A Sure Fire Oscar Contender: “The Master” Opens Friday; Final Week: “Sleepwalk With Me”; Special Midnite Shows Friday & Saturday: “Killer Joe”; Roman Polanski’s “Knife in the Water” Wednesday

A striking portrait of drifters and seekers in post World War II America, Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master unfolds the journey of a Naval veteran (Joaquin Phoenix) who arrives home from war unsettled and uncertain of his future – until he is tantalized by The Cause and its charismatic leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman). Smart, powerfully acted, beautifully filmed, and solidly engrossing, The Master extends writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson’s winning streak of challenging films for serious audiences. trailer

Wednesday’s entry in the Rosa Goddard International Film Festival features Knife in the Water (Noz w Wodzie), Polanski’s first feature-length film.An attractive young woman, Christine, takes the wheel of a car belonging to her partner Andrzej, a sports columnist. While he criticizes her driving skills, a reckless student leaps out in front of the car. Andrzej gives the student a ride and invites him to accompany them on their yacht trip. As the threesome head out to open water, the husband and the student start a kind of jealous interaction that keeps Kataryna mildly amused. What began as a macho sparring ends up in a fight that has the student falling overboard and the husband swimming to shore for help. But appearances are deceiving, as the husband will soon discover.  trailer

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