A P R I L â€” J U N E
2 0 1 8
A P R I L
J U N E
2 0 1 8
Vol. 20 Issue 2
THE DEATH OF STALIN Continues
DIRECTOR of PROGRAMMING
© CFI Releasing
Welcome to the April-June quarterly for the Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center. Essentially it’s our spring schedule and, as usual, other shows and engagements will be added as we go along, to complement the season’s later sunsets and warmer weather.
FILM INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARDS
CFI BOARD O F D I RECTO RS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR / FOUNDER
Mark Fishkin CFI BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Maida Brankman Kenneth Broad (Vice President)
Lynne Hale Richard J. Idell (Secretary)
Amy Keroes Caroline Labe Jennifer Coslett MacCready (Vice President)
Cathy Nourafshan Maggie O’Donnell Jonathan Parker (President)
Susan Schwartz Dr. Joel Sklar
Steve Weinswig Zach Zeisler (Treasurer)
Rita Cahill Sid Ganis Bruce Katz Gary Meyer Gordon Radley Christopher B. Smith Henry Timnick
Rita Cahill Mark Fishkin Lois Kohl Shore ADVISORY BOARD
The Honorable Barbara Boxer Stewart Boxer Drusie Davis Jeff Fisher Peter Flaxman Robert Greber
I recall that we experienced a vivid preview of spring around the first weekend in February, when Liv Ullmann and her husband arrived from Florida. They were such balmy days that it seemed as though Ullmann had brought the weather with her. It’s also a fact that she radiated personal warmth along with her prodigious intelligence. Ullmann’s visit to the Bay Area represented our first programming contribution to Bergman 100, the yearlong and worldwide celebration of Ingmar Bergman’s centenary. Liv Ullmann is perhaps the most famous of Bergman’s muses, and she was a longtime collaborator on some of his best films. While she maintains love and affection for her former partner, she spoke about their relationship and their films with a candor and generosity that our audiences found provocative and exhilarating.
NOMINEE BEST FEMALE LEAD WINNER JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD
Linda Gruber Peggy Haas Jessica Igoe Michael Klein Roxanne Klein KC Lauck Andrew McGuire Mary Poland Eric Schwartz Michael Schwartz Skip Whitney
We shared her extraordinary residency with Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive and their own inaugural Bergman 100 programs. Both BAMPFA and the California Film Institute are grateful for the support and participation of the Consulate General of Sweden, San Francisco, the Barbro Osher Pro Suecia Foundation, the Consulate of Norway, San Francisco and the Norway House Foundation. However, if we acknowledge one person, warmest thanks are due Barbro Osher, Consul General of Sweden, who over the years has brought us rare gold from that
country’s film talent. While Liv Ullmann is Norwegian, Ingmar Bergman’s films were primarily Swedish. Harriet Andersson, another Bergman muse, came to the Mill Valley Film Festival thanks to Barbro, and filmmaking legend Jan Troell visited twice, for a weeklong retrospective at the Rafael and for screenings at MVFF. Currently we’re discussing additional programs to celebrate Ingmar Bergman’s 100th birthday year. Once again, thank you, Barbro. Our offerings this quarter include: a retrospective of Bay Area filmmaker Mark Kitchell’s documentaries, including his latest; a retrospective look at Czech fantasy filmmaker Karel Zeman; three new (and rare) films presented with the Buddhist Film Foundation; the return of the Rafael Film Club; and our second annual DocLands Documentary Film Festival. Our first-run bookings include two documentaries we’re particularly excited about: one on Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and the other on television’s Mr. Rogers.
FILMS BY MARK KITCHELL April 5, 12, 19 ITZHAK OPENS April 6 ALL THE QUEEN’S HORSES April 8 1945 Opens April 13 ROBERT BLY: A THOUSAND YEARS OF JOY April 15 THE ROYAL OPERA CARMEN April 22 THE GREAT WHITE HOAX April 26 THE RIDER Opens April 27 GRACE JONES: BLOODLIGHT AND BAMI April 28 THE ROYAL BALLET BERNSTEIN CENTENARY April 29 DOCLANDS DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL May 3-6 RBG Opens May 4 THE YOUNG KARL MARX May 7-10
As we’ve indicated below, the “Mind the Gap” logo on this schedule recognizes the contribution of women filmmakers to the programs we offer. While the last several months have sparked a long-needed tsunami of awareness in the film industry, the Mind the Gap program began at the Mill Valley Film Festival in 2015, created by director of programming Zoë Elton as an initiative dedicated to gender equality in the film industry. We’ve expanded this program year-round to include the Rafael.
RAFAEL FILM CLUB May 10-June 7
As always, thank you for supporting the Rafael and its programs. We look forward to more nights (and later sunsets) at the movies.
