable.
17 BLOCKS: NR, 96m 
Using two decades of intimate home video, the story of the Sanford family, whose struggles with addiction and gun violence eventually lead to a journey of love, loss, and acceptance.
NEW TO VIRTUAL CINEMA
WITHIN OUR GATES: NR, 99m 
Abandoned by her fiancé, an educated black woman with a shocking past dedicates herself to helping a near-bankrupt school for impoverished black youths.
ANOTHER ROUND: NR, 117m 
Four friends, all high school teachers, test a theory that they will improve their lives by maintaining a constant level of alcohol in their blood.
VIRTUAL CINEMA
MINARI: PG-13, 115m 
A tender and sweeping story about what roots us, Minari follows a Korean-American family that moves to an Arkansas farm in search of their own American Dream. The family home changes completely with the arrival of their sly, foul-mouthed, but incredibly loving grandmother. Amidst the instability and challenges of this new life in the rugged Ozarks, Minari shows the undeniable resilience of family and what really makes a home.
TWO OF US: NR, 99m 
Pensioners Nina and Madeleine have hidden their love for many decades, but their bond is strained when they are suddenly unable to move freely between each other's apartments.
A GLITCH IN THE MATRIX: NR, 108m 
Documentary filmmaker Rodney Ascher tackles the question "Are we living in a simulation?" with testimony, philosophical evidence, and scientific explanation in his search for the answer.
ROCK CAMP: NR, 87m 
Summer camp meets Spinal Tap as we journey to Rock ‘n’ Roll Fantasy Camp in ROCK CAMP, where dreamers from across America and around the world gather to shred with their heroes - and learn to rock like the legends. Rock Camp is an institution and cultural phenomenon that has been going on in Los Angeles, New York, and other cities since 1996. The brainchild of music producer David Fishof, Rock Camp boasts a jaw-dropping array of rock star “counselors” that include Roger Daltrey, Alice Cooper, Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons, Nancy Wilson, Joe Perry, Jeff Beck, Slash, and countless other rock legends. The counselors teach, inspire, and jam with the campers over the course of four days. Each Rock Camp concludes with all of the counselors and their respective campers, performing together.
SOME KIND OF HEAVEN: NR, 83m 
With SOME KIND OF HEAVEN, first-time feature director Lance Oppenheim cracks the manicured facade of The Villages, America’s largest retirement community – a massive, self-contained utopia located in Central Florida. Behind the gates of this palm tree-lined fantasyland, SOME KIND OF HEAVEN invests in the dreams and desires of a small group of Village residents – and one interloper – who are unable to find happiness within the community’s pre-packaged paradise. With strikingly composed cinematography, this candy-colored documentary offers a tender and surreal look at the never-ending quest for finding meaning and love in life’s final act.
MUSEUM TOWN: NR, 76m 
Directed by Jennifer Trainer, a former journalist and one of MASS MoCA's original builders, and narrated by Academy Award® winner Meryl Streep, the documentary tells the story of an unconventional museum, the small town of North Adams, MA it calls home, and the great risk, hope, and power of art to transform a desolate post-industrial city.

Today, MASS MoCA is the largest museum for contemporary art in the world—but just three decades ago, its vast brick buildings were the abandoned relics of a shuttered factory. This documentary tells how such a wildly improbable transformation came to be. MUSEUM TOWN also looks at the artistic process itself—not only how museums work but how artists create, tracking celebrated artist Nick Cave as he builds the monumental installation “Until,” a reflection on gun violence, race, and the American Dream.

In addition to Nick Cave, the documentary features appearances by artists James Turrell, Laurie Anderson and David Byrne, with original music and soundtrack by John Stirratt of Wilco, featuring songs by Talking Heads, Sharon Jones, Big Thief, Wilco, Moses Sumney among others.
THE REASON I JUMP: NR, 84m 
Based on the book by Naoki Higashida this immersive film explores the experiences of nonspeaking autistic people around the world.
FINDING YINGYING: NR, 98m 
After a young Chinese student goes missing on an American university campus, her family travels to the U.S. for the first time, hoping to unravel the mystery of her disappearance.
THE WEASEL'S TALE: NR, 129m 
A group of four old friends conformed by a film director, a film writer, an actress, and her husband share a big house in the country. Their coexistence is menaced by a young couple who resourcefully and deceitfully seek to get them to sell the house to develop a real estate project of their own.
ASSASSINS: NR, 104m 
An account of the two women convicted of assassinating Kim Jong-un's half-brother, Kim Jong-nam. The film follows the women's trials in an attempt to understand whether they are trained killers or simply pawns.
CROCK OF GOLD: NR, 124m 
A celebration of Irish punk poet Shane MacGowan, composer and lead singer with The Pogues, combining unpublished archive footage and family footage with animation.
ZAPPA: NR, 129m 
An in-depth look into the life and work of musician Frank Zappa.
COLLECTIVE: NR, 109m 
Director Alexander Nanau follows a crack team of investigators at the Romanian newspaper Gazeta Sporturilor as they try to uncover a vast health-care fraud that enriched moguls and politicians and led to the deaths of innocent citizens.
NY DOG FILM FESTIVAL: NR, 100m 
The Dog Film Festival program is an hour and a half of short films from around the world that are a medley of animation, documentaries and narrative films with actors and scripts. These films celebrate all the ways we love our dogs that will delight and inspire you. 
NY CAT FILM FESTIVAL: NR, 88m 
The Cat Film Festival™ is an exploration through film of the fascinating felines who share our lives, creating a shared audience experience that inspires, educates and entertains.  Cats have their own unique and indescribable bond with people – even when living independently as community cats. For far too long, felines have been the “invisible” part of the human-animal bond and it’s time to shine the spotlight on these magnificent creatures and the humans devoted to them. A portion of every ticket at every destination goes to a local animal welfare non-profit, bringing community awareness and support for the needs of local kitties. 
MARTIN EDEN: NR, 129m 
Adapted from a 1909 novel by Jack London yet set in a provocatively unspecified moment in Italy’s history, Martin Eden is a passionate and enthralling narrative fresco in the tradition of the great Italian classics. Martin (played by the marvelously committed Luca Marinelli) is a self-taught proletarian with artistic aspirations who hopes that his dreams of becoming a writer will help him rise above his station and marry a wealthy young university student (Jessica Cressy). The dissatisfactions of working-class toil and bourgeois success lead to political awakening and destructive anxiety in this enveloping, superbly mounted bildungsroman. Winner of the Best Actor prize at the Venice Film Festival and the Platform Prize at the Toronto International Film Festival.
HERB ALPERT IS...: NR, 111m 
Herb Alpert, legendary musician, artist, and philanthropist has sold more than 72 million albums - 29 of them gold or platinum - outsold The Beatles in 1966 and co-founded A&M Records, the most successful independent record company in history. Herb Alpert Is…, directed by John Scheinfeld, looks at Herb’s extraordinary life with rare footage and interviews with colleagues like Sting and Questlove.
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