omplete QPORIT: THE NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL 2008

Saturday, September 27, 2008

 

THE NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL 2008

The Film Society of Lincoln Center presents
The 46th New York Film Festival
Sept. 26 - Oct. 12
at the Ziegfeld Theatre and Lincoln Center.


SURPRISE
a SHORT FILM Directed by Fabrice Maruca, France, 2007; 18m
Photo Credit: Film Society of Lincoln Center / Fabrice Maruca

The 2008 festival schedule includes
=>28 feature films
=>17 shorts,
=>four onstage conversations as part of the annual HBO Films Dialogues series,
=>and a diverse selection of panels and special events at the Walter Reade Theater.

Nearly all of this year’s feature directors are expected at the screenings during the festival, including Darren Aronofsky, Olivier Assayas, João Botelho, Laurent Cantet, Arnaud Desplechin, Clint Eastwood, Ari Folman, Matteo Garrone, Hong Sang-soo, Agnès Jaoui, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Mike Leigh, Steve McQueen, Kelly Reichardt, Jerzy Skolimowski, Steven Soderbergh, Wong Kar-wai and Jia Zhangke. Director Martin Scorsese and writers Andrew Sarris and Greil Marcus are among the other guests who will join the Film Society on stage.

The 46th New York Film Festival’s selection committee is composed of Richard Peña, chairman and program director at the Film Society; Kent Jones, associate director of programming at the Film Society and editor-at-large of Film Comment magazine; Scott Foundas, film editor and critic, L.A. Weekly; J. Hoberman, film critic, The Village Voice; and Lisa Schwarzbaum, film critic, Entertainment Weekly.

FEATURE FILMS

The festival opens with the North American premiere of Laurent Cantet’s “The Class” (“Entre les murs”), Palme d’Or winner from this year’s Cannes Film Festival, at Avery Fisher Hall and the Ziegfeld Theatre, Friday, Sept. 26. Adapted from François Bégaudeau’s first-hand account of teaching in a tough Parisian junior high school—and starring Bégaudeau and his students as they interact over the course of a school year—the film presents the classroom as a microcosm of contemporary France, a place where cultures and attitudes often clash.

Darren Aronofsky’s “The Wrestler” will be honored as the festival’s Closing Night selection at Avery Fisher Hall, Sunday, Oct. 12, at 8:30 p.m. Selection committee member Kent Jones says actor Mickey Rourke gives “a performance of a lifetime” as once-popular pro Randy “The Ram” Robinson, who now ekes out a living performing for diehard wrestling fans in small-town venues throughout New Jersey. Though forced to reconsider his life, The Ram’s attempts to reconnect with his daughter (Evan Rachel Wood) and start a relationship with stripper Pam (Marisa Tomei) cannot outshine the allure of the ring. The film, which recently won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, was written by Robert D. Siegel.

This year’s Centerpiece selection is Clint Eastwood’s true-crime period drama “Changeling.” Angelina Jolie stars as Christine Collins, a single mother in 1928 Los Angeles who returns home to find her nine-year-old son missing. Her desperate search for the boy becomes an unlikely campaign against institutional corruption and a vigilant stand for equality under the law. The film was written by J. Michael Straczynski and produced by Eastwood, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Robert Lorenz, with Tim Moore and Jim Whitaker as executive producers.

Cantet makes his second appearance in the New York Film Festival, following “Time Out” (2001), while Aronofsky makes his festival debut; his first film “Pi” (1998) was screened in the Film Society’s New Directors/New Films festival. “Changeling” marks Eastwood’s third festival selection, after “Bird” (1988) and the Opening Night-selection “Mystic River” (2003).

Festival favorites Mike Leigh, Wong Kar-wai and Hong Sang-soo also return to New York with “Happy-Go-Lucky,” “Ashes of Time Redux” and “Night and Day,” respectively. Leigh’s relationship with the New York Film Festival dates back to 1987, when his short “The Short & Curlies” screened at Alice Tully Hall. Since then, “High Hopes” (1988), “Two Mikes Don’t Make a Wright” (1992), “Naked” (1993), Opening Night-selection “Secrets & Lies” (1996), Centerpiece-selection “Topsy-Turvy” (1999) and “Vera Drake” (2004) have all been festival features. Wong’s “Days of Being Wild” (1990) screened in New Directors/New Films and was followed by four New York Film Festival selections: “Chungking Express” (1994), “Fallen Angels” (1995), “Happy Together” (1997) and “In the Mood for Love” (2000). Hong’s new Parisian love story is the Korean director’s fifth festival screening, constituting his past five films: “Turning Gate” (2002), “Woman Is the Future of Man” (2004), “Tale of Cinema” (2005), and “Woman on the Beach” (2006).

Other prominent alumni returning to the festival include Steven Soderbergh with “Che,” his controversial, two-part exposé on the life and tactics of influential freedom fighter Ernesto “Che” Guevara.

The star-studded drama “A Christmas Tale” is French mainstay Arnaud Desplechin’s fourth festival entry, after “La Sentinelle” (1992), “My Sex Life…or How I Got Into an Argument” (1996) and “Kings & Queen” (2004).

Jia Zhangke’s “24 City” is the Chinese director’s third festival feature and second in two years, following “Useless” (2007); his new short “Cry Me a River” will also screen during the festival, with New Directors/New Films veteran Kelly Reichardt’s “Wendy and Lucy.”

Polish master filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski returns to feature filmmaking after a 17-year hiatus with “Four Nights with Anna,” his fifth New York Film Festival selection but the first since “Moonlighting” (1982). Portuguese director João Botelho also makes a long awaited return with the haunting generational tale “The Northern Land,” his first selection since “Hard Times” (1988). Lucrecia Martel (“The Headless Woman”), Agnès Jaoui (“Let It Rain”) and Olivier Assayas (“Summer Hours”) each return to the festival for the second time.

Open and free of entry fees to all filmmakers regardless their experience, the 2008 New York Film Festival also boasts several engaging talents making their festival debuts. Israeli director Ari Folman will present his celebrated animated documentary “Waltz with Bashir,” capturing his time as a soldier in Lebanon during the ’82 war.

The award-winning first film “Hunger” by Turner prize-winning visual artist Steve McQueen is an uncompromising look at the hunger strike led by IRA prisoner Bobby Sands in 1981.

Matteo Garrone follows on the success of New Directors/New Films selection “The Embalmer” (2002) with his gripping and expansive mob tale, “Gomorrah.” Kazakh directors Sergey Dvortsevoy (“Tulpan”) and Darezhan Omirbaev (“Chouga”) both signal the rise of a new national force in world cinema, and native-New Yorkers Antonio Campos and fashion designer Alexander Olch both come to the festival with their feature film debuts: “Afterschool” and “The Windmill Movie,” based on the autobiographical footage of filmmaker and teacher Richard P. Rogers.

France is the most-represented country in the festival’s main slate through four French films and eight international co-productions. The United States is the slate’s second most-prominent country, represented by “Changeling,” “The Wrestler,” “Wendy and Lucy,” “Afterschool” and “The Windmill Movie.”

“The Class,” “The Wrestler” and “Changeling” join a select group of films to have been highlighted as the Opening, Closing and Centerpiece selections of the New York Film Festival. Since the first festival in 1963—which opened with Luis Buñuel’s “The Exterminating Angel”—these have included Jean-Luc Godard’s “Alphaville;” Akira Kurosawa’s “Red Beard;” Paul Mazursky’s “Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice;” Eric Rohmer’s “Chloe in the Afternoon;” Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Last Tango in Paris” (which inspired Pauline Kael’s notorious review in The New Yorker); Pedro Almodóvar’s “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown,” “Live Flesh,” “All About My Mother,” “Talk to Her,” “Bad Education” and “Volver;” Robert Altman’s “A Wedding” and “Short Cuts;” Hugh Hudson’s “Chariots of Fire” (which went on to win the 1982 Academy Award for Best Picture); Jane Campion’s “The Piano;” Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction;” Woody Allen’s “Celebrity;” Ang Lee’s “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon;” Alejandro González Iñárritu’s “21 Grams;” Alexander Payne’s “Sideways;” George Clooney’s “Good Night, and Good Luck;” Stephen Frears’s “The Queen;” Guillermo del Toro’s “Pan’s Labyrinth;” and last year’s selections: Wes Anderson’s “The Darjeeling Limited;” Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud’s “Persepolis;” and the Coen brothers’ best picture-winner “No Country for Old Men.”

SPOTLIGHT RETROSPECTIVE

“‘Lola Montès’ is in my unhumble opinion the greatest film of all time,” wrote film critic Andrew Sarris nearly 40 years ago. The film, Max Ophuls’s final masterpiece, will take the Ziegfeld Theatre spotlight as this year’s spotlight retrospective, Saturday, Oct. 4, at 11:15 a.m.

A biography told in flashbacks of notorious dancer and courtesan Elizabeth Rosanna Gilbert—aka Lola Montès—Ophuls’s landmark biography is a meditation on time and the evanescent nature of fame and riches, yet its financial failure and butchering at the hands of its producers were among the factors that contributed to the legendary director’s untimely death at the age of 54. The 46th New York Film Festival will screen a gleaming new restoration of the film from the Cinémathèque Française, which incorporates all available footage. The screening also honors Sarris (at one time the film critic of the Village Voice) on the occasion of his 80th birthday, and he will introduce the screening. The restoration is being released by Rialto Pictures.

Previous spotlight retrospectives in the New York Film Festival include Ridley Scott’s final director’s cut of “Blade Runner” last year, and Warren Beatty’s “Reds” in 2006.

SHORT FILMS

Jia Zhangke’s “Cry Me a River” headlines the 17 short films that will screen alongside the festival’s feature selections, offering New York Film Festival audiences a glimpse at the provocative themes captured by some particularly imaginative artists.

Academy Award-winning documentarian and cinematographer Ross Kauffman (“Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids”) brings his newest work “Wait For Me,” about the spiritual and emotional impact of a mother’s search for her long-missing son, to the festival’s Centerpiece screenings, while Lars Henning’s “Security” will accompany “The Wrestler” during Closing Night.

Sam Taylor-Wood’s “Love You More” is a tale of vinyl lust featuring the beloved English band the Buzzcocks; it was nominated for best short film at the Cannes Film Festival and also screened at Telluride.

With their animated short “Unpredictable Behaviour,” San Francisco and Berlin-based artists Pasha Shapiro and Ernst Weber unravel the mystery of Jack the Ripper with the help of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson. Dmitry Povolotsky’s “Pal/Secam,” Columbia University Film Festival winner for best short film, captures a boy’s romantic frustrations in the late Soviet era.

