Head Trip

Hippie-chick flick jumps from present to past to future.

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Never heard of the 1971 flick, A Safe Place? Not surprising. The drama in which Tuesday Weld meets a handsome Jack Nicholson and a bulbous Orson Welles in New York first came out in a handful of movie houses, then — poof! — disappeared off the radar screen, without even an eventual VHS or DVD release. It resurfaces tonight in Cleveland. "Expect it to be a prime example of psychedelic-era cinema, with a fluid bending of fantasy and reality," says John Ewing, associate director of film at the Cleveland Museum of Art. The Henry Jaglom-directed storyline revolves around Weld's flower-child character, who's overcome by big-city life. She escapes into her childhood dreamworld, where she bonds with a washed-up Central Park magician played by Welles. Back in the real world, she carries on ho-hum love affairs with two guys, including the sexy Nicholson. Scenes then jump between Weld's past, present, and future. Many critics panned the film; a fight even broke out in the audience at its New York Film Festival premiere. "Young people during the counter-culture era were questioning what was reality," says Ewing. "The lack of concrete answers was often reflected in trippy, suggestive, unresolved films." A Safe Place screens at 7:30 tonight at the Cleveland Cinematheque, 11141 East Boulevard. Tickets are $5 to $8. Call 216-421-7450 or visit www.cia.edu.
Fri., Feb. 1, 7:30 p.m., 2008
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