Release Date: June 7, 2018
National Gallery of Art 2018 Summer Film Program Features Ingmar Bergman Centennial, Ciné-Concerts, Washington Premieres, Archival Retrospectives, and Discussions with Filmmakers
Washington, DC—The summer film season at the National Gallery of Art features many special cinematic events, Washington premieres, archival retrospectives, and discussions with renowned filmmakers. Special events during the summer season (July–September) include a reprise of Harry Dean Stanton's final film Lucky, a ciné-concert featuring new musical scores inspired by the stately independent works of Peter Hutton, a lecture on Stanley Kubrick by historian Robert Kolker, and the Washington premieres of João Moreira Salles's In the Intense Now and Alanis Obomsawin's Our People Will Be Healed.
The Ingmar Bergman Centennial, a retrospective of the Swedish auteur's early works from the 1940s and 1950s, opens July 1 with Wild Strawberries. On September 2 Bergman scholar Jan Holmberg, curator and head of the Ingmar Bergman Foundation and Archives in Stockholm, discusses Bergman's oeuvre and introduces the rarely screened 1950 This Can't Happen Here. The retrospective also includes his later films, which are showing at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD. The Embassy of Sweden in Washington will feature exhibitions and documentaries on Bergman's life and career.
The series From Vault to Screen features highlights from the biennial UCLA Festival of Preservation, which celebrates recently restored 35mm prints from the vaults of the UCLA Film & Television Archive and includes films by the pioneering American independent Juleen Compton. Additional titles will be screened at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD. On July 21, Black Maria: Selections from the Festival returns to the Gallery with a selection of award-winning short films from the most recent Black Maria competition. In September, the series Jacques Becker: Poet of the Commonplace reexamines the work of a now overlooked French postwar master who was once admired and advocated by the young filmmakers of the French New Wave.
Films are shown in the East Building Auditorium in original formats whenever possible. Seating is on a first-come, first-seated basis unless otherwise noted. Doors open 30 minutes before films begin. Films are subject to change on short notice. For up-to-date information, visit nga.gov/film.
July 7, 4:30 p.m.
Having outlasted all his friends and relatives in a tiny, southwestern desert town, independent nonagenarian Lucky (Harry Dean Stanton in his final role) finds himself staring into the abyss. Actor John Carroll Lynch's directorial debut is an amalgam of shots that track Lucky's daily routines and coffee-shop conversations with the locals (David Lynch, Ed Begley Jr., Tom Skerritt, and Beth Grant, among others). (John Carroll Lynch, 2017, 88 minutes)
Ciné-concert: Films of Peter Hutton
Chris Brokaw and Matthew Nolan in performance
September 1, 2:30 p.m.
Guitarists and composers Matthew Nolan and Chris Brokaw have crafted new musical scores for a selection of works by American filmmaker Peter Hutton (1944–2016), whose evocative short films of landscapes and cityscapes, often in black and white, were made without sound. The films—Florence, In Titan's Goblet, Study of a River, New York Portrait, Chapter One, and more—move between their original soundless state and live accompaniment. (Total running time approximately 90 minutes)
Stanley Kubrick: The Irony of Feeling
Robert Kolker, lecturer
September 2, 2:00 p.m.
The images and the stories of Kubrick's films speak to a deeply held and ironically expressed passion, a level of feeling that the viewer has to seek out or be open to. This lecture, followed by a book signing of Robert Kolker's The Extraordinary Image: Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock, Stanley Kubrick, and the Reimagining of Cinema, is illustrated by numerous clips from Kubrick's films. (60 minutes)
In the Intense Now
Introduced by Michael Kraus
September 29, 2:30 p.m.
João Moreira Salles's new cine-essay combines anonymous archival footage and reflective voice-over to survey the societal chaos of the late 1960s. In the Intense Now is a poetic experiment in the communication between personal history and global events, as Salles mixes tourist footage recorded by his own mother on her trip to China at the start of the 1966 Cultural Revolution with found footage of rebellion from May 1968 recorded in France, Czechoslovakia, and Brazil. (João Moreira Salles, 2017, subtitles, 127 minutes)
Our People Will Be Healed
Alanis Obomsawin in person
September 30, 4:00 p.m.
