The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus.
Thursday, May 2 (7:30 p.m.)
I Like It Like That (Columbia, 1994 – Rated R*)
The year-long Contemporary Women Directors series at the Packard Campus Theater continues with this comedy-drama about the trials and tribulations of a young Puerto Rican couple: Lisette Linares, a young mother of three, married to Chino, a bicycle messenger, who lives in the poverty-stricken New York City neighborhood of the South Bronx. Written and directed by Darnell Martin, making her feature film debut, I Like it Like That was nominated for four Independent Spirit Awards: Best First Feature, Best Female Lead (Luna Lauren Velez), Best Male Lead (Jon Seda) and Best Cinematography (Alexander Gruszynski). Martin won the New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best New Director. Darnell Martin apprenticed as an assistant camera operator on Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (1989) and soon began directing commercials, music videos and short films. She works as a director both for theatrical features, such as the musical drama Cadillac Records (2008), and for television productions, having directing several episodes of shows like ER (NBC, 1994-2009), Oz (HBO, 1997-2003) and Sleepy Hollow (Fox, 2013-). 35mm archival film print. 104 min. *No one under the age of 17 will be admitted without a parent or guardian.
Friday, May 3 (7:30 p.m.)
Mother (Paramount, 1996)
Debbie Reynolds, in her first leading role in 27 years, steals every scene she’s in as Beatrice Henderson, whose son John (Albert Brooks, who also directed) wants to move back home after his second marriage has ended in divorce. A prickly, set-in-her-ways widow, Beatrice cooperates but is not pleased and the two constantly butt heads over day-to-day minutiae including Beatrice’s insistence on buying the cheapest brands of everything (Sweet Tooth sherbet, anyone?). The film was a hit with audiences and critics alike. New York Times film critic Janet Maslin wrote, “Mr. Brooks, whose humor thrives delightfully in this hothouse of Freudian confusion, brings vast reserves of quarrelsome, hairsplitting hilarity to the story of a man going mano a mano with his sweet little mom.” Albert Brooks and co-writer Monica Johnson won both the New York Film Critics Circle Award and the National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Screenplay and Reynolds was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress. Rated PG-13. 35mm archival film print. 104 min.
Saturday, May 4 (2 p.m.)
Brother Bear (Disney, 2003)
Set against the natural grandeur of the Great American Northwest, this animated children’s feature tells the story of a boy named Kenai, whose life takes an unexpected turn when the Great Spirits transform him into a bear–the creature he hates most. Befriended by a bear cub named Koda, Kenai sets out to regain his human form while his brother (who doesn’t realize Kenai is now a bear) pursues him on a mission of revenge and family honor. The film features the voices of Joaquin Phoenix, Jeremy Suarez and Rick Moranis and songs by Academy Award winner Phil Collins. USA Today film critic Claudia Puig praised the film for its “message of tolerance and respect for nature that rings loud and clear. And family audiences are treated to a vibrantly hued movie with appealing characters.” Brother Bear was nominated for an Oscar for Best Animated Feature, but lost to another Disney Picture, Finding Nemo. 35mm archival film print. Rated G. 85 min.
Saturday, May 4 (7:30 p.m.)
Steel Magnolias (Columbia, 1989)
Adapted from the autobiographical off-Broadway hit play by Robert Harling, Steel Magnolias is a bittersweet drama laced with comedy that follows five tightly-knit women who congregate at a beauty parlor in a small Louisiana town. When Shelby (Julia Roberts), the newlywed daughter of M’Lynn (Sally Field), decides to have a baby knowing it could risk her health, her worried mother’s group of strong, funny and colorful women friends come together to support Shelby and M’Lynn through one of the toughest crises they’ll ever have to face. Directed by Herbert Ross, the star-studded cast also includes Shirley MacLaine, Olympia Dukakis, Dolly Parton, Tom Skerritt, Sam Shepard, Dylan McDermott and Daryl Hannah. Julia Roberts, in the role that made her a star, received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Rated PG-13. 35mm archival film print. 117 min.
For more information on our programs, please visit the website at: //www.loc.gov/avconservation/theater/