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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Cool Films at Film School

Emory's Matthew Bernstein is an Atlanta Treasure.

Without him, the cinematic landscape in this town would be significantly less robust.

Not only is Matthew Chairman of the Department of Film and Media at Emory, he is also:
* the face, voice, and visionary behind the Atlanta chapter of the Cinema Club, the "nation's premier sneak preview film society," (formerly the Key Cinema Club), (disclosure: I have been an invited guest at the Cinema Club series on many occasions)

* a key player in the upcoming Atlanta Jewish Film Festival (serving as Co-Chair of the programming committee, a contributor to the program guide, and regular moderator, introduction maker, and post-screening Q&A leader); (disclosure: AJFF contracted me to write select notes in this year's AJFF program guide.)

* host of the area's best, albeit most exclusive, Oscar® gathering (disclosure: I think this party is awesome.)

Thanks to Matthew, as well as his colleague Dr. David Pratt, as well as Emory College and the Department of Film and Media Studies, Atlanta movie-lovers have the opportunity to enjoy free weekly screenings of 35mm prints of classic films at the Emory Cinémathèque.

On Wednesday evenings at 7:30 PM in White Hall 205, a series of cinematic classics will be screened in glorious 35mm prints.

The program entitled "Hollywood & International Film Classics: 1953 - 2000", begins January 19 with the Delmer Daves' Western 3:10 to Yuma and continues throughout the semester with, what a radio DJ might call, of deep cuts from cinema rock-stars like Truffaut, Fellini, Ray, Bergman and Polanski.

I Remember: Is Fellinis Amarcord Indulgent?
  • I Remember: Is Fellini's Amarcord Indulgent?

The line-up includes a few must see "rarities" like Vengeance in Mine—survey courses often overlook Imamura in lieu of Kurosawa or Ozu, Bergman's Monika—better known for causing scandal upon its release in the U.S., Fellini's Amarcord—is this film that the guy in line behind Woody Allen in Annie Hall called "Indulgent?" and Ray's Mahanagar—with few exceptions, the "go to" films from Ray's canon begins with the "Apu" trilogy.

Roman Knows: Polanskis Knife Cuts Deep
  • Roman Knows: Polanski's Knife Cuts Deep

The series also features some films that one should only see on the big screen: Jarmush's Stranger Than Paradise featuring lush B&W cinematography by Robby Müller; Mikhail Kalatozov's love letter from Russia to Castro I am Cuba features dizzying camera work that inspired Paul Thomas Anderson and Martin Scorsese, and Polanski's debut feature Knife in the Water, an intense three character study, set on a boat, Polanski's camera carves the limited space into abstract fields as bold as a Moholy-Nagy canvas.

The series features a few bizarro curiosities: Makavejev's free-love treatise which conflates Marx & Engels with Masters & Johnson WR Mysteries of the Organism plus Truffaut's sophomore effort, a fast-and-loose genre study Shoot the Piano Player, that boasts the best cut-away in film history. In many ways, in Shoot the Piano Player Truffaut "out Godards" Godard.

Complete line-up here:

January 26: Shoot the Piano Player
February 2: Amarcord
February 16: Monika
February 23: Knife in the Water
March 2: WR Mysteries of the Organism
March 16: I am Cuba
March 23: Vengance Is Mine
March 30: Mahanagar
April 6: Chunhyangdyun / Chunhyang
April 13: Five Easy Pieces
April 20: Stranger Than Paradise

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