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Film Picks

[whitespace] By Richard von Busack

Crocodile Tears
Dec 11-17 at the Lumiere Theater, 1572 California St; 415/352-0810.

An evil Faustian comedy about a meek schoolteacher (Ted Sod) who discovers that he's HIV-positive. Sod decides to sell his soul to the devil, who demands the completion of three tasks in exchange for HIV-negativity. Crocodilelike advice columnist Dan Savage of the SF Weekly co-stars as the hero's chum.


Free Tibet
Dec 11-17 at the Red Vic Theater, 1727 Haight St; 415/668-3994.

Documentary about the two-day, 100,000-attendance benefit concert for Tibetan freedom staged in Golden Gate Park, featuring the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Beastie Boys, Sonic Youth, Pavement and ultra-scary, bear-suit-wearing Icelandic warbler Bjork.


Steam (Hamam: Il Bagno Turco)
Dec. 4-17 at the Castro Theater, 429 Castro St; 415/621-6120.

Orientalism deluxe. Francesco (Alessandro Gassman) plays an unhappily married Milanese businessman who inherits a Turkish bathhouse in Istanbul from his aunt, the black sheep in his family. The bathhouse, once a gay men's club, is the last little piece standing in the way of the bulldozing of its neighborhood by developers. As Francesco gets to know the family who ran the hamam (bathhouse), he becomes convinced that he might be able to fix the place up and run it as in the old days. The spirit of the steambath seems to have taken him over, since he also develops a romantic interest in Mehmet (Mehmet Gunsur), the son of the Turkish family who are his hosts and guides. Despite how director Ferzan Ozpetek describes this as a love story, the culture is more intriguing than the individuals. It's as if the Turks depicted had only two sides, compliant and violent.

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From the December 7-20, 1998 issue of the Metropolitan.

Copyright © Metro Publishing Inc. Maintained by Boulevards New Media.




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