February is the month for love in all of its syrupy forms — and our list of cinematic valentines is packed tighter than a chocolate box. Though lacking in stories actually about love, each one of these movies is perfect for a date or a solo outing that might lead to your meeting someone afterward in the lobby. Take a chance, kids! Here, in chronological order, are the top ten film events in Denver this month. 10. Hail, Caesar!
Opens Friday, February 5, at a theater near you
After thirty years of their films, it should be a national holiday whenever the Coen Brothers release a new one into the world. Alas, our government has yet to recognize their work — but fans still clamor for the weirdo spins that the Coens bring to each and every one of their pictures. Their seventeenth movie, Hail Caesar!, turns its kooky camera back on Hollywood to tell the tasty tale of an epic film shoot in a 1950s Tinseltown thrown into a tizzy when its biggest star, played by George Clooney, is kidnapped for ransom. Featuring an all-star cast featuring Scarlett Johansson, Josh Brolin, Channing Tatum, Tilda Swinton, Jonah Hill and more. Everyone's around to see just where this screwball investigation is headed. Find theaters and showtimes at fandango.com. 9. Denver Jewish Film Festival
February 10 through February 21 Mizel Arts & Culture Center For twenty years, the Denver Jewish Film Festival has presented scores of films that celebrate the meaning of being Jewish and also explore the differences that come with the faith. This year’s fest may be the biggest yet, with a salute to the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) that's part of a special focus on “arts and culture.” See the full program and get tickets at maccjcc.org. 8. Midnight Madness: The Hunger
Midnight Friday, February 12, and Saturday, February 13 Esquire Theater
David Bowie tributes are flying fast and furious around theaters as fans continue to grieve his passing. The most delicious Bowie film may well be Tony Scott’s 1983 vampire tale The Hunger. The late starman plays John Blaylock who, along with his gorgeous wife, Miriam (Catherine Deneuve), paint the town red looking for blood to keep up their youthful facades. When the pert Sarah Roberts (Susan Sarandon) enters their lives, she brings a score of beautiful complications. The film is a masterpiece in mood, style and heat, and most of that is from Bowie, who continues to mystify and enchant without singing a single word in this modern, gothic masterpiece. Tickets at landmarktheaters.com. 7. Scream Screen: When Animals Attack
9:30 p.m. Saturdays, February 13 though March 5 Sie FilmCenter
Best Bloodthirsty Horror Host and notable animal lover Theresa Mercado is back with Scream Screen, her horror series at the Sie, and this month she’s making sure that animals get their due with her special salute to the sweet aggressions that our four-legged pals have toward us all. First up is Monkey Shines, George Romero’s non-zombie tale of a paraplegic whose relationship with his helper monkey turns out just as well as can be expected. The series continues with all of God’s creatures attacking a dumb couple in Long Weekend, a rabid St. Bernard attacking a mother and son in Cujo, and a bullied misfit leading an army of rats against his enemies in Willard. Enjoy these furry tales on the big screen and you’ll be convinced that, yes, your cat really is thinking about how it’s going to eat you the minute you fall ill or lower your defenses. Get tickets at denverfilm.org. 6. Denver Actors Fund: Heathers
6:30 p.m. Sunday, February 14 Alamo Drafthouse
Well, fuck us gently with a chainsaw: This month the Alamo has teamed up with the Denver Actors Fund to start a new film series and give back to our community at the same time. Due to a slew of red tape around the rights to the movie, the 1988 cult hit Heathers hasn’t seen a screen in over two decades — but this is a special occasion, and director Michael Lehmann will be at the Alamo not only to present the film, but to watch scenes from an upcoming musical production of the movie, one that defined and inspired a generation of outcasts to tear down their idols (without homicide, hopefully) and remember: “Teenage suicide, don’t do it!” The new Denver Actors Fund series will raise monies (50 percent of all box office) for medical needs of actors in Denver’s theatrical community. Get tickets at drafthouse.com.
Keep reading for five more of the best film events in Denver this month.
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Keith Garcia is a filmmaker, writer and secret agent looking for love and the perfect slice of pizza. If he looks familiar, it's probably because he introduced a film you watched in Denver sometime between 1996 and 2014.