12th Sep: (NOTE: Starts 6pm)
Mysteries of Lisbon
(Raoul Ruiz, Portugal/France, 2010, 272 mins + interval)
'Mysteries of Lisbon plunges us into a veritable whirlwind of adventures and escapades, coincidences and revelations, sentiments and violent passions, vengeance, love affairs, all wrapped in a rhapsodic voyage that takes us from Portugal to France, Italy, and as far as Brazil. In this Lisbon of intrigue and hidden identities, we encounter a series of characters all somewhat linked to the destiny of Pedro da Silva, orphan in a boarding school. Father Dinis, a descendent of the aristocratic libertines, later becomes a hero who defends justice, a countess maddened by her jealousy and set on her vengeance, a prosperous businessman who had mysteriously made his fortune as a bloodthirsty pirate; these and many more all cross in a story set in the 19th century and all searching for the true identity of our main character.'
(Otto Preminger, USA, 1944, 88 mins)
'Detective Mark McPherson investigates the killing of Laura, found dead on her apartment floor before the movie starts. McPherson builds a mental picture of the dead girl from the suspects whom he interviews. He is helped by the striking painting of the late lamented Laura hanging on her apartment wall. But who would have wanted to kill a girl with whom every man she met seemed to fall in love? To make matters worse, McPherson finds himself falling under her spell too. Then one night, halfway through his investigations, something seriously bizarre happens to make him re-think the whole case.'
(1) new BFI restoration trailer -
(2) original trailer -
The 400 Blows (PG)
(François Truffaut, France, 1959, 99 mins)
'François Truffaut’s first feature, The 400 Blows (Les quatre cents coups), is also his most personal. Told through the eyes of Truffaut’s life-long cinematic counterpart, Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud), The 400 Blows sensitively re-creates the trials of Truffaut’s own difficult childhood, unsentimentally portraying aloof parents, oppressive teachers, petty crime, and a friendship that would last a lifetime. The film marks Truffaut’s passage from leading critic of the French New Wave to his emergence as one of Europe’s most brilliant auteurs.'
(1) The superb original French trailer -
(2) The new BFI trailer for the restored version -
[The original trailer is sans pareil]
Le Rayon Vert (The Green Ray) (PG)
(Eric Rohmer, France, 1986, 98 mins)
'A spellbinding study of loneliness and the mysterious influence of fate on our lives. Rohmer’s masterpiece stars Marie Rivière in a captivating performance as the highly sensitive Delphine, a Parisian secretary looking for a meaningful connection in a callous and indifferent world. Winner of the Golden Lion at the 1986 Venice Film Festival, this is a seemingly featherweight tale, yet is perhaps the most memorable of the director's Comedies and Proverbs.'
Original French trailer (without subtitles): -
(Mike Leigh, UK, 1999, 160 mins)
'The world of Gilbert and Sullivan comes to vivid life in this extraordinary dramatization of the staging of their legendary 1885 comic opera The Mikado from Mike Leigh. Jim Broadbent and Allan Corduner brilliantly inhabit the roles of the world-famous Victorian librettist and composer, respectively, who, along with their troupe of temperamental actors, must battle personal and professional demons while mounting this major production. A lushly produced epic about the harsh realities of creative expression, featuring bravura performances and Oscar-winning costume design and makeup, Topsy-Turvy is an unexpected period delight from one of contemporary cinema’s great artists.'
Taxi Driver (18)
(Martin Scorsese, USA, 1976, 113 mins)
'Taxi Driver first hit US cinema screens thirty-five years ago. Even today, watching angry, delusional taxi driver Travis Bickle as he moves about the city ‘like a rat through the sewers’ (so screenwriter Paul Schrader) remains one of cinema’s most disturbing experiences. As Wolfram Schütte, writing in the ‘Frankfurter Rundschau’ newspaper on 3.11.1976, puts it: “A very strange … alarming and fascinating film; syncretic, iridescent, a furtive reptile, constantly changing its colours like a chameleon, soaring towards the mystical; a synthetic amalgam of the most contradictory influences, tendencies and metaphysical aspirations: comic, nervous and hysterical.” The final version of the restored film was approved by Martin Scorsese in January 2011.'
(1) The re-release 'preview' -
(2) Original trailer -
The Red Shoes (U)
(Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, UK, 1948, 133 mins)
'A glorious Technicolor epic that influenced generations of filmmakers, artists, and aspiring ballerinas, The Red Shoes intricately weaves backstage life with the thrill of performance. A young ballerina (Moira Shearer) is torn between two forces: the composer who loves her (Marius Goring), and the impresario determined to fashion her into a great dancer (Anton Walbrook)'
They Made me a Fugitive (PG)
(Alberto Cavalcanti, UK, 1947, 99 mins)
'A terrific, economical thriller about a war hero (Trevor Howard), down on his luck, who briefly falls in with a pack of East End gangsters, is framed and sent to prison, and escapes to take his revenge. Full of visual invention, it has Cavalcanti's greatest villain: "Narcy", or Narcissus, a preening, dandyish cockney sadist whose name, not so coincidentally, is a near-homophone for Churchill's pronunciation of "Nazi".'
There's no trailer available; but this clip (from TCM) is intriguing, and sets the scene without any spoilers:
(Jean Vigo, France, 1934, 89 mins)
'In Jean Vigo’s hands, an unassuming tale of newlyweds becomes an achingly romantic reverie of desire and hope. Jean (Jean Dasté), a barge captain, marries Juliette (Dita Parlo), an innocent country girl, and the two climb aboard Jean’s boat, the L’Atalante—otherwise populated by an earthy first mate (Michel Simon) and a multitude of mangy cats—and embark on their new life together. Both a surprisingly erotic idyll and a clear-eyed meditation on love, L’Atalante, Vigo’s only feature-length work, is a film like no other.'
Modern clip - unfortunately preceded by intrusive ad. - but lovely image and gives an excellent flavour of the film -
The Apartment (PG)
(Billy Wilder, USA, 1960, 125 mins.)
'Winner of five 1960 Academy Awards including Best Picture, The Apartment is legendary writer/director Billy Wilder at his scathing, satirical best, and one of “the finest comedies Hollywood has turned out” (Newsweek). C.C. “Bud” Baxter (Jack Lemmon) knows the way to success in business…it’s through the door of his apartment! By providing a perfect hideaway for philandering bosses, he reaps a series of undeserved promotions. But when Bud lends the key to big boss J.D. Sheldrake (Fred MacMurray), he not only advances his career, but his own love life as well. For Sheldrake’s mistress is the lovely Fran Kubelik (Shirley MacLaine), the elevator girl of Bud’s dreams. Convinced that he is the only man for Fran, Bud must make the most important executive decision of his career: lose the girl…or his job.'
(1) The original trailer seems to deliberately miss the point (Interesting, No?)
(2) But this clip sets things up well, without spoiling -