Introduction to Film/Media Studies

Monday, January 13 at 7pm

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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Monday, January 27 at 7pm

TOUCH OF EVIL

Orson Welles (U.S. 1958) 111 min. 35MM. With Charlton
Heston, Janet Leigh, Orson Welles.

A bomb rolls into a small, seedy border town in one of cinema’s most astounding opening shots. The ensuing thriller – Welles’ monstrously corrupt detective investigates, with the help of a Mexican narc (Heston) recently wed to Janet Leigh – is the stuff of a deliriously grotesque noir nightmare. “The tallest tree in the wilderness of Welles’ post-Kane career! The dialogue is as intricately overlapped as the lighting is cross-hatched; the cameos are as vivid as possible in a black-and-white movie; the camera work and blocking have the coordination of an Olympic pole vaulter” (J. Hoberman).

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Monday, February 3 at 7pm

BARAKA

Ron Fricke (U.S. 1992) 96 min.

Fricke reportedly spent five years devising this “non-verbal” feature documentary; photographed on 70mm in over 20 countries, Baraka is a journey of interconnection and transcendence.

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Monday, February 10 at 7pm

UPSTREAM COLOR

Shane Carruth (U.S. 2013) 96 min. DCP. With Amy Seimetz, Shane Carruth, Andrew Sensenig.. 

A man and woman are drawn together, entangled in the life cycle of an ageless organism. As they struggle to assemble the loose fragments of their wrecked lives, identity becomes an illusion. Romantic, intense, boldly (some might say willfully) opaque, and driven by philosophical curiosity about humanity’s mysterious biological connections, Upstream Color is “a deeply sincere, elliptical movie about being and nature, men and women, self and other” (Manohla Dargis, New York Times).

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Monday, February 17 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!”

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Monday, February 24 at 7pm

A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT

Ana Lily Amirpour (U.S. 2014) 99 min. DCP. With Sheila Vand, Arash Marandi, Marshall Manesh. Farsi with English subtitles.

The first vampire Western ever made in the Farsi language, Ana Lily Amirpour’s debut basks in the sheer pleasure of pulp. Dressed in hijab, a female vampire cruises the ghost town of Bad City on a skateboard, seeking her next victim in this joyful mash-up of genre, archetype and iconography, whose prolific influences span Spaghetti Westerns, graphic novels, horror films and the Iranian New Wave.