Friday, August 6, 2010

Patrik, Age 1.5

Opening this weekend: Patrik, Age 1.5, directed by Ella Lemhagen

Synopsis from AllMovie:

A married pair of ex-urbanites relocates to a small village in hopes of starting a family, only to receive an unexpected surprise thanks to a mix-up at the adoption agency. Sven and Göran are finally set to realize their shared dream of becoming parents. In preparation, the happy couple even decides to leave city life behind in favor of moving to a quaint village in the country. Unfortunately, the local villagers don't exactly extend a warm welcome to the optimistic couple; while some greet them with outright hostility, most are content simply to shun them. Upon receiving news that the adoption agency was unable to locate a suitable international baby, Sven and Göran agree to take in a local orphan. On paper, Patrik was listed as being age 1.5, though upon meeting their new adopted child it quickly becomes apparent to Sven and Göran that someone misplaced a decimal point. In reality, Patrik is a homophobic 15-year-old juvenile delinquent who's none too happy about being taken in by a pair of aging gay men. Still, Göran recognizes that Patrik needs a home, and agrees to put the openly hostile boy up until he and Sven can find a more suitable place for him to live. But former street punk Sven isn't quite as accommodating due to the fact that he knows well what a young ruffian such as Patrik may be capable of. Over time, Sven's trepidation about Patrik prompts him to confront not only his own misgivings about marriage and suburban living, but his long-buried feelings about his own estranged son from a previous marriage as well.

Quest for Honor

Opening this weekend: Quest for Honor, directed by Mary Ann Smothers Bruni

Synopsis from AllMovie:

In a small village in the Kurdistan region of Northern Iraq, a woman dressed in Western-style clothes — jeans and high heels — is found shot to death by the side of the road, and the preliminary investigation suggests that the victim knew her killers ... and that whoever pulled the trigger several times took no chances on the victim surviving. Before long, police have come to suspect that this was an "honor killing," in which a woman is murdered by a relative who believes she's brought shame in some way to the family name. "Honor killings" are still considered acceptable in many parts of the Middle East, and while they may be against the law, police rarely spend much time and energy on such cases. Filmmaker Mary Ann Smothers Bruni uses this murder as a springboard for examining the grim phenomena of "honor killings" in the documentary Quest For Honor, which features interviews with members of Sulaimaniyah's Women's Media and Education Center, police officers who investigate honor killings, family members of honor killing victims (and some suspected killers) and others who have become a part of this grim abuse of justice. Quest For Honor was an official selection at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival.

The film's website is here.

In Theaters: Cairo Time

Opening this weekend: Cairo Time, written and directed by Ruba Nadda

Lucky Days

Opening in Brooklyn this weekend: Lucky Days, directed by Angelica Torn and Anthony Torn

Synopsis from AllMovie:

A young woman seeking freedom from her abusive boyfriend, her embarrassing family, and her own self-constructed cage encounters a long lost childhood sweetheart who taps into her inner turmoil during the course of an explosive weekend at the Coney Island amusement park. All Virginia wants is to live life on her own terms, but something deep within is preventing her from truly striking out on her own. Now, as Virginia reaches a crucial turning point, life as she knows it is about to end. The only choice for Virginia now is whether to resign herself to the fact that the greedy developers intent on tearing down the boardwalk will accomplish their goal regardless of what she does, or allow herself to disappear right along with the only world she ever knew.

In Theaters: The Parking Lot Movie

Opening in New York this weekend: The Parking Lot Movie, directed by Meghan Eckman