Other short films in the festival include Baker Smith’s “Dust,” Alistair Banks Griffin’s “Gauge,” Pablo Lamar’s “I Hear Your Scream,” Katie Wolfe’s “This is Her,” Fabrice Maruca’s “Surprise!,” Guilhem Amesland’s “Maybe Tomorrow,” Alex Winckler’s “Ralph,” Eric Capitaine’s “Love is Dead,” Dyana Gaye’s “Deweneti” and Joachim Dollhopf and Evi Goldbrunner’s “I Don’t Feel Like Dancing.” The late Richard P. Rogers’s 1970 short “Quarry” will screen before Alexander Olch’s work based on Rogers’s footage, “The Windmill Movie,” on Sunday, Oct. 5, at 6:00 p.m. at the Ziegfeld Theatre.


HBO FILMS DIALOGUES

The popular HBO Films Dialogues return to the New York Film Festival for the fifth year, bringing celebrated artists together with their audiences to discuss the creative choices that have defined the acclaimed filmmakers’ careers and the issues raised by their newest works.

“24 City” director Jia Zhangke will join LA Weekly film critic and festival selection committee member Scott Foundas to talk about his influences at home and abroad and the changing face of China, his native country, fresh off hosting its first Olympic games, Sunday, Sept. 28, at 4:00 p.m.

Wong Kar-wai will discuss his working methods and the evolution of the themes that run through his work with Village Voice film critic and festival selection committee member J. Hoberman, Sunday, Oct. 5, at 4:00 p.m.

Brooklyn-native Darren Aronofsky is honored as this year’s Closing Night director for his film “The Wrestler.” He will be onstage with Film Society program director and festival selection committee chair Richard Peña, Saturday, Oct. 11, at 1:30 p.m.

“A Christmas Tale” director Arnaud Desplechin will talk about the themes and creative partnerships that continue to motivate him with Film Comment editor-at-large and festival selection committee member Kent Jones, Saturday, Oct. 11, at 4:30 p.m.

All HBO Films Dialogues will be held at the Stanley H. Kaplan Penthouse, on the 10th floor of Lincoln Center’s Samuel B. & David Rose Building, adjacent to the Walter Reade Theater.


WALTER READE THEATER PANELS AND SPECIAL EVENTS

Journalism, history and politics converge in the New York Film Festival’s special events and panels, taking place at the Walter Reade Theater throughout the festival’s run. Film Criticism in Crisis?, a panel discussion hosted by Film Comment magazine, brings together critics from around the world and close to home to discuss the current state and future of film criticism, Saturday, Sept. 27, at 1:00 p.m. Participants include critic Jonathan Rosenbaum, Cahiers du cinéma editor Emmanuel Burdeau, Film Comment editor-at-large Kent Jones, GreenCine Daily blog editor David Hudson, and Argentine film critic Pablo Suarez, among others. A reception will follow the event. Film Criticism in Crisis? is sponsored by Sardinia Region Tourism.

On Monday, Oct. 6, at 6:00 and 8:30 p.m., the New York Film Festival offers music fans, silent film aficionados and movie lovers a unique treat: two chances to see a new 35mm print of Josef von Sternberg’s 1928 classic “The Last Command,” accompanied by the New York premiere of Alloy Orchestra’s newest score. Emil Jannings stars in the film alongside Evelyn Brent and William Powell as a once-decorated Russian general who must relive the revolution that deposed him as an extra in a Hollywood film directed by a one-time opponent. Jannings’s performance contributed to his earning the first-ever Oscar for Best Actor, while the film was added to the National Film Registry in 2006. Alloy Orchestra works with untraditional objects to create unique and soulful music for silent film scores. The ensemble has performed live at celebrated arts venues throughout the world. These screenings were programmed by Sayre Maxfield and made possible through the generosity of the Ira M. Resnick Foundation.

Tickets are $20.

Filmmaker Martin Scorsese will be onstage to introduce and discuss the festival’s In Glorious Technicolor screening of “Pandora and the Flying Dutchman” at the Walter Reade Theater, Friday, Oct. 10, at 6:15 p.m. The film, a reworking of the tale of the Flying Dutchman set on the Spanish coast, stars one of cinema’s most explosive onscreen couples, James Mason as Hendrik the Dutchman and Ava Gardner as Pandora. Directed by one of cinema’s most unusual talents, Albert Lewin, designed by director-to-be Clive Donner and shot by the great cinematographer Jack Cardiff, it has been painstakingly restored to its original Technicolor glory by George Eastman House in cooperation with The Douris Corporation, with funding provided by The Film Foundation and the Franco-American Cultural Fund. This screening is made possible by The Film Foundation and American Express Preservation Screening Program.

The festival’s second anniversary screening remembers one of cinema history’s forgotten masterworks, “The Day Shall Dawn,” on Saturday, Oct. 11, at 6:30 p.m. Fifty years ago, a group of film enthusiasts inspired by the example of Satyajit Ray in India banded together to make Pakistan’s first experiment with realist cinema. Walter Lassally, a key figure in Britain’s Free Cinema movement, handled the camera for director and screenwriter A.J. Kardar’s story of a family of fishermen working along the Meghna River that attempts to break out of a vicious cycle of exploitation by acquiring a boat. The film was awarded a gold medal at the Moscow Film Festival and received several glowing reviews by international critics. Yet it was soon almost completely forgotten, as Pakistani cinema headed into another, very different direction. The Film Society thanks Anjum Taseer for making this screening possible.

On the festival’s final day, the Film Society hosts an expert panel following Daniel Leconte’s new documentary “It’s Hard Being Loved by Jerks,” investigating “the first major legal battle of the 21st century,” Sunday, Oct. 12, at 1:00 p.m. In 2006, the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo published 12 cartoons satirizing Islamic fundamentalism, including a rendering of a distraught Muhammad with a thought balloon lamenting, “It’s hard being loved by jerks.” Several Islamic organizations sued editor Philippe Val for slander. Leconte documents the trial, chronicling the various legal strategies and capturing an array of social commentators to remark on the event’s impact and long-term effects. After the screening, the filmmaker will join Carol Becker, writer, culture critic and dean of the School of the Arts, Columbia University; Marshall Cohen, professor of philosophy and provost emeritus of philosophy and law, University of Southern California; and others on stage to discuss the concerns raised by the film.


VIEWS FROM THE AVANT-GARDE (OCT 3-5)

Now in its 12th year, the annual festival showcase Views from the Avant-Garde offers New Yorkers nine programs of experimental films from some of the world’s most adventurous artistic talents, screening at the Walter Reade Theater, Oct. 3-5.

Filmmaker Olivier Assayas, writer Greil Marcus and filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin will launch the weekend program by joining the Film Society for a panel discussion following a 30th-anniversary screening of Situationist International originator and founder Guy Debord’s landmark opus, “In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni,” Friday, Oct. 3, at 6:30 p.m. The film re-uses images from magazines, comics and popular films—a technique defined by Debord as détournement—to critique image culture and media-dominated society. It is “an act of condemnation, but it is also an affirmation,” says Kent Jones, associate director of programming at the Film Society, “of our ability to build on the best rather than the worst in mankind, to create a true Utopia rather than a paltry counterfeit. Without exaggeration, this is one of the most provocative experiences you’ll ever have at the movies.”

Throughout the weekend, film and video artists Andrew Noren, Nathaniel Dorsky and Craig Baldwin are each given the Walter Reade’s spotlight with individual programs, while Views from the Avant-Garde honors legendary film and video trailblazer Bruce Conner—who died this year at the age of 74—with a program of some of his most inventive and celebrated works, including “A Movie,” “Breakaway,” Report,” “Take the 5:10 to Dreamland,” and his last completed film, “Easter Morning,” on Saturday, Oct. 4, at 8:45 p.m.

The entire Views from the Avant-Garde showcase culminates with a screening of James Benning’s 2007 film RR, on Sunday, Oct. 5, at 9:00 p.m. The weekend also features new films and videos by Pat O'Neill, Ben Rivers, Michael Robinson, Julie Murray, Leslie Thornton, Ken Jacobs, Ernie Gehr and Lewis Klahr.

Mary Helena Clark, Taylor Dunne, Chris Kennedy, Michael Maryniuk, Sylvia Schedelbauer, Joel Schlemowitz and Jessie Stead are among those film and videomakers who are making their Views from the Avant-Garde debut.


NYFF SIDEBAR: IN THE REALM OF OSHIMA (SEP 27 - OCT 13)

The Film Society of Lincoln Center will compliment the 46th New York Film Festival by launching the North American tour of In the Realm of Oshima, a historical, in-depth look at one of modern cinema’s essential figures, at the Walter Reade Theater, Sept. 27 – Oct. 13. The official festival sidebar, a near-complete retrospective of Japanese director, writer and post-war political firebrand Nagisa Oshima, presents 26 titles spanning five decades, half screening in brand-new 35mm prints.

In the Realm of Oshima is co-organized by The Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Cinematheque Ontario and curated by James Quandt. Following its New York premiere, it will screen at several prominent cultural institutions in the United States and Canada, including Walker Art Center (Minneapolis), Pacific Cinematheque (Vancouver), Harvard Film Archive (Cambridge, Mass.), Northwest Film Center (Seattle), Pacific Film Archive (Berkeley, Calif.), the National Gallery of Art (Washington D.C.) and George Eastman House (Rochester, NY).

The sidebar presents several key works in both Oshima’s career and Japanese film history, including his rarely screened first feature “A Town of Love and Hope;” the Shochiku Studios film that launched the Japanese New Wave of the 1960s, “Cruel Story of Youth;” his varied and accomplished political narratives, such as “Death by Hanging” and “The Man Who Left His Will on Film;” the highly controversial exploration of sexual ecstasy, “In the Realm of the Senses;” and his most recent effort, “Taboo.”

The series also showcases the filmmaker’s dynamic technical range—from the 40 shots of “Night and Fog in Japan” to the feverish 1,000 shots in “Violence at Noon”—in a career that has explored the gamut of cinematic styles: anime (“Band of Ninja”), avant-garde theater (“Diary of a Shinjuku Thief”), diary-like travelogue (“Dear Summer Sister”), historical epic (“Shiro of Amakusa, The Christian Rebel”), an international co-production ably headlined by pop icons David Bowie and Ryuichi Sakamoto (“Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence”), and more.

“Oshima helped spearhead an extraordinary new approach to filmmaking in Japan, one that constantly avoided the expected and conventional,” says Richard Peña, program director at the Film Society. “He continually attempted to re-invent both himself and the medium. He was profoundly marked by the political upheavals in Japan and around the world in the ’60s, and several of his films are direct meditations on the possibility of political action.”

