Museum Films Presents: La Semaine du film français

Joining, no doubt, the many venues hosting French film series this week, in commemoration of Bastille Day (July 14th), the Oklahoma City Museum of Art will be screening five new works–and one recently re-released masterwork, Jacques Rivette’s Le Pont du Nord, on 35mm–that speak to the quantitative strength of the French film industry. In their… Learn More

Pather Panchali and the Poetry of the Particular

Screening over three consecutive nights at the Noble Theater (Thurs., June 4-Sat., June 6, at 8 p.m. each night), Satyajit Ray’s The Apu Trilogy (1955-1959) inaugurated a new, alternative form of Indian cinema that captured the attention of the West almost immediately–a mode of ethnographic observation and humanistic pathos that completely eschewed the ‘Bollywood’ song-and-dance idiom that even… Learn More

From Mayerling to Montès: Exploring the Nationless Cinema of Max Ophüls

Over the next two Thursdays, Museum Film will be presenting a pair of 19th-century historical epics by the great Max Ophüls, best known today for his lavish romances, made in both Hollywood and Western Europe (cf. Madame de…, 1953), during the first post-World War II decade. Ophüls was born Max Oppenheimer in Saarbrücken, in western Germany, in 1902. When… Learn More

La Sapienza, or Cinema as Art History + Clouds of Sils Maria

Titled partially after Italian Baroque architect Francesco Borromini’s Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza, which was itself named for the Sapienza University of Rome, La Sapienza (2014, screening Thursday, April 30 only at 7:30 p.m.) also refers to a word of Latin origin that translates to “sapience” in English, or the possession of great wisdom or sagacity. A masterpiece of Baroque architecture that harmoniously brings… Learn More

Reflections on Jauja (2014): A Radical New Direction for Lisandro Alonso

Thirty-nine year-old Lisandro Alonso is one of the most original and distinctive filmmakers to emerge in the early 21st century. Beginning with 2001’s La Libertad, the Argentinian director’s startling debut, Alonso has produced a body of work that boldly explores the permeable boundaries between fiction and documentary. He is, in this sense, an heir to the… Read More

The Devil, Probably: French TV Produces a Cinematic Masterpiece

As the final season of AMC’s Mad Men is about to begin, we are once again reminded of the remarkable legacy for which that program, along with the network’s Breaking Bad, HBO’s The Sopranos and The Wire, can claim credit: long America’s most popular consumer art form, television is now also its widely discussed among taste-makers. This former mass medium is now… Read More

Staging Banality or “Have you seen L’Avventura by Antonioni?”: Reading Porumboiu's When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism (2013)

Romanian auteur Corneliu Porumboiu’s brilliant When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism (2013; screening Friday, March 20 at 9:00 p.m. and Saturday, March 21 at 5:30 p.m.) opens with an extended nocturnal dialogue, filmed inside an automobile, with the camera statically shooting the conversing couple. The driver, a film director named Paul (Bogdan Dumitrache), informs his actress passenger Alina… Read More

An Academy Award® post-mortem: American Sniper & looking ahead to Timbuktu

In a field that included an experimental and deeply moving portrait of maturation made over an unprecedented twelve-year period (Boyhood), a summarizing achievement from the best director of his generation (The Grand Budapest Hotel), a startling, expressionistic new work that deftly translates feeling into action and editing (Whiplash), and a morally complex and honestly self-critical mega-hit about… Read More

Dispatches from the 65th Berlinale: Days 5 & 6 + Listing My Best of the Fest

Deeply divisive in its Berlinale world premiere, though it is still the betting favorite to take home the festival’s first prize, the highly fragmented, boundlessly lyrical Knight of Cups (2015), the latest from Bartlesville, Oklahoma-native Terrence Malick (The Thin Red Line, The Tree of Life), opens with a voiced-over reference to John Bunyan’s 17th-century The Pilgrim’s Progress…. Read More

Dispatches from the 65th Berlinale: Days 3 & 4

One of the most significant developments in world cinema during the past half decade has been director Jafar Panahi’s response to his jail term and twenty-year filmmaking ban, ostensibly for making films that opposed the Iranian government. In This Is Not a Film (2011), Closed Curtain (2013) and now the outstanding Taxi (2015), certain not… Read More