Friday, May 29, 2015

June is all film at the Cleveland Cinematheque

[Press release from the Cleveland Cinematheque.]


Movies projected from actual film may be a thing of the past at the multiplex, but not at the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, which will screen every movie it shows in June from either 35mm or 16mm film. June is the next to last month that the Cinematheque will present its weekly programs in the Russell B. Aitken Auditorium at the Cleveland Institute of Art, 11141 East Boulevard in University Circle. At the end of July the Cinematheque will vacate this historic, 616-seat theater that has been its home for the past 29 years and move to a brand new theater at 11610 Euclid Avenue in the Uptown district.
Nineteen different movies will show during the month, and each will screen only one time—on a Friday or a Saturday. Among the highlights: the remaining three films from the internationally touring retrospective “Also Like Life: The Films of Hou Hsiao-hsien,” begun in April; four baroque psychodramas by Argentina’s late, largely forgotten master filmmaker Leopoldo Torre-Nilsson (1924-1978), one of the great unsung stylists in cinema history; and four essential film noir classics by the great Fritz Lang, one of the European emigrés who brought German Expressionism to Hollywood. There will also be a special screening of a restored archival print of the 1935 American movie BECKY SHARP, the first film shot in three-strip (full) Technicolor. The show will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the founding of Technicolor company in 1915. Sixteen of June’s 19 movies will be Cinematheque premieres.
This all-film month begins appropriately with two new features inspired by the demise of celluloid. OUT OF PRINT is a documentary about L.A.’s New Beverly Cinema, a legendary repertory theater (now owned by Quentin Tarantino) that specializes in double features shown from film. LA ÚLTIMA PELÍCULA is a mock documentary about an arrogant American moviemaker scouting Mexican location for a visionary epic that he plans to shoot on the world’s last remaining film stock. Both movies receive their Cleveland premiere on Friday, June 5.
The entire June line-up is below. Unless noted, admission to each film is $9; Cinematheque members and those age 25 & under $7. Free parking is available in the adjacent Cleveland Institute of Art lot, off of East Boulevard. For further information, call John Ewing or Tim Harry at (216) 421-7450, send an email to, or log on to Cinematheque programs are supported by Cuyahoga Arts and Culture and the Ohio Arts Council.

