Release Date: September 2, 2009
National Gallery of Art 2009 Film Program Enters Fall Season With Dynamic Line-Up Including D.C. Film Premieres and Guest Speakers
Washington, DC—This fall, the National Gallery of Art's film program provides a great variety of work, including area premieres combined with musical performances and appearances by noted film directors, as well as vibrant film series devoted to postwar "British noir" and the American expatriate director Joseph Losey, whose centennial is celebrated this year.
Among the film events, on October 4, director Ulrike Ottinger will appear at the Washington premiere of The Korean Wedding Chest to discuss her film about the elegant, ancient tradition of the Korean wedding rite. On October 31, Catia Ott will introduce her film Tevere (Tiber), a cinematic exploration of Rome's famous river that reveals relics, surprises, and obscure spots that have inspired generations of artists.
Eight recent works will be shown as part of the National Gallery's film series New Films From Hungary: Selections from Magyar Filmszemle, including the October 10 Washington premiere of White Palms—a feature film directed by Szabolcs Hajdu, inspired by his younger brother's life as a gymnast. Iván Angelusz, a founding member of Katapult Film Ltd., along with artists Ferenc Török and Diana Groó will speak about this dynamic collective of filmmakers and the cinematic talent emerging from Hungary today.
Director Kazimierz Kutz, one of Poland's most revered postwar cinematic auteurs, will speak on October 18 in conjunction with the screening of Salt of the Black Earth, part one of his Silesian Trilogy that also includes Pearl in the Crown and The Beads of One Rosary. The trilogy will be shown in its entirety by the close of the month.
On December 6, distinguished film historian, theorist, and professor of visual arts at Princeton University P. Adams Sitney will present an illustrated lecture titled American Visionary Filmmakers and the Heritage of Emerson. Professor Sitney will discuss American avant-garde cinema as the fulfillment of the promise of an American aesthetic, an idea that was first defined by Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1836.
All films are shown in the East Building Auditorium. Programs are free of charge but seating is available on a first-come, first-seated basis. Doors open approximately 30 minutes before each show. Programs are subject to change. Films are shown in original format. For current information, visit our Web site, www.nga.gov/programs/film, or call (202) 842-6799.
New Masters of European Cinema:
The Korean Wedding Chest (Die Koreanische Hochzeitstruhe)
Ulrike Ottinger in person
Sunday, October 4, at 4:30 p.m.
Art, narrative, and ethnography coalesce in The Korean Wedding Chest, German filmmaker Ulrike Ottinger's serene account of an elegant ancient tradition: the Korean wedding rite. "Like a polite guest, Ottinger never interrupts, but instead allows her poetic images to speak for themselves as old and new Korea marry"—Myrocia Watamaniuk. (Ulrike Ottinger, 2008, 35 mm, Korean, English, and German with subtitles, 82 minutes)
Thursday, October 29, and Friday October 30, at 12:30 p.m.
Saturday, October 31, at 1:00 p.m.
As the camera navigates a route along the banks of Rome's famous watercourse, Tevere becomes a rich historical and sociological document, filled with relics, surprises, and obscure spots that have inspired generations of painters, poets, novelists, and filmmakers. (Catia Ott, 2008, digital beta, 52 minutes) The director will introduce the screening on October 31.
Herb and Dorothy
Friday, November 27; Wednesday, December 16; Thursday, December 17; Friday, December 18; and Wednesday, December 30, at 12:30 p.m.
With modest means and great enthusiasm, collectors Herb and Dorothy Vogel began buying contemporary art together in the 1960s, eventually amassing in their small New York apartment one of the finest collections in the country. Their astonishing story is documented in this award-winning work. (Megumi Sasaki, 2008, HD-Cam, 89 minutes)
Dennis James on theater organ
Saturday, November 28, at 1:00 p.m.
