It's Alive!

by Matthew Curtis
October 31, 2006 4:59 AM
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The Sundance Institute's 25th anniversary celebration continues at Enzian Halloween night with the special "Art House Project" presentation of Bill Condon's GODS AND MONSTERS (1998) at 9:30 PM. Based on Christopher Bram's novel, Father of Frankenstein, this spellbinding work features Sir Ian McKellen in a brilliant performance as director James Whale (FRANKENSTEIN, BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, SHOWBOAT). Told with striking flashbacks to his film sets, the story finds the gay British filmmaker living out his final days in California in the late fifties in seclusion, with exception to his Hungarian maid (Lynn Redgrave) and the hunky gardener he befriends (Brendan Fraser in perhaps his finest role).

How much of this unique biographical drama is fiction we can only guess. But this is a moving and haunting work that deservedly earned Oscar nominations for both McKellen and Redgrave, and did in fact win the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. McKellen also won the Best Actor Award from the Florida Film Critics Circle that year for his performance in both this and APT PUPIL.

As the holiday season beckons and we await Bill Condon's big-buget movie adaptation of the smash-hit Broadway musical, DREAMGIRLS, don't miss this rare opportunity to see this indie gem from almost a decade ago. Get your trick or treating out of the way early--a more perfect "Art House Project" movie for Halloween night you'll be hard pressed to find!

Still to come: brand new 35mm prints of Quentin Tarantino's RESERVOIR DOGS (November 28) and Lisa Cholodenko's HIGH ART (December 26), so mark your calendars.

--Matthew

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