These dialectics prove more powerful than the Marxist kind in Chris Sheridan and Patty Kim’s Abduction: the Megumi Yokota Story (2006; April 22 at 8:30 at the Somerville Theatre and April 23 at noon at the Coolidge Corner Theatre; directors Sheridan and Kim in attendance). In 1977 the 13-year-old girl of the title disappeared before returning home from school in the coastal Japanese city where she lived. Years passed and her parents did not lose hope. Then an investigative reporter uncovered evidence of North Korean agents kidnapping civilians, and the story gets very strange indeed. Through the ups and downs of false hopes and crushing setbacks, of stunning revelations and apparent deceit, Megumi’s parents persevere and, one hopes, will prevail. The filmmakers do best when they relate the facts unadorned by pretty cinematography and a blatant soundtrack; folks like the Yokotas are more than a match for the likes of Kim Jong Il.With all these films more or less acknowledging the centrality of family in all our lives, there has to be at least one entry called FHck (2006; April 22 at 9 pm at the Brattle Theatre and April 23 at 9:30 at the Coolidge Corner Theatre, with director Steve Anderson in attendance). Steve Anderson’s freewheeling but pointed investigation of the perennially popular deleted expletive boasts a convincing cast of experts including Hunter S. Thomson, Pat Boone, Sam Donaldson, and Alan Keyes. It makes the expected points about freedom of speech, the FCC, and the fallacy of trying to protect kids from bad language (as George Carlin puts it, “Fuck the children”). But after 90 minutes and more than 600 repetitions of the f-word (which, the film points out, would result in over $300 million in FCC fines if the film was ever broadcast uncensored on network TV), I have to agree with Janeane Garofalo and her weariness with HBO’s fuck fetishization: enough, already, we get it.
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