Celebrated Abenaki cinéaste Alanis Obomsawin (born 1932) presents her most recent feature, Our People Will Be Healed—a multilayered portrait of Norway House Cree Nation, one of the largest First Nation communities in Manitoba with a rich historical legacy dating from the early 19th century. Through interviews and local landscape footage, Obomsawin represents this vibrant place in all its complexity and splendor. (Alanis Obomsawin, 97 minutes, 2017).
Ingmar Bergman Centennial
July 1–September 3
The enduring legacy of Ingmar Bergman (1918–2007) includes not only his landmark late films, but also his early work, broad formal range and expressionistic visual style, devotion to theater and music, and especially his gift for working with an ensemble of actors who routinely probe complex issues of morality, death, and faith. The Gallery, together with the American Film Institute, the Embassy of Sweden, and the Swedish Film Institute, presents this retrospective on Bergman's centenary. The Gallery's focus is his early work of the 1940s and 1950s, while later films are screened at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD. Special exhibitions and documentaries are shown at the Embassy of Sweden. Special thanks to Janus Film, the Ingmar Bergman Foundation, the Swedish Film Institute, and to Kajsa Hedström, Jan Holmberg, and Brian Belovarac.
July 1, 4:00 p.m.
Ingmar Bergman cast his friend and mentor Victor Sjöström as a distinguished older professor revisiting, in flashback, the experiences of a long life. While traveling with his daughter-in-law (Ingrid Thulin) to Lund, where he will receive an honorary degree, the professor returns in reverie to his youth, pays a visit to his aged mother, picks up a hitchhiker (Bibi Andersson) who resembles a former lover, and undergoes a fantasy inquisition. (1957, 35mm, subtitles, 90 minutes)
July 7, 12:30 p.m.
Charting the ill-fated romance between adolescent Jan-Erik (Alf Kjellin) and older, alcoholic widow-turned-hooker Bertha (Mai Zetterling), whose lover is Jan-Erik's sadistic Latin teacher "Caligula," the expressionistic Frenzy was Bergman's early, credited screenwriting effort. (Alf Sjöberg, 1944, 95 minutes)
July 7, 2:30 p.m.
Bergman's directorial debut (he also wrote the screenplay) bears traces of his life in the theater. Based on the radio play The Maternal Instinct (Moderhjertet) by Leck Fischer, Crisis delves into the emotional states of five characters. The action centers on a young woman called Nelly, who, in the midst of a quiet, small-town home life with a foster mother, is retrieved by her biological mother who wants her in Stockholm. (1945, subtitles, 93 minutes)
It Rains on Our Love
July 8, 4:00 p.m.
Two strangers with troubled pasts (Birger Malmsten and Barbro Kollberg) meet in a train station, spend a night together, and decide to start a new life, but their idyll is interrupted when they are forced to confront the coldly repressive society around them. (1946, subtitles, 95 minutes)
A Ship to India
July 14, 2:00 p.m.
Birger Malmsten flashes back to an O'Neill-esque, fractured ménage à quatre with the bad memories he harbors for his sea captain father's abusive conduct toward the family and the love he holds for his father's mistress. (1947, subtitles, 98 minutes)
Music in Darkness
July 14, 4:00 p.m.
When aspiring pianist Bengt is blinded in an accident, he loses the familiar comforts of his life. Despite his anguish, music restores him, bringing him closer to the lower-class Ingrid (Mai Zetterling). (1948, subtitles, 87 minutes)
Port of Call
July 15, 4:00 p.m.
Rossellini's spirit pervades this gritty waterfront drama, which gave Bergman his first box-office success. It also marked his earliest collaboration with longtime cinematographer Gunnar Fischer and caused a stir abroad with its frank discussion of maternal cruelty, premarital sex, and abortion. (1948, subtitles, 100 minutes)
Thirst (Three Strange Loves), followed by Prison
July 22, 4:00 p.m.
The rarely screened Thirst, an early Bergman milestone, was one of the first works to demonstrate his trademark delving into the human spirit. Adapted from short stories by actress Birgit Tengroth (who also plays Viola in the film), the plot follows a failing marriage but focuses principally on the inner torments of a trio of female characters damaged by past liaisons. (1949, subtitles, 88 minutes) In Prison, Bergman advanced an argument on morality and faith. (1949, subtitles, 79 minutes)
July 28, 2:00 p.m.
