Thursday, 30 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 351: Wed Dec 20

Meet Me in St Louis (Minnelli, 1944): BFI Southbank, NFT1, 6.15pm


This classic Christmas movie, which also screens on December 17th, 22nd and 28th, is part of the Big Screen Classics season at BFI Southbank. You can find full details here

Chicago Reader review:
Vincente Minnelli created one of his masterpieces with this loosely plotted but tightly structured 1944 story of a middle-class family waiting through spring, summer, and fall for the opening of the Saint Louis World's Fair of 1904. One of the first films to integrate musical numbers into the plot, it explores, without condescension or simplemindedness, the feelings that drive the family members apart and then bring them back together again. And there's the sublime Minnellian spectacle of Judy Garland singing "The Trolley Song," "The Boy Next Door," and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas." A great film.

Dave Kehr


Here (and above) is the trailer. 

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 350: Tue Dec 19

Rockers (Bafaloukos, 1978): Regent Street Cinema, 7.30pm


Soul Jazz Records are presenting the classic reggae movie Rockers in this rare one-off screening at Regent Street Cinema. The film will be introduced by Stuart Baker (head of Soul Jazz Records) and also followed by a free pre-xmas reggae and funk DJ-set from Soul Jazz Records Soundsystem DJs in the bar.

Time Out review:
A Trenchtown variant on 
Robin Hood, with dreadlocked drummer Horsemouth (Leroy Wallace) up against the local minor-league mafia. An excellent soundtrack (Peter ToshBurning Spear, Bunny Wailer, etc), and an endearingly witty script which digresses through explanations of the Rasta faith and countless idiosyncratic solidarity rituals, make for a delightful piece of whimsy. Complete with subtitles transliterating the Rasta patois.

Frances Lass 

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 349: Mon Dec 18

Three Days of the Condor (Pollack, 1975): BFI Southbank, NFT3, 8.35pm


This 35mm screening, also being shown on December 3rd, is part of the 'Can You Trust Them?' season. Full details here.

Time Out review:
Set in the world of CIA power games and scientific hardware, but dominated by an intriguing Borges-like riddle: why should a mystery thriller that didn't sell be translated into obscure languages? And why should the American Literary Historical Society in New York be massacred while one of their readers (Robert Redford) is out getting lunch? With the telephone his only method of contact with Olympian and untrustworthy superiors, Redford becomes lost, unpredictable, even sentimental. He holes up in Faye Dunaway's apartment and starts making mistakes. Thanks to an intelligent script, partly by 
Lorenzo Semple Jr (Pretty Poison, The Parallax View), the action rarely falters, and at its best the film offers an intriguing slice of neo-Hitchcock. A certain gloss irritates, but enough scenes compensate for the chic portrayal of the Redford/ Dunaway relationship: Redford's sudden intrusion into civilisation when he visits a dead man's apartment, and finds the wife preparing her husband's dinner; the postman whose pen won't work; Redford in the strange, darkened house of his quarry, taking the initiative by blaring soul music from the hi-fi.

Chris Peachment

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 348: Sun Dec 17

Hidden (Haneke, 205): Curzon Soho, 3pm


This is part of a Michael Haneke season (all 35mm screenings) at Curzon Soho. Details here.

Chicago Reader review:
This brilliant if unpleasant puzzle without a solution, about surveillance and various kinds of denial, finds writer-director Michael Haneke near the top of his game, though it's not a game everyone will want to play (2005). The brittle host of a TV book-chat show (Daniel Auteuil) and his unhappy wife (Juliette Binoche) start getting strange videos that track their comings and goings outside their Paris home. Once the husband traces the videos to an Algerian he abused when both were kids, things get only more tense, troubled, and unresolved. Haneke is so punitive toward the couple and his audience that I periodically rebelled against—or went into denial about—the director's rage, and I guess that's part of the plan.

Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 347: Sat Dec 16

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Powell & Pressburger, 1943): Barbican Cinema, 2pm



This screening is part of the 'Time, Memory Dream' season at the Bartbican. Full details here.

