INTRODUCTION TO FILM/MEDIA STUDIES

Friday, January 21 at 1 pm

GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL

Wes Anderson (U.S. 2014) 100 min. DCP. With Ralph Fiennes, Tony Revolori, Saoirse Ronan, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Jude Law, Owen Wilson, Willem Dafoe, Adrian Brody, Tom Wilkinson, Jason Schwartzman, Jeff Goldblum.

Admired for his meticulously designed cinematic confections, Wes Anderson is among a small handful of contemporary American Hollywood directors whose name is known and esteemed by the 18-49 demographic. This creation, for which he assembled an all-star cast, depicts the adventures of a legendary concierge working at a famous European hotel between the wars, and the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend.

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Friday, January 28 at 1pm

BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD

Benh Zeitlin (U.S. 2012) 93 min. 35MM. With Quvenzhané Wallis, Dwight Henry Dwight Henry, Levy Easterly Levy Easterly

A primal experience of the beginning of the end of the world, Benh Zeitlin’s debut feature opens amid chaos and closes with catharsis. Beasts of the Southern Wild is, above all, a film about girlhood told through the voice, eyes, and ears of a six-year-old. It is not so much a work of magical realism as a depiction of the way the world has impressed itself on the imagination of a particular girl named Hushpuppy (a remarkably concentrated and expressive Quvenzhané Wallis). Hushpuppy lives with her father, Wink (Henry), and a ragtag bande à part in the Bathtub, a rusting, broken-down shantytown deep in the lush, bountiful Louisiana marshlands, south of the levees that these bayou dwellers rightfully scorn. How much good did such man-made defenses do New Orleans? …  Indeed, the entire film hovers between the tumultuous immediacy of the present and the lyricism of a fairy tale. (Amy Taubin, Art Forum).

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Friday, February 4 at 1pm

MEMENTO

Directed by Christopher Nolan (U.S. 2000) 113 min. 35mm. With Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano.

The anterograde amnesiac protagonist of Nolan’s breakthrough/cult/neo-noir hit hunts his wife’s killer, and his own identity. The film plays mind-bending narrative tricks, portraying two strands of the same story, simultaneously running backwards and forwards in time.

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Friday, February 11 at 1pm

THE GUILTY

Directed by Gustav Möller (U.S. 2018) 85 min. DCP. With Jakob Cedergren, Jessica Dinnage, Omar Shargawi. Danish with English subtitles.

A horrific crime; an emergency responder struggling to stay off the edge; a kidnapping victim calling in for help. This is all we’re going to tell you about first-time feature filmmaker Gustav Möller’s unmissable and gripping debut thriller… There’s almost nothing a director can show on screen that’s more effective than what you’ll imagine in your own head with the right prompting. The Guilty is the latest example of taking a straightforward conflict, keeping the setting in one contained location, working with a terrific acting talent, and pushing everything else into the audience’s head. (James Emanuel Shapiro, for FantasticFest.com)

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Friday, February 18 at 1pm

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!”

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Friday, February 25 at 1pm

A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS

Sergio Leone (U.S. 1964) 96 min. DCP. With Clint Eastwood, Wolfgang Lukschy, Marianne Koch, Gian Maria Volonte.

With this blackly comic, cynical, dust-choked movie, Sergio Leone revolutionized the quintessentially American western genre from his native Italy, established “Man with No Name” star Clint Eastwood as a taciturn, sculptural screen icon, and launched a thousand knockoff spaghetti westerns. Inspired by Dashiell Hammett’s hard-boiled novel Red Harvest, Leone’s pitiless, operatic work has Eastwood arriving in the crime-ridden ‘burg of San Miguel, where he sets out to get rich setting two feuding gangs at each other’s throats. A work of bleak, brutal beauty, and a stern reminder to never, ever, under any circumstances, talk shit about Clint Eastwood’s mule. (Metrograph program notes.)

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Friday, March 25 at 1pm

THE WAR OF THE WORLDS RADIO DRAMA!

Orson Welles (U.S. 1938) Approx 60 min.

The legendary mass panic caused by Welles’ transmission about alien invasion has been questioned – just how many (or few) of the 12 million Americans listening, when Welles and his actors interrupted the regular programming to “report” the invasion, were truly gripped by fear, has likely been hyped. Nevertheless, this controversial moment in broadcasting history is fascinating, and a justly infamous work by one of American media’s most ingenious, mischievous and creative artists.

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Friday, April 15 at 1pm

WALTZ WITH BASHIR

Ari Folman (2008 Israel / France / Germany / USA / Finland / Switzerland / Belgium / Australia) 90 min. 35MM. Hebrew / Arabic / German with English subtitles.

This arthouse hit boasts a unique format: documentary animation. Based on a true story, the film is a quest into the director’s memory for the missing pieces from the days of the Lebanon War in the mid-80s, and has been heralded as a brilliant exploration of trauma. Full of imagination and fantasy, Waltz With Bashir is a formally and conceptually complex film that, as film scholar Giulia Miller shows in her book on the film, “allows for multiple themes and discourses to coexist, including Israel’s role during the Lebanon War and the impact of trauma upon narrative, but also the representation of Holocaust memory and its role in the formation of Israeli identity.”

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Friday, April 22 at 1pm
 

THE GODFATHER – Brand New 50th Anniversary Restoration!

Francis Ford Coppola (1972 U.S.) 175 min. DCP. With Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire…

One of the greatest gangster pictures of all time, The Godfather follows the chain of circumstances that inevitably pull war hero Michael Corelone (Pacino), the youngest son of mob boss Don Vito Corleone (Brando), into the family business. Set over the course of the decade from 1945-1955, The Godfather is epic in scope yet surprisingly intimate in execution – thanks largely to a close, dark style created by director Coppola and legendary cinematographer Gordon Willis.

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