Set in a musical milieu, the young hero's ambitions as a violin soloist for a provincial orchestra fail to synchronize with his romantic involvements. Victor Sjöström shines as the orchestra's genial conductor. (1950, subtitles, 98 minutes)
July 28, 4:00 p.m.
Based on Bergman's own early love affair, a ballet dancer recalls a relationship she once had during an idyllic Swedish summer and the poignant aftermath of her loss of this love. (1951, subtitles, 96 minutes)
Secrets of Women (Waiting Women)
July 29, 4:00 p.m.
In a summer house in the Stockholm archipelago, three wives recount an adventure from their marriages while awaiting their husbands' return: Anita Björk's dalliance with old flame Jarl Kulle; Maj-Britt Nilsson's impressionistically rendered remembrances of a Paris affair; and battling couple Eva Dahlbeck and Gunnar Björnstrand's romance rekindled when stuck in an elevator overnight. (1952, subtitles, 107 minutes)
Sawdust and Tinsel (The Naked Night)
August 4, 2:00 p.m.
As an itinerant circus rolls through the countryside in turn-of-the-century Sweden, a coach driver recounts to owner Albert (Åke Grönberg) a tale of lurid humiliation from long ago: Frost the clown (Anders Ek) must retrieve his naked wife before a crowd of leering, jeering soldiers, the only sound a relentless drumbeat. Later Albert finds himself reliving the episode within his own circus ring. (1953, subtitles, 96 minutes)
Lesson in Love
August 4, 4:00 p.m.
Gynecologist Gunnar Björnstrand dallies with a patient, while his wife (Eva Dahlbeck) runs off in retaliation for a fling with her old flame (Åke Grönberg). With enchanted musings about the past revealed in flashback, Lesson in Love's more whimsical passages include confusion as to who is married to whom and a deus-ex-machina Eros figure who delivers a "do not disturb" sign to a hotel room door. (1954, subtitles, 96 minutes)
Summer with Monika
August 5, 4:00 p.m.
The sensual, young, and freethinking Monika escapes with her new lover to the Swedish Archipelago, where the two spend the summer in a fragile idyll that eventually ends in loss of innocence and painful resignation. (1953, 35mm, subtitles, 96 minutes)
August 12, 4:00 p.m.
Set in Gothenburg where the famous wooden roller coaster of Liseberg Park provides an emblematic backdrop, Dreams spans 24 hours in the lives of two women (fashion mogul Eva Dahlbeck and model Harriet Andersson) at different points in their relationships with men. (1955, subtitles, 88 minutes)
Introduced by Peter Rollberg
August 18, 3:30 p.m.
In the mid-19th century, mute mesmerist Albert Vogler (Max von Sydow), on the road with his Dr. Vogler's Magnetic Health Theatre troupe, is detained at Consul Erland Josephson's home. After a performance Vogler is subjected to a grueling probe from rationalist doctor Gunnar Björnstrand. (1958,
35mm, subtitles, 101 minutes)
Smiles of a Summer Night
August 19, 4:00 p.m.
Bergman's romantic midsummer's roundelay at a fin de siècle house party has famously inspired creative artists from Woody Allen to Stephen Sondheim. The women guests cleverly conspire against the men, forcing their hands in matters of love while exposing the men's airs and anxieties. (1955, 35mm, subtitles, 110 minutes)
This Can't Happen Here (High Tension)
Introduced by Jan Holmberg
September 2, 4:30 p.m.
The scenario involves an agent known as Atkä Natas from a despotic country called Liquidatzia. The agent's estranged wife, Vera, a scientist, is engaged with exiles attempting to smuggle refugees out of the troubled homeland. Conspiracy, collusion, attempted murder, and secret emissaries ensue. The screening is introduced by Jan Holmberg, curator and CEO of the Ingmar Bergman Foundation and Bergman Archives. (1950, subtitles, 84 minutes)
Brink of Life
September 3, 1:00 p.m.