In addition to the sidebar’s film screenings, a free panel discussion titled “The Place of Oshima” will explore the issues raised by the filmmaker’s exemplary body of work, at the Walter Reade Theater, Wednesday, Oct. 1, at 6:30 p.m. The panelists will include Annette Michelson, editor of “Cinema, Censorship and the State,” a collection of Oshima writings; David Desser, author of “Eros + Massacre: An Introduction to the Japanese New Wave;” Aaron Gerow, Asst. Professor of Film Studies and East Asian Languages and Literatures at Yale University; and other scholars and critics.

Oshima has a unique distinction in relationship to the New York Film Festival: “In the Realm of the Senses” is the only invited film ever to have been censored. U.S. customs officials held the print prior to the 14th festival in 1976. It was later released and screened after the event. “Unhappily, the controversy has made it difficult for people to appreciate what an enormously powerful work of cinema it truly is,” says Peña of the film. “Boy” and “Taboo” (as “Gohatto”) screened at the seventh (1969) and 38th (2000) New York Film Festivals, respectively.


FRIEDA AND ROY FURMAN GALLERY

From Sept. 15 to Oct. 12, the Film Society’s Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery will host the photographic exhibitions Brief Histories Of… and Correspondence Course(s) by filmmaker, author and visual artist Mark Rappaport. Both photomontage essays gather frames from popular movies and re-assemble them in new juxtapositions. The stills refer to the old narrative from which the images were taken, but the viewer is invited to read them and the story they create with fresh eyes. As Mark Rappaport puts it, “It’s a leapfrogging, zigzagging, hopscotching, time-traveling, three-dimensional chess game through film history.” The Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery is adjacent to the Walter Reade Theater. It is free to the public, and open daily 1:30 to 6:00 p.m.


VENUE AND TICKET INFORMATION

Due to ongoing renovations at the festival’s traditional home Alice Tully Hall, this year’s festival screenings will be held at New York’s Ziegfeld Theatre, located at 141 West 54th St. (Please note the Ziegfeld Theater is not wheelchair accessible. For further information please call 212-875-5610.) An additional Opening Night screening, as well as Closing Night, will be held at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, corner of Columbus Avenue and 65th St. Other screenings and events will take place at the Film Society’s Walter Reade Theater, 165 West 65th St. close to Amsterdam Ave. More information is available at filmlinc.com.

Tickets for regular festival screenings at the Ziegfeld Theatre are $20 and $16, based on seating. Opening Night tickets are $40 and $35 at the Ziegfeld Theater and $40 and $20 at Avery Fisher Hall. Centerpiece tickets are $40 and $35. Closing Night tickets are $40 and $20. Except where noted, tickets for the HBO Films Dialogues and Walter Reade Theater special events are $16.

Single screening tickets for In the Realm of Oshima and Views from the Avant-Garde are $11; $7 for Film Society members, students and children (6-12, accompanied by an adult); and $8 for seniors (62+). For In the Realm of Oshima, a pass admitting one person to a total of five titles in the series can be purchased at the Walter Reade Theater box office (cash only) for $40; $30 for Film Society members.

Tickets for ALL New York Film Festival events can be purchased online at filmlinc.com. Tickets to Ziegfeld Theatre screenings, Walter Reade Theater special event screenings and panels (excluding the Oshima sidebar and Views from the Avant-Garde screenings) and HBO Films Dialogues can be purchased in-person at the Avery Fisher Hall and Ziegfeld Theatre box offices, and by phone via CenterCharge, (212) 721-6500. Tickets to the Oshima sidebar and Views from the Avant-Garde screenings, as well as all Walter Reade Theater special event screenings and HBO Films Dialogues, can be purchased at the Walter Reade Theater box office.

Pending availability, $10 Senior (62+) / Student Rush tickets go on sale day-of performance for Ziegfeld Theatre screenings and Walter Reade Theater special events and panels. Valid ID required. Limit one rush ticket per person.

For more information go to filmlinc.com or call 212.875.5050




PUBLIC SCREENING SCHEDULE
(See below for detailed information about the films)

Note: EVENT TITLES
NYFF – Festival main slate film
OSH – NYFF Sidebar: In the Realm of Oshima
VAG – Views from the Avant-Garde
SE – Festival special event


SCREENING LOCATIONS
ZT – Ziegfeld Theatre, 54th St. between 6th and 7th Avenues
AFH – Avery Fisher Hall, Broadway and 65th Street
WRT – Walter Reade Theater, 65th St. between Amsterdam and Broadway, upper level
KP – Kaplan Penthouse, 65th St. between Amsterdam and Broadway, 10th Floor


Friday, Sept. 26
8:00 26A OPENING NIGHT: The Class, 128m (NYFF/AFH)
9:00 26B OPENING NIGHT: The Class (NYFF/ZT)

Saturday, Sept. 27
11:00am Cruel Story of Youth, 96m (OSH/WRT)
12:00 27A Hunger, 96m (NYFF/ZT)
1:00 27B PANEL: Film Criticism in Crisis? (SE/WRT)
3:00 27C 24 City, 112m (NYFF/ZT)
3:00 A Town of Love and Hope, 62m, with Diary of a Yunbogi Boy, 24m (OSH/WRT)
4:45 Night and Fog in Japan, 107m (OSH/WRT)
6:15 27D Happy-Go-Lucky, 118m (NYFF/ZT)
7:00 Diary of a Shinjuku Thief, 94m (OSH/WRT)
9:00 Pleasures of the Flesh, 90m (OSH/WRT)
9:30 27E Wendy and Lucy, 80m, with Cry Me a River, 19m (NYFF/ZT)
midnight In the Realm of the Senses, 110m (OSH/WRT)

Sunday, Sept. 28
12:00 28A Happy-Go-Lucky (NYFF/ZT)
12:30 The Man Who Left His Will on Film, 94m (OSH/WRT)
2:30 The Sun’s Burial, 87m (OSH/WRT)
3:15 28B Wendy and Lucy, with Cry Me a River (NYFF/ZT)
4:00 28C HBO FILMS DIALOGUES: Jia Zhangke (SE/KP)
4:30 Empire of Passion, 106m (OSH/WRT)
6:15 28D Hunger (NYFF/ZT)
6:45 Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence, 122m (OSH/WRT)
9:00 28E I’m Gonna Explode, 106m, with This is Her, 12m (NYFF/ZT)
9:15 Taboo, 100m (OSH/WRT)

Monday, Sept. 29
4:30 A Town of Love and Hope, with Diary of a Yunbogi Boy (OSH/WRT)
6:00 29A I’m Gonna Explode, with This is Her (NYFF/ZT)
6:15 Cruel Story of Youth (OSH/WRT)
8:15 A Town of Love and Hope, with Diary of a Yunbogi Boy (OSH/WRT)
9:15 29B Tony Manero, 98m, with Love You More, 15m (NYFF/ZT)

Tuesday, Sept. 30
4:30 The Sun’s Burial (OSH/WRT)
6:00 30A Tony Manero, with Love You More (NYFF/ZT)
6:20 The Catch, 105m (OSH/WRT)
8:30 Night and Fog in Japan (OSH/WRT)
9:15 30B The Northern Land, 122m, with Surprise!, 18m (NYFF/ZT)

Wednesday, Oct. 1
6:00 1A Summer Hours, 103m, with Ralph, 14m (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 FREE PANEL: The Place of Oshima (OSH/WRT)
9:00 Shiro of Amakusa, The Christian Rebel, 100m (OSH/WRT)
9:15 1B Waltz with Bashir, 90m, with I Don’t Feel Like Dancing, 7m (NYFF/ZT)

Thursday, Oct. 2
4:30 Shiro of Amakusa, The Christian Rebel (OSH/WRT)
6:00 2A Waltz with Bashir, with I Don’t Feel Like Dancing (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 Pleasures of the Flesh (OSH/WRT)
8:40 Band of Ninja, 100m (OSH/WRT)
9:00 2B Summer Hours, with Ralph (NYFF/ZT)

Friday, Oct. 3
4:30 Japanese Summer: Double Suicide, 98m (OSH/WRT)
6:00 3A Gomorrah, 137m (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 3B VAG 1: In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni, 100m (VAG/WRT)
9:30 3C Four Nights with Anna, 87m, with Pal/Secam, 14m (NYFF/ZT)
10:00 In the Realm of the Senses (OSH/WRT)

Saturday, Oct 4
11:15am 4A Lola Montès, 115m (NYFF/ZT)
12:00 VAG 2: The Warmth of the Sun, 100m (VAG/WRT)
2:30 4B Night and Day, 144m (NYFF/ZT)
3:30 VAG 3: Andrew Noren, 101m (VAG/WRT)
6:15 4C Ashes of Time Redux, 93m, with Dust, 7m (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 VAG 4: Nathaniel Dorsky, 70m (VAG/WRT)
8:45 VAG 5: Bruce Conner tribute, 89.5m (VAG/WRT)
9:15 4D CENTERPIECE: Changeling, 140m, with Wait For Me, 3m (NYFF/ZT)
midnight 4E Ashes of Time Redux, with Dust (NYFF/WRT)

Sunday, Oct. 5
11:15am 5A CENTERPIECE: Changeling, with Wait For Me (NYFF/ZT)
12:00 VAG 6: Time of the Signs, 84m (VAG/WRT)
3:00 5B Four Nights with Anna, with Pal/Secam (NYFF/ZT)
3:00 VAG 7: Craig Baldwin, 123m (VAG/WRT)
4:00 5E HBO FILMS DIALOGUES: Wong Kar-wai (SE/KP)
6:00 5C The Windmill Movie, 80m, with Quarry, 12m (NYFF/ZT)
6:00 VAG 8: still wave, 102.5m (VAG/WRT)
9:00 5D Gomorrah (NYFF/ZT)
9:00 VAG 9: James Benning, 112m (VAG/WRT)

Monday, Oct. 6
6:00 6A Afterschool, 106m (NYFF/ZT)
6:00 6B The Last Command, 88m (SE/WRT)
8:30 6C The Last Command (SE/WRT)
9:15 6D The Headless Woman, 87m, with I Hear Your Scream, 11m (NYFF/ZT)

Tuesday, Oct. 7
4:30 Sing a Song of Sex, 103m (OSH/WRT)
6:00 7A Che, 268m (NYFF/ZT)
6:40 Violence at Noon, 99m (OSH/WRT)
8:45 Japanese Summer: Double Suicide (OSH/WRT)

