Harpur Cinema to examine ‘passages’
October 2, 2013Tweet
Streets, galleries, game boards, words written on a page, images that pass by in home movies.
This fall, Harpur Cinema celebrates “passages”: All those necessary, painful or pleasurable transits from a “here” to a “there” that make us the people we are.
Most films in the series are introduced by a Binghamton University faculty member. The schedule is:
Oct. 4 and Oct. 6: “Museum Hours” (Jem Cohen, 2012, Austria/USA, 106 min)
Museums are full of passages. Moving from one gallery to another might take the visitor through sudden changes in periods, styles, cultures. The eye passes over the surfaces of many different artifacts, past many different people who have many different ways of viewing. Shot in the Kunsthistorisches Art Museum in Vienna, Jem Cohen’s film reminds us of the joys of lingering, teasing out details—in the paintings and in peoples’ lives—that reward the persistent viewer. (Winner, CICAE Award, Locarno). Special note: Director Jem Cohen will be present to introduce the film on Friday, Oct. 4.
Oct. 18 and Oct. 20: “Tomboy” (Céline Sciamma , 2011, France, 82 min)
Laure is new in town…but is she the new girl or the new boy? Sciamma’s script—tender and lively—delicately explores the passage of a 10-year old child into a sense of identity and gender. Zoé Héran’s gives a performance is at once spirited and touching as Laure explores a life as Mikäel with all its rough and tumble joys, all its ambiguities and all its eventual consequences. Sciamma’s talent “for working with young actors…give the film messiness, joy and life.” (Manhola Darghis, NYT) (Winner: Teddy Jury Award, Berlin, Best Feature, Torino Gay & Lesbian Film Festival) Introduction by Dora Polachek on Friday, Oct. 18
Oct. 25 and Oct. 27: “Computer Chess” (Andrew Bujalski, 2013, USA, 92 min)
Film Comment’s Amy Taubin described Bujalski’s antic passage through the ranks and files of the classic game of military strategy as “part faux documentary and part hallucinatory coming-of-age sexual fantasy.” Film Forum continues: “With clunky computers the size of small cars, and eyewear of almost equal weight, these vintage geeks may be in the techno-vanguard, but they are hopeless when it comes to human relations. Bujalski gives the film a charming period look by shooting on primitive early ‘70s video cameras. ” (Winner, Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Award, Sundance) Introduction by Joyce Jesionowski on Friday, Oct. 25
Nov. 1 and Nov. 3: “Le Bonheur d’Elza” (Mariette Monpierre, 2011, France, 78 min.)
Before taking up her professional life in Paris, Elza journeys to Guadeloupe searching for the father she has never met. The journey is nothing if not complicated—not the least by a man who, she discovers, is a philanderer and a bigot. Melding the luxuriant beauty Guadeloupe, and the prejudices that exist among formerly colonized people, Monpierre’s debut film is deeply sensitive to the contradictions Elza must negotiate if she wishes to make peace with her difficult inheritance. (Winner, Jury Award & Best First Feature, Los Angeles Pan African Festival) Introduction by Chantal Rodais on Friday Nov. 1.
Nov. 8 and Nov. 10: “The Stories We Tell” (Sarah Polley, 2012, Canada, 108 min.)
Every family has its founding myths—though reconsidering the facts sometimes tells quite a different story. Sarah Polley uses the family movie to break into the myth and liberate the story again. “The main secret…regarding her own origins is somehow more invigorating than traumatic…and if viewers leave the screening…determined to chip away at the apparently fixed narratives that sustain their own families, then the movie’s job is done.” (Anthony Lane, The New Yorker) (Winner: Genie, Best, Documentary, Canadian Screen Awards; Best Documentary & Best Canadian Film, Toronto Film Critics Awards) Introduction by Tomonari Nishikawa on Friday Nov. 8.
Nov. 15 and Nov. 17: “A Cat in Paris” (Jean-Loup Felicioli, Alain Gagnol, 2010, France/Netherlands/Switzerland, Belgium, 70 min.)
Note: The screening on Sunday, November 17 will take place at 2 p.m. as a special children’s feature.
A cat has many lives…as Zoe, a silent little girl traumatized by her father’s loss finds out. By day Dino is her beloved pet. But at night, he stalks the rooftops of Paris helping Nico, a daring jewel robber. How Dino and Nico help Zoe’s mother bring about justice is only one of the pleasures of this magical film in hand-drawn, old-school animation. “Complete with a climactic Hitchcockian set piece on the rooftops of Notre Dame…the romantic backdrops tip the hat to film noir…in a storybook Paris of the imagination.” (Seattle Weekly, Seattle Times, San Francisco Bay Guardian) (Nominated Best Animated Film: Oscar, César, European Film Awards 2012)