Chicago Reader review:
It's almost impossible to define this 1943 masterpiece by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. It was ostensibly based on a cartoon series that satirized the British military class, yet its attitude toward the main character is one of affection, respect, and sometimes awe; it was intended as a propaganda film, yet Churchill wanted to suppress it; it has the romantic sweep of a grand love story, yet none of the romantic relationships it presents is truly fulfilled, and the film's most lasting bond is one between the British colonel (Roger Livesey) and his Prussian counterpart (Anton Walbrook). Pressburger's screenplay covers 40 years in the colonel's life through a series of brilliantly constructed flashbacks, compressions, and ellipses; Powell's camera renders the winding plot through boldly deployed Technicolor hues and camera movements of exquisite design and expressivity. It stands as very possibly the finest film ever made in Britain. With Deborah Kerr, Roland Culver, and James McKechnie. 
Dave Kehr

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Monday, 27 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 346: Fri Dec 15

So Long Enthusiasm (Duran, 2017): ICA Cinema, 6.45pm


This is part of the Latin America Monthly strand, curated by ICA Cinema and Maria Delgado, director of research at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London.

Here is the ICA introduction:
Axel is a ten year-old who lives with his mother Margarita, and his three twenty-something sisters in a flat in Montserrat, a once-aristocratic Buenos Aires neighborhood now fallen into decadence. Margarita requests to be locked up in her bedroom as part of a homemade treatment which remains partially unexplained. Axel and his sisters play the part of jailers of their own mother in this odd self-preservation agreement - this will be the arrangement between them until Margarita attempts to break it. Axel will then have to decide which of the contradictory orders given by his mother to follow.

This screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Vladimir Durán


Sunday, 26 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 345: Thu Dec 14

Picnic at Hanging Rock (Weir, 1975): Barbican Cinema, 6.30pm


This screening is part of the 'Time, Memory Dream' season at the Bartbican. Full details here.

Barbican Cinema introduction:
There is a subset of films which are arguably pure dream from beginning to end, that take place entirely within the dream world. Picnic at Hanging Rock is one brilliant example. This unsettling period film about the disappearance of a party of schoolgirls announces it is based on a real story. But in its most memorable moments its realism is corroded by a dense, dream-like atmosphere that sends us back to the Edgar Allan Poe line recited earlier: “All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream.”


Here (and above) is the trailer.

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 344: Wed Dec 13

The Lady Vanishes (Hitchcock, 1938): Cinema Museum, 7.30pm



Chicago Reader review:
Alfred Hitchcock's masterful 1938 spy thriller, with Margaret Lockwood and Michael Redgrave searching for kidnapped agent Dame May Whitty aboard a trans-European express train, pursued all the while by sinister Nazi agents. This is vintage Hitchcock, with the pacing and superb editing that marked not only his 30s style but eventually every film that had any aspirations whatever to achieving suspense and rhythm. 
Don Druker


Here (and above) is the trailer.

Friday, 24 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 343: Tue Dec 12

The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum (Schlondorff/Von Trotta, 1975): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 6.15pm


This video presentation, which is also being screened on December 17th (details here), is part of the 'Can You Trust Them' season at BFI Southbank. Full details here.

Time Out review:
A disturbingly powerful version of Heinrich Böll's novel about the irresponsibility of the gutter press and their ability to destroy lives. Angela Winkler is excellent as the shy, apolitical young woman who sleeps with a man she meets at a party, unaware that he's a terrorist; next morning, after he's gone, armed police burst in, arrest her, and the nightmare begins. A smear campaign is started against her character, her privacy is repeatedly violated, and the links between single-minded, right-wing police and news-hungry press are made clear. It's a frightening account of how external, arbitrary forces can ruin lives, which simultaneously portrays the heroine as a courageous, dignified upholder of her freedom. Sometimes surreal, always intelligent and menacing, it's far superior to Victor Schlöndorff's later The Tin Drum.

Geoff Andrew

Here (and above) is an extract.

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 342: Mon Dec 11

Santa Claus (Cardona, 1959): Institute of Light, Helmsley Place, London Fields, E8, 7pm



Here is the Cigarette Burns introduction to a special fundraising night:
Cigarette Burns Cinema celebrates and utlises archives and archive materials. Archives come in a variety of forms, from the large institutional ones to smaller volunteer run ones and all serve a vital purpose. When the 19th September 2017 earthquake hit Mexico, Tepoztlan was among the many cities and towns that were devastated. Located in Tepoztlan is the Permanencia Voluntaria Archivo Cinematográfico, a small independent archive, that hosts a wide range of equally small independent Mexican cinema, from paper, photo, posters, audio, tapes in 16 and 35 mm, and video. They are now working to rebuild and repair the damage that the earthquake left behind. Without Santos to save them from the evils of the Vinegar Syndrome Vampires, Cigarette Burns thought it was time to step up and give back to the archives. 
 
