Archive for July 13th, 2010

Charles Chaplin’s ‘The Circus’ kicks off Film Forum retrospective of comic genius’ carrer starting Friday, July 16th

by Sam Juliano

     A full retrospective of Charles Chaplin’s career will launch on Friday, July 16th at Manhattan’s Film Forum with a one-week unveiling of a pristine new 35 millimeter print for his 1925 masterpiece, The Circus. (which will run for one-full week with the short, The Idle Class. The festival will present every one of the Little Tramp’s feature works, including: City Lights, Modern Times, The Gold Rush, Monsieur Verdoux, The Great Dictator, The Kid, A Woman of Paris,  A King in New York and Limelight.  The full duration of the festival will be three full weeks – July 16th till August 3rd.

       The lion’s share of the comic genius’s short films will also be showcased, with ‘The Chaplin Revue’ (A Dog’s Life, The Pilgrim and Shoulder Arms) pairing up with The Gold Rush on Thursday, July 29th, and the four most beloved mutual shorts, The Immigrant, The Adventurer, The Cure and Easy Street running on Monday, August 2nd with A King in New York.  In addition, Pay Day, Sunnyside and A Day’s Pleasure will be shown with some of the features.  As always, every single film in the festival will be shown in a 35 mm print as per Film Forum routine with all films, year round.

     Coming on the heels of a hugely-successful three-week Anthony Mann retro that featured 32 films, and platform runs of the restored Metropolis, and Jean-Luc Godard’s A Bout de Souffe, this may well be the most popular and well-attended summer in Film Forum history.  With festivals on William Castle and “Heist” films set for the fall, the beat goes on for the nation’s premier revival house.  Here are the links to both The Circus and general festival runs:




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by Allan Fish

(Germany/France 2009 144m) DVD1/2

Aka. Der Weisse Band – Eine Deutsche Kindegeschichte

Malice, apathy and brutality

p  Stefan Arndt, Veit Heiduschka, Michael Katz, Margaret Ménégoz, Andrea Occhipinti  d/w  Michael Haneke  ph  Christian Berger  ed  Monika Willi  m  none  art  Christoph Kanter, Anja Müller

Christian Friedel (the school teacher), Leonie Benesch (Eva), Ulrich Tukur (The Baron), Ursini Lardi (The Baronin), Fiona Mutert (Sigi), Michael Kranz (the home teacher), Maria Victoria Klarus (Klara), Burghart Klausner (the pastor), Steffi Kühnert (the pastor’s wife), Leonard Proxauf (Martin), Levin Henning (Adolf), Janina Fautz (Erna), Rainer Bock (the doctor), Johanna Busse (Margarete), Susanne Lothar (the midwife), Birgit Minichmayr (Frieda), Thibault Sérié (Gustav), Ernst Jacobi (narrator, older school teacher), 

The beginning is ambiguous, as the narrator advises us that he doesn’t know whether the story he wants to tell you is entirely true.  Even when taking us back to the beginning, like David Copperfield, he’s unsure; “it all began, I think, with the doctor’s riding accident.”  From the outset then there is ambiguity and it remains, not lurking in the corner but in the very atmosphere, the oxygen of the characters and the village.  Yet this oxygen is not clean, it’s contaminated, and about to be more so. 

            The village itself shall remain nameless, but it’s in the period leading up to World War I.  The village is largely populated by farmers who work the land of the local baron, whose authority they are increasingly coming to resent.  During the traditional annual harvest dance, the baron’s cabbages are hacked to bits by a man wielding a scythe; the latest in a series of antisocial acts that began with the doctor’s horse being tripped up by a wire strung between two trees, and continues with beatings applied to the baron’s son, a farmer’s wife falling fatally through floorboards at a sawmill, the farmer later hanging himself in the barn, torture dished out to the doctor’s housekeeper’s handicapped son and ritual killings of pet birds.  It’s only on finding the tortured boy do they find a note pinned to him which seems to indicate a visitation of divine judgement, noting how the sins of the parents extend to the third and fourth generation.  Unbelievably, police called in to investigate and the local schoolteacher, begin to suspect that the local children are responsible, under the leadership of the daughter of the strict local pastor. (more…)

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