Watch Out, Austin! April Accolades

The Cinapse guide to this month’s best screenings around town

March was absolutely insane with SXSW, but April is back to normal, which means lots of amazing screenings to check out in Austin. Find an old favorite or pick something new, but get out there and watch movies!

New French Cinema Week 2019

AFS Cinema: April 18–21

New French Cinema Week welcomes international guests and filmmakers, feature an opening night reception, guest DJ sets, and a diverse program of narrative features, documentaries, animations and shorts by emerging Francophone artists. Nearly all of the films are undistributed in the US, and so the week provides a rare opportunity to see European independent films from diverse perspectives, that don’t typically reach United States audiences.


AFS at Symphony Square on Waller Creek: April 14

Symphony Square on the northern edge of downtown Austin is a hidden treasure. Situated along Waller Creek, it’s a fantastic venue for classic music and, this month, movies! The Austin Film Society is showing this documentary about an idealistic housing project gone wrong, a tale our growing city should hear about.


Community Cinema (w/New Story Festival): April 27

If there was ever a movie that needs a panel discussion after it, Arrival is the one. Seeing it under the stars at the Community Cinema amphitheater is pretty great, too.

Disclaimer: Our Editor in Chief Ed Travis runs the Community Cinema, but it’s a venue worth checking out regardless.


AFS Cinema: April 24

I know nothing of this film except that it “reimagines Prince’s PURPLE RAIN set against the desert city of Agadez, Niger, led by the Tuareg guitar virtuoso Mdou Moctar.” Done and done. I’m there.

The Films of Prince


Alamo Ritz: April 8


Alamo Ritz: April 22

For the real thing, check out the Alamo’s The Films of Prince series, including Purple Rain sequel Graffiti Bridge. (Am I the only one who remembers “Round and Round” by Tevin Campbell from that soundtrack?)

Crispin Glover Live


Alamo Ritz: April 5


Alamo Ritz: April 5

You wanna get weird? Then let’s get weird. The two event-screenings feature Crispin Hellion Glover (of course that’s his middle name) showing his movies, reading from books, answering Q’s with insane A’s. You’re not gonna forget something like this. I promise.


AFS Cinema: April 23

Year’s before Good Will Hunting defined the late 90’s, director Gus Van Sant had arthouse hits with Drugstore Cowboy and more importantly My Own Private Idaho. Starring River Phoenix (who I contend would be one of the biggest stars around today if he hadn’t died tragically young) and Keanu Reeves (who is), this film follows a group male hustlers around Van Sant’s stomping grounds of Portland, Oregon.


Alamo Mueller: April 11

GREETINGS FROM AUSTIN is a Sicilian-Texan rockabilly odyssey written, produced and directed by Vittorio Bongiorno. [It] documents the experience of a talented Sicilian rockabilly trio as they are called to challenge the best American musicians in Texas.

Director and musicians in attendance. Presented by KOOP Radio.


Alamo South Lamar: April 13

Leaked by an anonymous source to journalists in 2015, The Panama Papers were an explosive collection of 11.5 million documents, exposing the use of secretive offshore companies to enable widespread tax evasion and money laundering. In his expansive documentary, director Alex Winter examines how this story reshaped our understanding of corruption amidst the highest forms of government, and the systemic problem of global inequality.

Director Alex Winter live and in-person!

Magnolia Mondays


Violet Crown: April 8 & 15


Violet Crown: April 22 & 29

The Violet Crown continues its Magnolia Mondays series, highlighting some of the best from one of Hollywood’s best houses. This month, things get scary with The Host, and introspective with Jiro Dreams of Sushi.

Hitchcock Before Hollywood

AFS Cinema: April 4–28

By the time Alfred Hitchcock made the films represented in this series, he was an experienced and respected director who had directed 20 features, some of them quite successful. But it was this run of movies that made him a household name and a sought-after property in Hollywood, where his legend, bank account, and waistline all grew to legendary proportions. These are magnificent entertainments. As the master himself told Francois Truffaut, “Some films are slices of life, mine are slices of cake.”


AFS Cinema and elsewhere: Opens April 19

Cinapse staffer Jon Partridge was intrigued by this one from SXSW 2019:

Her Smell marks the third collaboration between writer/director Alex Ross Perry (The Color Wheel) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) after Queen of Earthand Listen Up Philip. Like their previous ventures, it’s intimate storytelling, but with a more sprawling approach and structure and an unruly composition that reflects the mindset of its protagonist Becky Something (Moss). She’s the founder, lead singer, and iconic figure who frontlines the punk rock group ‘Something She’

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