1942. USA. Dir: Jacques Tourneur. With Simone Simon, Kent Smith. 73 min.
In this twisted fable about the caging of female sexuality, a woman with a fascination for large felines meets a well-to-do fella, falls in love, and gets married. Yet as the two find trouble consummating their nuptials, hubby’s eyes wander and the new bride shows signs that she might actually be a mystical cat-human hybrid…on the prowl for blood.
1977. Japan. Dir: Nobuhiko Obayashi. With Kimiko Ikegami. 88 min. 35mm print
A schoolgirl named Gorgeous and her friends head out to Auntie’s creaky country home to be devoured one by one by a bloodthirsty piano, phantom mattresses, and other ghoulish traps. With a stream-of-consciousness plot and boldly experimental design, this absurdist ghost take comes to life as a candy-colored pop art hallucination.
1975. Russia. Dir: Andrei Tarkovsky. With Margarita Terekhova. 108 min. 35mm print
Shakespeare said an artist’s role was to hold a mirror up to nature; in this semi-autobiographical work, Tarkovsky does just that, though his looking-glass is a fractured and opaque as human experience itself. The movie weaves a series of haunting, half-remembered dreams as a dying man reflects on his broken past.
2016. USA. Dir: Andrew Stanton & Angus MacLane. With Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks. 97 min.
Your favorite, forgetful, whale-speaking blue tang buddy is back and she’s looking for answers. The follow-up to Pixar’s 2003 classic dives us back into, and back out of, the ocean for another heartfelt adventure with the turbulent aquatic family.
2015. Guatemala/France. Dir: Jayro Bustamante. With María Mercedes Coroy. 100 min.
On the slopes of an active volcano, modernity and ritual collide. Young María works the coffee plantation, goes along with the preparations for her arranged marriage, and dreams of the United States beyond the volcano. Her circumstances provide no room for change, until an unexpected pregnancy complicates matters…
1999. USA. Dir: Alexander Payne. With Matthew Broderick, Reese Witherspoon. 102 min. 35mm print.
The search for a new class president takes on all the desperation and intrigue of an actual election cycle when a popular teacher meddles with an overachiever determined to win. As the vote draws nearer and personal lives begin to unravel, Payne’s pitch-black comedy paints a perfect picture of political pettiness.
1953. USA. Dir: Ida Lupino. Edmond O’Brien, Frank Lovejoy. 71 min.
“There’s Death in his upraised thumb!”
Two men on a fishing trip pick up a mysterious hitcher only to find themselves at the mercy of a sadistic fugitive. Lupino, a female pioneer in the world of film noir, builds an atmosphere of dread that will make you feel claustrophobic despite the sprawling desert scenery
2014. Mexico. Dir: Alonso Ruizpalacios. Sebastián Aguirre. 106 min.
Against the backdrop of the 1999 UNAM student strike, three teens embark on a quest across Mexico City to find their childhood idol, the elusive rock star Epigmenio Cruz. On the way, they ecounter drunken hoodlums, anarchists, lost loves, and a renewed sense of self. Ruizpalacios simultaneously mocks and celebrates Mexican art-house cinema to a hilarious effect.
1964. UK/USA. Dir: Stanley Kubrick. With Peter Sellers. 94 min. 35mm print.
When a trigger-happy general orders a nuclear attack on the USSR, the POTUS and his advisors race against the clock to prevent doomsday. Kubrick’s grimly farcical take on nuclear conflict presents a parade of over-the-top megalomaniacs, including Sellers (of The Pink Panther fame) in three different roles.
1937. France. Dir: Jean Renoir. With Jean Gabin, Erich von Stroheim. 114 min.
After being taken prisoner during WWI, a group of French airmen separated by class and cultural background bond through their shared struggle for freedom. Renoir’s long-revered paean to the innate strength and goodness of humankind in the face of adversity was dubbed “Cinematic Public Enemy No. 1” by Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels.