(Giovanni Pastrone, 1914) · Set in the 3rd century B.C. against the backdrop of the Punic Wars, Pastrone's Cabiria tells the story of a young noble girl kidnapped by pirates during an eruption of Mt. Etna. Dazzling with its impressive sets, visual effects, and revolutionary moving camera, Cabiria confidently takes its place with the epics of Eisenstein and Griffith (having profound influence on the latter's Intolerance) as a stately remnant of the fantasy and spectacle that ruled cinema before the advent of the Second World War.
runtime: 148m format: 16mm
(Im Kwon-taek, 2000) · A recent take of many on its eponymous Korean folktale, Chunhyang freshens the legend upon which it is based with lush visual theatricality, and unique narration via pansori singing (a traditional storytelling form). The tale itself is as follows: Mongryong, the son of a governor, falls for and covertly marries the beautiful courtesan's daughter Chunhyang. When he and his father must leave the region, Chunhyang is left to endure the tribulations of serving under the selfish governor Byun while awaiting her love's return.
runtime: 120m format: 35mm
(Charles Barton, 1948) · In the 1948 American horror comedy Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Abbott and Costello star as freighthandlers from North Florida who are asked to deliver crates to a house of horrors museum. The first in a series of Abbot and Costello's horror films produced by Universal Pictures, the movie insights monsterous laughs as the comedic duo encounter the Wolf Man, Dracula, and Frankenstein's Monster.
runtime: 83m format: 35mm
(Fritz Lang, 1944) · In Fritz Lang's 1944 film The Woman in the Window, Professor Richard Wanley (Edward G. Robinson) meets Alice (Joan Bennett), a young femme fatale he soon falls for. Her jealous boyfriend finds out and Richard kills him in self defense. He hides the body, but then his D.A. friend invites him to tag along on the investigation of his own crime. The term "film noir" originated as a genre description, in part, because of The Woman in the Window. Print courtesy of the Library of Congress
runtime: 107m format: 16mm
(Charles Burnett, 1978) · In Watts, a mostly African-American setion of Los Angeles, Henry Gayle Sanders spends his days toiling away at a local slaughterhouse. His work affects his home life with his unnamed wife and two children. Through a series of episodic events, the film presents a mosaic of an austere working-class life, in which the character feels the inevitable intertwine between his work and family life.
runtime: 80m format: 35mm
(William Dieterle, 1949) · An obsessive college student assaults his psychology professor (Loretta Young), and in self-defense, she accidentally kills her attacker. After the fact, she hopes to mask the events by framing his death as a diving accident off a cliff. However, as a police investigation concerning the circumstances of his death ensues, she begins to lose her grip on her emotional self and the reality of her situation. The wheel of justice turns--what is to be her curse and what is to be her fortune? Print courtesy of the Library of Congress
runtime: 101m format: 35mm
(Michael Roemer, 1964) · Nothing but a Man tells the story of an African-American railroad worker, Duff Anderson, who marries the local preacher's daughter of a small town near Birmingham, Alabama in the eary 1960s. Facing racism and discrimination as well as the disapproval of his father, Duff navigates life in a troubling time and place. Considered to be an important example of neorealistic American cinema, Nothing but a Man was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant". Print courtesy of the Library of Congress
runtime: 95m format: 16mm
(Frank Capra, 1944) · Mortimer Brewster (Cary Grant), a marriage cynic, falls in love with Elaine Harper, his childhood neighbor and the two elope on Halloween night. Upon their return from their honeymoon, Brewster visits his two eccentric aunts and a series of antics make him realize how sinister his family truly is. A spin on Joseph Kesselring's classic stage comedy, Arsenic and Old Lace is said to be "practically as funny in picture form as it [was] on the stage, and that is very funny indeed" (The New Yorker). Print courtesy of the Library of Congress
runtime: 118m format: 35mm
(Andy Warhol, 1966) · Up on the fourth floor loft of Warhol's NYC Factory in 1966, The Velvet Underground and Nico gather under Warhol’s "direction" for a long and loose improvisational jam session. His camera in frenetic sync (or better, discord) with the band's playing as it zooms into/moves across their faces--a pale, shades-wearing Lou Reed on guitar, and Nico and her son in the room's center--Warhol captures a document (and only decent footage) of the band that was arguably first to perform to the hazy tune of "alternative."
runtime: 103m format: 16mm