Daily Archives: May 19, 1995

The Perez Family

Mira Nair (Salaam Bombay, Mississippi Masala) directs an adaptation by Robin Swicord of a novel by Christine Bell, yielding a comedy about Cuban immigrants in Miami that is consistently pleasurable for its lead performances by Marisa Tomei, Alfred Molina, Chazz Palminteri, and Anjelica Huston. The story concerns a former political prisoner (Molina) who hasn’t seen his wife (Huston) and daughter (Trini Alvarado) in two decades. Though the circumstances delaying their reunion seem a little contrived in spots, the details about what Cuban immigrants have to contend with and the spirited riffs of the actors keep this busy and bubbling. With Celia Cruz and Lazaro Perez. Ford City, Lake, Webster Place, Evanston, Norridge, Chestnut Station, Plaza. Read more

Looking for Fun

Also known as For Fun, a title I prefer, this is a delightful comedy from mainland China (1992) about grumbly old men, directed and cowritten by a young woman, Ning Ying, who studied film in both Beijing and Italy, was assistant director on The Last Emperor, and is currently director of the Beijing Film Studio. An old man is obliged to retire from his job as house manager for a local Peking Opera troupe, and after he finds a few opera buffs around his age in a park he organizes a club that meets in an abandoned hall. Working mainly with nonprofessionals, Ning shows a genuine flair for documentary-style shooting and humorous observation, though this is only her second feature. She’s clearly someone to watch. Adapted with Ning Dal from a novella by Chen Jiangong; with Huang Zongluo and Huang Wenjie. To be screened as part of the Silver Images Film Festival. Facets Multimedia Center, 1517 W. Fullerton, Saturday, May 20, 1:15, 281-4114 or 881-8491. Read more