Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The Best Old Movies on a Big Screen This Week

Posted By and on Wed, Jan 29, 2014 at 8:30 AM

lady from shanghai orson welles rita hayworth mirrors
The Lady from Shanghai (1948)
Directed by Orson Welles
Like much of Welles's work in Hollywood, this film noir was an ill-fated endeavor, taken from the director’s hands to be reedited and in some instances reshot against his will. Yet what survives is, miraculously, one of Welles’s most satisfying studio films, a work of playful genre escapades and stylistic effervescence. When an idealistic seaman (Welles) falls for a mysteries femme fatale (Rita Hayworth, Welles’s then-wife), he is forced to untangle a botched murder attempt involving not only the woman’s husband but also two lawyers and a private investigator. The carnivalesque plot grows more convoluted with each successive double cross, culminating in a thrilling sequence set inside an actual hall of mirrors, literalizing many of the narrative’s disorienting twists and once again proving Welles to be one of cinema’s consummate entertainers. Jordan Cronk (Opens Jan 31 at Film Forum)

one day pina asked pina bausch chantal akerman documentary
One Day Pina Asked… (1983)
Directed by Chantal Akerman
This 57-minute documentary features "snippets, feelings, impressions" of a few weeks in the spring-summer of '83 that the filmmakers spent with the then 40-year-old choreographer and her troupe. Via rehearsals, backstage preparations and onstage presentations, Akerman spotlights the radical dances' emotional narratives—and the dancers' camera-ready acting skills, on which their leader places much demand. In 2011, Wim Wenders would turn such choreography into cinema by filming it in 3D; Akerman did it 30 years before by shooting in close-up—and making the distance of the theater seem suddenly, troublingly, affectingly intimate. Henry Stewart (Feb 1 at Lincoln Center, part of its Dance on Camera series)

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