Wednesday, Oct. 8
4:30 Death by Hanging, 117m (OSH/WRT)
6:00 8A The Headless Woman, with I Hear Your Scream (NYFF/ZT)
7:00 Diary of a Shinjuku Thief (OSH/WRT)
9:00 8B Afterschool (NYFF/ZT)
9:00 Sing a Song of Sex (OSH/WRT)

Thursday, Oct. 9
4:30 Dear Summer Sister, 96m (OSH/WRT)
6:00 9A Tokyo Sonata, 119m, with Love is Dead, 17m (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 Boy, 97m (OSH/WRT)
8:30 Three Resurrected Drunkards, 80m (OSH/WRT)
9:00 9B Tulpan, 100m, with Deweneti, 15m (NYFF/ZT)

Friday, Oct. 10
2:00 Three Resurrected Drunkards (OSH/WRT)
3:45 Kyoto, My Mother’s Place, 50m, with 100 Years of Japanese Cinema, 52m (OSH/WRT)
6:00 10A A Christmas Tale, 150m (NYFF/ZT)
6:15 10B Pandora and the Flying Dutchman, 122m (SE/WRT)
9:00 Max mon amour, 98m (OSH/WRT)
9:45 10C Let It Rain, 110m, with Unpredictable Behaviour, 5m (NYFF/ZT)

Saturday, Oct. 11
11:15am 11A A Christmas Tale (NYFF/ZT)
1:30 11B HBO FILMS DIALOGUES: Darren Aronofsky (SE/KP)
3:00 11C Chouga, 91m, with Gauge, 9m (NYFF/ZT)
4:00 Death by Hanging (OSH/WRT)
4:30 11D HBO FILMS DIALOGUES: Arnaud Desplechin (SE/KP)
6:00 11E Tulpan, with Deweneti (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 11F The Day Shall Dawn, 87m (SE/WRT)
9:00 Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (OSH/WRT)
9:15 11G Tokyo Sonata, with Love is Dead (NYFF/ZT)

Sunday, Oct. 12
11:15am 12A Let It Rain, with Unpredictable Behaviour (NYFF/ZT)
1:00 12B It’s Hard Being Loved by Jerks, 119m (SE/WRT)
2:30 12C Bullet in the Head, 85m (NYFF/ZT)
4:30 The Man Who Left His Will on Film (OSH/WRT)
5:15 12D Serbis, 90m, with Maybe Tomorrow, 12m (NYFF/ZT)
6:30 The Ceremony, 122m (OSH/WRT)
8:30 12E CLOSING NIGHT: The Wrestler, 109m, with Security, 13m (NYFF/AFH)
9:00 Dear Summer Sister (OSH/WRT)

Monday, Oct. 13
2:00 Taboo (OSH/WRT)
4:00 Kyoto, My Mother’s Place, with 100 Years of Japanese Cinema (OSH/WRT)
6:30 Empire of Passion (OSH/WRT)
8:45 Taboo (OSH/WRT)


All times p.m. except where noted



DETAILED FILM AND EVENT INFORMATION

Feature Films and Short Films

OPENING NIGHT
The Class / Entre les murs
Laurent Cantet, France, 2008; 128m
Writer and teacher François Bégaudeau plays himself in this unsentimental, superior addition to the canon of classroom movies: outspoken, multiethnic teens from a tough Parisian junior high school meet a teacher trying to make a difference. Laurent Cantet’s engrossing portrait of the new France, winner of the Palme d’Or at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, is the finest and most important example yet of his pioneering brand of social cinema. A Sony Pictures Classics release.
26A Fri Sep 26: 8:00pm Avery Fisher Hall
26B Fri Sep 26: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

CLOSING NIGHT
The Wrestler
Darren Aronofsky, USA, 2008; 109m
Mickey Rourke has never been better than as pro wrestler Randy “The Ram” Robinson, whose brush with mortality inspires him to reconnect with his daughter (Evan Rachel Wood) and settle down with his stripper girlfriend (Marisa Tomei). But like any old vaudevillian, he pines for the roar of the crowd. Owing much to John Osborne’s The Entertainer, Darren Aronofsky’s existentialist wrestling drama is a poignant, thoroughly unexpected and occasionally ultra-violent movie about performance, self-worth and the satisfying thwack of a folding chair to the back. Winner of the Golden Lion at this year’s Venice Film Festival. A Fox Searchlight release.
SCREENING WITH
Security
Lars Henning, Germany, 2007; 13m
In a world obsessed with crime prevention, who will watch the watchers?
12E Sun Oct 12: 8:30pm Avery Fisher Hall

CENTERPIECE
Changeling
Clint Eastwood, USA, 2008; 140m
1928 Los Angeles. Single mother Christine Collins (Angelina Jolie) comes home to discover that her 10-year-old son has disappeared. The police find him several months later, but their reunion is just the beginning of this true-crime, stranger-than-fiction mystery. Changeling is at once the harrowing story of a woman wronged and a serpentine portrait of city corruption reminiscent of Chinatown and Touch of Evil. It is also Clint Eastwood’s most provocative inquiry yet into the grey areas between good and evil––and the moral ambiguity of what we call justice. A Universal Pictures release.
SCREENING WITH
Wait For Me
Ross Kauffman, USA, 2008; 3m
A mother-son story still waiting for its ending.
4D Sat Oct 4: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
5A Sun Oct 5: 11:15am Ziegfeld Theatre

24 City / Er shi si cheng ji
Jia Zhangke, China/Hong Kong/Japan, 2008; 112m
Jia Zhangke’s latest bulletin on the state of the world’s most rapidly expanding economy follows a half-dozen retired workers, brought from all over China to labor in a gigantic Chengdu munitions plant now slated for conversion into high-rise luxury apartments. The story of these (barely) living monuments of Mao’s China—supplemented by monologues delivered by professional actors, including Joan Chen—creates an artfully composed and subversively old-fashioned hymn to industrial production. An ambivalent exercise in Communist nostalgia, as well as a moving collective portrait. A Cinema Guild release.
27C Sat Sep 27: 3:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Afterschool
Antonio Campos, USA, 2008; 106m
In Antonio Campos’s first feature, withdrawn New England prep school student Robert unwittingly captures on video the sudden deaths by drug overdose of a pair of popular twin girls. As the school goes through an official mourning process, Robert becomes increasingly fragile. Campos frames the action in impressive wide shots that, coupled with a meticulously ambient soundtrack and the precise disaffection of his teenage cast, accomplish something rare: the outlining of violent impulses as they are in the process of being sublimated.
6A Mon Oct 6: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
8B Wed Oct 8: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Ashes of Time Redux
Wong Kar-wai, Hong Kong, 2008; 93m
Wong Kar-wai has restored, rescored, expanded and re-edited his legendary 1994 exercise in swordplay pyrotechnics and melancholy temps perdu. He’s also digitally colorized the film, rendering master cinematographer Christopher Doyle’s images even more insanely gorgeous. Ashes of Time treats a well-known wuxia (martial arts) tale of medieval warriors and the women who can’t forget them as a delicate succession of privileged moments. As avant-garde as it is pop, Wong’s time-tripper featuring a stellar cast is a movie to swoon for. A Sony Pictures Classics release.
SCREENING WITH
Dust
Baker Smith, USA, 2008; 7m
An unsettling look at a future growth industry.
4C Sat Oct 4: 6:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
4E Sat Oct 4: midnight Walter Reade Theater

Bullet in the Head / Tiro en la cabeza
Jaime Rosales, Spain/France, 2008; 85m
Someone is watching––all the time––as a middle-aged Spanish man buys a newspaper, meets another man in a cafe, attends a dinner party, has sex with a woman, listens to music in a CD shop, makes a payphone call. Like the unseen voyeur of Catalan director Jaime Rosales’s claustrophobically intense, avant-garde thriller, we too see and hear everything from a distance, forced to assemble the movie’s disparate narrative pieces like detectives on the trail of a dangerous conspiracy. Remarkable and beguiling, a mystery movie in the purest sense.
12C Sun Oct 12: 2:30pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Che
Steven Soderbergh, France/Spain, 2008; 268m
Benicio Del Toro (Best Actor at Cannes) brilliantly embodies Argentine-born revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara in Steven Soderbergh’s sweeping, Spanish-language meditation on the theory and practice of guerrilla warfare. The first two hours concern the miraculous success of the Cuban Revolution. The second part dwells on Guevara’s doomed attempt to repeat this victory a decade later in Bolivia. At once boldly simplified and massively detailed, this dazzlingly choreographed combat film challenges us to confront a figure as relevant to our times as he was to his own. An IFC Films release. This screening will include a 30-minute intermission.
7A Tue Oct 7: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Chouga / Shuga
Darezhan Omirbaev, France/Kazakhstan, 2007; 91m
Well-to-do Chouga (Ainur Turgambaeva, in a quietly compelling performance) leaves her callous husband and beloved son for a charismatic but equally callous younger man, Ablai. The woman Ablai has courted and forsaken attempts suicide. After her recovery she marries the more reliable Tiburon. Sound familiar? Darezhan Omirbaev’s razor-sharp re-imagining of Anna Karenina examines the new, consumerist Kazakhstan, as one perfectly framed embrace between Chouga and her son conveys the limitless love between them, and a cut from a popping champagne cork to a fireworks display embodies a wealth of passion.
SCREENING WITH
Gauge
Alistair Banks Griffin, USA, 2008; 9m
A shotgun rite of passage.
11C Sat Oct 11: 3:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

A Christmas Tale / Un conte de Noël
Arnaud Desplechin, France, 2008; 150m
Arnaud Desplechin comes home for Christmas in his outrageous, daring and emotionally bountiful new movie. Catherine Deneuve is Junon, the family matriarch, who greets the news of her life-threatening illness with calm equanimity. Jean-Paul Roussillon is her wise, tender husband, and Mathieu Amalric, Anne Consigny, Emmanuelle Devos, Melvil Poupaud and Chiara Mastroianni play her children and their lovers. In this midwinter night’s dream, unrequited love collides with bitter resentment, nostalgic longing crosses paths with abject fear, and pure hatred gives way to vivacious affection. An IFC Films release.
10A Fri Oct 10: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
11A Sat Oct 11: 11:15am Ziegfeld Theatre

