Spring 2001 (1)

Wednesday, January 24 at 7:00 pm

Celebrate Mozart's birthday a few days early. A Boulder Film Alliance screening.

Mozart had God's gift for music, and he treated it so arrogantly that it became his downfall. AMADEUS is the story of Mozart, the composer with God's gift and the Devil's audacity, and Salieri, the composer with God's pity and the Devil's vengeance. In Vienna, Salieri embarks on a jealous quest to bring Mozart to his knees, and, ultimately, his death. It is a battle that only one of them fights. Mozart never really grasped that Salieri was his enemy until it was too late. Salieri, a man who traded chastity for talent, became obsessed with defeating Mozart as a way to defeat God, and thus he employed all of the impish tricks he could devise. The result is one of the finest crafted forms of revenge ever conceived. AMADEUS is a movie so good that it defies description. Although such praise is often a cop out, Amadeus holds true to this level of acclaim. Watching Amadeus is like listening to Mozart: it is a horrible beauty beyond words. ­ James Brundage, filmcritic.com.

USA, 1984, English, 158 mins, color, rated PG.

Thursday, January 25 at 7:00 pm
Friday, January 26 at 7:00 pm

PLEASE NOTE: This film is $6 General, $5 CU Boulder Students w/ID

A restored 35mm print of a Kurosawa classic!

Akira Kurosawa has been called the "Shakespeare of cinema. "RAN, which melds an ancient samurai legend with King Lear, reaffirms Kurosawa's greatness both as an interpreter of Shakespeare and as a master of the medium of film. RAN shows us an ancient Japanese Lord, nearing the end of his life, trying to sort out his affairs. He wants to divide his lands between three sons, but lacks the humility to realize two of his children are disloyal, while the one son who refuses to play bootlicking games is banished. As the two remaining sons move inevitably toward civil war, their father is stripped of his power, prestige and pride. It is only then that he is able to see the truth. But is it too late? A venerable 75 years old when he made the film, Kurosawa's eyesight was apparently very poor, which might account for the orgy of color that greets us in RAN. Blazing reds, yellows and blues assault us during some of the most exciting and energetic battle scenes ever filmed. ­Dan Jardine, Apollo Movie Guide.

Japan/France, 1985, color, Japanese w/English subtitles, 160 mins, 35mm, rated R.

Saturday, January 27 at 7:00 pm
Saturday, January 27 at 9:30 pm
Sunday, January 28 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, January 28 at 7:00 pm

The last film ever directed by Akira Kurosawa.

Made in 1993, MADADAYO was the last film by the Japanese master Akira Kurosawa, who died in 1998. And yet the very title of the film argued against death; "Madadayo" means "not yet!" That is the ritual cry which the film's old professor shouts out at the end of every one of his birthday parties, and it means that although death will come and may be near, life still goes on. There were times when I felt uncannily as if Kurosawa were filming his own graceful decline into the night. It tells the story of the last two decades in the life of Hyakken Uchida, a writer and teacher who retires in the war years of the early 1940s. He was the kind of teacher who could inspire great respect and affection from his students, who venerate him and, as a group, help support him in his old age. The movie is as much about the students as the professor; as much about gratitude and love as about aging. Kurosawa said his movie is about "something very precious, which has been all but forgotten: The enviable world of warm hearts." ­Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun Times.

Japan, 1993, color, Japanese w/English subtitles, 134 mins, 35mm, not rated.

Wednesday, January 31 at 7:00 pm
Wednesday, January 31 at 9:15 pm

A restored 35mm print of the grandpere of all jewel-heist films.

In 1955, Jules Dassin, an American director in exile in Paris, made this flat-out perfect piece of cinema. RIFIFI became unquestionably his most loved work. Telling the story of a newly sprung bank robber who engineers the perfect caper, the film is a delirious fantasia of gangster ethics and underworld locales, artfully framed in a baroque, twisting plot and hung lovingly against the gorgeous backdrop of Parisian streets. Dazzling, ornate, and artfully crafted, Rififi is, it cannot be disputed, a work of perfection. Like a diamond, each facet of the film gleams as brightly: The performances are quite excellent. The cinematography is stunning, the music, by famed composer Georges Auric, is dead on, restrained and somber, occasionally breaking into dance. The plot is an economic wonder: three succinct acts that unfold with the dedication of an opera, building to a glorious, melodramatic finish. ­ Jamie Hook, The Stranger.