King Vidor's late silent masterpiece, The Crowd, may deny its ambitious average-guy hero (James Murray) a chance to rise above the masses and achieve the American dream of success, but the film remains a treasured cinematic milestone. Filled with style and wit, The Crowd is an "early domestic attempt at the European art film"—David Thomson. (King Vidor, 1928, 35 mm, silent with live music, 100 minutes)
Lecture / Screening:
American Visionary Filmmakers and the Heritage of Emerson
Illustrated discussion by P. Adams Sitney
Sunday, December 6, at 2:00 p.m.
Distinguished film historian, theorist, and professor of visual arts at Princeton University, P. Adams Sitney discusses American avant-garde cinema as fulfillment of the promise of an American aesthetic, an idea first defined by Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1836. Four related films follow his lecture: Arabesque for Kenneth Anger (Marie Menken); Visions in Meditation #2—Mesa Verde (Stan Brakhage); Gloria (Hollis Frampton); and Gently Down the Stream (Su Friedrich). (Approximate total running time, 120 minutes) This program is made possible by funds given in memory of Rajiv Vaidya.
Black Orpheus (Orfeu Negro)
50th Anniversary Screening
Sunday, December 6, at 5:00 p.m.
Fifty years after its initial release, this retelling of the Orpheus myth in the streets of a Rio de Janeiro ghetto during Carnaval retains all of its endearing enchantments. Foretelling the arrival of a new wave in Brazilian film, Black Orpheus combines poetry, naturalism, fantasy, and even voodoo. (Marcel Camus, 1958, 35 mm, Portuguese with subtitles, 105 minutes)
Dreyer's Two People
Saturday, December 12, at 1:00 p.m.
A chamber piece that Carl Theodor Dreyer nearly renounced when he was unable to get the two actors he most wanted, this unusual one-act takes place during the course of a day. A wife, in spite of her deepest affection, ruins her husband's career. The husband, on the face of things, is involved in a murder. As for its place in Dreyer's oeuvre, Two People "opens a path to Ordet in its use of camera movement"—David Bordwell. (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1944–1945, 35 mm, Danish with subtitles, 78 minutes)
The Little Match Girl (La petite marchande d'allumettes)
Andrew Simpson on piano
Saturday, December 19, at 1:00 p.m.
Hans Christian Andersen's timeless tale of the poor little match seller who finds happy fantasies of holiday feasts when she strikes her own matches was filmed by Renoir and Tédesco as they generated raw electricity from an automobile motor and improvised their lighting. (Jean Renoir and Jean Tédesco, 1928, 35 mm, silent with live music, 40 minutes)
New Films from Hungary: Selections from Magyar Filmszemle
Hungary's presence on the global cinematic stage is celebrated each year at Magyar Filmszemle, a showcase of Hungarian premieres now in its fortieth year. Reflecting the rich variety of Hungarian film culture, this selection is culled from several recent Filmszemle and includes an homage to the Budapest collective known as Katapult Film, a league of young filmmakers who support each other's projects with technical support and production assistance. The series is presented in association with the Hungarian Cultural Center, New York, with special thanks to Krisztina Danka, Magda Zalán, Kati Vajda, and Filmunió.
Saturday, October 3, at 2:00 p.m.
The regimented routines and discordant conflicts of a 1912 Catholic boarding school create the mysterious dramatic core of Prank, adapted from Dezsö Kosztolányi's popular novella Tréfa. László Seregi's cinematography and Péter Horgas' production design add beauty to this work that won top prize for direction at the 2009 Filmszemle. (Péter Gárdos, 2008, 35 mm, Hungarian with subtitles, 93 minutes)
Miss Universe of 1929
Saturday, October 10, at 12:30 p.m.
The delicate story of cousins Lisl Goldarbeiter and Marci Tänzer, both born in 1907 to a middle-class Austro-Hungarian Jewish family, is retold through Marci's home movies of Lisl, whose rise to beauty pageantry stardom culminated in her crowing as the first Miss Universe. (Péter Forgács, 2006, digital beta, German with subtitles, 70 minutes)
Salute to Katapult Film:
preceded by 411-Z
Iván Angelusz in person
Saturday, October 10, at 2:30 p.m.