Four Nights with Anna / Cztery noce z Anna
Jerzy Skolimowski, Poland/France, 2008; 87m
The first film in 17 years by the great Polish auteur Jerzy Skolimowski centers on an introverted crematorium worker (brilliantly played by Artur Steranko) who shows his growing affection for a beautiful nurse by repeatedly breaking into her apartment to do chores and occasionally spend the night by her side. Skolimowski crafts a darkly romantic tale of obsession that courses with surprising tenderness, perverse humor and ravishing surrealist images not soon to be forgotten. The work of a master at the top of his form.
SCREENING WITH
Pal/Secam
Dmitry Povolotsky, Russia/USA, 2008; 14m
A Russian youth's amorous designs are thwarted by the unromantic realities of the late Soviet era.
3C Fri Oct 3: 9:30pm Ziegfeld Theatre
5B Sun Oct 5: 3:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Gomorrah / Gomorra
Matteo Garrone, Italy, 2008; 137m
Based on Roberto Saviano’s bestselling book, Matteo Garrone’s electrifying mob movie weaves together five stories of the Italian organized crime empire known as the Camorra, whose reach from the heights of haute couture to the depths of toxic waste is coolly observed in all its attendant brutality. The great Neapolitan director and actor Toni Servillo heads a strong cast as a lethally smooth businessman in a sharp suit who specializes in the illegal dumping of corporate poisons. An IFC Films release.
3A Fri Oct 3: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
5D Sun Oct 5: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Happy-Go-Lucky
Mike Leigh, UK, 2008; 118m
You’ve never met a woman in bloom quite as fresh as Poppy Cross. But the radiant north London kindergarten teacher (played with star-making sparkle by Sally Hawkins, Best Actress at this year’s Berlin Film Festival) and her militantly upbeat embrace of life are not always welcome, especially with her bitter, racist and damaged driving instructor (a wonderful Eddie Marsan). Happy-Go-Lucky reveals the British master of ensemble dysfunction at a rich, new creative place, where delight and gratitude are emotions to inspire, rather than to doubt. A Miramax Films release.
27D Sat Sep 27: 6:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
28A Sun Sep 28: 12:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

The Headless Woman / La mujer sin cabeza
Lucrecia Martel, Argentina/France/Italy/Spain, 2008; 87m
While driving alone on a dirt road, a middle-aged woman (María Onetto) hits something––perhaps a dog, perhaps a boy, perhaps something more mysterious. Her phantom accident jars Lucrecia Martel’s challenging, hyper-acute third feature onto a different perceptual plane—everything about the ordinary world feels new, disconnected and very strange—as her rare gift for social melodrama is pushed to another level of creative daring. A portrait of a family, a social universe and, thanks to Onetto’s stunning performance, a woman in believably disoriented distress.
SCREENING WITH
I Hear Your Scream / Ahendu nde sapukai
Pablo Lamar, Argentina, 2008; 11m
A slow-burning, real-time meditation on mourning in long shot.
6D Mon Oct 6: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
8A Wed Oct 8: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Hunger
Steve McQueen, UK, 2008; 96m
The masterful debut feature of Turner Prize-winning visual artist Steve McQueen takes on IRA member Bobby Sands and the 1981 hunger strike he waged in Maze prison in an effort to improve conditions for fellow political prisoners. Yet the Camera d’Or-winning film is less a biopic than an intensely lyrical reverie on human suffering, in which striking visual compositions counterpoint the raw degradation to which his characters are subjected. A provocative exploration of the politics of torture and the yearning for spiritual transcendence. An IFC Films release.
27A Sat Sep 27: 12:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
28D Sun Sep 28: 6:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre

I’m Gonna Explode / Voy a explotar
Gerardo Naranjo, Mexico, 2008; 106m
Mexican director Gerardo Naranjo’s hectic, mood-shifting mock epic channels Pierrot le fou, complete with Georges Delerue music, albeit in an upper middle-class Mexico City exurb. Ramon contributes to his new high school’s talent show by ineptly hanging himself on stage. Maru is the only one who claps. They bond in detention, and then it’s off in a stolen Volkswagen… or something like that. Absurdist and ultimately heartbreaking, I’m Gonna Explode is further proof of Mexican cinema’s ongoing vitality, a prime example of its nuevo nouvelle vague.
SCREENING WITH
This is Her
Katie Wolfe, New Zealand, 2008; 12m
Narrating from a perfect moment in the present, Evie reveals the unexpected outcomes of her life, all of which came thanks to a six-year-old girl she passed one day on the sidewalk.
28E Sun Sep 28: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
29A Mon Sep 29: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Let It Rain / Parlez-moi de la pluie
Agnès Jaoui, France, 2008; 110m
Urbane social satirist Agnès Jaoui plays a self-regarding feminist novelist weighing a run at politics in her deftly structured comic study of self-delusion in an unexpectedly rainy southern France. Her inimitable creative partner Jean-Pierre Bacri is pitch-perfect as an equally self-absorbed filmmaker angling to make a documentary about powerful women. Often compared to Woody Allen, Jaoui’s perceptions about class, power and sexual politics are so sharp and her wit so light that perhaps it’s time to start thinking of this wonderful filmmaker as a modern-day French Jane Austen.
SCREENING WITH
Unpredictable Behaviour
Ernst Weber and Pasha Shapiro, USA/Germany, 2007; 5m
Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson finally solve the mystery of Jack the Ripper through a discussion on rational thought and the human intellect.
10C Fri Oct 10: 9:45pm Ziegfeld Theatre
12A Sun Oct 12: 11:15am Ziegfeld Theatre

Night and Day / Bam guan nat
Hong Sang-soo, South Korea, 2008; 144m
Forty-something painter Sung-nam escapes to Paris after being caught smoking pot with American tourists in Seoul. Only, now that he’s settled in the City of Light, what should he do? Hong Sang-soo creates a beautifully observed, characteristically wry chronicle of Sung-nam’s attempt to savor his wandering year, even if it’s come 20 years too late. Hong’s eye for telling details has never been sharper, and Sung-nam’s running commentary on the French and those aspiring to live like them is often hilariously perceptive.
4B Sat Oct 4: 2:30pm Ziegfeld Theatre

The Northern Land / A Corte do Norte
João Botelho, Portugal, 2008; 122m
Through interlocking stories that cross centuries, classes and lifestyles, The Northern Land links a young woman in search of an ancestor’s life-story to several Maderia women whose frustrated passions have played out in well-appointed manor houses set along magnificent, ocean-swept landscapes. They’re also united as each character is incarnated by the same amazing performer, Ana Moreira. Using a painterly mise-en-scene, João Botelho describes the history of an unfulfilled passion, an emotional energy, transmitted through generations of women. A great and welcome comeback for a uniquely gifted filmmaker.
SCREENING WITH
Surprise!
Fabrice Maruca, France, 2007; 18m
A loving husband learns that the birthday surprise you plan isn’t always the surprise you get.
30B Tue Sep 30: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Serbis
Brillante Mendoza, Philippines/France, 2008; 90m
Bigamy, unwanted pregnancy, possible incest and bothersome skin irritations are all part of the daily challenges of the Pineda family in the Filipino city of Angeles, as they live and work in an enormous, dilapidated movie theater that hosts porn double-bills and hustlers of every conceivable persuasion. Channeling both Fassbinder and John Waters, Brillante Mendoza brilliantly captures the sordid atmosphere while enveloping the viewer in a maelstrom of sound, noise and continuous motion. A bold, challenging work from one of the recently energized Filipino cinema’s most interesting talents. Serbis contains some sexually graphic sequences. A Regent Releasing release.
SCREENING WITH
Maybe Tomorrow
Guilhem Amesland, France, 2008; 12m
Lingering memories of desire force the solitude and discontents of the professional world to the surface.
12D Sun Oct 12: 5:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Summer Hours / L’heure d’été
Olivier Assayas, France, 2008; 103m
The marvelous Edith Scob is a troubled family matriarch with children scattered across the globe, who spends the bulk of her time worrying over the legacy of her uncle, a legendary artist. After her sudden death, the siblings (Charles Berling, Juliette Binoche and Jérémie Renier) meet to discuss practical details, prompting some of the most moving passages in Olivier Assayas’s entire body of work. A rueful and wise mixture of the heaviness of loss and the lightness of time’s passage. An IFC Films release.
SCREENING WITH
Ralph
Alex Winckler, UK, 2008; 14m
Adrift in Marseille, Ralph finds that a missed telephone connection is the best thing to happen to him all day.
1A Wed Oct 1: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
2B Thu Oct 2: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Tokyo Sonata
Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Japan/Netherlands, 2008; 119m
Kiyoshi Kurosawa delves into a different kind of horror with his surprising and exquisitely crafted new film. A Tokyo husband and father is laid off and takes out his frustrations at home. His proud refusal to allow his gifted youngest son to take piano lessons is the first step on a strange trip into violence, temporary madness and possible regeneration. A contemporary fable masterfully pitched between comedy, tragedy and Buñuelian irrationality, Tokyo Sonata is a perfect film for a troubled historical moment. A Regent Releasing release.
SCREENING WITH
Love is Dead
Eric Capitaine, France, 2007; 17m
Breaking up is hard to do—but here’s a modern solution for the busy professional.
9A Thu Oct 9: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
11G Sat Oct 11: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Tony Manero
Pablo Larrain, Chile/Brazil, 2008; 98m
An unsmiling Al Pacino look-alike who has named himself after John Travolta’s character in Saturday Night Fever will stop at nothing in his quest to stage a scaled-down version of his beloved film in a grungy Santiago cantina. On one hand, Pablo Larrain’s second feature is a rough-hewn verité-style dance-musical about a 50-something psychotic with inextinguishable dreams. On the other, it’s a darkly comic allegory about the spell cast by American pop culture during the grimmest days of General Pinochet’s police state.
SCREENING WITH
Love You More
Sam Taylor-Wood, UK, 2007; 15m
A tale of vinyl lust featuring a blast from the past by beloved English band the Buzzcocks.
29B Mon Sep 29: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
30A Tue Sep 30: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Tulpan
Sergey Dvortsevoy, Germany/Kazakhstan/Poland/Russia/Switzerland, 2008; 100m
Having completed his military service, Asa returns home to his brother-in-law’s yurt with hopes of becoming a shepherd. But is such a life possible in the modern world? First, he must win the affections of his beautiful neighbor, Tulpan. Celebrated documentarian Sergey Dvortsevoy’s astonishing ethnographic drama-cum-wildlife movie captures the bleak beauty of southern Kazakhstan’s Hunger Steppe: the endless sky, the camel stampedes, the raucous behavior of a reggae-loving teamster, and one of the most remarkable animal birth scenes ever captured on film.
SCREENING WITH
Deweneti
Dyana Gaye, France, 2007; 15m
An enterprising Dakar street orphan raises money for a special seasonal communiqué.
9B Thu Oct 9: 9:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre
11E Sat Oct 11: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Waltz with Bashir
Ari Folman, Israel/Germany/France, 2008; 90m
One of the boldest films in recent memory, Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir is an ingenious and provocative anime documentary, blending animated film techniques with sharp-edged, often unsettling personal testimony of his and his friend’s time as soldiers in Lebanon during the ’82 war. The animation is used by Folman to illuminate what might be called his subjects’ historical imagination—that place in our minds in which actual lived experience combines with fears, fantasies and justifications. A Sony Pictures Classics Release.
SCREENING WITH
I Don’t Feel Like Dancing
Joachim Dollhopf & Evi Goldbrunner, Germany, 2008; 7m
The cruel effects of war sometimes come in unforeseen guises.
1B Wed Oct 1: 9:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre
2A Thu Oct 2: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre

Wendy and Lucy
Kelly Reichardt, USA, 2008; 80m
Girl, Wendy, loses dog, Lucy. Girl looks for dog. Girl (Michelle Williams) is alone in a nowhere Oregon town, on the road to somewhere in Alaska. From such barebones material, Kelly Reichardt builds a drama of piercing intensity. As she did for her previous work Old Joy (to which this film might be considered a companion piece on the theme of American anxiety), Reichardt co-wrote the exceptionally fine script with John Raymond, based on his short story. Lucy, by the way, is the filmmaker’s own pooch. An Oscilloscope Pictures release.
SCREENING WITH
Cry Me a River
Jia Zhangke, China, 2008; 19m
The game of love can sometimes be played as mixed doubles.
27E Sat Sep 27: 9:30pm Ziegfeld Theatre
28B Sun Sep 28: 3:15pm Ziegfeld Theatre

The Windmill Movie
Alexander Olch, USA, 2008; 80m
Richard P. “Dick” Rogers was a respected filmmaker and teacher. Following his death in 2001, Alexander Olch, his former student, made Rogers’s own autobiographical footage into this moving and provocative work spanning Rogers’s childhood to just days before his death. The film straddles the line between documentary and fiction, examining class in America, film and art, and the changing relations between men and women. But at its heart is its portrait of Dick Rogers, and his quest to create a lasting artistic legacy.
SCREENING WITH
Quarry
Richard P. Rogers, USA, 1970; 12m
Darker currents course through an afternoon idyll by a local swimming hole.
5C Sun Oct 5: 6:00pm Ziegfeld Theatre


Spotlight Retrospective

Lola Montès
Max Ophuls, France/West Germany, 1955; 115m
A biography told in flashbacks of Elizabeth Rosanna Gilbert—aka, Lola Montès, dancer, courtesan, mistress of composers and kings—Max Ophuls’s final masterpiece is a meditation on time and the evanescent nature of fame and riches. This gleaming new restoration from the Cinémathèque Française, which incorporates all available footage, is a major cinematic event. “Lola Montès is in my unhumble opinion the greatest film of all time,” famously wrote the great film critic Andrew Sarris some 40 years ago. In honor of Andrew on the occasion of his 80th birthday, we’ve asked him to introduce this very special screening. A Rialto Pictures release.
4A Sat Oct 4: 11:15am Ziegfeld Theatre


HBO Films Dialogues

Jia Zhangke
Jia Zhangke has established himself as one of the world’s most provocative film directors since his first feature, Xiao Wu, screened in New Directors/New Films 1999. His work, which frequently examines the dark consequences of a rapidly modernizing China, has become an enormous influence on the newest generation of Chinese filmmakers. Jia will join L.A. Weekly film critic and festival selection committee member Scott Foundas to talk about his influences at home and abroad and the changing face of his native country, fresh off hosting its first Olympic Games.
28C Sun Sep 28: 4:00pm Kaplan Penthouse

Wong Kar-wai
A visionary director whose cult following has few equals in the contemporary film world, Wong Kar-wai returns to the New York Film Festival with his re-worked and re-imagined version of Ashes of Time. Together with Village Voice film critic and festival selection committee member J. Hoberman, he will discuss his working methods and the evolution of the themes that run through his work, from lost love to urban alienation.
5E Sun Oct 5: 4:00pm Kaplan Penthouse

Darren Aronofsky
From his first feature Pi to his new festival-closer The Wrestler, Darren Aronofsky has been an outsider, whose work is characterized by its sharp cinematic intelligence and a distinctive style that brings complex dreamlike visual trajectories to sharply edged storylines. Finally, a chance to see what makes him tick! Film Society program director and festival selection committee chair Richard Peña will host the Brooklyn-born filmmaker.
11B Sat Oct 11: 1:30pm Kaplan Penthouse

Arnaud Desplechin
La Sentinelle, My Sex Life…or How I Got into an Argument, Esther Kahn, Kings & Queen and now A Christmas Tale: Over the past 15 years, Arnaud Desplechin has created one of the most impressive bodies of work in contemporary cinema. His films frame basic philosophical questions within the complicated lives of vivid characters, often played by some of France’s most talented actors. Desplechin will talk about the themes and creative partnerships that continue to motivate him with Film Comment editor-at-large and festival selection committee member Kent Jones.
11D Sat Oct 11: 4:30pm Kaplan Penthouse


Walter Reade Theater Panels and Special Events

Film Criticism in Crisis?
A panel discussion hosted by Film Comment
At the turn of the millennium, the burning topic in film culture circles was the oft-proclaimed “Death of Cinema.” Nearly ten years later movies continue to thrive and mutate—but a new question looms: Are we now facing the Death of Film Criticism—or its rebirth? This panel, organized by Film Comment magazine, will bring together critics to discuss the current state and future of criticism. Participants include Jonathan Rosenbaum, Cahiers du cinéma editor Emmanuel Burdeau, Kent Jones, GreenCine Daily blog editor David Hudson, and Argentine film critic Pablo Suarez, and more. A reception will follow the event. Sponsored by Sardinia Region Tourism.
27B Sat Sep 27: 1:00pm Walter Reade Theater

The Last Command
Josef von Sternberg, USA, 1928; 88m
Alloy Orchestra presents the New York premiere of its newest score, accompanying a gorgeous new 35mm print of Josef von Sternberg’s 1928 silent classic The Last Command. Emil Jannings won the first-ever Oscar for Best Actor partly for his performance here as a decorated Russian general who must relive the revolution that deposed him as an extra in a Hollywood film directed by a one-time opponent. With Evelyn Brent and William Powell. These screenings are made possible through the generosity of the Ira M. Resnick Foundation.
6B Mon Oct 6: 6:00pm Walter Reade Theater
6C Mon Oct 6: 8:30pm Walter Reade Theater

Martin Scorsese Presents
IN GLORIOUS TECHNICOLOR
Pandora and the Flying Dutchman
Albert Lewin, UK, 1951; 122m
This reworking of the tale of the Flying Dutchman set on the Spanish coast is as visually exquisite as filmmaking gets. Director Albert Lewin was one of the most distinctive artists to emerge in ’40s Hollywood, and James Mason and Ava Gardner are one of cinema’s most stirringly passionate couples. Pandora and the Flying Dutchman has been painstakingly restored to its original Technicolor glory. We’re proud to have Martin Scorsese with us to introduce this very special screening. Restored by George Eastman House in cooperation with The Douris Corporation with funding provided by The Film Foundation and the Franco-American Cultural Fund. This screening is made possible by The Film Foundation and American Express Preservation Screening Program.
10B Fri Oct 10: 6:15pm Walter Reade Theater

The Day Shall Dawn / Jago Hua Savera
A.J. Kardar, Pakistan, 1959; 87m
In 1958, a group of film enthusiasts banded together to make Pakistan’s first experiment with realist cinema. This little-known masterwork tells the story of fishermen working along the Meghna River in what was East Pakistan, who attempt to break out of a vicious cycle of exploitation by acquiring a boat. The Day Shall Dawn was awarded a gold medal at the Moscow Film Festival, yet it is almost completely forgotten, as Pakistani cinema went in a very different direction. Special thanks to Mr. Anjum Taseer for making this essential 50th-anniversary screening possible.
11F Sat Oct 11: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

It’s Hard Being Loved by Jerks / C’est dur d’etre aimé par des cons
Daniel Leconte, France, 2008; 119m
When the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo published 12 cartoons satirizing Islamic fundamentalism in 2006, several Islamic organizations sued editor Philippe Val for racist slander. Thus began what’s been called the first major legal battle of the 21st century: a struggle between an understandably aggrieved minority and the press defending its freedom. Daniel Leconte chronicles the various legal strategies and remarks on the trial’s impact and long-term effects in a fascinating document of a problem all democratic societies will continue to face.
A panel discussion will follow the screening, with Leconte; Carol Becker, writer, culture critic and dean of the School of the Arts, Columbia University; Marshall Cohen, professor of philosophy and provost emeritus of philosophy and law, University of Southern California; and more.
Co-presented by the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival.
12B Sun Oct 12: 1:00pm Walter Reade Theater


Views from the Avant-Garde (Oct. 3-5)

VAG 1: Guy Debord
In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni
Guy Debord, France, 1978; 100m (35mm, color/sound)
This palindromically titled pure act of negation by Guy Debord, founder of the Situationist International, turns images from magazines, comics and popular films inside out to illustrate what he sees as the complete vacuity of mediatized society, of which we the viewers are passive participants. But the film is also an affirmation—of our ability to build on the best rather than the worst in mankind, to create a true Utopia rather than a paltry counterfeit. Without exaggeration, one of the most provocative experiences you’ll ever have at the movies. A panel with filmmaker Olivier Assayas, writer Greil Marcus and filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin will follow the screening.
3B Fri Oct 3: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 2: The Warmth of the Sun (102.5m)
Dove Coup Ben Rivers, UK, 2008; 2.5m (16mm, color/silent)
Whispers Ernie Gehr, USA, 2008; 5m (digital, b&w & color/sound)
Les Chaises Vincent Grenier, USA/Canada, 2008; 8m (HD, color/sound)
Obar Taylor Dunne, USA, 2008; 12m (Super 8 transferred to DV, color/sound)
After Writing Mary Helena Clark, USA, 2007; 4.5m (16mm, color/silent)
Origins of the Species Ben Rivers, UK, 2008; 16m (16mm, color/sound)
Film for Invisible Ink, case no. 142 Abbreviation for Dead Winter [diminished by 1,794] David Gatten, USA, 2008; 13m (16mm, b&w/sound)
ELEMENTs Julie Murray, USA, 2008; 7m (16mm, color/sound)
False Friends Sylvia Schedelbauer, Germany, 2007; 5m (digital, b&w/sound)
Hold Me Now Michael Robinson, USA, 2008; 5m (digital, color/sound)
And the Sun Flowers Mary Helena Clark, USA, 2008; 5m (digital, color/sound)
False Aging Lewis Klahr, USA, 2008; 14.5m (digital, color/sound)
Sat Oct 4: 12:00pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 3: Andrew Noren
Aberration of Starlight Andrew Noren, USA, 2008; 101m (digital, b&w/color/silent)
Sat Oct 4: 3:30pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 4: Nathaniel Dorsky (approx. 70m)
Winter USA, 2008; 21.5m (16mm, color/silent)
Sarabande USA, 2008; 15m (16mm, color/silent)
Sat Oct 4: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 5: Bruce Conner tribute (79.5m)
A MOVIE USA, 1958; 12m (16mm, b&w/sound)
THE WHITE ROSE USA, 1967; 7m (16mm, b&w/sound)
BREAKAWAY USA, 1966; 5m (16mm, b&w/sound)
VIVIAN USA, 1964; 3m (16mm, b&w/sound)
TEN SECOND FILM USA, 1965; 10s (b&w/silent)
REPORT USA, 1967; 13m (16mm, b&w/sound)
LOOKING FOR MUSHROOMS (long version) USA, 1996; 14.5m (16mm, color/sound)
TAKE THE 5:10 TO DREAMLAND USA, 1977; 5m (16mm, sepia/sound)
VALSE TRISTE USA, 1979; 5m (16mm, sepia/sound)
EASTER MORNING USA, 2008; 10m (digital, color/sound)
Sat Oct 4: 8:45pm Walter Reade Theater

Our very special thanks to Jean Conner for making these personal prints available and to Michelle Silva and Henry Rosenthal.