Three powerful performances resulted in a three-way best-actress award at the 1958 Cannes Film Festival for Eva Dahlbeck, Ingrid Thulin, and Bibi Andersson in Brink of Life, a chamber play set in a hospital maternity ward. Representing different backgrounds, the three women reveal a range of emotional and mental processes experienced during their pregnancies (and, in one case, a live birth) and the effect of sharing these experiences. (1957, subtitles, 85 minutes)
Black Maria: Selections from the Festival
For 37 years the Black Maria Film Festival has been advancing inventiveness and vitality in the short form. Named for Thomas Edison's original West Orange, New Jersey, movie studio (its resemblance to black-box police paddy wagons sparked the nickname "Black Maria"), the Black Maria Film Festival is an annual juried competition centered at New Jersey City University and open to all genres and all makers. With special thanks to Black Maria executive director Jane Steuerwald, who introduces both events.
Black Maria I
July 21, 1:00 p.m.
The Washing Society (Lynne Sachs and Lizzie Olesker, 2018, 44 minutes); Dandelion (Lisa Talentino, 2017, 3 minutes); The Paintings Paint Themselves (James Hollenbaugh, 2017, 6 minutes); Theatrum Magicum (Marcin Gizycki, 2017, 23 minutes); The Driver is Red (Randall Christopher, 2017, 15 minutes); Analog Orange (John Hawk, 2017, 3 minutes); Mama (Mert Canatan, 2017, 10 minutes). (Total running time 104 minutes)
Black Maria II
July 21, 3:30 p.m.
New York City Sketchbook (Willy Hartland, 2017, 13 minutes); Atlantic City Character Study (Billy Linker and Ben Carey, 2017, 29 minutes); Insecta (Ramey Newell, 2017, 5 minutes); On the Cusp (Yuri Alves, 2017, 10 minutes); I Saw You Yesterday (John Valeriani, 2017, 3 minutes); Little Potato (Wes Hurley and Nathan Miller, 2017, 14 minutes); Game (Jeannie Donohoe, 2017, 15 minutes); Sans Chlorophyll (Phil Davis, 2017, 3 minutes). (Total running time 91 minutes)
From Vault to Screen: UCLA Festival of Preservation
August 11–September 3
The UCLA Film & Television Archive's biennial preservation festival is renowned for bringing back rare relics of Hollywood history, affording instructive views into a neglected past. This year's varied showcase includes a beloved Ernst Lubitsch classic, two works by a pioneering American woman director, a silent starring comedienne Constance Talmadge, a Laurel and Hardy early sound feature, and a 1970s documentary on African American activist Fred Hampton. Additional titles screen at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD.
Trouble in Paradise
August 11, 4:00 p.m.
Master crooks and con artists Gaston Monescu (Herbert Marshall) and Lily Vautier (Miriam Hopkins) fall in love and then decide to cozy up to wealthy entrepreneur heiress Madame Colet (Kay Francis)—but life gets complicated. (Ernst Lubitsch, 1932, 35mm, 82 minutes) Restored from 35mm nitrate studio print and 35mm acetate duplicate negative by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by The Packard Humanities Institute and David Stenn.
August 25, 2:00 p.m.
The first of two films by the unjustly forgotten, pioneering, American independent Juleen Compton, Stranded follows a young woman called Raina (Compton herself) traveling in Greece with her American lover (Gary Collins) and her French, gay best friend (Gian Pietro Calasso). Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by Century Arts Foundation.
The Plastic Dome of Norma Jean
August 25, 4:00 p.m.
Filmed in the Ozarks with a cast of unknowns (a 25-year-old Sam Waterston costars in his first film), the opening title sequence—the two young leads walking through a bucolic setting with Michel Legrand's sentimental score—suggests a tender tale about a pair of young companions. However, the movie quickly takes an unusual turn when Norma Jean and her friend Vance pick up an enormous plastic dome. (Juleen Compton, 1966, 35mm, 82 minutes) Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by Century Arts Foundation.
Ciné-concert: Good References
Andrew Simpson, pianist
August 26, 4:00 p.m.
Unable to find a decent job, comedienne Constance Talmadge (with no good references to rely on) decides to masquerade as a sick friend and assume her role as secretary to a socialite. Constance was the younger sister of actress Norma Talmadge and very few of her silent films survive. (R. Willian Neill, 1920, 35mm, 60 minutes) Preservation funded by The Packard Humanities Institute, Barbara Roisman Cooper and Martin M. Cooper.
The Murder of Fred Hampton
August 26, 5:30 p.m.
