Commentary by Gregg Rickman (firstname.lastname@example.org). Times compiled from information available Tuesday; it's always advisable to call for confirmation. Price given is standard adult admission; discounts often apply for students, seniors, and members.
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345 Bush (at Polk), 775-7755, www.afsf.com. French-language films shown on projected video. $5 donation.
WEDNESDAY (Feb. 26): A Juliette Binoche series continues with Krzysztof Kieslowski's Blue (France, 1993), the first of his "Three Colors" trilogy, with Binoche as the widow of a celebrated composer coming to terms with loss 7 p.m.
SATURDAY (March 1): Blue 2 p.m.
ARTISTS' TELEVISION ACCESS
992 Valencia (at 21st Street), 824-3890, www.atasite.org for most programs, www.othercinema.com for Saturday evening programs. $5 save as noted. This venue offers all manner of strange and unusual video and film.
FRIDAY (Feb. 28): "Rhythm From Wreckage!," a showcase of "vidsonic" work from Wago Kreider, Lovid, Rebekah Nagy, and others exploring the results of "awkward encounters with media technology," plus live performance with streams of live and prepared video and audio by Sue Costabile 8 p.m.
SATURDAY (March 1): The Noise Pop festival of music, at various venues around town, also sponsors film screenings here and at the Yerba Buena this week. This afternoon, Rock That Uke (William Preston Robertson and Sean Anderson, 2002) shows us how post-punk musicians have taken up the four-stringed novelty as "a raucous and irreverent source of irony, angst and impotent rage." Screens with Doug Stone's Angel of Love (2002), about a substitute teacher who writes and sings his own music about the U.S. Navy 2 p.m. The Pixies are remembered in Pixies -- Gouge (Matt Quinn, U.K., 2001), plus two shorts 4 p.m. In the evening, Ah! The Hopeful Pageantry of Bread and Puppet (DeeDee Halleck, Tamar Schulmann, 2003) looks back over a decade's work of the anti-war Bread and Puppet Theater. Halleck in person 8:30 p.m.
SUNDAY (March 2): Noise Pop -- It's a DIY world: Do You Remember?: Fifteen Years of the Bouncing Souls (Jeff Alulis, 2002) 2 p.m. An S.F. video artist returns home to San Antonio and tries to make a documentary about a Chicano punk band in Jim Mendiola's comedy Speeder Kills (2003) 4 p.m.
3630 Balboa (at 37th Avenue), 221-8484, $7.50. This great neighborhood house is a good place to catch second-run Hollywood, independent, and foreign fare. See our Showtimes page for regular programs.
THURSDAY (Feb. 27): The Balboa celebrates a "77th Birthday Party" with a screening of Rudolph Valentino, still compelling as the Son of the Sheik (1926), presented in a tinted 35mm print, plus Charlie Chaplin's filmed-in-San Francisco A Jitney Elopement (1915), cartoons, and more shorts. Evening show only: all of the above plus a vaudeville review with magician James Hamilton, belly dancer Nahar, and songstress Susanne Ramsey 2, 7:30 p.m.
MONDAY (March 3): A memorial for the late Bay Area filmmaker Jaime Kibben offers a retrospective of his films, which included documentaries on organic farming in Cuba; Chiapas, Mexico, Indians practicing sustainable agriculture; and a friend with early-onset Parkinson's. Screens as a fund-raiser for Kibben's family. $15; all welcome 7:30 p.m.
429 Castro (near Market), 621-6120, www.thecastrotheatre.com. $8 save as noted. Short-run rep in a spectacular 1922 Greco-Roman-themed palace designed by Timothy L. Pflueger. Evening intermissions feature David Hegarty or Bill McCoy on the Mighty Wurlitzer.
WEDNESDAY: A new print of David Lynch's dreamy tour of small-town nightmare, Blue Velvet (1986) 1:30, 4:15, 7, 9:35 p.m.
THURSDAY: The Frameline-hosted series "Close-Up: Visionaries of Modern Cinema" offers an evening with producer Christine Vachon (Todd Haynes' films and many more), interviewed onstage by David Ansen of Newsweek. $12 8 p.m.
FRIDAY: This evening opens a two-week series of screenings from producer Ely Landau's American Film Theatre, 14 film adaptions of celebrated plays released on a subscription basis in 1973-75, and now finally revived. (I saw many of these way back when, and at the time they mostly went over my head -- the thankfully broken promise in the ads was that they would never be seen again!) Tonight, Alan Bates stars as a bisexual teacher in the bitterly witty Butley (Harold Pinter, U.K., 1974). With Jessica Tandy 7, 9:35 p.m.
SATURDAY: AFT -- Jean Genet's tale of two murderous servants, based on a true incident, The Maids (Christopher Miles, 1975), stars Glenda Jackson and Susannah York 1, 3:05, 5:10, 7:20, 9:30 p.m.
SUNDAY: AFT -- For whatever reason, Lee Marvin was cast in the role supposedly owned by Jason Robards, Hickey in the AFT film of Eugene O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh (John Frankenheimer, 1973), and by all accounts was more than credible. The great cast includes Robert Ryan, Jeff Bridges, Fredric March, and Moses Gunn 2, 7 p.m.
MONDAY: AFT -- Three brothers return to their coal mining hometown for their parents' 40th wedding anniversary in David Storey's In Celebration (Lindsay Anderson, 1974), with Alan Bates and Brian Cox 7, 9:35 p.m.
TUESDAY: AFT -- Even as a 20-year-old I recognized Robert Shaw's The Man in the Glass Booth (Arthur Hiller, 1975) as meretricious. Maximilian Schell chews the scenery as a Jew accused of being a Nazi war criminal 7, 9:30 p.m.
FILM ARTS FOUNDATION
145 Ninth St. (at Minna), 552-8760, www.filmarts.org/events for this program. This venerable helpmate for local filmmakers offers occasional screenings of members' works.
FRIDAY (Feb. 28): "Open Screening" of new Bay Area-made shorts by members, "the first 90 minutes of material to walk through the door." Plus gratis popcorn and soda. Free 7 p.m.
2534 Mission (between 21st and 22nd streets), 648-7600, www.foreigncinema.com. Free with meal. This restaurant screens foreign films, usually in 35mm, on the back wall of its outdoor patio, with drive-in speakers available for the tables of those who want to watch while they dine.