Katapult Film Ltd., a collective formed in Budapest by protégés of Hungarian master filmmaker Sándor Simó, includes some of the most promising directorial talent in contemporary Hungary. In Katapult's White Palms, a gifted gymnast arrives in Calgary, Canada, to coach. As he struggles to settle into a new life in an unfamiliar land, his old-world past starts intruding on his performance. (Szabolcs Hajdu, 2006, 35 mm, English, Hungarian, Russian with subtitles, 100 minutes) 411-Z's metaphorical tale takes place within a ship on the Danube whose captain is, literally, out to lunch. (Dániel Erdélyi, 2007, 35 mm, 5 minutes)
Salute to Katapult Film:
preceded by Urlicht
Ferenc Török and Diana Groó in person
Sunday, October 11, at 4:30 p.m.
Probing the murky and ruthless world of international finance, Overnight's young broker Péter Vas tries to settle a complex 24-hour global transaction, only to witness the process go awry. The film is the final piece in this director's three-part study of his peers—the generation that came of age after the breakup of the Eastern Bloc. (Ferenc Török, 2008, 35 mm, Hungarian with subtitles, 105 minutes) Preceding Overnight, Urlicht is an operatic dream about a young woman's fear of trains. (Diana Groó, 2006, Hungarian with subtitles, 15 minutes)
The Man from London
Saturday, October 17, at 4:00 p.m.
Transforming a Georges Simenon mystery novel into a haunting art film is a task meant only for virtuoso auteur Béla Tarr. A morose dock worker (Miroslav Krobot) silently watches the clandestine transfer of a briefcase full of British bills. As his minimal plot unfolds, Tarr creates a series of mesmerizing tableaux, "a typically Tarrian world marked by long passages of [striking] stasis and silence"—Dimitri Eipides. (Béla Tarr, 2007, 35 mm, Hungarian with subtitles, 135 minutes)
Saturday, October 24, at 4:30 p.m.
A finely tuned tale of poor villagers in Transylvania's Zsil River valley, Iszka's Journey centers on somber, resilient young Iszka, who abandons her family only to be pulled into an orphanage and abduction. The cinema verité tone and spare beauty derive from Francisco Gózon's camera, Razvan Radu's art direction, and Mária Varga's resplendent performance as Iszka. (Csaba Bollók, 2007, 35 mm, Hungarian with subtitles, 92 minutes)
The Silesian Trilogy
One of the most revered of Poland's postwar cinematic auteurs, Kazimierz Kutz (b. 1929) began his career in the mid-1950s as an assistant to Andrzej Wajda. A native of Silesia, the vast and historically rich region in the heart of central Europe, Kutz is best known for this triptych—a poetic tribute to the land, traditions, and populations of Silesia. Presented through the courtesy of Waldemar Izdebski, Polish National Film Archive (Filmoteka Narodowa), Polish Film Institute, and Embassy of the Republic of Poland.
Salt of the Black Earth
Kazimierz Kutz in person
Sunday, October 18, at 4:30 p.m.
"I wanted to create an artistic mythology about Silesia, one that would ennoble the region," Kazimierz Kutz said of Salt of the Black Earth, a ballad of seven brothers who join the Silesian uprising of 1919. "The patriarch of the family, taciturn old Basista, embodies the great Pole, a staunch defender of his own system of values. Equally important is the landscape—a juxtaposition of two worlds—a land dark with fumes and slag heaps, and Poland with its idyllic landscape of green fields"—Polish Film Institute. (Kazimierz Kutz, 1969, 35 mm, Polish with subtitles, 99 minutes)
Pearl in the Crown
Saturday, October 24, at 2:00 p.m.
Set a decade later in the 1930s, part two of the trilogy is built around three strains: the colorful family festivities of the mining communities; life underground in the mines; and the meanings conveyed through all these rituals—solidarity, history, and tradition. (Kazimierz Kutz, 1972, 35 mm, Polish with subtitles, 111 minutes)
The Beads of One Rosary
Sunday, October 25, at 4:30 p.m.
