Movie Diary 5/19/2010

Countdown to Zero (Lucy Walker, 2010). Just when you thought we’d passed through the “Duck and Cover” and “No Nukes” periods, here comes a movie to remind us that the real nuclear threat comes from rogue states and individual crazies. (screens at Seattle International Film Festival 6/2,  6/3)

Mao’s Last Dancer (Bruce Beresford, 2010). Based on a true tale of a Chinese ballet dancer who came to Texas in the early 1980s, before China had discovered the Yao Ming approach to cultural sharing. (screens at SIFF 5/27, 5/29, 5/30)

Kites (Anurag Basu, 2010). For what it’s worth, this is the 130-minute version of an insane Bollywood picture set in Las Vegas; a shorter version is promised, prepared under the supervision of Brett Ratner. Those elements promise more fun than is actually on view. (full review 5/21)

Green for Danger (Sidney Gilliat, 1946). Nice British whodunit with Alastair Sim acting up as an inspector looking into a series of hospital murders; the spectre of death by V-1 bomb is still very much in the atmosphere, despite the playful tone.