INTERNATIONAL BUDDHIST FILM FESTIVAL SHOWCASE June 10, 17, 24
~ Richard Peterson
A QUEST FOR MEANING May 10 LIVES WELL LIVED Opens May 11 SECRET INGREDIENTS May 17 THE DESERT BRIDE Opens May 18 THE ROYAL OPERA MACBETH May 20 GODARD MON AMOUR Opens in May THE ROYAL BALLET MANON June 10
OF DOLLS & MURDER June 14 WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? Opens June 15 TWELVE PIANOS June 28
R AFAEL QUART ERLY STAF F R I C H A R D PE TE R S ON Director of Programming | Editor
SHEL L EY SPICER Director of Marketing & Publicity
L EAH LO SC HIAV O Marketing Coordinator
D A N ZAS TR OW Rafael General Manager
JAN KL INGEL HOF ER Program Consultant
BRIAN LEHMAN Quarterly Layout/Production
JONAT HAN MARL OW CFI Releasing / Rafael Film Club
Smith Rafael Film Center is owned and operated by the California Film Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that also produces the annual Mill Valley Film Festival, DocLands Documentary Film Festival and CFI Education programs throughout the year. © Copyright 2018. All rights reserved. No portion of the Rafael Quarterly may be duplicated in any form without written consent from the Smith Rafael Film Center and/or the California Film Institute.
Films marked with this logo are part of CFI’s gender equity initiative, Mind the Gap, launched at the 2015 Mill Valley Film Festival. CFI is dedicated to actively working towards closing the gender gap in Hollywood and the rest of the global film industry.
TROUBLE IN PARADISE July 1 THE ROYAL BALLET SWAN LAKE July 8
On the cover: WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? - See page 13 Programs subject to change, including opening dates. OTHER PROGRAMS OPEN THAT DO NOT APPEAR HERE. For up-to-date info: rafaelfilm.org Sign up for weekly email at rafaelfilm.org Check daily newspaper Call 415 454 1222
Programs with in-person guests
© Nicola Dove / IFC Films
THE DEATH OF STALIN
CONTINUES Filmmaker Armando Iannucci, the satirist who created Veep, aims his sharp comic scalpel at one of the darkest periods in world history. In the days following Joseph Stalin’s collapse in 1953, his ministers are confused and tussling for control, with their one common trait being their desperate desire to remain alive. Among them are Khrushchev (Steve Buscemi), Beria (Simon Russell Beale), Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor), Molotov (Michael Palin), Zhukov (Jason Isaacs) and Mikoyan (Paul Whitehouse). Iannucci milks absurdist humor from the totalitarian setting, forging a balance between the funny and the unnerving. By the way, this movie has already been banned in Russia! With Andrea Riseborough, Rupert Friend, Paddy Considine, Olga Kurylenko. Writer: Fabien Nuri. Director: Armando Iannucci. (UK/France 2017) 107 min.
FILMS BY MARK KITCHELL APRIL 5-19
Over three feature documentaries, Bay Area filmmaker Mark Kitchell has chronicled major movements of cultural and social change that have transformed our country. The Rafael celebrates Kitchell with the first retrospective of his work. $13 (CFI members $9)
© Greenwich Entertainment
EVOLUTION OF ORGANIC
OPENS APRIL 6 From Schubert to Strauss, Bach to Brahms, Mozart to Billy Joel, the music of violinist Itzhak Perlman transcends mere performance to attain a level described by renowned Tel Aviv violinmaker Amnon Weinstein as “praying with the violin.” Alison Chernick’s enchanting documentary looks beyond the sublime musician to see the polio survivor whose parents emigrated from Poland to Israel, and the young man who struggled to be taken seriously as a music student when schools saw only his disability. Perlman himself is funny, irreverent and self-deprecating, and his life story unspools in conversations with fellow musicians and friends, and, most endearingly, Toby, his wife of 50 years. Director: Alison Chernick. (US 2017) 83 min.
THURSDAY, APRIL 5, 7:15
IN PERSON: FILMMAKER MARK KITCHELL & WARREN WEBER, STAR ROUTE FARM; WENDY JOHNSON, GREEN GULCH FARM; JOHN WICK, MARIN CARBON PROJECT Mark Kitchell’s new documentary tells the story of organic agriculture, tracking its arc from alternative origins to mainstream triumph. Begun by an assortment of back-to-the-landers, spiritual seekers and farmers’ sons and daughters who rejected chemical farming, the movement has broadened into both an industry oriented toward bringing organic to all people and a movement that has realized a vision of sustainable agriculture. Narrated by Frances McDormand and told by those who built the movement, it’s a collective portrait that recounts a fascinating history, but also explores the next generation expanding organic farming and carbon farming as a solution to climate change. Panel discussion follows the screening. Writer/Producer/Director: Mark Kitchell. (US 2018) 86 min. plus discussion with English subtitles.
BERKELEY IN THE SIXTIES
THURSDAY, APRIL 12, 7:15
IN PERSON: FILMMAKER MARK KITCHELL Nominee for the Academy Award®. And winner of the National Society of Film Critics Award and the Sundance Audience Award, Mark Kitchell’s first feature has come to be regarded as a defining documentary about the protest movements of the 1960s. The film brings an impressive sense of immediacy to the decade’s events: the birth of the Free Speech movement, civil rights marches, anti-Vietnam protests, the counterculture, the women’s movement, the rise of the Black Panthers. The San Francisco Chronicle called it “an exciting and provocative record,” and the Los Angeles Times wrote: “The film’s intellect is matched by a vivid sense of history; this really is the ‘60s again.” Writers: Susan Griffin, Mark Kitchell, Stephen Most. Director: Mark Kitchell. (US 1990) 117 min. plus discussion.
