The Cave­man of Atomic City; Free CeCe; The Gen­eral Spe­cific

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cabin he lived in with his wife, Eu­rithe, takes the same med­i­ta­tive but up­beat tone as the Twit­ter ac­count. Purdy, who died in 2000, is pre­sented as a flawed man — a loyal friend and de­voted de­bater of life’s mys­ter­ies who loved to en­ter­tain other writ­ers at his home but who was un­in­ter­ested in fa­ther­hood. In co­pi­ous archival footage, voice record­ings, and photography, the writer is re­vealed as a hard-drink­ing, rough-and­tum­ble sort. Eu­rithe, in her nineties and still spry enough to as­sist with the restora­tion of her old home as a writ­ers’ re­treat, is the stal­wart star of the show. Purdy was a quiet man, she says, her eyes tired and her smile thin. All the rest was im­age. — Jen­nifer Levin Vi­o­let Crown, 7:30 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 20; 11 a.m. Oct. 22; 3:10 p.m. Oct. 23

THE CAVE­MAN OF ATOMIC CITY doc­u­men­tary, 79 min­utes, not rated, 2.5 chiles

Just out­side a town known for its weaponry and se­crets, in the shadow of the Los Alamos Na­tional Lab, a man who calls him­self mi­cromike lived un­de­tected in caves for sev­eral years. He has given up most earthly com­forts to pur­sue a uni­fied the­ory of con­nect­ed­ness called gravion­ics, which unites sci­ence, love, and spir­i­tu­al­ity. Though he now lives in a proper (so­lar-pow­ered) house, he is no less ea­ger to share his mes­sage, which has a lot to do with a gi­ant me­te­orite from Mars that he has in his pos­ses­sion. Film­maker Paul Rat­ner fol­lows mi­cromike around, weav­ing his story into the his­tory of Los Alamos, atomic the­ory, and the ways in which the sci­en­tific es­tab­lish­ment re­ceives the ideas of out­siders. mi­cromike presents a com­pelling char­ac­ter study, and the film’s strong­est mo­ments have him opin­ing (opaquely) against the stun­ning North­ern New Mex­ico land­scape he knows and loves so well. But along with skep­ti­cal sci­en­tists, dis­jointed sto­ry­telling and am­a­teur­ish graph­ics di­lute mi­cromike’s al­ready mud­dled mes­sage. — Molly Boyle The Screen, 7 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 20; 1 p.m. Oct. 23

FREE CECE doc­u­men­tary, 100 min­utes, not rated, 3.5 chiles

Lav­erne Cox (Or­ange Is the New Black) guides view­ers through this in­for­ma­tive and chal­leng­ing ac­count of the in­car­cer­a­tion of CeCe McDon­ald, a trans­gen­der woman who went to prison af­ter fa­tally stab­bing a man for as­sault­ing her out­side a Min­neapo­lis bar in 2011. The doc­u­men­tary opens with the chaos of the al­ter­ca­tion and is front-loaded with McDon­ald’s ar­rest and trial, dur­ing which the me­dia and le­gal system por­trayed her as a man and the in­ci­dent as a stan­dard street fight. The case in­spired an in­ter­na­tional hu­man rights out­cry. Di­rec­tor Jac­que­line Gares uses footage from in­ter­views with trans-rights ad­vo­cates and McDon­ald’s mother, jux­ta­pos­ing the in­ter­views with more mun­dane mo­ments, such as when McDon­ald must recre­ate her wardrobe and beauty rou­tine af­ter be­ing re­leased from prison. The movie re­veals as­sump­tions about trans women of color and the trans­gen­der com­mu­nity, the high rate of vi­o­lence they face, and what it means to be gen­der-non-con­form­ing in open so­ci­ety and within the prison system. Cox’s in­ter­view­ing skills vis­i­bly im­prove as she gets more deeply in­volved with the pro­ject, and McDon­ald, who be­comes a prison abo­li­tion­ist, is re­vealed as a re­silient, big­hearted per­son who comes out on the other side of her or­deal a thought­ful, fo­cused ac­tivist. — J.L. Vi­o­let Crown, 3:15 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 20; 3:15 p.m. Oct. 21

THE GEN­ERAL SPE­CIFIC com­edy, 80 min­utes, not rated, 3 chiles

Matthew Stana­solovich’s com­edy about a young man who re­turns to New Mex­ico to wreak havoc on the lives of fam­ily and friends is the first fea­ture from the writer-di­rec­tor, an Al­bu­querque na­tive who shot The

Gen­eral Spe­cific in New Mex­ico us­ing mostly non­ac­tors. In the film, Alexan­der McHar­ren (El­liot Gross) is a re­cent dropout from an Ivy League univer­sity who uses his ar­cane knowl­edge of me­dieval phi­los­o­phy to derail con­ver­sa­tions, at­tack­ing the peo­ple he meets with un­pro­voked but pointed crit­i­cisms, all the while keep­ing his mo­ti­va­tions hid­den.

It is a pi­caresque and episodic tale of dis­rup­tion. Alexan­der is like a phan­tom from the id, ap­pear­ing to hold oth­ers to ac­count for real and imag­ined slights against him. But it’s a credit to Gross’ act­ing and Stana­solovich’s script that we can re­late to him and that he makes us laugh. — M.A. Jean Cocteau Cin­ema, 10 p.m. Thurs­day, Oct. 20; 8:30 p.m. Oct. 22

Girl Flu

Free CeCe

The Cave­man of Atomic City

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