Butterfly FX Join Animated Fare at Box Office

Mid-January 2004 continues in the tradition of most Januarys in the film biz. (Not much going on, waiting for the Oscars to happen). While Disney’s Teacher’s Pet and Satoshi Kon’s Tokyo Godfathers continue their run in most theaters, this weekend has one new opening that should be of interest to fans of f/x-driven thrillers and another for those who consider themselves connoisseurs of the design-world.

For starters, the unfortunately ubiquitous Ashton Kutcher stars in the time-traveling, psychological thriller The Butterfly Effect. Opening wide in 2,605 locations the film is about a guy (Kutcher) who discovers that he can go back in time and fix the past to change the present. Only, as with all films with this premise, it’s not quite that simple. The film’s stunning visual effects are by Schminken Studio and Toybox.

On a completely different astral plane this weekend is the doc My Architect, about Nathaniel Kahn’s relationship with his father, leading architect Louis Kahn. The film has been reviewed favorably by most critics and lauded for its sensitive and personal approach to its subject matter.

If you happen to live in Los Angeles, you can catch a big-screen presentation of Disney’s underrated 1959 classic Sleeping Beauty, which will be shown as part of the American Cinematheque’s Great Big 70 Milllimeter Festival, this Sunday at 1 p.m.

Directed by Clyde Geronimi, this grand adaptation of Charles Perrault’s fairy tale features one of Disney’s scariest villains (the evil fairy Maleficent), and George Bruns’ Oscar-nominated score based on the waltzes by Tchaikovsky. The film screens at the Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian, 6712 Hollywood Blvd. The festival also includes the French comedy classic Jacques Tati’s Playtime (1967), the Barbra Sreisand musical Hello, Dolly! (1969) and Stanley Kramer’s comedy It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. For more information, visit www.egyptiantheatre.com.