THE JUNIPER TREE
1990, Arbelos Films, 78 min, Iceland, Dir: Nietzchka Keene

An unsung talent in her lifetime, director Nietzchka Keene’s stark, stunning debut feature is loosely based on a Brothers Grimm fairy tale of the same name, and stars Björk in her first screen performance. Set in medieval Iceland, THE JUNIPER TREE follows Margit (Björk) and her older sister, Katla (Bryndis Petra Bragadottir), as they flee for safety after their mother is burned to death for witchcraft. Finding shelter and protection with Johan (Valdimar Orn Fygenring), and his resentful young son, Jonas (Geirlaug Sunna Pormar), the sisters help form an impromptu family unit that’s soon strained by Katla’s burgeoning sorcery. Photographed entirely on location in spectacular black-and-white by Randy Sellars, this deeply atmospheric film is a potent allegory for misogyny and its attendant tragedies, and a major rediscovery for art house audiences. “Distinctive, ambitious, and genuinely poetic.” – Los Angeles Times.


BIG FISH
2003, Sony Pictures, 120 min, Dir: Tim Burton

In the heartwarming BIG FISH, director Tim Burton brings his inimitable imagination on a journey that delves deep into a fabled relationship between a father and his son. Edward Bloom (Albert Finney) has always been a teller of tall-tales about his oversized life as a young man (Ewan McGregor), when his wanderlust led him on an unlikely journey from a small-town in Alabama, around the world and back again. His mythic exploits dart from the delightful to the delirious as he weaves epic tales about giants, blizzards, a witch and conjoined-twin lounge singers. With his larger-than-life stories, Bloom charms almost everyone he encounters except his estranged son, Will (Billy Crudup). When his mother (Jessica Lange) tries to reunite them, Will must learn how to separate fact from fiction as he comes to terms with his father's great feats and great failings.


BLACULA
1972, Park Circus , 93 min, Dir: William Crain

When the charitable Prince Mamuwalde (William Marshall) travels through 18th century Transylvania, a fated run-in with the one-and-only Count Dracula damns him for all eternity. It isn’t until a century later, that he suddenly finds himself in 1970s Los Angeles, where he must balance his infatuation with a woman, whom he believes to be his wife reincarnate (Vonetta McGee), with an insatiable taste for blood. The first and perhaps most enduring Blaxploitation horror film of the early 1970s, BLACULA tells the tragic story of a good-natured man’s transformation into a blood-sucking undead killer.


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