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Screenings: ‘Mommy’ is a fine introduction to director Xavier Dolan

Are you aware of French-Canadian wunderkind Xavier Dolan? If you’re a cinephile, the answer is yes, but Dolan has not yet crossed over from festival/indie darling to mainstream acceptance outside of his home country.  The actor-director is at work on his most-profile project to date, a new film starring Marion Cotillard and Léa Seydoux. So it’s a fine time for an introduction to his emotion-heavy style of personal storytelling.

Thanks to the Cultivate Cinema Circle film series, Dolan’s Cannes Jury Prize-winning “Mommy” is making its local debut. It’s a long, sometimes exhausting experience, but undoubtedly a memorable one featuring a stunning performance from Anne Dorval.  (Note that his first three films are streaming on Netflix, including the stunning “Laurence Anyways.”)

The free screening will be held at 7 p.m. on July 23 at the Mason O. Damon Auditorium at Buffalo Central Library. Visit for more info.

Also this week:

 “Game Changers”

7 p.m. July 25 at the Dipson Eastern Hills Cinema in Williamsville

This locally produced film from director Robert Imbs is about two life-long friends and professional gamers coping with the onset of adulthood. Visit to watch the trailer, or for tickets.

 “For All Mankind”

8 p.m. screening, 6:30 p.m. gallery show, July 24 at Sugar City

Al Reinert’s documentary features stunning NASA footage and a score by Brian Eno. Photos from the Apollo missions will accompany the screening. Film admission is $5. See buffalosugarcity.orgs.

 “Day of the Triffids”

Dusk July 21 at Canalside

Off Beat Cinema presents the 1962 sci-fi film. Visit for the full Tuesday Night Flicks schedule or for more info.


11:30 a.m. July 25 and 26 at the North Park Theatre

Watch for a young Liam Neeson in this 1983 sci-fi epic. Visit

 “Ex Machina”

9 p.m. on July 21 at the Special Events Field at UB’s North Campus; 9 p.m. July 22 at the Hayes Hall Lawn at South Campus

Believe the hype: Alex Garland’s sci-fi thriller is one of 2015’s finest films, and features note-perfect performances from Oscar Isaac and Alicia Vikander. (“Avengers: Age of Ultron” screesns at 9 p.m. on July 24 at UB’s Special Events Field.) Visit for the full schedule.

 “Toy Story”

1 p.m. July 25 at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery

Pixar’s first feature remains a modern classic, and one of my son’s favorite films. Yep, we’ll be there. Visit

 “Rock ’N’ Roll High School”/”Grease”

“Rock”: 7:30 p.m. July 21 and 9:15 p.m. July 25; “Grease”: 7:30 p.m. July 22 and 7 p.m. July 25; both at the Screening Room in Amherst

One is the Ramones’ ultra cool cult classic … the other is “Grease.” Visit

 “The Green Mile”

7:30 p.m. on July 23 at the Riviera Theatre in North Tonawanda

The Tom Hanks M&T Bank Summer Film Series heads to death row, Mr. Jingles in tow.  The full schedule can be found at

 “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”

11 a.m. on July 22 and 25 at the Aurora Theatre in East Aurora

The Aurora Theatre’s free Summer Family Film Series features Steve Carell’s entertaining family film. Visit

“There’s Something About Mary”/”Crazy Stupid Love”

Dusk on July 22 and 23, respectively, at Bacchus

Will there be a summer rom-com in 2015 as enjoyable as these two hits of summers past? Doubtful. Visit


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