The Seattle International Film Festival has drawn to a close, and while you can still catch some great SIFF picks at the Best of SIFF Showcase, it also might be time to catch up on some of those blockbusters you haven't had time for. Or you can pay a visit to Northwest Film Forum, which is hosting a number of recommended events this weekend including staggering documentary Last Men in Aleppo, Funeral Parade of Roses (a gender-fluid take on Oedipus Rex), pressing documentary Awake, a Dream From Standing Rock, and PrideFest Film Fest, a (mostly) free queer series. If our picks aren't up your alley, check out our full movie times page and our special events-filled film calendar—but we recommend that you stay far away from The Mummy and Cars 3.
Jump to: Thursday Only | Friday—Sunday | Sunday Only | All Weekend
THURSDAY ONLYDark Lodge: The Man Who Fell to Earth: Remixed!
An extremely Tilda Swinton-esque David Bowie stars in this erratic but extremely watchable sci-fi film from 1976. At this screening, presented as part of the Dark Lodge series, they’ll replace the existing soundtrack with an all-Bowie compilation arranged and performed live by DJ NicFit.
Ark Lodge Cinema
Last Men in Aleppo
Heroism, at least in the movies, is an easily quantifiable attribute, generally accompanied by swelling music and a self-effacing wisecrack or two. The real deal, however, proves to be a much less enviable trait. The Sundance award-winning Last Men in Aleppo is a staggering documentary about a group of scared, harried people fated to do one damned dangerous thing after another. While not easy viewing by any means, this film provides an unforgettable look at people forced into their best, defined by constant moments of terrible clarity. ANDREW WRIGHT
Northwest Film Forum
FRIDAY-SUNDAYBest of SIFF Showcase
The 43rd annual Seattle International Film Festival ended last week after 25 days of excellent programming, but, even if you attended SIFF screenings every day, chances are you probably missed some of the films. But you're in luck: SIFF also announced their lineup for their Best of SIFF Showcase, which runs from June 16-22. Films screening this weekend include award winners like At the End of the Tunnel, Becoming Who I Was, and Lane 1974.
SIFF Cinema Uptown
Deconstructing the Beatles' Rubber Soul
Learn about the creation of the Beatles' album Rubber Soul (a romantic, poignant work that includes tracks like "In My Life" and "Norwegian Wood") from composer and producer Scott Freiman.
SIFF Film Center
SUNDAY ONLYAwake, a Dream From Standing Rock
Learn about the Water Protectors at Standing Rock through this documentary (a collaboration between Indigenous and environmental filmmakers) that promises "the story of Native-led defiance that forever changed the fight for clean water, our environment and the future of our planet." This screening will also be accompanied by a panel discussion featuring Seattle-area Indigenous women who travelled to Standing Rock to help the cause.
Northwest Film Forum
ALL WEEKENDAlien: Covenant
As Alien: Covenant begins, its titular ship is under repair. After completing a fix, Tennessee (Danny McBride) picks up a stray communication, and the crew follows the signal to a pristine planet—at which point the film becomes four old Alien movies happening at once. David [the robot] shows up. (Surprise!) Bodies explode. (Surprise?) And, after 20 years, everyone’s favorite fanged penis-monster triumphantly returns. The result is a film that’s much less ambitious than Prometheus, but also significantly less pretentious and stupid. Covenant aims lower but hits more frequently. Covenant’s victory is minor—after 25 years, the Alien series has finally managed to make a movie that, however slightly, is better than 1992’s Alien3. BOBBY ROBERTS
Meridian 16 & Pacific Place
All Eyez on Me
This is a biopic about the overrated rapper Tupac Shakur. Now, I’m going to say something that might hurt but is just truth: The decline of hiphop is marked by the rise of Biggie Smalls and Shakur in the mid-90s. They were the first to successfully sell the soul of hiphop. And once the sale was made, we entered the age of the rapper as multi-millionaire—and considering the trajectory of Jay-Z and Dr. Dre, the billionaire rapper is not long in coming. Shakur, like Smalls, had to sell out because they were second-rate. A first-rate rapper has no fear (check out Ish of Shabazz Palaces). He/she can only, to use the words of Erick Sermon, stay real. CHARLES MUDEDE
Ark Lodge Cinema, Pacific Place & Sundance Cinemas
Funeral Parade of Roses
As with last year’s restoration of John Waters’ fantastic second film Multiple Maniacs, another landmark of queer cinema has been rescued and revived. Released in 1969, Toshio Matsumoto’s debut Funeral Parade of Roses shares similar thematic DNA with its counterpart from Baltimore. Both feature daring sex scenes, a plot involving a love triangle, and moments of shocking violence. But instead of relying on Waters’s in-your-face weirdness, Matsumoto lets his experimental style do the work of setting the audience at unease. A gender-fluid take on Oedipus Rex that takes cues from Jonas Mekas (who’s name-checked in the film), Seijun Suzuki, and Andy Warhol, Funeral is a frenetic hodgepodge of styles and moods. ROBERT HAM
Northwest Film Forum
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
The music is uniformly great, the jokes are whip-smart and delightful, the action scenes are exciting CG works of art, the characters are identifiable and lovable, and BABY GROOT IS (as mentioned earlier) GODDAMN ADORABLE. While the characters of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 may be mired in their feelings, at least they have them—and aren't afraid to show them. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY
It Comes at Night
It Comes at Night tells the story of Paul (Joel Edgerton), who lives in a secluded woodland house with his wife (Carmen Ejogo) and teenage son (Kelvin Harrison Jr.). The world is sick—probably dying. An unnamed plague, fatal and incurable, has fragmented what we can see of society. Food, gas, and ammunition are in short supply, and bands of violent men prowl the roads. Every foray into the outside world carries the threat of contamination. Paul and his family must defend themselves from these threats and ensure they have enough supplies to last... a while. It doesn’t seem like any cavalry is coming to the rescue. Aside from the obvious similarities to Naughty Dog’s remarkable 2013 video game The Last of Us (which the film resembles both aesthetically and thematically), the more I think about It Comes at Night, the more it reminds me of a video game. In a good way! The film consistently evokes that very specific sense of risk/reward anxiety that makes survival games both punishing and fun. BEN COLEMAN
Pacific Place, Sundance Cinemas & SIFF Cinema Egyptian
PrideFest Film Fest: Featuring Milk with Activist Cleve Jones
Enjoy a series of (mostly) free screenings presented as part of Seattle PrideFest at Northwest Film Forum. They’ll showcase the best movies that local LGBTQ film organization Three Dollar Bill Cinema has shown in the past year—see the film schedule and watch trailers here. Plus, there will be a special Cineoke sing-along event on Saturday, and, as the highlight of the festival, they’ll host a screening of the 2008 biopic Milk with Cleve Jones (an activist and author who conceived the legendary NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt). David Schmader credited Milk’s success to its “comfortably unabashed sexuality” and Sean Penn’s “quietly amazing, simultaneously lived-in and spontaneous” performance.
Northwest Film Forum and SIFF Cinema Egyptian
In Wonder Woman, innocence is Diana’s foil. She’s read at great length about the world, but has never lived in it. And as Diana deals with her naïveté and her foes, Wonder Woman is exciting and fun—even though it devolves into typical blockbuster spectacle near its end, I’d recommend it to anyone who loves action films, and there’s also just enough subtext to feed a philosophical mind. How much harm does Wonder Woman do when she strides boldly into war? Is this what power looks like? Is it cool just because she’s a woman? Hopefully these questions will be answered in future films. For now, Wonder Woman is a thrilling start. SUZETTE SMITH