JUNE 5-6
Friday, June 5, at 7:00 pm
USA, 2014, Julia Marchese
The New Beverly Cinema, a Los Angeles revival movie theatre that has been showing daily double features of old 35mm films since 1978, is profiled in this new documentary by former employee Julia Marchese. The New Bev advocates that classic films should be seen theatrically and also projected from 35mm film. Owned, operated, and programmed by Sherman Torgan from 1978 until his sudden death (at age 63) in 2007, the cinema is now owned and programmed by Quentin Tarantino, who actively embraces its all-35 policy. Marchese’s film pays tribute to the loyal patrons of the New Bev (which include directors and actors like John Landis, Joe Dante, Kevin Smith, and Patton Oswalt) while also describing the digital-age realities that threaten the existence of all 35mm repertory cinemas. Cleveland premiere. 35mm. 86 min.
Friday, June 5, at 8:45 pm
Mexico/Denmark/Canada/Philippines, 2013, Raya Martin, Mark Peranson
A snarky, satirical riff on Dennis Hopper’s indulgent, shot-in-Peru 1971 fiasco The Last Movie (though this movie’s title more accurately translates as “The Last Film”), this mock-doc by a Filipino filmmaker and the editor of Canada’s film magazine CinemaScope takes place in the year of the predicted Mayan apocalypse. Indie filmmaker Alex Ross Perry (Listen Up Philip) plays an insufferable American director scouting locations around Mexico’s Mayan ruins. Sensing that the death of cinema is as imminent as the end of the world, he plans to make a visionary, mystical, and spiritual cinematic masterpiece using the world’s last existing 35mm film stock. Cleveland premiere. Subtitles. 35mm. 88 min.
Saturday, June 6, at 5:00 pm
The Films of Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
Argentina, 1957, Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
In this haunting and visually stunning drama, a sheltered young Argentine girl (Elsa Daniel), growing up in a repressive upper middle-class Catholic household during the 1920s, suffers a disastrous first love affair. Screenplay by Beatriz Guido. “This claustrophobic Gothic drama put [Torre Nilsson]—and Argentina—on the cinematic map.” –Holt Foreign Film Guide. Subtitles. 16mm. 73 min. Three other forgotten classics by Leopoldo Torre Nilsson, all written by Beatriz Guido, will show over the next three Saturdays.
Saturday, June 6, at 6:35 pm
Technicolor Centenary, 1915-2015
Restored 35mm Archive Print!
USA, 1935, Rouben Mamoulian
Incorporated in 1915, the Technicolor company marks its centennial this year. We commemorate the occasion with a special screening of the first feature film shot in three-strip Technicolor (full color), Becky Sharp, based on William Makepeace Thackeray’s Vanity Fair. Miriam Hopkins stars as the title character, a cunning, amoral, lower-class young woman who engineers a rapid rise through 19th-century European society. “Marvellous…Sophisticated, witty, and beautifully economical…The colour is supremely important.” –Time Out Film Guide. 35mm restored print courtesy of the UCLA Film & Television Archive. Restoration funding provided by The Film Foundation. 84 min. Special admission $11; members and CIA I.D. holders $9; age 25 & under $7; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Saturday, June 6, at 8:20 pm
The Films of Hou Hsiao-hsien
Taiwan/France, 2001, Hou Hsiao-hsien
Chinese pop star Shu Qi plays a bar hostess torn between two men—her possessive live-in boyfriend and a small-time gangster who offers her refuge and the promise of love—in Hou’s portrait of life in contemporary Taipei. If the urban milieu and techno soundtrack are new for Hou, the deliberate pacing, formal rigor, gorgeous cinematography (by Ping Bin Lee, who also shot In the Mood for Love), and trance-like mood recall his previous masterpiece, Flowers of Shanghai. Subtitles. 35mm. 119 min. Special admission $12; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $9; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
JUNE 12-13
Friday, June 12, at 7:00 pm
50th Anniversary!
Czechoslovakia, 1965, Ivan Passer
This masterpiece of the Czech New Wave was the only Czech feature of Ivan Passer, who co-wrote Milos Forman’s Loves of a Blonde and The Firemen’s Ball before emigrating with him to the U.S. and becoming a Hollywood director. The movie is a funny, rueful account of a professional cellist from Prague who agrees to be the soloist in a provincial orchestra conducted by an old Conservatory friend he hasn’t seen for years. Their reunion finds big city ambitions clashing with small town ways. “A moving, sympathetically directed study of belonging, place, and the pleasures of friendship…Wistful, gently comic, and affecting.” –Time Out Film Guide. Subtitles. 35mm. 72 min.
Friday, June 12, at 8:35 pm
The Films of Hou Hsiao-hsien
Taiwan, 2005, Hou Hsiao-hsien
Hou tells three love stories set in three different eras of Taiwanese/Chinese history, and Chang Chen and Shu Qi play the lovers in all three episodes. The first, “A Time for Love,” is set in pop-music-filled 1966 and overflows with youthful yearning. It tells of a young army recruit who becomes smitten with a young woman working in a billiard parlor. “A Time for Freedom” is an artistically daring period romance set in 1911 at an upscale brothel reminiscent of the one in Hou’s Flowers of Shanghai. The third story, “A Time for Youth,” is set in present-day Taipei, where a singer abandons her female lover for a young male photographer. “[A] masterpiece…The first section is one of the most perfect pieces of cinema I’ve ever seen.” –Jim Jarmusch. “A masterpiece…This is why cinema exists.” –A.O. Scott, The NY Times. Subtitles. 35mm. 130 min. Special admission $12; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $9; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Saturday, June 13, at 5:00 pm
The Films of Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
Argentina, 1959, Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
A repressed, virginal, Catholic university student from the provinces (Elsa Daniel) takes a room at a creepy Buenos Aires boarding house, where she helps a bed-ridden mother care for her four independent, amoral children. The experience proves mind-expanding, but not in a good way. “The director evokes with great force and conviction the film’s enclosed world with its strongly Cocteauesque overtones.” –Peter Cowie. Subtitles. 35mm. 86 min.
Saturday, June 13, at 6:45 pm
Special Benefit Screening!
Germany/France/UK, 2011, Wim Wenders
