Cinema

​Monogram Mystery: horror for B-movie fans

by Christopher P. Jacobs | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 12th, 2017

Sometimes one is not in the mood for a heavy drama, elaborate action-adventure, or even a light comedy. Sometimes it feels good to watch a simple formula genre picture unashamed of its low budget, be it a western, film noir crime story, murder-mystery, or horror-thriller. The latter two genres often blend together, as in two B-grade thrillers released in 1940-41 by the low-budget Monogram studio, both of which came out on Blu-ray from Kino a few weeks ago.

“Chamber of Horrors” (1940)…

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​Classic romances explore still-timely social issues

by Christopher P. Jacobs | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 5th, 2017

Todd Haynes’ Oscar-nominated period romantic melodrama “Far from Heaven” (2002) will have its 15th anniversary this fall. The film has a socially-conscious edge that earned it widespread acclaim, yet it is still not available on Blu-ray in the United States (there are Blu-rays from Canada, France, and Spain, however). Those who appreciated his story of a 1950s New England housewife’s awakening to the hypocrisy, racism, and homophobia of her apparently perfect little world may…

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How to dance in Ohio

by Suzanne Carroll | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 5th, 2017

April is Autism Awareness Month. To celebrate both the unique challenges and capabilities of people on the Autism Spectrum, the Region V Transition Community of Practice Committee is hosting a free movie night at the Fargo Theatre on Thursday, April 6at 7:00pm.

The featured film is called “How to Dance in Ohio.” The Region V Transition Committee is a multi-disciplinary group made up of area agencies, educators and families that come together for the common purpose of assisting…

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“78/52” looks at “Psycho” and its unforgettable shower scene

by Greg Carlson | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | April 5th, 2017

An entertaining close reading and consideration of the shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s “Psycho,” Alexandre O. Philippe’s “78/52” can expect a lengthy post-theatrical existence in college film courses and in the movie collections of cinephiles.

Despite some publicity claims that the documentary focuses exclusively on the Bates Motel bathroom fate of Marion Crane, Philippe shares additional context, expanding the scope of the narrative to encompass details that inform our…

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​Blu-rays boost reputations of forgotten films

by Christopher P. Jacobs | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 29th, 2017

A few big-name stars or even an all-star cast certainly do not guarantee that a movie will be top-notch entertainment, but are usually an effective way to attract viewers. Sometimes it might even be a warning that the story may have difficulties holding interest on its own or is otherwise just a routine example of its genre.

With most movies, it’s generally best if one watches without preconceived expectations, as overly-hyped films may easily be disappointing and overly-disparaged…

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​Always Shine

by Greg Carlson | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 29th, 2017

Sophia Takal’s sophomore feature “Always Shine” deserves a spot among the best films of 2016. Razor sharp, spellbinding, and intense, the film is too slippery to be pigeonholed in a single genre, and to call it a “psychological thriller” fails to adequately capture the scope of its ambitions.

Showcasing superb performances by leads Mackenzie Davis and Caitlin FitzGerald, “Always Shine” teases cinephiles as a boiling, bubbling metafiction: a movie about the movies and the…

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​2017 Fargo Film Festival

by HPR Contributor | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 22nd, 2017

By Kaley Sievert 

Movies have this magic. An emotional pull that lures audiences into their universe. Filmgoers can get lost in stories painted in dazzling lights, electric colors and robust sounds. They mourn over the hardships of the characters on screen, experience nostalgia when a relatable childhood memory flashes in front of them, and hold their breath in anticipation for the monster lurking around the corner.

Crowds are starting to feel that pull again as the annual Fargo Film…

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​Media satire classics on Blu-ray double-feature

by Christopher P. Jacobs | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 22nd, 2017

Lately (especially over the past year) media coverage has been almost as much about biased media coverage as it is about the stories that the media typically cover. But a cynical view of how slanted and exploitive media reports can be is nothing new.

Less than two years ago, Lewis Milestone’s newspaper genre classic “The Front Page” (1931) finally came out in a high-quality Blu-ray edition from Kino Video.

Based on a darkly satiric hit 1928 Broadway play, the double-plot deals with…

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​HPR Exclusive: Brett Haley Interview

by Greg Carlson | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 22nd, 2017

Writer-director Brett Haley spoke with Greg Carlson ahead of the Fargo Film Festival’s screening of “The Hero.”