The final segment, set in the late 1970s, portrays a retired miner losing his soul when forced to live in a contemporary world of material comforts, a world he considers shallow and dangerous, uprooting connections to the past. "The film shows clear signs of maneuvering between censors . . . but it carries a warning and is an upsetting testimony to the times"—Polish Film Institute. (Kazimierz Kutz, 1979, 35 mm, Polish with subtitles, 98 minutes)
Dark crime dramas played out on damp streets were familiar staples in midcentury Britain. From the late 1930s with Brian Desmond Hurst's On the Night of the Fire, through the 1940s and 1950s with Carol Reed's The Third Man and Jules Dassin's Night and the City, "Brit noir" is a mix of true films noirs and noirish, low-budget B-movies with location shooting, shadowy sets, and (sometimes) femmes fatales. This series was organized in association with Bruce Goldstein and Film Forum, with special thanks to the British Film Institute, Park Circus, and Tamasa.
The October Man
Friday, October 30, at 3:00 p.m.
When a bus collision claims the life of a dear friend's daughter, chemist John Mills is guilt-ridden and attempts suicide. Later, fellow boarding-house resident Molly (Kay Walsh) is murdered, and Mills fears he might be a psychotic killer. Penned by espionage writer Eric Ambler, The October Man is "very much in the Hitchcock/Lang tradition"—William K. Everson. (Roy Baker, 1947, 35 mm, 110 minutes)
On the Night of the Fire
followed by They Drive by Night
Saturday, October 31, at 3:00 p.m.
Normally mild-mannered Newcastle barber Ralph Richardson is pulled into a seamy blackmail scheme after one false move. On location in northeast England, On the Night of the Fire's noir ambience is aided by Gunther Krampf's expressionistic lighting and a climactic multi-alarm blaze. (Brian Desmond Hurst, 1939, 35 mm, 94 minutes)
Ex-convict Shorty (Emlyn Williams) finds his former mistress murdered. Then, a long-distance lorry driver and a hostess at the Palais de Danse try to help. Filled with lively lowlife characters, They Drive by Night is "an enormously sympathetic movie that time forgot"—Elliott Stein. (Arthur Woods, 1938, 35 mm, 84 minutes)
Night and the City
Friday, November 6, at 3:00 p.m.
Small-time club owner Harry Fabian (Richard Widmark) concocts a scheme to run London's wrestling rackets—but instead runs headlong into the big-time bosses. With masterful location shooting from the docks of the East End to Trafalgar, Night and the City makes London a "dark, sad city of the imagination" —Colin McArthur. (Jules Dassin, 1950, 35 mm, 95 minutes)
Saturday, November 7, at 2:00 p.m.
John Dankworth's jazz score and Robert Krasker's dusky images emphasize an edgy mood in Joseph Losey's gangland thriller, based loosely on the life of mobster Albert Dimes. "A controversial exposé of prison life and the underworld"—Pacific Film Archive. (Joseph Losey, 1960, 35 mm, 97 minutes)
Seven Days to Noon
Friday, November 13, at 3:00 p.m.
Nuclear scientist Barry Jones threatens to blow up London by noon on Sunday unless Britain is willing to stop all atomic weapons research; his motive, he claims, is the long-term good of mankind. With help from a superb supporting cast, including a family of boarding-house cats, the Boulting brothers forged a strangely prescient picture of a contemporary terror. (John and Roy Boulting, 1950, 35 mm, 94 minutes)
I Met a Murderer
also The Upturned Glass
Saturday, November 14, at 12:30 p.m.
On the lam after killing his wife, James Mason accepts a lift from novelist Pamela Kellino. A bond between the two begins to develop—though Mason might just be material for her next book. I Met a Murderer, wrote James Agee, "is graceful, gallant, resourceful. . . and better than most studio production." (Roy Kellino, 1939, 35 mm, 79 minutes) In The Upturned Glass brain surgeon James Mason cures a young woman's blindness, then falls in love with her mother. When the mother is pronounced dead from a fall, Mason starts probing. (Lawrence Huntington, 1947, 35 mm, 90 minutes)
Sunday, November 15, at 4:30 p.m.
