News Column

Bay Area repertory picks, Sept. 12-15

September 12, 2013


Sept. 12--Local Boy Makes Good: A lot of films are made in the Bay Area, but only a small percentage get exposure. Here are four that deserve a look, showing over the next three Thursdays and finishing with a bonus Sunday. Doug Wolens' "The Singularity" (7 p.m. Thursday) is a documentary about the inevitable day that computers will exceed human intelligence; Gibbs Chapman's feature "mother mortar, father pestle" (next Thursday) doesn't have much regard for human intelligence in the first place, especially in this near future; "way" (Sept. 26) is Konrad Steiner's tribute to the late Oakland poet Leslie Scalapino; and it all finishes with "Fred Lyon -- Living Through the Lens," a tribute to a legendary (and still very much active) San Francisco photographer. All the filmmakers (plus Lyon) will appear in person. Through Sept. 26 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F., (415) 978-2700.

The Atheist Film Festival: A day of godlessness is highlighted by two documentaries -- Scott Thurman's "The Revisionaries," about the Texas Board of Education's attempt to eliminate the mention of evolution from school textbooks, and the world premiere of Sylvia Broeckx's "Hug an Atheist," about the surprising number of atheists in America. Saturday at the Roxie Theater, 3117 16th St., S.F. (415) 863-1087.

Best of Bogart and Film Noir Classics: Not all of them have Humphrey Bogart, and not all of them are film noirs, but it's hard to argue with any of the eight double features in this two-month festival at the Stanford Theatre, beginning Saturday with nine consecutive days of "Casablanca" and "The Maltese Falcon." My two favorite weekends are "To Have and Have Not" and "Out of the Past" (Sept. 26-29) and "In a Lonely Place" and "Gun Crazy" (Nov. 7-10). Frustratingly, there are three Orson Welles films ("The Lady From Shanghai," "Touch of Evil" and Carol Reed's "The Third Man"), but none paired together. Oh well. Saturday through Nov. 10 at the Stanford Theatre, 221 University Ave., Palo Alto. (650) 324-3700.


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