Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Engagements January 2019 at the Quad

The Quad rings in the new year with revivals of Isao Takahata's wartime masterpiece Grave of the Fireflies (NY theatrical premiere engagement) and Just Jaeckin's softcore sensation Emmanuelle (U.S. premiere of 2K restoration)

Plus the gorgeously animated Tito and the Birds, two essential Holocaust documentaries The Invisibles and Who Will Write Our History, and more!

Grave of the Fireflies

Opens Fri January 4—New York premiere theatrical engagement

30th anniversary release
Isao Takahata, 1988, Japan, 88m, DCP
One of the greatest films produced by Japan’s legendary Studio Ghibli, Takahata’s heartbreaking tale follows a teenage boy left to care for his younger sister after they’re separated from their parents in the wake of a WWII bombing raid. “An emotional experience so powerful that it forces a rethinking of animation,” wrote Roger Ebert, and the Quad is honored to give this overwhelming and profound work of art the attention and theatrical showcase it has long deserved but seldom received. A GKIDS release

In Japanese with English subtitles

"If you thought Bambi or Up were as emotional as animation gets, you need to see this Japanese masterpiece." —The Guardian


Opens Fri January 24 — U.S. premiere of new 2K restoration

Exclusive NY engagement
Just Jaeckin, 1974, France, 95m, DCP
Thai-born Emmanuelle Arsan (who appeared in The Sand Pebbles) was identified as the writer of the scandalous 1959 novel Emmanuelle, but her husband Louis-Jacques Rollet-Andriane was later alleged to be the author. Carnally incarnating the character onscreen, Dutch actress Sylvia Kristel was catapulted to international fame; Emmanuelle’s marriage to diplomat Daniel Sarky is rocked by sexual explorations—some startling—with and via older man Alain Cuny. Jaeckin’s movie was a phenomenon in France, an X-rated hit in America, and banned in some countries; the “Emmanuelle” brand extended to wicker chairs after one racy scene in particular, and led to an avalanche of official and unauthorized sequels over the next several years. A Kino Lorber Repertory release

In French with English subtitles

“Like a softcore version of The Story of O commissioned by Vogue magazine.”
—Chris Petit, Time Out

A Just Jaeckin retrospective plus a sampling of films from the Emmanuelle canon screen starting February 1.
First Run

The Aspern Papers

Opens Fri January 11 — Exclusive NY engagement
Julien Landais, UK/Germany, 90m, DCP
Rife with deception, lust, and literary intrigue, this adaptation of Henry James’ 1888 novella stars a commanding Vanessa Redgrave as the ailing (but formidable) former lover of a deceased poet—and the supposed recipient of a cache of his personal letters. Posing as a prospective lodger, conniving American editor Jonathan Rhys Meyers courts Redgrave’s niece (played by her real-life daughter Joely Richardson) in the hopes of gaining access to the mysterious—and potentially scandalous—contents of the missives. But is the past best kept in the past? Executive-produced by James Ivory. A Cohen Media Group release

In anticipation of International Holocaust Remembrance Day Sunday, January 27, the Quad is honored to present weeklong engagements of two extraordinary new documentaries.

Who Will Write Our History

Opens Friday January 18 — Exclusive NY Engagement
Roberta Grossman, U.S., 96m, DCP
With a wealth of archival footage and detailed re-enactments, this film recounts the incredible story of Emanuel Ringelblum, who secretly led a team of writers and intellectuals to preserve a vibrant Jewish culture in the Warsaw Ghetto shortly after the Nazis took over. What resulted was a startlingly deep and diverse portrait of European Jewish life, as the Oyneg Shabes Archive made an invaluable contribution to the historical record. Based on the book by Samuel Kassow. An Abramorama release.

In English, Yiddish, and Polish with English subtitles

Official selection: New York Jewish Film Festival

“Arguably the most important Holocaust story never told.” —Tablet

With filmmakers in person opening weekend

The Invisibles

Opens Friday January 25
Claus Räfle, Germany, 110m, DCP
When Goebbels declared Berlin judenfrei (free of Jews) in 1943, little did the German government know that roughly 7,000 Jews were still living in the capital, hiding in plain sight. Of that group, some 1,700 lived to see the defeat of the Third Reich, and this remarkable new film tells the stories of four of these survivors. Combining documentary interviews with stunning dramatizations (photographed by Jörg Widmer, The Tree of Life’s camera operator), The Invisibles offers a riveting portrait of resourcefulness and courage in the face of horror. A Greenwich Entertainment release.

In German with English subtitles

Official selection: New York Jewish Film Festival

“Fascinating… plays like a thriller but is all the more remarkable for being true.” —Jerusalem Post

Tito and the Birds

Opens Friday January 25 — Exclusive NY engagement
Gustavo Steinberg, Gabriel Bitar & André Catoto, Brazil, 71m, DCP
Reflecting the scope of political unrest in Brazil and abroad, this brisk, gorgeous, endlessly inventive hybrid of oil painting and digital animation packs thrills and heart in equal measure. In a society plagued (literally) by mass hysteria, young Tito invents a machine to help humans communicate with birds, believing he can execute a plan to save the city and his ailing mother. But first he must face up to a rich, reactionary TV personality capitalizing on the chaos. A Shout! Studios release

Official selection: Toronto International Film Festival

Matinees: English-language version | Evenings: Portuguese with English subtitles

"Constantly absorbing and picture-book vivid... an unusually candid political allegory for young audiences." —Variety

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