France, 1956, B&W, French w/English subtitles, 115 mins, 35mm, not rated.

Goya in Bordeaux
Thursday, February 1 at 7:00 pm
Thursday, February 1 at 9:00 pm
Friday, February 2 at 7:00 pm
Friday, February 2 at 9:00 pm

The latest film from Carlos Saura, the director of TANGO, CARMEN, and BLOOD WEDDING.

GOYA IN BORDEAUX is a staggeringly beautiful excursion into the sensibility of an artist whose disillusionment with mankind, dark subject matter and break with artistic traditions made him the first truly modern painter. It is 1828, as Goya is 82 and near death, living in Bordeaux, France ­ in pleasant financial circumstances but in bitter exile from the Spanish regime that he loathes. The film dwells on Goya's interior life. Soon, he's wandering through his past, often in dialogue with his younger self; and we follow his artistic development, his rising contempt for the human species and his great love affair with the Duchess of Alba. The film gets increasingly surreal, often using painted theatrical backgrounds in flashbacks and re-creating some of Goya's most famous paintings in an explosion of color, pulsating music and stylized spectacle that will be familiar to anyone who's seen Carlos Saura's FLAMENCO and TANGO. ­William Arnold, Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Spain, 1999, color, Spanish w/English subtitles, 102 mins, 35mm, rated R.

The Tao of Steve
Saturday, February 3 at 7:00 pm
Saturday, February 3 at 9:00 pm
Sunday, February 4 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, February 4 at 7:00 pm

A Sundance Film Festival Award-winning comedy.

THE TAO OF STEVE is a philosophy for picking up chicks: to bed a woman you must first be desireless; then you must be excellent in her presence; finally, you must retreat. This is the approach Dex has been taking, and it works surprisingly well, especially considering that Dex is not exactly Mr. Handsome. Anywhere he goes in Santa Fe, at least one girl walks up to him and says ^Ìhi' in that knowing manner. Dex meets his match when he meets Syd, a beautiful woman from his past who has her own philosophy on love. Drawing from Kierkegaard and Don Giovanni, she says that men who sleep around are simply afraid of facing love. The plot is funny and the dialogue insightful as Dex and Syd fall prey to each other's philosophy. THE TAO OF STEVE is a low budget film from first-timers but it has the look, sound, and feel of a solid, polished movie. With its smooth polish, original writing, and good acting, THE TAO OF STEVE makes a very good, slightly cynical, modern romantic comedy. ­Marty Mapes, MovieHabit.com.

USA, 2000, color, English, 87 mins, 35mm, rated R.

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
Wednesday, February 7 at 7:00 pm
Wednesday, February 7 at 9:00 pm

A restored 35mm print ­ special introduction by Film Studies Professor Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz.

Another of Buñuel's witty satires, intelligently structured and almost flawless in terms of directorial technique and in its critique, the film concentrates around a group of people typifying the bourgeoisie who gather for a meal but they can never eat it because they are interrupted by all sorts of unexpected events. Buñuel fuses ingeniously dream and reality and carries the notion of illusion to extremes. He combines the minute mannerisms and savoir vivre of the bourgeois type with the bourgeoisie's gross indifference towards substantial issues and the result is often hilarious, often astonishing in its rang of perception. Politics, sex, religion, ideology are all placed under close scrutiny by Buñuel's sensitive eye. Laden with some well placed symbolism and unique injections of Surrealism, THE DISCREET CHARM..., is ultimately a film of brilliant twists and turns, a humorous treatise on sociability which finds its best expression in the bourgeoisie. ­Spiros Gangas, EUFS Programme 1993-94.

France, 1972, color, French / Spanish w/English subtitles, 105 mins, 35mm, rated PG.

I'm the One that I Want
Thursday, February 8 at 7:00 pm
Thursday, February 8 at 9:00 pm
Friday, February 9 at 7:00 pm
Friday, February 9 at 9:00 pm

Comedian Margaret Cho takes on racism, self image, family, cruelty in the entertainment instustry and sex in all its forms.