Wim Wenders (Wings of Desire, The Buena Vista Social Club) celebrates the groundbreaking work of his friend and fellow German Pina Bausch (1940-2009), a modern dancer and choreographer. This magnificent, Oscar-nominated movie captures Bausch and members of her company performing some of their most celebrated works both on stage and around the German city of Wuppertal, home of Bausch’s dance theatre since 1972. Shown in 2D. Subtitles. 35mm. 103 min. Screening courtesy of IFC Films; proceeds from this show will help pay for the costs of installing digital cinema in our new theatre.
Saturday, June 13, at 8:50 pm
Finland, 1952, Erik Blomberg
This hauntingly photographed Finnish fantasy is a vampire movie like no other. (It won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film over 50 years ago.) Set in Finnish Lapland and based on an ancient legend, the movie follows a herdsman’s lonely wife who is transformed by a shaman into a shape-shifting, vampiric white reindeer. This cursed creature wanders the snowfields of the Midnight Sun, luring hunters to their deaths. Subtitles. 35mm. 75 min.
JUNE 19-20
Friday, June 19, at 7:00 pm
The Films of Hou Hsiao-hsien
France/Taiwan, 2007, Hou Hsiao-hsien
Juliette Binoche stars in the first Hou Hsiao-hsien film made outside of Asia. Produced by the Musée d’Orsay, it’s one of the director’s most rapturous works. Inspired by Albert Lamorisse’s 1956 kids’ classic The Red Balloon, Hou’s movie tells of a Taiwanese film student in Paris who is hired by a frazzled single mom (Binoche) to be nanny to her seven-year-old son. “A meditation on art, life, loneliness and the links between friends and strangers.” –Philadelphia Inquirer. “A movie of genius.” –J. Hoberman, Village Voice. Subtitles. 35mm. 115 min. Special admission $12; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $9; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Friday, June 19, at 9:15 pm
USA, 1984, Tom Schiller
So strange and unclassifiable that it was never released theatrically, this 1980s sci-fi comedy written and directed by longtime Saturday Night Live writer and filmmaker Tom Schiller (and produced by Lorne Michaels) stars Zach Galligan, Lauren Tom, Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Mort Sahl, among others. Set in a surreal future where the iron-fisted Port Authority controls NYC, the film follows an aspiring artist who goes to work in the Holland Tunnel, discovers a society of powerful bums and tramps living underground, and takes a bus to the moon. Old newsreels, classic film clips, and assorted celebrity cameos add to the comic craziness. Cleveland theatrical premiere. 35mm. 82 min. Special admission $10; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $8; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Saturday, June 20, at 5:00 pm
The Films of Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
Argentina/Spain, 1961, Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
In what may be Leopoldo Torre Nilsson’s greatest film, a convent schoolgirl (Elsa Daniel), home for the summer, decides that she wants to meet the mysterious recluse who has been living in solitary confinement on the third floor of her spooky, seen-better-days house for more than 20 years. The shocking truth ensnares her as well. With Francisco Rabal. Subtitles. 16mm. 90 min.
Saturday, June 20, at 6:50 pm
New 35mm Scope Print!
Czechoslovakia, 1967, František Vláčil
Voted the best Czech movie of all time in a 1998 poll of Czech film critics, this stirring medieval epic, set at the time that Christianity replaced paganism, chronicles a kidnapping that ignites a feud between two rival clans.  “Pure cinema…Stark, daring and often astoundingly dynamic…Near hallucinatory…Not so much a drama as an ancient litany—mystical and feral rather than spiritual or religious.” –Time Out Film Guide. Cleveland revival premiere. Subtitles. 162 min. Special admission $11; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $9; no passes, twofers, or radio winners. Support for this film comes from the Cinematheque’s George Gund III endowment.
JUNE 26-27
Friday, June 26, at 7:00 pm
Lang Noir
USA, 1944, Fritz Lang
In “one of the best of Fritz Lang’s American movies” (Pauline Kael), a criminology professor (Edward G. Robinson) falls hard for a woman (Joan Bennett) pictured in a painting, and soon he’s involved in murder and blackmail. This clever, nightmarish thriller is “not merely a dazzling piece of suspense, but also a characteristically stark demonstration of Lang’s belief in the inevitability of fate” (Time Out Film Guide). With Dan Duryea. 35mm. 99 min. Special admission $10; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $8; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Friday, June 26, at 9:00 pm
Lang Noir
Restored 35mm Archive Print!
USA, 1945, Fritz Lang
Fritz Lang’s follow-up to The Woman in the Window (see previous blurb) also starred Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, and Dan Duryea. It’s a remake of Jean Renoir’s 1931 La Chienne in which a meek, put-upon husband and Sunday painter becomes criminally involved with a tart who models for him and with her lowlife boyfriend. This movie was originally banned in New York State for being “immoral, indecent, corrupt, and tending to incite crime.” Whoa! 35mm print preserved by the Library of Congress. 103 min. Special admission $10; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $8; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Saturday, June 27, at 5:00 pm
The Films of Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
Argentina, 1961, Leopoldo Torre Nilsson
This Torre Nilsson tale of moral corruption forsakes the creepy confines of dilapidated mansions for the sun, sea, and sand of the summertime beach. There a young girl pretends to love a sick boy in order to help his recovery. “Visually shows Torre Nilsson at his brilliant best.” –Int’l Film Guide 1967. Subtitles. 16mm. 96 min.
Saturday, June 27, at 7:00 pm
Lang Noir
New 35mm Print!
USA, 1953, Fritz Lang
Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, and Lee Marvin star in Fritz Lang’s brutal, shocking police drama, about a clean cop who turns unrelenting avenger in his attempt to bring down a corrupt crime syndicate. “A definitive film noir.” –Pauline Kael. 90 min. Special admission $10; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $8; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.
Saturday, June 27, at 8:50 pm
Lang Noir
USA, 1956, Fritz Lang
Fritz Lang believed that this rarely shown thriller was as good as his earlier masterpieces M and Fury. It follows three greedy, ambitious newspaper men who each try to catch a serial sex murderer before the police do, thus winning the position of executive editor at their paper. With Dana Andrews, Ida Lupino, George Sanders, Thomas Mitchell, Vincent Price, et al. 35mm scope print! 100 min. Special admission $10; members, CIA I.D. holders, and those age 25 & under $8; no passes, twofers, or radio winners.

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