A collection of reviews of films from off the beaten path; a travel guide for those who love the cinematic world and want more than the mainstream releases.
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
May/June 2018 Week-Long Engagements Calendar Announced at the Metrograph
May 4-10 Exclusive One-Week NY Engagement
ANGELS WEAR WHITE A Harrowing and Uncompromised Film by Vivian Wu
A bold and, in Mainland China, unprecedented use of genre film means to shine a light on a culture of bureaucratic corruption and conspiratorial silence which puts vulnerable young women at particular risk. Two schoolgirls are assaulted in a motel; Mia, a teenager on-duty at the desk who is the lone witness, says nothing to the authorities for fear of reprisal, but she begins to buckle upon meeting one of the victims, 12-year-old Wen, and finds herself sucked into an intrigue involving media, local government, and more. A harrowing and uncompromised sophomore feature from Vivian Qu, resonant with the global reckoning of the #MeToo moment. A KimStim release.
May 11-17 Exclusive One-Week NY Engagement
FILMWORKER A Candid and Moving Portrait of Stanley Kubrick's Longtime Assistant
After a long struggle to make it as an actor, Leon Vitali seemed to have arrived when he played Lord Bullingdon in Stanley Kubrick’s 1975 Barry Lyndon. After appearing in the film, prestigious job offers poured in from film, television and stage, but Vitali turned them all down to take on the role of assistant to Kubrick, which he held for more than two decades, on The Shining (1980), Full Metal Jacket (1987), andEyes Wide Shut (1999). In Filmworker, Vitali’s candid and often funny experiences in the company of Kubrick are woven together with the notoriously private director's previously unseen artifacts, including photos, videos, letters, notebooks, and memos. Concurrent with the run of Filmworker, Metrograph will present Kubrick x8, retrospective including such masterpieces as Dr. Strangelove (1964),Paths of Glory (1957), Lolita (1962), and A Clockwork Orange (1971). A Kino Lorber release.
May 25-31 Exclusive One-Week Revival Run
THE CHANGELING New 4K Restoration of the Psychological Horror Cult Classic
Mad with grief over the deaths of his wife and daughter, composer George C. Scott decides to retire from the world into an ominous, remote mansion—but he’s got company, in the form of a murdered child’s restless spirit. Based on recorded supernatural incidents at the Harry Treat Rogers Mansion in Denver, Peter Medak’s gracefully shot, relentlessly atmospheric film is one of the most spine-tinglingly effective haunted house movies ever made, one sure to instill in new viewers a lifelong fear of self-propelling wheelchairs and rubber balls. New 4K restoration from film's internegative. A Severin Films release.
May 25-31 Exclusive One-Week Revival Run
A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS New 4K Restoration of Sergio Leone's Masterpiece
With this blackly comic, cynical, dust-choked movie, Leone revolutionized the quintessentially American western genre from his native Italy, established “Man with No Name” star Clint Eastwood as a taciturn, sculptural screen icon, and launched a thousand knockoff spaghetti westerns. Inspired by Dashiell Hammett’s hard-boiled novel Red Harvest, Sergio Leone’s pitiless, operatic work has Eastwood arriving in the crime-ridden ‘burg of San Miguel, where he sets out to get rich setting two feuding gangs at each other’s throats. A work of bleak, brutal beauty, and a stern reminder to never, ever, under any circumstances, talk shit about Clint Eastwood’s mule. Restoration carried out by Cineteca di Bologna and Unidis Jolly Film at L'Immagine Ritrovata laboratory in association with MGM. Restoration funding provided by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and The Film Foundation. A Park Circus release.
May 30-June 5 Exclusive One-Week Revival Run
GANJA & HESS New Restoration of Bill Gunn's Cult Classic
Cut by timid distributors and inappropriately marketed as grindhouse blaxploitation, this eerie, sui generis work by utterly iconoclastic director Bill Gunn (Personal Problems) is, in its original form, nothing short of a masterpiece of ‘70s American cinema. Night of the Living Dead’s Duane Jones is an anthropologist living in aristocratic splendor in the Hudson Valley who finds himself lusting for blood after being stabbed by his unstable assistant (Gunn). What proceeds from this is a baroque, atmospheric rumination on the clash between African-American and Euro-American culture, animist and Christian influences, and homo–and hetero–desire. This version of Ganja & Hess represents the director’s cut of the film, restored by the Museum of Modern Art from a 35mm negative, with support from the Film Foundation. A Kino Lorber release.
June 8-14 Exclusive One-Week Revival Run
DEMENTIA 13 and LICK THE STAR New 4K Restorations of Francis Ford and Sofia Coppola's Career-Launching Films
A duo of distinguished father-daughter debuts. After dabbling in nudies, Francis Ford Coppola officially began his brilliant career under the tutelage of Roger Corman with this shot-in-Ireland, Psycho-inspired exploitation number, which finds the young director’s genius for gothic filigree already in full flowering. Thirty-five year later, Sofia Coppola showed her sensuous storytelling sensibility entirely developed in short Lick the Star, a languorous, punk-inflected tale of high school skullduggery featuring family friend Peter Bogdanovich as the principal. New 4K restorations by American Zoetrope.
June 22-28 Exclusive One-Week Revival Run
LES CARABINIERS Imported 35mm Print of Jean-Luc Godard's Antiwar Classic
In an invented country that’s everywhere and nowhere, in a time out of time, two poor schlemiels, the imposingly-named Ulysses and Michelangelo, receive a missive from their king that promises untold riches in exchange for their service in battle, in which they are encouraged to pillage, rape, and plunder at will. Co-written by Roberto Rossellini, this grim, grotty, grotesque, and audience-assaultive anti-imperialist fable, disdained by critics, inaugurated Jean-Luc Godard’s golden era, a harrowing journey leading to a sour punchline that, per admirer Susan Sontag “vividly parodies the equivocal magic of the photographic image.”A Rialto Pictures release.
June 29-July 5 Exclusive One-Week NY Engagement
ROCK RUBBER 45s Bobbito Garcia's Thrilling and Fresh Auto-Portrait
DJ, author, filmmaker, TV/radio personality, B-ball player, card-carrying Rock Steady Crew member, and all-around apostle for NYC street culture, Bobbito Garcia a/k/a Kool Bob Love draws in this film on the whole of his life experience, from a rough and unpromising youth to an influential, entrepreneurial, and determinedly-independent adulthood, combining autobiography with recent-past art history as he traces the global transmission of hip-hop, basketball, and sneaker culture. Featuring Garcia, who was there at the beginning, and a whole host of friends, including Lin-Manuel Miranda, Chuck D, Questlove, and too many more to name. A Saboteur Media release.