Margaret Cho plays the story of her life and career for laughs in this entertaining one-woman show. Cho started stand-up at 16 and by her early 20s she was the star of her own sitcom, ³All-American Girl.² That¹s where her troubles began; the network thought she was too fat (yes, too fat to play herself). She lost weight, but ended up ill and hooked on diet pills and booze. Cho recounts the tale with a sense of liberation. Highlights include her encounter with nurse Gwen in the hospital after a collapse and the network¹s hiring of an ³Asian consultant² to help the Korean-American Cho be more, um, Asian. Her routine also compares gay porn with straight porn (the men are uglier in straight porn because straight men watching it don¹t want to risk even a momentary attraction to another man), addresses her sexual history (³I used to think ^ÌAm I gay? Am I straight?¹ Then I realized I was just slutty. Where¹s my parade?²), family and Asian stereotypes. It¹s humor with a message (love yourself as you are) that doesn¹t forget to be funny. ­Curt Fields, Washington Post.

USA, 2000, color, English, 96 mins, 35mm, unrated.

Dancer in the Dark
Saturday, February 10 at 7:00 pm
Saturday, February 10 at 9:30 pm
Sunday, February 11 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, February 11 at 7:00 pm

The latest film by Lars von Trier, starring Björk, and a a big winner at the last Cannes Film Festival.

The dark is a place of both fear and pleasure for Czech immigrant Selma Jezkova (Björk) in Lars von Trier's astonishing and triumphant musical melodrama DANCER IN THE DARK. It's the 1960s in a fictional rural America, and the factory worker and single mother, secretly going blind from a hereditary eye disease, is frantically saving money for an operation that might spare her 12 year old son from the same encroaching fade to black. But the dark is also where Selma loses herself in the classic Hollywood musicals that sustain her. Sitting in a dimmed theater with her friend and fellow factory worker, Kathy (Cathérine Deneuve), she's transported into the light; what she can't see on the screen, she relies on Kathy to describe. Selma's life is one of steadily escalating tragedy. But in the dark, she's free to dance in a better, sunnier tomorrow. DANCER IN THE DARK (which won the Palme d'Or this year at Cannes and the top acting prize for its star), is animated by Björk's powerful artlessness and the originality of her musicianship. ''I've seen it all,'' Selma sings in this optimistic tragedy. Von Trier, meanwhile, shows us something amazing we haven't seen before. ­Lisa Schwarzbaum, EW Online.

Denmark, 2000, color, English, 139 mins, 35mm, rated R.

Monday, February 12 at 7:00 pm

* FREE *

CAUGHT (1996) with director Robert M. Young in-person.

CAUGHT is a noir-ish film about passion and betrayal that stars Edward James Olmos, Maria Conchita Alonso and Arie Verveen. The program is presented by CU-Denver's Film Center, and is supported by a grant from The James and Rebecca Roser Visiting Artist Foundation.

Filmmaker Robert M. Young is the director of NOTHING BUT A MAN, ALAMBRISTA!, and THE BALLAD OF GREGORIO CORTEZ.

Live Nude Girls Unite!
Wednesday, February 14 at 7:00 pm
Wednesday, February 14 at 9:00 pm

A documentary about strippers on strike ­ to be preceded by an archive print of a pornographic cartoon circa 1922.

Whether dancing to earn a meager living or make a political statement, the subjects of this aptly titled documentary (many of whom are queer) put aside their differences in order to accomplish one goal: to be treated with respect by their employers. For years, unknown to the public or their clientele, strip club entertainers faced labor problems that went unaddressed. Deciding to unionize, the dancers faced a seven-month struggle to come to terms with club owners. LIVE NUDE GIRLS UNITE! illustrates the tribulations of these courageous women, considered second-class citizens by many Americans, who fought the odds to improve their lot. The inspiring struggle depicted here has galvanized nationwide changes for workers in the sex industry and other fields, and has helped legitimize an industry too easily neglected and demonized by law enforcement. ­SeattleQueerFilm.com.

USA, 2000, color, English, 75 mins, 16mm, not rated.

Requiem for a Dream
Thursday, February 15 at 7:00 pm
Thursday, February 15 at 9:00 pm
Friday, February 16 at 7:00 pm
Friday, February 16 at 9:00 pm

The latest film by Darren Aronofsky, the director of PI.

Everyone who matters in Requiem for a Dream is addicted to something ­ chocolate, television, diet pills, heroin, you name it. Director Darren Aronofsky, fortunately, is addicted to images. He has put together a phantasmagoria of self-destructive obsession that is so visually astounding it becomes its own saving grace. Otherwise, we might not be able to bear it. This unrelenting film presents some of the most wrenching images conceivable, yet never for a single moment is there anything exploitive about them. Aronofsky's artistry extends to compassion for the self-deluded, doomed characters. Sara Goldfarb is a lonely woman who has a junkie son and whose closest relationship is with the television set and the host of a bizarre show she watches. She is played by veteran actress Ellen Burstyn, whose grueling, vulnerable performance exists in a place beyond praise. The entire cast is extraordinary. Jared Leto is Sara's wraithlike son, Jennifer Connelly his would-be-designer girlfriend and Marlon Wayans his drug-dealing buddy. ­Bob Graham, SF Chronicle.

