South Beach conjures up breast implants and Oompa Loompa suntans. Horses – not so much. Even so, Buck, the Audience Winner for Best Documentary at Sundance 2011, will gallop its way onto the screen and into your heart this weekend at the Regal South Beach. (Yes, that was a bad pun. Shut up.)
The story of horse trainer Buck Brannaman, Buck may be a better fit for local equestrian communities like Davie or Homestead, or even art houses where its Sundance cred would draw a crowd. But IFC is making a bold statement in booking this film at the height of summer at Regal in SoBe. It’s saying this film isn’t just for horse lovers and it’s right. Full of heart, humor, and humanity, Brannaman’s story is the distinctly American tale of a selfless hero who survived an abusive childhood to tour the country helping horses with people problems.
If you find yourself at Regal, skip Ryan Reynolds “look I have abs” role in Green Lantern and “funny bearded fat guy goes to China” (aka Hangover 2) and enjoy a little piece of Americana.
— Buck opens at Regal on Friday, June 24.
Meanwhile, there is no shortage of great choices at Miami’s art houses this weekend. O Cinema is bringing Canne’s Palme D’or winner, Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, a beautiful, lyrical Thai masterpiece about reincarnation that is unlike anything you have ever seen.
If you’re more concerned with your current life than previous ones, then check out How To Live Forever, also at O Cinema. The film stars director Mark Wexler in a worldwide exploration of aging and the possibility and ramifications of immortality.
— How To Live Forever and Uncle Boonmee are both playing at O Cinema through Sunday, June 26.
Across the bay, Miami Beach Cinematheque is celebrating the art of cinema twice over. Road to Nowhere, director Monte Hellman’s first film in 21 years, is a film within a film within a film. It is hard to follow at times but nonetheless engaging. From the L.A. Times:
“Genre conventions become a point of departure for Hellman as he contemplates and explores an all-consuming romantic passion, a love of making films, the blurry lines between truth and illusion and the magic of cinema and its enduring power.”
If you’re looking for a doc, MBC has you covered with Blank City, a look back at New York’s No Wave Cinema of the 70s and 80s with the likes of Jim Jarmusch and John Waters as your guides.
— Road to Nowhere and Blank City are both playing at MBC through Thursday, June 30.
Over in Little Havana, Tower Theater has four different titles playing this week. My pick is NEDs, the story of teenager John McGill who must overcome his violent lush of a father, a numbed mother, and a demoralizing school system to make something of himself in the streets of Glasgow.
— NEDs is playing at Tower Theater through Sunday, June 26.
University of Miami’s Bill Cosford Cinema is screening In Our Name, an exploration of post-traumatic stress through a British soldier who returns home from Iraq with an obsessive need to safeguard her daughter. The irony, of course, is that her own paranoia is the child’s greatest threat.
— In Our Name is playing at Cosford Cinema through Sunday, June 26.
Lastly, Coral Gables Art Cinema serves up a bit of light indie fare in The Best and The Brightest, starring the ever charming Neil Patrick Harris as a married father and recent New York transplant who will go to extreme lengths to get his daughter into the best school.
— The Best and The Brightest is playing at CGAC through Thursday, June 30.
Happy viewing, Miami. And remember: The new — and last — Harry Potter film is a mere 23 Days away. So excited. It’s kind of pathetic, I know. Don’t judge me.
A Miami native, Kareem Tabsch is Co-Director and Co-Founder of O Cinema.