opening this week
AJAMI This tough, gritty Israeli movie — an Oscar nominee for Best Foreign Language film — has a lot of things going for it, but clarity is not one of them. Ajami shuffles a deck of narrative cards and deals them forward and backward. Stories stop and start, overlap, reverse, and sidestep. It’s a patchwork tale of drugs, feuds, love, and death in the mean streets of Ajami, a multi-ethnic, multi-faith ghetto in Jaffa. Grim and sometimes muddled, the movie packs a powerful punch. Opens Thursday, March 25, with a 6:45 p.m. screening and panel discussion. Not rated. 120 minutes. In Hebrew and Arabic with subtitles. CCA Cinematheque, Santa Fe. ( Jonathan Richards) BANFF INTERNATIONAL MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL The annual festival, which showcases documentaries and narrative films about outdoor sports and the environment, returns to Santa Fe. Films include Africa Revolutions Tour, First Ascent: Alone on the Wall, and Project Megawoosh. 7 p.m.
Tuesday, March 23, only. Lensic Performing Arts
Center, Santa Fe. (Not reviewed)
THE BOUNTY HUNTER Those annoying ads you’ve seen with Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler should subside now that the likely annoying movie is here. Butler plays a bounty hunter who is hired to bring in his ex-wife (Aniston) — you can fill in the blanks from there. Rated PG-13. 106 minutes. Regal
Stadium 14, Santa Fe; DreamCatcher, Española; Reel Deal, Los Alamos; Storyteller, Taos. (Not reviewed)
THE CRY OF THE OWL No, it’s not a nature documentary. It’s a thriller about a man (Paddy Considine) who moves to the country to escape a messy divorce. He is drawn to a local woman (Julia Stiles) and soon makes her marriage messy as well. Based on a novel by Patricia Highsmith ( The Talented
Mr. Ripley). Rated R. 100 minutes. Regal DeVargas, Santa Fe. (Not reviewed)
DIARY OF A WIMPY KID The cartoon figures of Jeff Kinney’s highly popular illustrated novels are brought to flesh and blood, and if everyone with unpleasant memories of middle school goes to see this adaptation, it will outgross Avatar. Zachary Gordon plays the wimpy kid, who’s just trying to make it through the school year. Directed by the man with one of the best names in Hollywood: Thor Freudenthal ( Hotel for Dogs). Rated PG. 120 minutes. Regal Stadium 14, Santa Fe; DreamCatcher,
Española; Storyteller, Taos. (Not reviewed)
HARLAN: IN THE SHADOW OF
JEW SÜSS Veit Harlan was the most successful film director under the Third Reich, a favorite of Joseph Goebbels, and the auteur of the most notorious film of the Nazi era, the virulently anti-Semitic Jew Süss, which his son Thomas calls “a murder weapon.” This documentary explores Harlan’s terrible legacy primarily through the reactions and attitudes of his descendants. Director Felix Moeller’s film stirs up a hot broth of issues and ideas about culpability and guilt and the power of art for good and for evil. Not rated. 99 minutes. In German, French, and Italian with subtitles. The Screen, Santa Fe ( Jonathan Richards) See review, Page 38.
MYTHIC JOURNEYS This mix of documentary and animation about the world’s myths, which showed at the 2009 Santa Fe Film Festival, returns to town. Filmmakers Stephen Boe and Whitney Boe attend the screenings. Not rated. 90 minutes.
CCA Cinematheque, Santa Fe. (Not reviewed)
REPO MEN In the future, you will be able to purchase mechanical organs for transplant. If you do not make the hefty payments on time, repo men will come and retrieve the organ. OK, so it isn’t that much worse than the current system. Try telling that to repo man Remy (Jude Law) who needs a heart transplant and finds his old partner (Forest Whitaker) after him. Rated R. 111 minutes. Regal Stadium 14, Santa Fe;
DreamCatcher, Española; Storyteller, Taos.
Leave me alone: Zachary Gordon in Diary of a Wimpy Kid, at Regal Stadium 14
in Santa Fe and DreamCatcher in Española