In a tawdry seaside town, as day-trippers dance to the bands on the pier and local folk pack the tearooms, Kolly Kibber keeps an eye open for Pinkie (Richard Attenborough), the razor-wielding head of a racecourse gang. Graham Greene's script of the Boulting brothers' adaptation of his own novel proves, in true noir fashion, "there are no heroes, only those who have been tainted by the darkness"—Cullen Gallagher. (John and Roy Boulting, 1947, 35 mm, 92 minutes)
Sunday, November 29, at 4:00 p.m.
Tough-as-nails truckers Stanley Baker and Patrick McGoohan face off—in and out of their lorries—while working for a shifty gravel-transport firm in the wilds of rural West Sussex. For blacklisted ex-Hollywood writer/director Enfield, Hell Drivers was the seventh production following a self-imposed exile in England. (Cy Enfield, 1957, 35 mm, 108 minutes)
Joseph Losey: American Abroad
Born in Wisconsin one hundred years ago, Joseph Losey (1909–1984) made his mark in American cinema as the insightful outsider who distilled his style in exile, in England. In the early 1950s, when his promising Hollywood career was threatened by blacklisting, Losey resettled in London. Within a decade he had launched a new life as a European auteur. A native aesthetic brilliance and committed social conscience led to associations with many artists—most notably with English playwright Harold Pinter. A selection of Losey's rarely screened early work from the late 1940s through the 1960s, along with his three Pinter partnerships, is included in this series. Presented in association with the British Film Institute with special thanks to Harvard Film Archive, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Library of Congress. Note: The Prowler and The Criminal by Losey are presented in other series.
preceded by First on the Road
Introduction by Jay Carr
Sunday, November 1, at 4:30 p.m.
A recently restored Joseph Losey–Harold Pinter collaboration, Accident's chain of interlocking events is set in motion by Dirk Bogarde as an Oxford don mired in emotional conflict with a group of friends and faculty. "As simple, as bafflingly perfect, and as difficult to take apart as a circle. . . . [Six characters] tear each other to pieces amid the droning calm of an English fall"—Tom Milne. (1967, 35 mm, 105 minutes)
First on the Road is Losey's unusual promotional short for the Ford Motor Company. (1959, 35 mm, 12 minutes)
Saturday, November 7, at 4:00 p.m.
In his earliest alliance with Harold Pinter, Losey critiques English class structures by observing a relationship between servant Dirk Bogarde and aristocrat James Fox. "The story of Faust . . . of a man and his alter ego, of one world swallowing another. . . . The screenplay is pure Pinter, with dialogue acting primarily as a ritualistic mask designed to conceal the characters' misshaped lives"—British Film Institute. (1963, 35 mm, 115 minutes)
Sunday, November 8, at 4:30 p.m.
Another Pinter-Losey alliance was The Go-Between, an adaptation of L.P. Hartley's Edwardian novel and a nuanced analysis of the class system's social taboos. The daughter of a patrician family (Julie Christie) carries on an affair with a local tenant farmer (Alan Bates) through the aid of a young boy, the couple's go-between for trysts. "Losey's supreme achievement . . . and one of the world's great films"—Foster Hirsch. (1970, 35 mm, 116 minutes)
The Boy with Green Hair
Saturday, November 14, at 4:00 p.m.
A terse allegory of social intolerance through a child's eyes, The Boy with Green Hair finds young war orphan Dean Stockwell snubbed by friends and townsfolk when his hair turns a mysterious color. His first Hollywood feature is "a fantasy of unusual charm, addressing itself to the wave of paranoia that accompanied the Cold War, and to everyday racism."—Pacific Film Archive. (1948, 35 mm, 82 minutes)
Sunday, November 22, at 4:30 p.m.