So we will be screening René Cardona's insane Christmas fairy tale - Santa Claus aka Santa vs the Devil. Famously takien apart by the folks at Mystery Science Theatre 3000, and nestled comfortably in the infamous IMDb Bottom 100, this interpretation is packed full of the magical and weird, from Santa's child labour force, to his arch enemy Satan whispering in children's ears, from gigantic terrifying dancing dolls, to Merlin the Magician, 1959's Santa Claus is by no means a titan of Mexican cinema, but rather a magical foray into the odder corners of cinema. 

All proceeds will be donated to the Permanencia Voluntaria Archivo Cinematográfico to help secure their collection remains for us to enjoy and discover it.


Here (and above) is the trailer.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 341: Sun Dec 10

Dead Again (Branagh, 1991): Regent Street Cinema, 7pm


This 35mm presentation is the latest Badlands Collective screening.

Chicago Redaer review:
Kenneth Branagh (Henry V) directs and plays two roles in a show-offy American thriller scripted by Scott Frank that is loads of fun even if it's ultimately strangled by its excesses. A Los Angeles private eye (Branagh) sets out to learn the identity of a beautiful amnesiac (Emma Thompson) who suffers from nightmares; he's aided by an antique dealer (Derek Jacobi) with a flair for hypnosis. With his help the woman produces tales set in LA in the 40s about a European composer and his wife (Branagh and Thompson again), shot in black and white. As the twists come thick and fast and the plot gets progressively more and more baroque, Branagh shows himself to be at least as intelligent as Brian De Palma in delivering over-the-top stylistic filigree and every bit as willing to take his own two-dimensional postmodernism too seriously; with Andy Garcia, Hanna Schygulla, and an enjoyable turn by an uncredited Robin Williams (1991).
Jonathan Rosenbaum


Here (and above) is the trailer.

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 340: Sat Dec 9

F For Fake (Welles, 1975): ICA Cinema, 8.30pm


This 35mm screening is part of a superb "Light Show' season devoted to screening from prints over at the weekend of December 8th to 10th at the ICA. More details here.

ICA introduction:
Please walk into the light – the ICA, MUBI and Little White Lies are proud to present a weekender of movie masterworks screened on glistening 35mm celluloid. The films we have selected are all outliers in some aspect or another, and they are all the product of genius directors looking to capitalise on the possibilities of this young medium. They ask not what cinema can do for them, but what they can do for cinema. And even though each title offers a deeply personal insight into the inquiring, philosophical, playful and subversive minds of their maker, they also speak about cinema itself. What does it mean to make a movie? To create a world? To build a person?  The line-up includes Jacques Tati’s dance through the Paris of his dreams in Playtime (1967), a devilish treatise on truth in Orson Welles's F For Fake (1973), an eccentric, soul-searching confessional in Agnés Varda's The Beaches of Agnés (2008), a limo ride through the history of cinema with Leos Carax's Holy Motors (2012) and a kaleidoscopic feminist dirty bomb in Vera Chytilova’s Daisies (1966).

Chicago Reader review:
'Orson Welles's underrated 1973 essay film—made from discarded documentary footage by Francois Reichenbach and new material from Welles—forms a kind of dialectic with Welles's never-completed It's All True. The main subjects are art forger Elmyr de Hory, Clifford Irving, Howard Hughes, Pablo Picasso, Welles himself, and the practice and meaning of deception. Despite some speculation that this film was Welles's indirect reply to Pauline Kael's bogus contention that he didn't write a word of Citizen Kane, his sly commentary—seconded by some of the trickiest editing anywhere—implies that authorship is a pretty dubious notion anyway, a function of the even more dubious art market and its team of “experts.” Alternately superficial and profound, the film also enlists the services of Oja Kodar, Welles's principal collaborator after the late 60s, as actor, erotic spectacle, and cowriter, and briefer appearances by many other Welles cohorts. Michel Legrand supplies the wonderful score.'
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here is the most impressive part of the film, Welles' paean to Chartres Cathedral.