VAG 6: Time of the Signs (84m)
1859 Fred Worden, USA, 2008; 11m (digital, color/silent)
Train of Thought Jim Jennings, USA, 2008; 8m (16mm, b&w/silent)
New York Lantern Ernie Gehr, USA, 2008; 15m (digital, color & b&w/sound)
After Marks Fern Silva, USA/India, 2008; 7m (16mm to digital, color/sound)
Nocturne [Avenue A, no lens] Joel Schlemowitz, USA, 2008; 3m (16mm, color/sound)
Novel City Leslie Thornton, USA, 2008; 8m (digital, color/sound)
Trypps #5 (Dubai) Ben Russell, USA/United Arab Emirates, 2008; 3m (16mm, color/silent)
Today! (excerpts #28, #19) Jessie Stead & David Gatten, USA, 2008; 10m (digital, color/sound)
Ah Liberty! Ben Rivers, UK, 2008; 19m (16mm widescreen transferred to digital, b&w/sound)
Sun Oct 5: 12:00pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 7: Craig Baldwin (122.5m)
The Diptherians Episode Two: The Rhythm That Forgets Itself Lewis Klahr, USA, 2008; 12.5m (digital, color/sound)
Tattoo Step Michael Maryniuk, Canada, 2008; 1m (35mm, sound)
Mock up on Mu Craig Baldwin, US, 2008; 109m (digital, color/sound)
Sun Oct 5: 3:00pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 8: still wave (108m)
AMERICA IS WAITING Bruce Conner, USA, 1982; 3.5m (16mm, b&w/sound)
Dig Robert Todd, USA, 2007; 2m (16mm, color/sound)
Right Scott Stark, USA, 2008; 13m (digital, color/sound)
16-18-4 Tomonari Nishikawa, Japan, 2008; 2.5m (35mm, color/silent)
The Acrobat Chris Kennedy, USA, 2007; 6m (16mm, b&w/sound)
Nightparking Gretchen Skogerson, USA, 2008; 15m (HD, color/sound)
The Scenic Route Ken Jacobs, USA, 2008; 25m (digital, color)
Phantogram Kerry Laitala, USA, 2008; 6m (16mm, color/silent)
When Worlds Collude Fred Worden, USA, 2008; 13m (digital, color/sound)
Horizontal Boundaries Pat O’Neill, USA, 2008; 22m (35mm, color/sound)
Sun Oct 5: 6:00pm Walter Reade Theater

VAG 9: James Benning
RR James Benning, USA, 2007; 112m (16mm, color/sound)
Sun Oct 5: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater


NYFF Sidebar: In the Realm of Oshima (Sept. 27 – Oct. 13)

Band of Ninja / Ninja bugei-cho
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1967; 100m
Oshima’s one attempt to enter the world of Japanese anime brings actual comic book pages to life through camera movements, zooms, voices and sound effects. The source, Sanpei Shirato’s comic strip Ninja Bugeicho, was a staple of ’60s Japanese pop culture. Its story of a boy seeking revenge for his father’s death by teaming up with a renegade ninja struck a chord with an entire generation—and was right up Oshima’s alley.
Thu Oct 2: 8:40pm Walter Reade Theater

Boy / Shonen
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1969; 97m
Based on a true story, Boy picks up on one of Oshima’s favorite themes: the con game as a symbol for postwar Japanese society. A couple travels throughout Japan, extorting money from drivers thanks to their 10-year-old son’s (Tetsuo Abe) skill at running into traffic and faking injury. More classical than many of Oshima’s other works of this period, Boy contrasts the outwardly normal behavior of the family with the reactions of its victims: the fraud reveals a kind of collective guilty conscience shared by a vast range of average Japanese citizens.
Thu Oct 9: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
The Catch / Shiiku
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1961; 105m
“A powerful, thoughtful, critical film.”—Donald Richie
In this adaptation of a story by acclaimed novelist Kenzaburo Oe, the inhabitants of a rural Japanese village take an African-American GI (Hugh Hurd) prisoner in the closing days of the war. They soon fall to squabbling over what’s to become of their catch. Despite a fine cast and exquisite cinematography by Yoshitsugu Tonegawa, the film struggled at the box office. It has recently come under critical re-evaluation that now hails it as one of Oshima's most perceptive portraits of modern Japan.
Tue Sep 30: 6:20pm Walter Reade Theater

The Ceremony / Gishiki
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1971; 122m
The Ceremony charts Oshima’s growing disillusion with the possibility of real change in Japan, after he had been one of the most visible advocates of the radical movements of the late ’60s. Told in a series of flashbacks, the film traces Masuo’s incorporation into the powerful Sakurada clan through a series of complex yet ultimately empty rituals. For Oshima, postwar Japan is an “empire of signs,” veiled, misleading markers that mask the true relationship between a haunted past and an unsettled present.
Sun Oct 12: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Cruel Story of Youth, aka Naked Youth / Seishun zankoku monogatari
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1960; 96m
Impressed by the success of Nikkatsu’s “sun tribe films”—works about aimless youth, full of violence and other illicit activities—Shochiku called upon its young directors to create a new kind of cinema for a new audience. The result: the Japanese New Wave, perhaps the only such movement sponsored by the industry itself. Oshima’s film is a delirious color and Scope epic focusing on a young couple that hustles older men. What impresses most is the overwhelming speed and energy of a world on the verge of exploding at any second.
Sat Sep 27: 11:00am Walter Reade Theater
Mon Sep 29: 6:15pm Walter Reade Theater

Dear Summer Sister / Natsu no imoto
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1972; 95m
A Tokyo girl arrives in Okinawa in a stylish orange polka-dot dress and sets off for a historical tour with an attractive young guide. Made just at the moment when Okinawa, which had been under direct U.S. supervision since the war, was once again becoming part of Japan, the film captures a number of odd encounters with eccentric characters, a possible murder story and questions about the guide’s identity to turn this travelogue into an unexpectedly off-hand commentary on the troubled relationship between both islands.
Thu Oct 9: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Sun Oct 12: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Death by Hanging / Koshikei
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1968; 117m
“The most fantastic scenario in the history of cinema.”—Luc Moullet
Based on a well-publicized execution, Death by Hanging is a powerful plea against capital punishment and an exposé of the racism against Japanese-born Koreans. Convicted killer R. won’t cooperate: His body simply refuses to die. What’s worse, R. has no memory of his deeds, and the authorities must help R. reconstruct his identity so that they can convict and (hopefully) execute him once again. Outrageous, insightful and endlessly provocative, Death by Hanging is considered Oshima’s masterpiece by several prominent scholars.
Wed Oct 8: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Sat Oct 11: 4:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Diary of a Shinjuku Thief / Shinjuku dorobo nikki
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1968; 94m
With a title nod to Jean Genet, Diary of a Shinjuku Thief follows Birdey Hilltop after he is caught stealing books from the massive Kinokuniya Bookstore in Shinjuku, Tokyo's busiest entertainment district. On a date with the sales clerk who caught him, Birdey reveals that stealing gives him an erotic charge. Thus begins what Oshima called “the story of a boy and girl in search of their rightful moment of sexual ecstasy.” More collage-like in its structure than Oshima's other works, Diary is, to scholar David Desser, “one of Oshima's most important films.”
Sat Sep 27: 7:00pm Walter Reade Theater
Wed Oct 8: 7:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Empire of Passion / Ai no borei
Nagisa Oshima, Japan/France, 1978; 106m
This variation on The Postman Always Rings Twice with a very Japanese supernatural twist was unavoidably seen as a companion piece to In the Realm of the Senses, but other than its strong focus on sexuality—an Oshima staple—it is a very different film. In turn-of-the-century Japan, Toyoji, a soldier passing through a rural village, falls into a passionate affair with a local married woman, Seki. Soon, Toyoji pushes Seki to help him kill her husband. Winner of the Best Director award at the 1978 Cannes Film Festival.
Sun Sep 28: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Mon Oct 13: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
In the Realm of the Senses / Ai no corrida
Nagisa Oshima, Japan/France, 1976; 110m
The only film invited to the New York Film Festival ever to have been censored, In the Realm of the Senses has proved so controversial that it’s still effectively banned in Japan. A hotel maid, Sada Abe, locks herself into a room with her lover and employer, Kichizo Ishida, to push their lovemaking to some new, unknown limit. Bold, challenging, unforgettable—and based on a real incident—In the Realm of the Senses is not for the faint-hearted, but not to be missed.
Sat Sep 27: midnight Walter Reade Theater
Fri Oct 3: 10:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Japanese Summer: Double Suicide, aka Night of the Killer / Muri shinju: Nihon no natsu
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1967; 98m
One of Oshima’s least-known films, Japanese Summer: Double Suicide “centers on the death impulse in Japanese society,” says critic Tony Rayns. Terrified that his crime-world bosses are out to get him, Otoko (Kei Sato, in a remarkably unnerving performance) decides to arrange for his own death, and that his killer should be a woman. Eighteen-year-old Nejiko wants to find a man willing to make love to her with no strings attached. These two hapless souls inevitably cross paths and rapidly become the subjects of each other’s fantasies.
Fri Oct 3: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Tue Oct 7: 8:45pm Walter Reade Theater