A group of independent filmmakers in Chicago set out to profile Chairman Fred Hampton, the charismatic, 21-year-old leader of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party, and ended up documenting the last nine months of his life. It shows a fuller portrait of a misunderstood political movement that was simplistically reduced, by its critics and the media, as one solely devoted to violent militancy. (Howard Alk, 1971, 35mm, 88 minutes) Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding by the National Film Preservation Foundation and The Packard Humanities Institute.
Sons of the Desert, preceded by Berth Marks
September 3, 3:30 p.m.
After a string of successful silent shorts for Hal Roach Studios, Laurel and Hardy made a seamless transition to sound with their unique comic timing intact—plus a new array of off-screen noises. Sons of the Desert was their fourth sound feature and one of the top ten films of 1934, spoofing everything from fraternal lodges to marriage banalities. (William A. Seiter, 1934, 35mm, 65 minutes) Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by the George Lucas Family Foundation and The Film Foundation. Preceded by Berth Marks, with the boys sharing an upper berth in a Pullman sleeping car. (Lewis R. Foster, 1929, 35mm, 19 minutes) Restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by The Packard Humanities Institute.
Jacques Becker: Poet of the Commonplace
Jacques Becker's (1906–1960) relatively small body of work constitutes some of the most engaging cinema of postwar Europe. His family knew Paul Cézanne's family, and through that connection the young Becker met Jean Renoir. Although the two filmmakers worked together on many of Renoir's films, Becker launched his own career after returning from a stint as a German prisoner-of-war. With compassion, wit, and a gift for working with actors, he became a perceptive chronicler of life in Paris during the 1940s and 1950s. This series screens eight of Becker's films, several of which have recently been restored and theatrically re-released.
Falbalas (Paris Frills)
September 8, 2:30 p.m.
Shot near the end of the German occupation, Falbalas marks the start of Becker's foray into the 1940s Paris milieu that was to be become his métier—a visual theme he continued to advance in subsequent films. Set in the world of Parisian haute couture, Falbalas's tragic comedy revolves around the romantic maneuverings within one of the city's flourishing fashion houses. (1945, subtitles, 111 minutes)
Antoine et Antoinette
September 9, 4:00 p.m.
Antoine et Antoinette is a delicate tale of a young Parisian couple who, not long after the liberation, find themselves with a winning lottery ticket that somehow gets misplaced. (1947, subtitles, 78 minutes)
Édouard et Caroline
September 15, 2:00 p.m.
The last in a trio of sympathetic urban comedies, Édouard et Caroline's gently farcical plot centers on a young couple who nearly ruin their marriage when he—an aspiring concert pianist—quarrels with his wife over her outfit as they dress for a pompous cocktail party. (1951, subtitles, 88 minutes)
September 15, 4:00 p.m.
An unusual departure from his lyrical black-and-white productions, Ali Baba was a full-blown commercial blockbuster in color, complete with belly dancers, magnificent Moroccan architecture, and famous comedian Fernandel as the Arabian Nights hero. (1954, subtitles, 93 minutes)
Rendez-vous de juillet
September 16, 4:00 p.m.
Rendez-vous de juillet catches the spirit of young friends who come together in the heady atmosphere of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, then drift apart when the romantic idealist in their group resolves to leave for Africa to work on an ethnographic film. (1949, subtitles, 112 minutes)
September 22, 2:00 p.m.
Becker evokes turn-of-the-century Paris in Casque d'or—but it's a world of petty thieves, pimps, and prostitutes and a tale of gangland passions and treachery. (1952, subtitles, 94 minutes)
Touchez pas au grisbi
September 22, 4:00 p.m.
Based on a série noire novel by Albert Simonin (who coauthored the screenplay), Touchez pas au grisbi helped to launch a fad for film noir in French cinema of the 1950s. Max le Menteur (Jean Gabin) is a wealthy and well-mannered gangster—but also aging, world-weary, and ready to retire, except, he hopes, for one more heist. (1954, subtitles, 96 minutes)
September 23, 4:00 p.m.
In Becker's final film—with amateur actors and a documentary-like realism—four jaded convicts prepare for a breakout. When a fifth inmate arrives to share the cell, the co-conspirators bring the newcomer into their plot. Based on an autobiographical novel by ex-Nazi collaborationist José Giovanni, Le Trou's focused austerity is reminiscent of Robert Bresson's Un condamné a mort s'est échappé. (1960, subtitles, 132 minutes)
Laurie Tylec, (202) 842-6355 or [email protected]
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