Remaking Fritz Lang's expressionist tale of a haunted child murderer, Losey moved the location from 1930s Berlin to 1950s Los Angeles. Losey's version stands on its own as a great interpretation, admired for David Wayne's lead performance. "The translation is faithful to Lang, to Losey, and to L.A. . . ."—Judy Bloch. Preserved by the Museum of Modern Art with funding provided by The Film Foundation. (88 minutes, 35 mm, 1951)
The Lawless (The Dividing Line)
Friday, November 27, at 2:30 p.m.
Losey's second Hollywood feature is, like his first, a study of community intolerance, a taut drama set among Mexican-American fruit-pickers in Southern California. "A courageous film, boasting among other things some very offbeat casting in supporting roles. Had the blacklist not changed the course of Losey's career, America might well have had another Lang or Siodmak"—William K. Everson. (1949, 35 mm, 83 minutes)
The Sleeping Tiger
Friday, November 27, at 4:15 p.m.
The operatic tenor of Losey's first British picture plays well with the talents of soon-to-be favorite lead actor Dirk Bogarde, cast as a career criminal caught in an odd social experiment at the home of psychiatrist Alexander Knox. "A fiercely energetic film (credited to producer Victor Hanbury) that transcends its limited budget and channels the resourcefulness of form that Losey learned on the stage and in the Hollywood studios"—Harvard Film Archive. (1954, 35 mm, 89 minutes)
King and Country
Saturday, November 28, at 3:30 p.m.
Callow working-class private Tom Courtenay deserts the English army after witnessing the Battle of Passchendaele and other wartime terrors from the trenches. Court-martialed, the young soldier is defended by Dirk Bogarde, the army's lawyer assigned to the case. "The film is, in the end, a mystery of human experience on the subject of changes that are felt far more than they can be explained"—James Palmer. (1964, 35 mm, 88 minutes)
The Gypsy and the Gentleman
Saturday, December 5, at 4:00 p.m.
Losey's unusual period film "was elaborately designed," he said, "to give the effect of a series of Thomas Rowlandson prints." Although the director was not especially fond of it (period films were not his forte), The Gypsy and the Gentleman neatly expresses his position toward England's social system and introduces a young Melina Mecouri as the gypsy in her first English-speaking role. (1958, 35 mm, 103 minutes)
Recovered Treasure: UCLA's Festival of Preservation
UCLA Film & Television Archive's annual Festival of Preservation, now in its fifteenth year, is a brilliantly diverse showcase of the rare and the recognized, the engaging and the challenging, culled from the archive's extensive holdings. This selection of new preservation from the 2009 festival ranges from the first Sri Lankan independent film, to jazz-infused Vitaphone shorts of the early sound era, to rare melodramas by Frank Borzage. "What could be better than to sample the eclectic collection of rarities, oddities, and one-offs that this festival manages to rescue"—Kenneth Turan. With special thanks to Mimi Brody, the National Gallery presents ten programs from the fourteenth festival.
Saturday, December 5, at 2:00 p.m.
Wealthy Los Angeles housewife Evelyn Keyes, at home alone, is trailed by a peeping tom until conniving cop Van Heflin answers her call. With screenplay by Dalton Trumbo and Hugo Butler, The Prowler was Joseph Losey's final and most successful Hollywood creation before he emigrated to England. (Joseph Losey, 1951, 35 mm, 92 minutes)
Point of Order!
preceded by Sunday
Saturday, December 12, at 3:30 p.m.
Assembled from kinescopes of the live gavel-to-gavel broadcasts of the 1954 Army-McCarthy hearings, Point of Order eschewed narration ("inherently condescending," said director De Antonio) and shaped its rigorous viewpoint entirely through editing. (Emile de Antonio and Daniel Talbot, 1963, 35 mm, 97 minutes)
Sunday utilized then-new portable recording technologies to capture a crowd of folksingers confronting police in Washington Square Park (Dan Drasin, 1961, 35 mm, 17 minutes)
A Woman Under the Influence
Sunday, December 13, at 4:30 p.m.
