Everyone likes to talk about movies, so let’s keep the conversation going! The Gene Siskel Film Center will get everyone talking with monthly film conversations. Audiences are invited to informal conversations led by—but not monopolized by—carefully selected facilitators.
2014, Jody Lee Lipes, USA, 75 min.
“Short, vigorous and charming.”
— A.O. Scott, The New York Times
“Exhilarating...a delight for balletophiles.”
— Ronnie Scheib, Variety
A corrective to pop-culture portraits of ballet as an overheated arena of backstage psychodramas presided over by sadistic taskmasters, BALLET 422 finds more than enough drama in the nuts and bolts of the creative process. The film focuses on Justin Peck, a low-ranking but conspicuously talented 25-year-old dancer in the New York City Ballet who is given the extraordinary opportunity to create a new ballet--the 422nd in the company’s fabled history. Using the classic cinéma-vérité approach of direct observation without narration or interviews, director Lipes draws upon his skills as a top indie cinematographer (TINY FURNITURE, MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE) to provide an authentic and often visually stunning step-by-step account of the painstaking collaborative effort that goes into producing a ballet. DCP digital. (MR)
SHIRLEY: VISIONS OF REALITY
2013, Gustav Deutsch, Austria, 92 min.
“Captivating…empowering the silent, lonely women in Hopper’s masculine American landscapes and cityscapes.”
— Lee Marshall, Screen Daily
“A fascinating synthesis of art and film…paints a dreamlike reverberation of recent history.”
— Patrick Gamble, CineVue
Thirteen iconic paintings by Edward Hopper, including “Chair Car,” “Hotel Room,” “New York Movie,” and “Office at Night,” are astonishingly brought to life by means of actors and sets in a loose narrative featuring a solitary female protagonist. Viennese avant-garde filmmaker, performance artist, and architect Deutsch (FILM IST) sets each tableau on the date on which Hopper created the painting, evoking periods from 1931 to 1963 through newscasts and Shirley’s internal monologue. In English. Special advance screening courtesy of EastWest Filmdistribution. DCP digital. (BS)
Director Gustav Deutsch will be present for audience discussion at both screenings. The discussion on Saturday will be a Movie Club event, moderator TBA.