Kyoto, My Mother’s Place
Nagisa Oshima, UK/Japan, 1991; 50m
Commissioned by BBC Scotland, Kyoto, My Mother’s Place is a lovely, achingly personal portrait of Oshima’s mother and the world in which she came to live when she arrived in Kyoto as a young woman. Oshima explores a city that has tried to resist the passage of time, a metaphor for the country that Oshima and his generation came to inherit.
SCREENING WITH
100 Years of Japanese Cinema
Nagisa Oshima, UK, 1994; 52m
To commemorate the centenary of cinema, the British Film Institute commissioned a number of filmmakers around the world to make works on their own national cinemas. Oshima produced a film notable for its irreverence and very personal take on Japanese history. The work of masters such as Ozu, Kurosawa and Mizoguchi together receive less screen time than Oshima’s own films. Of special interest are his comments on the Japanese New Wave of the ’60s, a movement he seems to doubt ever really existed.
Fri Oct 10: 3:45pm Walter Reade Theater
Mon Oct 13: 4:00pm Walter Reade Theater

The Man Who Left His Will on Film, aka He Died After the War / Tokyo senso sengo hiwa
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1970; 94m
One of Oshima's most remarkable and experimental works, The Man Who Left His Will on Film follows Motoki, a member of a left-wing film collective, in his tireless efforts to steal a particular Bolex camera. Oshima creates a series of frames within frames, of films within films, as the idea of point-of-view becomes increasingly enigmatic and the line between filmmaker and filmed subject is blurred. Oshima's young subjects have taken Godard's dictum to heart: It's not enough to make political films, one must learn to film politically.
Sun Sep 28: 12:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Sun Oct 12: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater

Max mon amour
Nagisa Oshima, France/USA/Japan, 1986; 98m
“A hilarious send-up of the French sex comedy.”—Amy Taubin, Village Voice
With the help of Luis Buñuel-collaborators Serge Silberman and Jean-Claude Carrière, Oshima’s Max mon amour brilliantly channels the wily old Spaniard’s surrealist sensibility for a look at the travails of a respectable household undone when wife Margaret (Charlotte Rampling) brings home a new lover: Max, a chimp she picked up at the zoo. Oshima brilliantly calibrates the action, slowly ratcheting up the absurdity of the proceeding as the family does its best to act natural.
Fri Oct 10: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence / Senjô no merî Kurisumasu
Nagisa Oshima, UK/Japan, 1983; 122m
“A spectacular, fascinating film.”—David Thomson, The New York Times
Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence marked Oshima’s triumphant return to center stage of international cinema. David Bowie plays Major Jack Celliers, ranking officer for the British soldiers interned in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp during World War II. The camp's commander, Captain Yonoi (Japanese rock star Ryuichi Sakamoto, who also composed the film's haunting score), grows increasingly fascinated with Celliers, while Sgt. Hara (Takeshi Kitano, aka Beat Takeshi, in his first major screen appearance), a brute responsible for the day-to-day running of the camp, understands Yonoi better than he knows himself.
Sun Sep 28: 6:45pm Walter Reade Theater
Sat Oct 11: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Night and Fog in Japan / Nihon no yoru to kiri
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1960; 107m
Regularly listed among the greatest political films ever made, Night and Fog in Japan was Oshima's first full meditation on the complex maelstrom of youth and politics that heavily influenced both the ’60s and his own work. Nozawa, a political activist turned journalist, is marrying Reiko, a student protester recently injured in a confrontation with the police. The wedding brings together all sides of their personal and political backgrounds—as well as all the barely concealed tensions. A tour-de-force, and one of Oshima’s key works.
Sat Sep 27: 4:45pm Walter Reade Theater
Tue Sep 30: 8:30pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Pleasures of the Flesh / Etsuraku
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1965; 90m
This eccentric satire on new Japan and its values follows Wakizaka, a young college graduate who is given a huge sum of money to hide by a government official on his way to jail. Wracked by guilt for a murder he has committed, Wakizaka decides to spend the money on prostitutes, planning suicide when his special trust fund runs out. Featuring several wickedly funny sequences set in the "love hotel" that hosts our hero's escapades, Pleasures looks ahead to Oshima’s studies of sexual abandon.
Sat Sep 27: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater
Thu Oct 2: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater

Shiro of Amakusa, The Christian Rebel, aka The Revolutionary / Amakusa shiro tokisada
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1962; 100m
Based on the historical persecution of Japanese Christians by the Shogunate in the 17th century, Oshima’s film follows Shiro (rising young star Hashizo Okawa), a Christian teenage farm boy who organizes a peasant resistance against government troops. Shiro’s oft-told struggle is given rather blatant parallels to contemporary student movements in the script by Oshima and Toshiro Ishido. The director exhibits easy mastery in depicting battles and crowd scenes, though his inherently complex view of human interaction dooms any simple, rousing message that could be derived from this portrait.
Wed Oct 1: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater
Thu Oct 2: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Sing a Song of Sex, aka A Treatise on Japanese Bawdy Songs / Nihon shunka-kô
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1967; 103m
A group of provincial high school students arrive in Tokyo to take their university entrance exams. To pass the time, one of their professors teaches them rather crude, sexually suggestive songs, arousing in the students desires they can’t hope to satisfy. Oshima returns to the theme of generational conflict treated in his earlier Night and Fog in Japan, charting the differences between the emerging generation of students and those responsible for its education.
Tue Oct 7: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Wed Oct 8: 9:00pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
The Sun’s Burial, aka Tomb of the Sun / Taiyo no hakaba
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1960; 87m
In Osaka’s massive 19th-century slum Kamagasaki, Hanako, a tough prostitute, seeks revenge on a con man by linking up with a rival gang leader. But her new alliance proves more than she bargained for. One of the very few films that can bear comparison to Buñuel's masterpiece Los Olvidados in its completely unsentimental portrait of contemporary urban poverty, The Sun's Burial offers a searing look at a festering segment of postwar Japan, a world light-years away from the rapidly industrializing city on its border.
Sun Sep 28: 2:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Tue Sep 30: 4:30pm Walter Reade Theater

A Town of Love and Hope / Ai to kibo no machi
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1959; 62m
“Shows that Oshima's political acumen was a great deal stronger than Godard's at the time.”—Tony Rayns, Time Out Film Guide
A poor boy trains and then sells a homing pigeon—selling it each time it returns to him—to help pay for his mother's medical bills. He catches the eye of a wealthy businessman’s daughter, but his idyll with her is cut short when he runs up against her brother. Oshima’s first film is a prime example of the socially critical eye that would guide all of his work. He hated the title forced on him by Shochiku, feeling it made the film sound too optimistic.
SCREENING WITH
Diary of a Yunbogi Boy / Yunbogi no nikki
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1965; 24m 16mm print
Largely made up of still images taken by Oshima during a trip to Korea, Diary of a Yunbogi Boy reflects on Japan's colonial occupation of Korea as well as the lingering prejudice against Koreans still living in Japan.
Sat Sep 27: 3:00pm Walter Reade Theater
Mon Sep 29: 4:30pm and 8:15pm Walter Reade Theater

Taboo / Gohatto
Nagisa Oshima, France/UK/Japan, 1999; 100m
“Like Oshima's scandalous In the Realm of the Senses (NYFF '76), Gohatto deals with the anti-authoritarian sway of sexuality, a nearly taboo topic in Japan. The setting is a 19th-century samurai school, where an impossibly handsome new recruit (Ryuhei Matsuda) spreads trouble and desire through the ranks of enlisted men and officers alike (among them, cult director and star Beat Takeshi). Filmed in a stately, burnished style…Gohatto is a late-life statement from one of the genuine masters of the medium."—38th New York Film Festival (2000)
Sun Sep 28: 9:15pm Walter Reade Theater
Mon Oct 13: 2:00pm and 8:45pm Walter Reade Theater

NEW 35MM PRINT
Three Resurrected Drunkards, aka Sinner in Paradise / Kaette kita yopparai
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1968; 80m
A wild youth farce becomes an incredible fresco of a Japan lumbering into the watershed year of 1968 after three young men go for a swim in the sea: Their clothes are stolen, and they’re soon mistaken for illegal Korean immigrants. The action is fast and furious, with wonderful sight gags, pratfalls, plot reversals, an encyclopedic Japanese pop score and Oshima’s most inventive use of color.
Thu Oct 9: 8:30pm Walter Reade Theater
Fri Oct 10: 2:00pm Walter Reade Theater

Violence at Noon / Hakuchu no torima
Nagisa Oshima, Japan, 1966; 99m
Even by Oshima’s own groundbreaking standards, Violence at Noon is one of his most remarkable films. After Eisuke kills Shino’s employer, Mrs. Inagaki, Shino enters into a strange complicity with her increasingly erratic one-time friend, as well as a silent witness to his wild spree of murders and assaults. With reportedly over 2,000 cuts, the film has the atmosphere of a fever dream, as Oshima creates a world where nothing—time, location, identity—is more than a fleeting image.
Tue Oct 7: 6:40pm Walter Reade Theater

FREE PANEL DISCUSSION
The Place of Oshima
Along with Jean-Luc Godard, Michelangelo Antonioni, Alain Resnais and a handful of others, Nagisa Oshima is routinely cited as one of the key figures of the modern cinema. But where does Oshima fit within the trajectory of Japan’s own postwar filmmaking? Moreover, is the “modernism” regularly attributed to Oshima truly comparable to that same contemporary movement in Europe and elsewhere? The Film Society presents a panel discussion on these and other issues raised by Oshima’s exemplary body of work. Participants will include Annette Michelson, editor of the collection of Oshima writings Cinema, Censorship and the State; David Desser, author of Eros + Massacre: An Introduction to the Japanese New Wave; Aaron Gerow, asst. professor of Film Studies and East Asian Languages and Literatures at Yale University; and other scholars and critics.
Wed Oct 1: 6:30pm Walter Reade Theater


At the Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery

Mark Rappaport’s Brief Histories Of… and Correspondence Course(s)
Sept. 15 – Oct. 12
Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery

Brief Histories Of… and Correspondence Course(s) are photo essays by filmmaker, author and visual artist Mark Rappaport, in which frames from a wide variety of movies are plucked from their original contexts and re-assembled. The stills refer to the old narrative from which the images were taken, but the viewer is invited to read them and the story they create with fresh eyes. As Rappaport puts it, “It’s a leapfrogging, zigzagging, hopscotching, time-traveling, three-dimensional chess game through film history.” The Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery is adjacent to the Walter Reade Theater. It is open daily 1:30 to 6:00 p.m.

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