Here are Welles's words: 'Now this has been standing here for centuries. The premier work of man perhaps in the whole western world and it’s without a signature: Chartres. A celebration to God’s glory and to the dignity of man. All that’s left most artists seem to feel these days, is man. Naked, poor, forked, radish. There aren’t any celebrations. Ours, the scientists keep telling us, is a universe, which is disposable. You know it might be just this one anonymous glory of all things, this rich stone forest, this epic chant, this gaiety, this grand choiring shout of affirmation, which we choose when all our cities are dust, to stand intact, to mark where we have been, to testify to what we had it in us, to accomplish. Our works in stone, in paint, in print are spared, some of them for a few decades, or a millennium or two, but everything must finally fall in war or wear away into the ultimate and universal ash. The triumphs and the frauds, the treasures and the fakes. A fact of life. We’re going to die. “Be of good heart,” cry the dead artists out of the living past. Our songs will all be silenced – but what of it? Go on singing. Maybe a man’s name doesn’t matter all that much. (Church bells peal…)'

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 339: Fri Dec 8

Playtime (Tati, 1967): ICA Cinema, 8.30pm


This 35mm screening is part of a superb "Light Show' season devoted to screening from prints over at the weekend of December 8th to 10th at the ICA. More details here.

ICA introduction:
Please walk into the light – the ICA, MUBI and Little White Lies are proud to present a weekender of movie masterworks screened on glistening 35mm celluloid. The films we have selected are all outliers in some aspect or another, and they are all the product of genius directors looking to capitalise on the possibilities of this young medium. They ask not what cinema can do for them, but what they can do for cinema. And even though each title offers a deeply personal insight into the inquiring, philosophical, playful and subversive minds of their maker, they also speak about cinema itself. What does it mean to make a movie? To create a world? To build a person?  The line-up includes Jacques Tati’s dance through the Paris of his dreams in Playtime (1967), a devilish treatise on truth in Orson Welles's F For Fake (1973), an eccentric, soul-searching confessional in Agnés Varda's The Beaches of Agnés (2008), a limo ride through the history of cinema with Leos Carax's Holy Motors (2012) and a kaleidoscopic feminist dirty bomb in Vera Chytilova’s Daisies (1966).

Chicago Reader review:
My favorite movie, this 1967 French comedy by actor-director Jacques Tati has the most intricately designed mise en scene in all of cinema. The restored 65-millimeter version, with four-track DTS sound, expands the possibilities of becoming lost in Tati's vast frames and creatively finding one's way again. His studio-constructed vision of Paris begins in daytime with nightmarishly regimented straight lines and right angles and proceeds to night with accidental yet celebratory curves of people instinctively coming together. It peaks in an extraordinary sequence, set in a gradually disintegrating restaurant, that comprises almost half the film: once various musicians start to perform, the viewer's gaze inevitably follows the customers in a kind of improvised dance, collecting and juxtaposing simultaneous comic events and details. In this landscape everyone is a tourist, but Tati suggests that once we can find one another, we all belong.
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 338: Thu Dec 7

The Apartment (Wilder, 1960): Prince Charles Cinema, 1.10pm


This 35mm screening is part of the 'Christmas at the PCC season'. Full details here.

Time Out review:
'Re-teaming actor Jack Lemmon, scriptwriter Iz Diamond and director Billy Wilder a year after ‘Some Like It Hot’, this multi-Oscar winning comedy is sharper in tone, tracing the compromises of a New York insurance drone who pimps out his brownstone apartment for his married bosses’ illicit affairs. The quintessential New York movie – with exquisite design by Alexandre Trauner and shimmering black-and-white photography – it presented something of a breakthrough in its portrayal of the war of the sexes, with a sour and cynical view of the self-deception, loneliness and cruelty involved in ‘romantic’ liaisons. Directed by Wilder with attention to detail and emotional reticence that belie its inherent darkness and melodramatic core, it’s lifted considerably by the performances: the psychosomatic ticks and tropes of nebbish Lemmon balanced by the pathos of Shirley MacLaine’s put-upon ‘lift girl’.'
Wally Hammond

Monday, 20 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 337: Wed Dec 6

Pavement Butterfly (Eichberg, 1929): Cinema Museum, 7.30pm


 
Cinema Museum introduction:

The film Pavement Butterfly (1929), is a German English co-production directed by Richard Eichberg in Germany, and stars Anna May Wong. Tonight's presentation will be screened using a 35mm BFI print, and will be accompanied by guest pianist Stephen Horne. In this, her second silent film with Eichberg, Wong plays Princess Butterfly, an exotic Parisian fan dancer whose “death leap through a circle of naked swords” act goes tragically wrong. Blamed for the impalement of a fellow performer, she runs away and takes shelter with a handsome but starving painter who she brings luck.


Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 336: Tue Dec 5

In A Lonely Place (Ray, 1950): BFI Southbank, NFT3, 8.40pm 


Nicholas Ray’s beguiling blend of murder mystery and unusually adult love story is one of the finest American movies of the early 50s. The lonely place is Hollywood: scriptwriter Dix (Bogart) is prime suspect in the murder of a young woman, until neighbour Laurel (Grahame) provides him with a false alibi. But as the pair embark on a romance, his volatile temper – exacerbated equally by the studio and the cops – makes her wonder whether he might have been guilty... Brilliantly adapted from Dorothy B Hughes’ novel, Ray’s tough but tender film is spot-on in its insightful characterisation of Tinseltown and of the troubled lovers. Marvellously cast, Bogart and Grahame bring an aching poignancy to their painful predicament.
Geoff Andrew, BFI Programmer-at-large


This 35mm re-release begins an extended run at BFI Southbank on Novemebr 27th (full details here). Geoff Andrew will provide an introduction at the November 28th screening.
Time Out review:
The place is Hollywood, lonely for scriptwriter Dixon Steele (Humphrey Bogart), who is suspected of murdering a young woman, until girl-next-door Laurel Gray (Gloria Grahame) supplies him with a false alibi. But is he the killer? Under pressure of police interrogation, their tentative relationship threatens to crack - and Dix's sudden, violent temper becomes increasingly evident. Nicholas Ray's classic thriller remains as fresh and resonant as the day it was released. Nothing is as it seems: the noir atmosphere of deathly paranoia frames one of the screen's most adult and touching love affairs; Bogart's tough-guy insolence is probed to expose a vulnerable, almost psychotic insecurity; while Grahame abandons femme fatale conventions to reveal a character of enormous, subtle complexity. As ever, Ray composes with symbolic precision, confounds audience expectations, and deploys the heightened lyricism of melodrama to produce an achingly poetic meditation on pain, distrust and loss of faith, not to mention an admirably unglamorous portrait of Tinseltown. Never were despair and solitude so romantically alluring.
Geoff Andrew

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 335: Mon Dec 4

The Shop Around the Corner (Lubitsch, 1940): Prince Charles Cinema, 1.50pm


This 35mm presentation is part of the Prince Charles' Christm as season. Full details here.
 
Chicago Reader review:
There are no art deco nightclubs, shimmering silk gowns, or slamming bedroom doors to be seen, but this 1940 film is one of Ernst Lubitsch's finest and most enduring works, a romantic comedy of dazzling range that takes place almost entirely within the four walls of a leather-goods store in prewar Budapest. James Stewart is the earnest, slightly awkward young manager; Margaret Sullavan is the new sales clerk who gets on his nerves—and neither realizes that they are partners in a passionate romance being carried out through the mails. Interwoven with subplots centered on the other members of the shop's little family, the romance proceeds through Lubitsch's brilliant deployment of point of view, allowing the audience to enter the perceptions of each individual character at exactly the right moment to develop maximum sympathy and suspense. With Frank Morgan, Joseph Schildkraut, Sara Haden, and Felix Bressart.
Dave Kehr

Here (and above) is the trailer.

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 334: Sun Dec 3

Les Valseuses (Blier, 1974): Cine Lumiere 4pm


This screening is part of the Jeanne Moreau season. Full details here.

Cine Lumiere introduction:
Les Valseuse
features Gérard Depardieu and Patrick Dewaere as a pair of sociopaths wending their way across France. The two men break into houses, but largely as a prelude to seducing and exploiting women. Actresses Miou-Miou, Jeanne Moreau and Isabelle Huppert join the dance in Blier’s powerful satire of social and sexual mores.


Here (and above) is the trailer.

Friday, 17 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 333: Sat Dec 2

Kiss Me Deadly 6.20pm (Aldrich, 1955): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 3.30pm


This 35mm presentation, which also screens on December 8th, is part of the 'Can You Trust Them?' season at BFI Southbank season. Full details here.

