INTRODUCTION TO FILM/MEDIA STUDIES

Monday, January 22 at 7pm

NORTH BY NORTHWEST

Alfred Hitchcock (U.S. 1959) 136 min. 35MM. With Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint, James Mason, Jessie Royce Landis.

A breathless ride – from the spiffy Saul Bass title sequence to the cliffhanger climax on Mount Rushmore – North by Northwest was, per screenwriter Ernest Lehman, “the Hitchcock picture to end all Hitchcock pictures.” Featuring an unforgettable Bernard Herrmann score, VistaVision Technicolor cinematography, an impeccable Cary Grant and a classic case of Hitchcockian mistaken identity. And also the crop duster sequence, one of Hitch’s most iconic set pieces. Asked by an admiring Truffaut about the audaciously conceived scene’s “fantasy of the absurd,” Hitchcock replied, “The fact is, I practice absurdity quite religiously!”

TOP OF PAGE


Monday, January 29 at 7pm

GIRL POWER

Sadie Benning (U.S. 1992) 15 min.

Video artist Sadie Benning paired music by Bikini Kill to her raucous vision of what it was to be a radical girl in the 1990s. Informed by the underground “riot grrrl” movement, Benning’s tape transforms the image politics of female youth, rejecting traditional passivity and polite compliance in favor of radical independence and a self-determined sexual identity.

Playing with

WHEN THE CLOUDS ROLL BY

Victor Fleming (U.S. 1919) 84 min. DCP. With Douglas Fairbanks, Albert MacQuarrie, Ralph Lewis. 

Throughout 1918 and 1919 Douglas Fairbanks was the biggest male star in the film industry. In this dazzling comic spree of action and fantasia, made before he transformed himself into the screen’s most popular swashbuckler, he plays a comically superstitious young man slowly being driven mad by his evil-scientist neighbor. Adapted from Silent Film Festival notes.

TOP OF PAGE


Monday, February 5 at 7pm

THE CRIME OF MONSIEUR LANGE – New Restoration!

Jean Renoir (France 1936) 83 min. DCP. With René Lefèvre, Florelle, Jules Berry. French with English subtitles.

Renoir’s famous motto, expressed by Octave in The Rules of the Game (“The terrible thing about this world is that everyone has his reasons”), is on display in this tale of the formation of a collective within a publishing company. When the workers’ charming but malicious owner disappears, a struggling writer’s lurid “Arizona Jim” Western adventures catch fire. Jacques Prévert – poet, author of Port of Shadows, Children of Paradise, and member of Le Groupe Octobre, the socialist theater collective – wrote the screenplay. Restored in 4K by Cineteca di Bologna, under the supervision of Studiocanal, with the support of the CNC

“Of all Renoir’s films, the most spontaneous, the richest in miracles of camera work, the most full of truth and beauty, a film touched by grace.” – François Truffaut

TOP OF PAGE


Monday, February 12 at 7pm

SUNSET BOULEVARD

Billy Wilder (U.S. 1950) 110 min. 35MM. With Gloria Swanson, William Holden, Erich von Stroheim.

One of Billy Wilder’s most enduring masterpieces is a glittering poison-pen letter to all things Hollywood, told in flashback by a screenwriter whose final job is playing paid companion to aging silent-film goddess Norma Desmond (Swanson).

TOP OF PAGE


Monday, February 19 at 7pm

TOKYO STORY

Yasujirō Ozu (Japan 1953) 137 min. 35MM. With Chishu Ryu, Chieko Higashiyama, Setsuko Hara, So Yamamura. Japanese with English subtitles.

A profoundly stirring evocation of elemental humanity and universal heartbreak, Tokyo Story is the crowning achievement of the unparalleled Yasujiro Ozu. The film, which follows an aging couple’s journey to visit their grown children in bustling postwar Tokyo, surveys the rich and complex world of family life with the director’s customary delicacy and incisive perspective on social mores. Lovely performances from Ozu regulars Chishu Ryu and Setsuko Hara deepen the director’s recurring theme of generational conflict, creating what is without question one of cinema’s mightiest masterpieces.

TOP OF PAGE


Monday, February 26 at 7pm

INSIDE DAISY CLOVER

Robert Mulligan (U.S.1965) 128 min. With Natalie Wood, Christopher Plummer, Robert Redford.

Ranging from melodrama to satire to cosmic horror, Daisy Clover reflects on classical Hollywood, stardom and sexual exploitation. Profoundly ambivalent – and at times unpleasant – the film explores the economies of image and desire that ensnare young Daisy Clover (Wood) in her conflicting pursuits of fame, love and happiness. A box office and critical failure, over the years the film gained a cult appreciation for its compelling use of color and widescreen, the committed yet raw performances of its stars, and its obliquely queer indictment of the mid-century culture industries.

TOP OF PAGE