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Archive for October 8th, 2011

 

By Bob Clark

We’re taking a break from anime this Saturday, or at least I am insofar as it pertains to writing this column. On the day that this piece is running, I’ll be sitting in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center to catch a morning screening of the Hayao Miyazaki classic Laputa: Castle in the Sky on the occasion of its 25th anniversary. I’d had a chance earlier this week to see a screening in honor of the 10th anniversary of the Ghibli master’s most celebrated work, Spirited Away, but I was already spending too much time and money on other attractions in this, the 49th annual New York Film Festival, to spare any more change for an already rather popular film, especially considering that it very well might make rounds in theaters again after G-Kids picked the director’s films up for distribution. I’ve been going to the Film Festival regularly for over ten years now, and thankfully the system of securing tickets has gotten more and more reliable over the years, allowing parishioners of the church of cinema more than ample opportunity to sit in on some of the most anticipated film events of the year. Years ago I wasn’t able to score seats for stuff like Dancer in the Dark, Mulholland Drive or Dogville, but over the years I’ve made up for the difference attending showings of Manderlay, Inland Empire and Antichrist, not to mention discovering unanticipated gems every now and again. This year I’ve seen four features already before tomorrow’s Laputa screening, and though it hasn’t been my favorite assortment of works over the course of a decade, it’s certainly been one of the most varied and interesting, to say nothing of the heaps of stuff I passed up, a combination of old classics, new fare and rarities you don’t get much of a chance to see anywhere else. In that sense, the range of works I’ve seen this year probably best represents the whole of the NYFF experience better than anything else I’ve sat in on over the years.

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