The Best Old Movies On a Big Screen This Week: NYC Repertory Cinema Picks, March 11-17

03/11/2015 9:44 AM |

tales of hoffman

The Tales of Hoffman (1951)
Directed by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger
The Tales of Hoffmann are three in number, and draw on E.T.A. Hoffmann’s actual stories, except that in this opera-film Hoffmann himself becomes the protagonist, and sings to a soused tavern audience about losing his various loves to sorcery and machination—it doesn’t help that one of these was what we might these days call a cyborg. No harm in being ahistorical—by reimagining a 19th-century opera as a magnificent, choreographed revel, Powell and Pressburger repeat their Red Shoes feat. The movie’s in its sixties, but refuses to age: screen it in schools, and all the handwringing about the limited and graying audience of certain artforms may be replaced by healthy youthful clapping. Elina Mishuris (Mar 13-19 at Film Forum, showtimes daily)