posted January 22, 2010

Knickerbocker Theatre Announces Spring Film Series

The Hope College Knickerbocker Theatre continues its tradition of showing the best in independent and foreign films with its spring film series.

The series will begin on Monday, Jan. 25, and will continue through Saturday, April 17, featuring "Still Walking," "Coco Before Chanel," "Amreeka" and "An Education." All show times are 7:30 p.m

° The series will open with "Still Walking" on Monday-Saturday, Jan. 25-30. Director Kore-eda Hirokazu's award-winning new film is a family drama about grown children visiting their elderly parents, which unfolds over one summer day. The aging parents have lived in the family home for decades. Their son and daughter return for a rare family reunion, bringing their own families with them. They have gathered to commemorate the tragic death of the eldest son, who drowned in an accident 15 years ago. Although the roomy house is as comforting and unchanging as the mother's homemade feast, everyone in the family has subtly changed. With a subtle balance of gentle humor and wistful sorrow, Kore-eda portrays just how precious, and exactly how annoying, family can be. The film is 114 minutes long and in Japanese with English subtitles. The film is not rated.

° The series will continue on Monday-Saturday, Feb. 8-13, with Audrey Tautou in "Coco before Chanel." Before she became Coco, the world-famous fashion designer, she was Gabrielle Chanel. After her mother's death, her father deposited her and her sister, Adrienne (Marie Gillain), at an orphanage, where they learn to sew. They go on to become cabaret singers, but when Adrienne runs off with a wealthy suitor the newly christened Coco must go it alone until she meets gentleman farmer Étienne Balsan (Benoît Poelvoorde). She lives comfortably at his chateau, but he refuses to take her out in public, so she puts her skills as a seamstress to good use and designs outfits for his lady friends, like Emilienne (Emmanuelle Devos), an actress. From there begins the story of the legendary designer.  Rated PG-13, the film is in French with English subtitles and has a running time of 105 minutes.

° Monday, March 29, through Saturday, April 3, will feature "Amreeka," which has won several international awards and was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival.  Muna, a single mother in Ramallah, has applied for a visa to the U.S. When it comes, her son Fadi, an excellent student, convinces her they should go. After an incident at customs begins their exile badly, they join Muna's sister and family in Illinois. Muna needs a job: although she has two degrees and 15 years' experience in banking, she settles for work at WhiteCastle, telling the family her job's at a nearby bank. It's spring, 2003, and the U.S. invades Iraq. While friends come from unlikely places, Fadi meets prejudice at school. How he'll respond to it and to American youth culture and how Muna will sort things out with her family are the rest of the story.  The film is rated PG-13 and is in English and Arabic with English subtitles. It has a running time of 96 minutes.

° The series will end with "An Education" showing Tuesday-Saturday, April 13-17. Winner of 11 international awards and nominated for another 38, this film has been captivating audiences. In the early 1960s, 16-year-old Jenny Mellor lives with her parents in the London suburb of Twickenham. Jenny's life changes after she meets David Goldman, a man more than twice her age. David goes out of his way to show Jenny and her family that his interest in her is not improper and that he wants solely to expose her to cultural activities which she enjoys. As the relationship evolves Jenny learns more about David, including how he makes his money. Jenny has to decide if what she learns about him and leading such a life is worth forgoing her plans of higher education at Oxford.  The film is rated PG-13 and is in English with a running time of 95 minutes.

Tickets are $6 for regular admission and $5 for students and senior citizens, and can be purchased at the door or in advance at the ticket office in the front lobby of the DeVos Fieldhouse. The ticket office is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and can be called at (616) 395-7890.

The DeVos Fieldhouse is located at 222 Fairbanks Ave., between Ninth and 11th streets.  The Knickerbocker Theatre is located in downtown Holland at 86 E. Eighth St., between College and Columbia avenues.