USA, 2000, color, English, 102 mins, 35mm, not rated. No one under 17 admitted.

Sound and Fury
Saturday, February 17 at 7:00 pm
Saturday, February 17 at 9:00 pm
Sunday, February 18 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, February 18 at 7:00 pm

When their daughter requests cochlear implants, the deaf parents grapple with the idea of technology obliterating deaf culture and sign language.

SOUND AND FURY centers on two branches of a Long Island, N.Y., family. One of the fathers is deaf, the other can hear, and both have young children diagnosed with hearing disorders. Searching their consciences and discussing the issue with their wives and others, they wrestle with the question of whether to accept a surgical procedure that may allow their youngsters to hear. Two of the parents lean toward giving their offspring greater chances of a normal life. But the others feel differently, arguing that deafness is not a handicap or limitation at all, and that choosing to hear betrays the "deaf culture" they and their friends have learned to cherish. Josh Aronson's straightforward filmmaking conveys the complexity of the social, political, and medical issues connected with these matters; and just as important, it etches a vivid portrait of the bedrock human emotions aroused by endless debates involving a wide range of family members and outside experts. The result is gripping, touching, and enlightening. ­Joseph Sinnot, Christian Science Monitor.

USA, 2000, English, 80 mins, color, not rated.

Wednesday, February 21 at 7:00 pm

PLEASE NOTE: This film is $6 General, $5 CU Boulder Students w/ID

Imported directly from Germany. The first theatrical screening in decades of the renown Werner Herzog Film starring Klaus Kinski. A Boulder Film Alliance event.

As a story of obsession, FITZCARRALDO is Werner Herzog's most engaging protagonist, and probably the only character played by Klaus Kinski one would ever want to meet in person. With a childlike imagination and unlimited stubbornness, Fitzgerald (Fitzcarraldo to the natives) forges his way where white men fear to tread. The central image for the film is not a steamboat being hauled up a hill, but the sight of Kinski cruising along on the top deck of his steamship, playing Caruso on his Victrola and filling the primeval jungle with culture. Most of Herzog's films end in despairing doom, but although Fitzcarraldo doesn't finish in the clover, he's afforded a wistful finale that fulfills the spirit of his dreams, if not the letter. Being in awe of Fitzcarraldo is guaranteed, if one is aware that everything in the movie (with the exception of a few model boat shots) has the truth of documentary. ­Glenn Erickson, DVD Savant.

Peru/West Germany, 1982, color, German & English w/subtitles, 158 mins, 35mm, rated PG.

Pola X
Thursday, February 22 at 7:00 pm
Thursday, February 22 at 9:30 pm
Friday, February 23 at 7:00 pm
Friday, February 23 at 9:30 pm

A Leos Carax film starring Guillaume Depardieu, Katerina Golubeva, and Catherine Deneuve.

Léos Carax (LOVERS ON THE BRIDGE) turns this loose adaptation of Herman Melville's PIERRE, or THE AMBIGUITIES into an exceedingly morbid and incest-laden variant of VERTIGO ­ complete with a near-necrophilic sex scene. It involves a well-off writer (Guillaume Depardieu) who turns his back on his wealth when he meets a mysterious woman who may be his half sister (Katerina Golubeva), and begins to wander with her through the French countryside as if in a trance. Ultimately, POLA X charts the direct opposite trajectory of Carax's earlier film, whose homeless lovers rather implausibly turned into yuppies; here the leisure class goes slumming toward self-destruction. The movie isn't the least bit commercial (downward mobility isn't too sexy these days), but its breathtaking images are often thrillingly weird. ­Rob Nelson, City Pages.

France, 1999, color, French w/English subtitles,134 mins, 35mm, not rated (no one under 18 admitted).

Time Regained
Saturday, February 24 at 7:00 pm
Sunday, February 25 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, February 25 at 7:00 pm

Marcel Proust's epic masterwork Remberance of Things Past comes to shimmering life in this film by Raúl Ruiz.

