Brighter Summer Days
To judge by the box office stats and the grousing critics, not to mention the received wisdom that summer movies are only good for air-conditioning, 2005 is shaping up as the worst year in film since, oh, 2004. But a quick survey of the city's art houses suggests a much happier state of affairs. No movie lover can reasonably complain about a season that sees local runs for Café Lumiere, Kings and Queen, The Holy Girl, Mysterious Skin, Tropical Malady, The World and the films by the three new directors in our summer movie package. As it happens, all are only quasi-neophytes, crossing over into feature filmmaking after distinguished careers in other fields. David LaChapelle, celebrity photographer of celebrities, hung out with teenage "krumpers" in South Central L.A. and emerged with the irresistible dance documentary Rize (opening June 24). Multimedia artist Miranda July's expansive, idiosyncratic rom-com, Me and You and Everyone We Know (opening June 17 at the brand-new IFC Center) is already the most lauded American indie of the year, having just won an armful of Cannes prizes. And Pawel Pawlikowski, an ex-BBC documentarian who earned critical praise for 2000's Last Resort, looks set to consolidate his art house rep with the languid and faintly sinister girlhood reverie My Summer of Love (opening June 17).
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