Greg Carlson: Congratulations on “The Hero.” I was at the second Sundance screening. The one where you had been up all night and had just sold it.

Brett Haley: That was a great screening.

GC: We are so happy to have “The Hero” at the Fargo Film Festival.

BH: I am very excited about the film. It is getting released by The Orchard. They’re a great fit for us, and…

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​Noteworthy noir new to Blu-ray

by Christopher P. Jacobs | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | March 15th, 2017

Big news for film buffs lately was the long-awaited February Blu-ray release of film noir classic “The Big Sleep” (1946). But three notable noir variations on a theme also came out on Blu-ray in recent months, another major classic and two lesser-known titles that deserve more widespread recognition. None is truly an archetypal film noir like “The Big Sleep,” or say “Out of the Past” or “Double Indemnity,” but all share a number of elements identified with noir (postwar…

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cshagen@hpr1.comBISMARCK - One day after law enforcement cleared the “Treaty Camp” on October 27, 2016, hundreds of activists defending Native American treaty rights, water rights, and land rights, lined up north of three…

Culture

Millennial

by James Osborne

We all know that labels can lead to some unfair and incorrect conclusions. Is it a coincidence that the generation that everyone loves to hate has been given the most faceless and disaffectionate of all the generational labels?…

Friday, June 23, 6pm till lateSidestreet Grill, 404 4th Ave N, FargoThe best way to spend Friday evening, hipping and hopping in Sidestreet’s parking lot with Kipp G, Circle of Heat, and for the first time in several months, D…

Albert Einstein once said, “The revolution introduced me to art, and in turn, art introduced me to the revolution.”This past Sunday marked the 58th year of the Rourke’s Great Midwestern. Though Jim O’Rourke, founder of the…

From Homer’s Odyssey to Buddy Holly: The times they are a-changin’When Robert Zimmerman, born in Duluth and raised in Hibbing, better known as Bob Dylan, won the Nobel Prize for Literature (worth almost a cool $1 million), he…

The moment of truth has arrived. After seven weeks of sampling and judging some of the finest libations in the area the results for this year’s Cocktail Showdown have arrived. Christopher Larson, Raul Gomez and Sabrina Hornung…

On a sultry Thursday night, I sauntered into Luna. Situated on South University next to Bernie’s Beer and Wine, it isn’t exactly a hole in the wall, but it is certainly off the beaten path, and as described by their motto it is…

Pursuing a hobby, much less a career in music is more difficult than just picking up an instrument. Though the passion may be there, the cost of equipment and lessons can be prohibitive.Of course this is something that…

A couple of classic courtroom dramas and a romantic melodrama about theatrical ambition, all adapted from popular novels of their day, are among the recently released Blu-rays by Kino-Lorber. All were made by major filmmakers with…

“I was devastated, scared, and lost. My family’s world changed and our relationships with one another changed too.” said Lonna Whiting.Whiting, co-founder of Brains on the Plains, went on. “In addition to a dramatic shift…

Author, professor, historian and now playwright: Dr. Charlie Barber has taken his love of history to the stage with his new musical, “No Backseat Driver.”Barber’s play is the story of two North Dakota heroes: “Wild Bill”…

Humor

​Talking to strangers

by Sabrina Hornung

“I don’t have a tour, like, on the back of a sweatshirt,” comedian Paula Poundstone says. “I go out every weekend. This weekend I went out Friday, Saturday and Monday. Mostly it’s Friday/Saturday or Thursday through…

Here in the upper midwest we love the summer season for so many different reasons but two of the big reasons I love summer are fresh produce and being outside with a beer in my hand. Sometimes, when I’m spending the day in the…

Wellness

​Natural sleep aids

by Erin Oberlander

As I interact with clients and friends and family alike, one of the issues that comes up commonly is that of sleep. It seems that in our modern world, getting deep, nourishing sleep has become a challenge for some and a complete…

Live and Learn

​The other shoe

by HPR Contributor

By Elizabeth Nawrotnawrot@mnstate.eduI look up from my hotel lobby breakfast astonished to see a framed print of Wassily Kandinsky's "Mit und Gegen,” a masterpiece of color and composition that just happens to be my favorite…

The North Dakota Department of Health has called “Bullsh*t!” on Meridian Energy’s application to construct its Davis Oil Refinery three miles from Theodore Roosevelt National Park.In fact, in a strongly-worded letter to…