From coppers and gangsters to cowboys and cattle barons (with a few soldiers, wildcatters and ancient warriors thrown in for good measure), Film Forum’s three-week retrospective of director Anthony Mann offers an unbeatable rogue’s gallery of hardboiled antiheroes. Paul Brunick tackles some critical misconceptions of Mann’s work throughout his career.
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Before Preston Sturges became a marquee-name comedy director in the 1940s, he spent a decade as a studio-hopping screenwriter, knocking out scripts and dialogue polishes at the speed of ticker tape. His furiously fast, whizbang witticisms were the stuff of instant legend, and his 1937 screenplay for Easy Living (screening at Film Forum this Sunday) may be the best work of his pre-directorial career.
Paul Brunick interviews Tony Pipilo, author of the upcoming Robert Bresson: A Passion for Film, an “aesthetic biography” on Bresson. On Thursday, Dec. 17 at 7:30 P.M., Pipolo will introduce a rare screening of Bresson’s The Trial of Joan of Arc at Anthology Film Archives. A book release event follows.
The great film critic Stanley Cavell once wrote that his enjoyment of The Awful Truth was “especially dependent on the presence of an appreciative audience.” Fortunately for us New Yorkers, this 1937 screwball classic will be screening to a predictably packed house this Friday and Saturday when it kicks off the opening weekend of Film Forum’s “Madcap Manhattan” retrospective.
This Sunday, November 29, Anthology Film Archives will be screening a whole day’s worth of shorts surveying Chaplin’s earliest filmmaking period, from his 1914 arrival at Mack Sennett’s Keystone Studios to the start of his feature-length filmmaking in 1921.
A no-frills B-noir born in the gutter of Hollywood’s Poverty Row, Detour was shot in six days on a broken-shoestring budget in the low six figures. Given the track record of its parent PRC film studio (Producers Releasing Corporation, or “Pretty Rotten Crap,” as the joke went), this 1945 road movie should have disappeared into the vanishing point of film history faster than a hitchhiker in your rearview mirror. Click through for Paul Brunick’s review of the film and a short interview with Noah Isenberg, who will be introducing the film tonight, November 16th, at BAM.
How can one explain the wonderful and terrifying magic of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s 1948 adaptation of The Red Shoes? A film about creative obsession, it has itself become the object of such obsession.
If you’re looking for one cuh-ray-zee scene (and I’m talking wild, man) then shuffle down to the East Village for Roger Corman’s hipster horror-comedy A Bucket of Blood, now playing at Anthology Film Archives as part of their Corman retrospective.
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