Time Regained, the tastefully brash, subtly eccentric, and altogether triumphant Raúl Ruiz adaptation of the labyrinthian volume that brings Marcel Proust's Remembrance of Things Past to its magnificent conclusion, is a golden reverie on a passing age ­ namely ours. Writing in the light of the Lumière brothers' cinematographe, Proust sought to have his readers visualize temporality; filming at the dawn of the digital era, Ruiz allows the flow of static images through the movie projector to merge with the stream of time, while pondering the paradox of memories fixed in emulsion. Time Regained's characters are introduced as the dying Proust shuffles through his collection of photos. "Then one day," he muses, "everything changes." The movie searches for that day. With misplaced nostalgia, contemporary filmmakers continue to revisit those literary classics written before there were movies. Ruiz is more creatively anachronistic. This is a 20th-century movie about a 20th-century novel. ­J. Hoberman, Village Voice.

France, 1999, color, French w/English subtitles, 169 mins, 35mm, not rated.

Cobra Verde
Wednesday, February 28 at 7:00 pm
Wednesday, February 28 at 9:15 pm

Imported directly from Germany. First theatrical screening in decades. A Boulder Film Alliance event.

Cobra Verde is the most radical of the AGUIRE, THE WRATH OF GOD and FITZCARRALDO trilogy. Going beyond man conquering nature, here Werner Herzog takes on the maddening caprices of human politics, both savage and civilized. It compares business and international brokering of trade with outright brigandry and doesn't see many real differences. Its hero, played by Klaus Kinski, becomes an out-and-out slave trader, but the film doesn't once offer a moral position regarding the notorious profession. With Herzog's customary documentary eye, Cobra Verde is an absurdist adventure in a savage land, as bizarre as anything in Alice in Wonderland. ­Glenn Erickson, DVD Savant.

West Germany, 1988, color, German w/English subtitles, 111 mins, 35mm, not rated. A Boulder Film Alliance event.

Yi Yi
Thursday, March 1 at 7:00 pm
Friday, March 2 at 7:00 pm

PLEASE NOTE: This film is $6 General, $5 CU Boulder Students w/ID

Edward Yang's film shows life in Tapei through reflections, mirrors and windows ­ a Cannes Film Festival award winner.

How difficult is it to make a truthful movie about family? Think of one ­ that's how difficult. Bearing the emotional complexity and depth of a great novel, Edward Yang's Yi Yi (A One and a Two ^Ê) takes the family drama to a level nobody's seen since the heydays of Renoir and Ozu. Undoubtedly one of the year's best films, Yi Yi trains its wise gaze upon a family's often unexamined middle years, when children seem to be nothing but trouble, aging parents begin to die, jobs get outmoded, and lost opportunities begin to seriously haunt. The most and the least you can say is that, in our current landscape of neutered nonsense and preadolescent drama ideas, it's a film about recognizable humans, on a recognizable planet Earth. To anyone who's been to the movies in 2000, that should sound like a ticket to heaven. A Cannes Film Festival award winner. ­Michael Atkinson, Mr. Showbiz.

Taiwan/Japan, 2000, color, English/Hokkien/Mandarin, 173 mins, 35mm, not rated.

Aimee & Jaguar
Saturday, March 3 at 7:00 pm
Saturday, March 3 at 9:30 pm
Sunday, March 4 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, March 4 at 7:00 pm

An invigorating wartime romance based on a true story that was a bestselling novel in Germany.

Lesbians in Hitler's Berlin! The theme seems like old, ripe cheese, but director Max Farberbock, dramatizing an actual wartime romance, avoids most of the gaping traps. Blonde Lilly (pet name: Aimee), is a Berlin hausfrau and mother of four whose Nazi husband is serving on the Russian front. Dark-haired Felice (pet name: Jaguar), a Jewish lesbian who sports a Gentile identity and a saucy, impertinent manner, is a risky adventuress as her lesbian circle's life of the party, and a spy working for the underground. The story, framed as a flashback from old age, is of how Felice confrontationally turns Lilly from her stupefied life as Perfect German Woman. Lilly, who is played with a strong mix of sulky vulnerability and fierce, Teutonic tantrums, is swept up and away ­ and inside herself. The love scenes are tender and erotically true, with emotions layering the sex. Farberbock seldom seems voyeuristic in his approach, and the film memorializes Jewish and lesbian martyrs without becoming ceremonious. ­David Elliott, Union-Tribune.

Germany, 2000, color, German w/English subtitles, 126 mins, 35mm, not rated.