(D. W. Griffith, 1916) · With this monumental epic, the architect of narrative cinema as we know it pushed the form he originated to new depths. There remains something special about Griffith's use of a tool as ubiquitous as the close-up; for Gilberto Perez, "when Griffith focused his camera on the face of Lillian Gish, he composed close-ups that are perhaps the most beautiful in existence... nobody can recapture the innocence of those Gish close-ups - the conveyed excitement of learning to speak, and speaking with surprised eloquence, the camera's language of love."
runtime: 210m format: 16mm
(Zacharias Kunuk, 2001) · Join us for this rare, imported, out-of-circulation 35mm print! A film experience unlike any other, Atanarjuat brings to the screen a centuries-old Inuit legend, passed down orally and adapted here in collaboration with several tribal elders. Written, directed, and acted entirely in the Inuktitut language (the first ever such feature) and shot on-location in the arctic wilderness of Nunavut, Atanarjuat is an epic story of love, jealousy, revenge, and the preservation and representation of indigenous cultures.
runtime: 172m format: 35mm
(Manuel José Álvarez and Nicolás Buenaventura, 1997) · La Deuda begins with the murder of a debt collector known as the Turk. Although it is unclear who killed him, nearly everyone in the Colombian town played a part in his death and the coverup. After the Turk's death, guilt begins to eat up the citizens who try and go back to their everyday lives, as strange and uncanny events start to occur around them.
runtime: 90m format: 35mm
(Rudolph Maté, 1949) · Try and dream up a more suspenseful premise: ordinary accountant Frank Bigelow walks into the police station to report a murder - his own. Several days earlier at a beatnik nightclub, some cat slipped him more than a mickey. A doctor tells him that he's been poisoned and has only a few days to live. As his time slips away, Frank investigates his own impending murder, desperately rebelling against an inexorable fate in this definitive crystallization of film noir's pessimistic attitude.
runtime: 84m format: 16mm
(Andy Warhol, 1965)· Shot mostly in close-up, Poor Little Rich Girlis something like a "documentary" about Edie Sedgwick, waking up at home, putting on make-up, and talking to the off-screen Chuck Wein. It is also a profound meditation on issues Warhol is known for dealing with - surface appearances, fetishism - and issues he is less often associated with - loneliness, emptiness, vanity. Warhol creatively layered his out-of-focus first takes over the in-focus second takes to create an elusive portrait of his star.
runtime: 66m format: 16mm
(John Ford, 1917) · John Ford's first full-length feature, Straight Shooting is a silent Western starring Harry Carey (Mr. Smith Goes to Washington) as Cheyenne Harry, a Generic gunman defending farmers' access to water. One of the first Westerns by a director who would go on to redefine and culminate the genre, Straight Shooting already displays glimmers of Ford's brilliant visual acumen. Print courtesy of the Library of Congress
runtime: 71m format: 35mm
(Robert J. Flaherty, 1922) · A groundbreaking work in documentary film, Nanook of the North follows the lives of an Inuit family braving the unforgiving yet starkly beautiful landscapes of northern Quebec. Set apart by a vivacity that stems from its heroes' resourcefulness (famous scenes include a walrus hunt and the building of an igloo) as well as its own scrappily innovative filmmaking methods, Nanook endures thanks to its "assisted reality," as a milestone in implicit and explicit reportage of the human capacity for ingenuity and awe.
runtime: 79m format: 16mm
(Hollis Frampton, 1970) · This seminal work of the American avant-garde takes its name from an influential axiom of mathematical set theory, and structures itself as an exploration of the letters of the alphabet, progressing from New York street signs and the Bible into an otherworldly realm of poetic abstraction. In the words of film historian P. Adams Sitney, "at a time when radical uniqueness seems progressively less probable, Hollis Frampton has made a film that is absolutely one of its kind."
runtime: 60m format: 16mm
(Miklós Jancsó, 1972) · FREE SCREENING! Miklós Jancsó has been forgotten in the current craze for long-take cinema, despite being one of its most innovative forebears. Eschewing the rigorous austerity for which the mode is known, Jancsó's freewheeling camera tracks and pans wildly, fusing the long take with kinetic visual spectacle in the service of radical political critique. Red Psalm, which contains a total of just 26 shots, is a lushly sensual Hungarian Communist musical that utilizes this stylistic bravado to exhilarating effect.
runtime: 87m format: DVD
(Juan Carlos Tabío, 1988) · Before receiving international acclaim with Strawberry and Chocolate, Juan Carlos Tabío's wicked humor took on 1980's Cuba in Plaff!. Concha, a superstitious widow, suddenly finds that someone is throwing eggs at her house. Unhappy with her son's recent marriage and aggravated by the egg-tossing felon, Concha lashes out as tension builds. On the cusp of the fall of the Berlin Wall, Tabío's quirky satire takes aim at Cuban society, with its target encompassing everything from the government to the very process of filmmaking itself.
runtime: 92m format: 35mm