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On Flesh-Starved Mermaids, Japanese Fortitude And More Kristen Stewart


Cinema Usher is a Scout column dedicated to detailing some of the best films playing in theatres with the when, where and why you should really give a damn and go watch. Presented by Ken Tsui.


The Lure

March 20th, 21st & 24th | Rio Theatre, 1660 East Broadway
For those who thought La La Land was a little too square for their tastes, Agnieszka Smoczy?ska’s The Lure (or Córki Dancingu — literally translated as “Daughters of the Dance Club”) might be the antidote. This Polish horror-rock opera tells the bizarre tale of two mermaids who encounter a rock band. Charmed by their beauty, the band takes them to the stage where they become a novelty act. In a classic fairytale gone wrong, things get a little weird when these mermaids build an appetite for humans in more ways than one. Vibrant, kitsch and genuinely weird, The Lure has all the ingredients for becoming a midnight madness classic so make sure to catch it while you can at The Rio.


March 24th – 26th & 30th | The Cinematheque, 1131 Howe St.
If you ever thought your family gatherings were crazy, Romanian auteur Cristi Puiu might have you beat with his most recent dramedy, ‘Sieranevada’. The movie tells the tale of a family who gathers in a cramped apartment in Bucharest for an Orthodox meal meant to commemorate their family’s patriarch. What ensues is a meal that is rarely touched, incessantly interrupted by a comically incisive airing out their grievances on just about every subject you can think of. With an impressive ensemble cast, the film is a balance of sharp comedy and poignant political observation. Hailed by critics as one of the best films of 2016, Cristi Puiu continues to put Romanian new wave cinema on the map with his latest.

A New Moon Over Tohoku

March 17th – 23rd | Vancity Theatre, 1181 Seymour St.
After making its debut at the 2016 Vancouver International Film Festival, Linda Ohama’s documentary ‘A New Moon Over Tohoku’ was celebrated for humanizing the tragic 2011 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear disaster that devastated the coastal Japanese region of Tohoku. Ohama, a Vancouverite, was able to permeate the traditions of cultural silence and was given privileged access with survivors of the disaster to tell their story paired with inspired cinematography. After a season of festivals, this documentary finds a limited run at the Vancity Theatre with the director present for weekend screenings.

Personal Shopper

March 24th – 30th & April 2nd | Vancity Theatre, 1181 Seymour St.
Director Olivier Assayas has spent the last decade finding his place among the best working directors in the contemporary world cinema circuit. From assassination thrillers and sweeping crime sagas to intimate family stories, Assayas’ is a curious, chameleonic talent that finds the nooks and crannies of genre to explore bigger emotions and ideas. In ‘Personal Shopper’ he plays with a ghostly tale, re-teaming with Kristen Stewart for a film about an American fashionista in Paris haunted by her dead twin brother. Existing in the liminal space between horror and drama, ‘Personal Shopper’ is exactly where it wants to be.

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