Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Small Budget Movies In A Big Budget Summer.

These are what usually show up as "Art House" movies, playing only in select theaters. Still, if you they show up in your city and you're looking for something different, watch the trailers and if you think you might like it, give it a try.

Brick Lane is the story of a beautiful young Bangladeshi woman, Nazneen (Chatterjee), who arrives in 1980s London, leaving behind her beloved sister and home, for an arranged marriage and a new life. Trapped within the four walls of her flat in East London, and in a loveless marriage with the middle aged Chanu (Kaushik), she fears her soul is quietly dying. Her sister Hasina (Zafreen), meanwhile, continues to live a carefree life back in Bangladesh, stumbling from one adventure to the next. Nazneen struggles to accept her lifestyle, and keeps her head down in spite of life's blows, but she soon discovers that life cannot be avoided - and is forced to confront it the day that the hotheaded young Karim (Simpson) comes knocking at her door.

The Stone Angel is possibly the best-known of Margaret Laurence's series of novels set in the fictitious town of Manawaka, Manitoba. First published in 1964 by McClelland and Stewart, The Stone Angel tells the story of Hagar Currie Shipley, using parallel narratives set in the past and the present-day 1960s. In the present-day narrative, 90-year-old Hagar is struggling against being put in a nursing home, which she sees as a symbol of death. The present-day narrative alternates with Hagar looking back at her life.

Although Margaret Laurence had been publishing fiction for a decade before The Stone Angel was published in 1964, it was this novel that first won her a wide and appreciative audience. When The Stone Angel was first published in 1964, most reviewers recognized it as a major achievement. Robertson Davies, in The New York Times Book Review, praised Laurence's insight into character as well as her "freshness of approach her gift for significant detail.” A reviewer for Time described The Stone Angel as "one of the most convincing and the most touching portraits of an unregenerate sinner declining into senility since Sara Monday went to her reward in Joyce Cary's The Horse's Mouth."

The book, amongst other titles by Laurence, was banned by some school boards and high schools, usually following complaints from fundamentalist Christian groups labelling the book blasphemous and obscene. The Stone Angel has been translated into French, as L'Ange de pierre (Montréal, 1976), German, and eleven other languages. It was also selected for the 2002 edition of Canada Reads, where it was championed by Leon Rooke.

Los Feliz, CA - On the sleazier side of Sunset, teenage beauty April has humble ambitions. She’s searching for a way to get by without taking off her clothes—any more than she already has. But the going is tough.

Sally St.Clair is a realtor whose business has been built upon her sex appeal and secret past. Success has hardened Sally and rendered her disconnected, but it has given her a great eye for spotting lost souls in need of direction.

One such soul is her assistant, Nathan, who has moved to Los Angeles from Nebraska in search of fame as a dancer. Lacking drive and confidence, Nathan finds himself making late night photocopies for Sally and her clients.

Todd is one of those prospective clients. A porn addicted artist in search of a way out of a sexless relationship and into an adventure, he’s happy to help Sally get revenge for some past indiscretions. In exchange, Sally helps Todd live out his fantasy.

Blazing his own path is SAMMY, a cunning, off the bus musician/street kid with his eyes on stardom. When Nathan meets Sammy, Nathan sees a light at the end of the tunnel and maybe more than just a friend, while Sammy sees a much-needed roof over his head

When a local erotic photographer introduces April to Nathan, the dominoes fall on a series of chance encounters. And after everyone has met just about everyone else, each comes away changed in the strangest of ways.

As a young teenager suffering from really early male-pattern baldness, Harold has never had it easy. Despite the efforts of his scattered mother --- and aggravated by his beauty-queen-mean sister - life is a trial for Harold.

And now his teen angst is topping out: He's facing his first day at a new high school in a new town. He's not only going to be the "new kid," but the "new weird bald kid."

Day one turns out to be even worse than he expected. Right off he comes face- to-face with the school bully, and learns very quickly that the new school's teachers are barely more sympathetic or supportive than his bullying nemesis.

Harold's saving grace arrives in the person of Cromer, the subversive school janitor, who knows and cares far more about the students than any teacher or administrator.

With a cleverness hidden behind his unassuming janitor's uniform, broom and bucket, Cromer comes to Harold's aid, teaching him how to out maneuver his adversaries, and, ultimately, how to survive that most difficult and dreaded American institution ---High School.

August is about two brothers, Tom (Josh Hartnett) and Joshua Sterling (Adam Scott) who must try to keep their Internet start-up, Landshark, afloat during the summer of 2001, which is a few weeks away from 9/11.

Trailers and their descriptions come from the fantastic website TrailerAddict.com.

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