The Prison in Twelve Landscapes
Friday November 4, 7 pm and 9:15 pm and through Wednesday November 9 at Anthology Film Archives: $11

This documentary explores the far-reaching consequences of incarceration across the United States, without ever setting foot inside the prison proper. It’s a fascinating take on the impact of the prison system from a different perspective than the one we’re used to, in which the cameras are literally being behind bars. Instead, the subject is approached through absence and invisibility, from the parallel infrastructures that bring food and supplies into penitentiaries to women prisoners fighting forest fires in California.

The doc makers push the conversation beyond the troubling and widely documented disproportionate imprisonment of people of color, reframing everything in a way that only film can do.

Broadcast
Friday November 4, 7:30 pm at Video Revival: $5

Just in time for the election, this tragically stunning parody of political reportage follows Janine Costello-White. The election’s unlikeliest of reporters, as she schleps her way through the noxious muck that is the 2016 presidential race. During the film’s telling 60 minutes, the journalistess in question exhibits what at first might seem like a charming but jaw-dropping naiveté. Soon enough, however, it’s clear that her flailing pluckery is maybe some of the most revealing coverage of this entire election season.

Video Revival calls Broadcast: “the abandoned love child of Working Girl and The War Room, that manages to observe the everyday drudgery and the random horrors a female reporter faces while covering a major news story.” Sold and sold.

The Handmaiden 
Friday November 11 through Wednesday November 11 a Sunshine Cinema: $14.50

Sadism, masochism, tension, power plays, and a blush-worthy soundtrack– it’s the perfect prescription for that particularly mauve-tasting kind of prudishness that’s been masquerading as fet since 50 Shades of Grey became a (really stupid) thing.

Run, don’t walk to see The Handmaiden, from the director of Old Boy. So what’s a Korean filmmaker doing telling a story that’s so, well, Japanese? Here’s a little history lesson: In the 1930s, Korea, where/when the story’s set, was under Japanese rule– hence all the decorum and heavy Japanese tradition. Playing off of the realities of political domination, the film is steeped in the tight-lipped interactions and elaborate mating rituals of the upperclass between a Count who’s courting a Lady, and a Lady who is meanwhile seducing her maid. “Ladies truly are the dolls of the maids.” I bet you’re feeling flushed already.