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Michael Powell – Return to the Edge of the World (1978)

Director Michael Powell, actor John Laurie and assistant Sydney Streeter return to the isle of Foula, on which they made the film The Edge of the World over forty years earlier.

Michael Powell always considered The Edge of the World to be his first truly personal film, even to the extent of keeping the rights to it. However, after its initial trade screening in 1937, the film was cut by seven minutes for a general release length of 74 minutes. In 1940, when it was re-released, the film was cut by a further twelve minutes, and for decades this was the only version available. Read More »

Marcel Hanoun – L’authentique procès de Carl-Emmanuel Jung (1966)

“It’s virtually impossible to think of a major contemporary French filmmaker who has been more independent, hence more consistently marginalized, than Marcel Hanoun (1929–2012). Born in Tunis, he immigrated to France immediately after the war and, as Bernard Benoliel and Nicole Brenez put it, “gradually taught himself the techniques of cinema, without the help of any formal schooling and apprenticeship.” Despite the fact that he remained on the margins of “the French cinema” as we know it (in terms of state support, distribution, and critical attention), he managed to make an astonishing 70 films over the course of his career. Read More »

W.S. Van Dyke – San Francisco [Colourised] (1936)

San Francisco is a 1936 film directed by W.S. Van Dyke, written by Anita Loos, starring Clark Gable, Jeanette MacDonald, Spencer Tracy and Jack Holt. It was nominated for six Oscars, of which it won one. The film tells the story of Mary Blake, who, out of poverty, starts singing at a local gambling hall. When she moves on, the owner of the gambling hall, Blackie, keeps following her. The confrontations between Mary and Blackie are suddenly put to a stop with the advent of the San Franscisco earthquake. Read More »

Andrzej Wajda – Popiól i diament aka Ashes and Diamonds [+Extras] (1958)

Quote:
On the last day of World War Two in a small town somewhere in Poland, Polish exiles of war and the occupying Soviet forces confront the beginning of a new day and a new Poland. In this incendiary environment we find Home Army soldier Maciek Chelmicki, who has been ordered to assassinate an incoming commissar. But a mistake stalls his progress and leads him to Krystyna, a beautiful barmaid who gives him a glimpse of what his life could be. Gorgeously photographed and brilliantly performed, Ashes and Diamonds masterfully interweaves the fate of a nation with that of one man, resulting in one of the most important Polish films of all time. Read More »

William A. Seiter – Chance at Heaven (1933)

Plot: Blackstone ‘Blacky’ Gorman, rising service station owner, is blessed with the devotion of supremely sweet and noble Marje Harris, but he meets coquettish and silly debutante Glory Franklyn and, between Glory’s charm and his social ambition, is snared into an upscale marriage that proves to have its downside. Written by Rod Crawford
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Alan Zweig – I, Curmudgeon (2004)

In this often very funny enquiry into crankiness, Toronto filmmaker Alan Zweig interviews notable curmudgeons like Fran Lebowitz, Harvey Pekar and Bruce LaBruce. Zweig wants to know what their frickin’ problem is and, more importantly, whether it’s the same as his. As in Vinyl, his equally irascible doc on record collectors, the endearingly dour filmmaker spends much of I, Curmudgeon spilling his guts directly to his camera and torturing himself with big questions that he can never answer satisfactorily. Zweig then confronts his subjects with the same questions, thereby making them even grouchier. (How grouchy? Andy Rooney is moved to kick Zweig out of his office.) Though I, Curmudgeon’s meandering structure and incessant jump-cuts are irritants, they’re also appropriate to the movie’s abrasive, anti-social personality. Consider this a testament to the power of negative thinking. – Eye Weekly Read More »

Marcel Hanoun – Octobre à Madrid (1967

“OCTOBRE A MADRID” 1964, 70 min, 16 mm

Octobre à Madrid, de Marcel Hanoun (1964), est certainement le film qui m’a le plus hanté et nourri depuis près de quarante ans. Je l’ai vu, pour la première fois, un matin de l’année 1946 au cinéma Quartier Latin. Ces séances pour lève-tôt étaient destinées à faire connaitre des films “difficiles” ou fragiles. J’y avais également découvert, dans ce même cadre, Méditerranée de Jean-Daniel Pollet. Read More »