Thirty-five years after its initial release, screenwriter-director John Cassavetes' masterpiece still retains its original raw power as an impassioned portrayal of a blue-collar family in turmoil. Gena Rowlands' tour de force performance as Mabel Longhetti, wife and mother struggling to tame her anarchic nature, won her a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination. (John Cassavetes, 1974, 35 mm, 155 minutes)
Song o' My Heart
also Young America
Saturday, December 19, at 2:30 p.m.
Irish tenor John McCormack made his talking picture debut as a disconsolate concert singer who retires to a country village only until the return of his former sweetheart rejuvenates his career. (Frank Borzage, 1930, 35 mm, 85 minutes)
In Young America, Borzage's usual pair of young lovers is upstaged by two male school chums in their teens, Art Simpson (Tommy Conlon) and Edward "Nutty" Beamish (Raymond Borzage, the director's nephew). (Frank Borzage, 1932, 35 mm, 71 minutes)
Secret Beyond the Door
Sunday, December 20, at 2:00 p.m.
"Hollywood's mooncalf affair with Freud, ending in an absurd instant cure for psychopathy . . . is fraught with Gothic overtones. Joan Bennett's heroine gradually realizes that—married to architect Michael Redgrave who literally and obsessively collects rooms in which murders have occurred—she must uncover the secret of the one room always kept locked"—Tom Milne. (Fritz Lang, 1948, 35 mm, 99 minutes)
Sunday, December 20, at 4:00 p.m.
Director Edgar G. Ulmer's 1940s psycho-melodrama is worthy of rediscovery. A flashback-structured tale of a sociopath's remorseless drive for station and wealth, the undercurrent of emotional violence is personified in a remarkable and starkly muted performance by Zachary Scott. (Edgar G. Ulmer, 1948, 35 mm, 104 minutes)
The Brother from Another Planet
Saturday, December 26, at 1:00 p.m.
"Sayles gave the figure of the alien a revitalized punch by casting African American actor Joe Morton as a visitor from beyond the stars. After ditching his malfunctioning spaceship at Ellis Island, Morton's mute newcomer, known only as ‘The Brother,' navigates the mores of Manhattan as he searches for a place to call home"—Cara King. (John Sayles, 1984, 35 mm, 108 minutes)
Return of the Secaucus 7
Saturday, December 26, at 3:30 p.m.
John Sayles' directorial debut is a frequently funny, occasionally melancholy look at the lives of a few formerly radical friends who gather for a reunion ten years after their arrest in Secaucus, New Jersey, en route to a demonstration in Washington. Preceding The Big Chill by several years, Return of the Secaucus 7 was produced independently and shot with a cast of unknowns. (John Sayles, 1980, 35 mm, 110 minutes)
Vitaphone Varieties 1927–1931
Sunday, December 27, at 2:00 p.m.
The Vitaphone Corporation produced thousands of appealing shorts in the late 1920s featuring musicians, vaudeville acts, and radio stars, recording the soundtracks on large phonograph discs for synchronized playback. This mix, celebrating the often raucous talents that have made these shows must-see events, includes among others: The Opry House (1929); Tex McLeod, "A Rope and a Story"(1928); Tal Henry and His North Carolinians (1929); and Helen Morgan, "The Gigolo Racket" (1931). (35 mm, 110 minutes total)
Gamperaliya (Changing Village)
Sunday, December 27, at 4:30 p.m.
A cornerstone of Sri Lankan cinema, Gamperaliya launched in 1964 "a revolution, not only in the way films were made but also in content, as the filmmakers sought an alternative to the Bollywood-influenced melodramas that dominated commercial cinema. . . . With an elegant narrative style comparable to Satyajit Ray's Apu Trilogy, the aesthetic choices also have a moral dimension"—David Chute. (Lester James Peries, 1964, 35 mm, Sinhala with subtitles, 110 minutes)
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