Love old or unusual movies but never know when they’re on? Here are several I recommend.
Clue (1985): This farcical romp is trying really hard to channel the inspired lunacy of Murder by Death (1976). It doesn’t succeed, but it has an energy and wit all its own. To start with, there’s the jaw-dropping cast of comedic pros: Madeline Kahn, Tim Curry, Eileen Brennan, Christopher Lloyd, Michael McKean, Martin Mull, Lesley Ann Warren, just to mention a few. Since it’s based, of course, on the board game, three different endings were filmed, and the versions shuffled among the movie theaters. Happily, in the version being shown here, you get to see all the endings. If you’ve never seen it, check out a movie that holds a special place in the heart of many film lovers.
Turner Classic Movies, Wednesday, 8:45 p.m.
SUPER WEIRD DOUBLE FEATURE:
Enemy (2013): After their successful collaboration with Prisoners (2013), director Denis Villeneuve and actor Jake Gyllenhaal wanted to work together again. What they came up with is this twisty, creepy fever dream about a man struggling with his own identity. After seemingly seeing his double in a movie, Jake begins stalking the actor who looks exactly like him. Are they lost twins? Is there something criminal going on here? Mom is played in a couple of chilling scenes by Isabella Rossellini, and the women in his two lives by Sarah Gadon and Mélanie Laurent. Wherever you think this craziness is going, I can almost guarantee you, it’s going someplace else even weirder.
Now streaming on Kanopy.
Amulet (2020): This fits the “not for the faint of heart” label. This seriously messed-up horror film tells the story of Tomas, a handsome and kind former soldier and refugee who gets sent to a ridiculously creepy remote house in the woods to help a beautiful young woman take care of her sick old mother. Only it turns out that virtually nothing in that sentence is actually true. This is horror in the tradition of Hereditary, in that it uses horror to explore issues of family along with the more existential bugaboos about good and evil. Can we escape our past? Is forgiveness possible? Let’s see what you think after you make it to the end of this blood-curdling fable. (Warning: Really not for the faint of heart.)
Now streaming on Hulu.
I’m Your Woman (2020): Here’s a chance to see the talented Rachel Brosnahan (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel) in a huge change of pace. In the paisley-bedecked 1970s she’s a mobster’s wife who has to abruptly go on the run with her baby and a stranger. The slow burn of the tension in this beautifully made thriller comes from superior acting from Brosnahan, Arinzé Kene, Marsha Stephanie Blake, Frankie Faison, Bill Heck and Marceline Hugot. It’s directed by the talented Julia Hart, who wowed with Fast Color (2018). You really feel the claustrophobia and powerlessness crushing Brosnahan’s previously pampered housewife in this tense adventure.
Now streaming on Amazon Prime.
Trivia Question 878: Which cast member of Clue was also in Murder by Death?
Answer to Trivia Question 876: Actress Zoe Kazan is the granddaughter of legendary director Elia Kazan.