Chicago Reader review:
The end of the world, starring Ralph Meeker (at his sleaziest) as Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer (at his most neolithic). Robert Aldrich's 1955 film is in some ways the apotheosis of film noir—it's certainly one of the most extreme examples of the genre, brimming with barely suppressed hysteria and set in a world totally without moral order. Even the credits run upside down. This independently produced low-budget film was a shining example for the New Wave directors—Truffaut, Godard, et al—who found it proof positive that commercial films could accommodate the quirkiest and most personal of visions.
Dave Kehr

Here (and above) is the remarkable opening with those subversive credits.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 332: Fri Dec 1

Eyes Wide Shut (Kubrick, 1999): Prince Charles Cinema, 8.50pm


Here's one of the great films set during Christmas, and an opportunity to see Stanley Kubrick's much-underrated final movie in an original 35mm print.

If you're interested in reading more about this film I can recommend two BFI publications - Michel Chion's Modern Classics monograph on Eyes Wide Shut and the chapter on the film in James Naremore's book titled On Kubrick.

Chicago Reader review:
Initial viewings of Stanley Kubrick's movies can be deceptive because his films all tend to be emotionally convoluted in some way; one has to follow them as if through a maze. A character that Kubrick might seem to treat cruelly the first time around (e.g., Elisha Cook Jr.'s fall guy in The Killing) can appear the object of tender compassion on a subsequent viewing. The director's desire to avoid sentimentality at all costs doesn't preclude feeling, as some critics have claimed, but it does create ambiguity and a distanced relationship to the central characters. Kubrick's final feature very skillfully portrays the dark side of desire in a successful marriage; since the 60s he'd been thinking about filming Arthur Schnitzler's brilliant novella "Traumnovelle," and working with Frederic Raphael, he's adapted it faithfully--at least if one allows for all the differences between Viennese Jews in the 20s and New York WASPs in the 90s. Schnitzler's tale, about a young doctor contemplating various forms of adultery and debauchery after discovering that his wife has entertained comparable fantasies, has a somewhat Kafkaesque ambiguity, wavering between dream and waking fantasy (hence Kubrick's title), and all the actors do a fine job of traversing this delicate territory. Yet the story has been altered to make the successful doctor (Tom Cruise) more of a hypocrite and his wife (powerfully played by Nicole Kidman) a little feistier; Kubrick's also added a Zeus-like tycoon (played to perfection by Sydney Pollack) who pretends to explain the plot shortly before the end but in fact only summarizes the various mysteries, his cynicism and chilly access to power revealing that Kubrick is more of a moralist than Schnitzler. To accept the premises and experiences of this movie, you have to be open to an expressionist version of New York with scant relation to the 90s (apart from cellular phones and AIDS) and a complex reading of a marriage that assumes the relations between men and women haven't essentially changed in the past 70-odd years. This is a remarkably gripping, suggestive, and inventive piece of storytelling that, like Kubrick's other work, is likely to grow in mystery and intensity over time.
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is the trailer. 

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 331: Thu Nov 30

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007): Genesis Cinema, 8.50pm


This modern classic will be screened from a 35mm print.

Time Out review:
Where does criminality end and celebrity begin is the question posed by Australian director Andrew Dominik whose stunning second film – after 2000’s excellent (and not entirely dissimilar) ‘Chopper’ – sets the Western genre barn ablaze to deliver a gripping, Gothic tête à tête between two of American history’s most morally perplexing folk heroes. Kicking off with an expertly choreographed train robbery which acts as both a narrative nub and tonal barometer for the director’s bucolic, mournful mise en scene and script, the film then ruefully traces the interlocking paths of Jesse James and his young admirer Robert Ford. Early word suggested that Casey Affleck’s Ford was the man to keep an eye on come awards season, but this is unquestionably Pitt’s film, his James insouciantly radiating a piercing, unreadable intensity redolent of Joe Pesci’s work with Scorsese, a truly enigmatic presence constantly obscured behind warped glass, thick smoke, or even his own visibly battered visage. Though, in the end, the film’s main intention is to have you query every element of its mischievous title (and you probably will), it’s a journey of immense emotional foreboding and, flabby coda aside, a red-raw classic. 

David Jenkins

Here (and above) is the trailer.