© Kartemquin Films
ALL THE QUEEN’S HORSES
SUNDAY, APRIL 8, 4:15 How could one woman steal $53 million without anyone noticing? This documentary tells the story of Rita Crundwell, the perpetrator of the largest case of municipal fraud in American history. As city comptroller of Dixon, IL (population 15,838), Crundwell stole a fortune of public funds over 20 years. She used the money to build one of the nation’s leading quarter horse breeding empires, all while forcing staff cuts, slashing the police budget and neglecting public infrastructure. This film investigates her crime, her lavish lifestyle and the small town she left in her wake, as well as the blatant negligence of auditors and bankers. Producer/Director: Kelly Pope Richmond. (US 2017) 70 min.
A FIERCE GREEN FIRE: THE BATTLE FOR A LIVING PLANET
IN PERSON: FILMMAKER MARK KITCHELL & JOHN HARTE, PROFESSOR, UC BERKELEY Screened in anticipation of Earth Day, Mark Kitchell’s epic documentary is the first big-picture exploration of the environmental movement: grassroots and global activism spanning 50 years from conservation to climate change. Rich with archival footage, the film focuses on movements more than issues, unfolding in five acts, narrated successively by Robert Redford, Ashley Judd, Van Jones, Isabel Allende and Meryl Streep. Their vivid true stories include: David Brower and the Sierra Club; Lois Gibbs and the Love Canal; Paul Watson, Greenpeace and the whales and seals; Chico Mendes and the Amazon rainforest; Bill McKibben and issues of climate change. Writer/Producer/Director: Mark Kitchell. (US 2012) 101 min. plus discussion. This program is part of Science on Screen, a series matching the art of film with experts in scientific fields addressing topics that affect our lives. Science on Screen is an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theatre, in partnership with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
OPENS APRIL 13 One summer day in 1945, an Orthodox man and his grown son disembark at a station in Hungary while villagers prepare for the wedding of the town clerk’s son. The clerk himself fears that the men may be heirs of the town’s deported Jews, who would demand return of property that had been confiscated illegally. Townspeople expect the worst and some behave accordingly. Beautifully photographed in lustrous black and white, 1945 paints a complex picture of a society trying to come to terms with the recent horrors they’ve experienced, perpetrated or just tolerated for personal gain. Winner of the San Francisco Film Critics Circle Award at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival. In Hungarian with English subtitles. Director: Ferenc Török. (Hungary 2017) 91 min. © Don Kechely
© Lenke Szilagyi / Menemsha Films
THURSDAY, APRIL 19, 7:15
GRACE JONES: BLOODLIGHT AND BAMI
© Kino Lorber
SUNDAY, APRIL 15, 4:15 IN PERSON: FILMMAKER HAYDN REISS In honor of National Poetry Month, Bay Area filmmaker Haydn Reiss (Rumi: Poet of the Heart) will present and discuss a special screening of his intimate film portrait of one of America’s most celebrated poets. In his singular path from Minnesota farmer’s son to radical anti-Vietnam war activist, and the instigator and mentor of the 1990s “men’s movement,” Robert Bly (who recently turned 91) was one of the first to translate Pablo Neruda and Rumi, and his work with Joseph Campbell led to the unexpected pop culture phenomenon of Iron John. Featured in the film are Gary Snyder, Jane Hirshfield, Mark Rylance, Martin Sheen and others. (US 2015) 81 min. plus discussion.
THE ROYAL BALLET
SUNDAY, APRIL 22, NOON The best-known work by French composer Georges Bizet, and one of the most famous operas in history, this heady combination of passion, sensuality and violence was ahead of its time in 1875, and Bizet did not live to see its ultimate, spectacular success. Staged by Australian director Barrie Kosky and conducted by Jakub Hrusa, this adventurous production stars Anna Goryachova in the title role, with Francesco Meli as Don José, Anett Fritsch as Micaëla and Kostas Smoriginas as Escamillo. This far-from-traditional production features Bizet music not usually included. Sung in French with English subtitles. Anticipated running time is 200 minutes, including intermission. $15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
& THE POLITICS OF RACE & CLASS IN AMERICA THURSDAY, APRIL 26, 6:30 SPECIAL GUESTS IN PERSON In The Great White Hoax, anti-racist educator and author Tim Wise explores how American political leaders of both parties have tapped into white anxiety, stoked white grievance and scapegoated people of color to divide and conquer working class voters and consolidate power. While Wise’s primary focus is Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, he widens his scope to show how Trump’s charged rhetoric about African-Americans, Latinos and Muslims fits within a longstanding historical pattern of racism and racial scapegoating that goes back centuries in American politics. Director: Jeremy Earp. (US 2018) 72 min. plus discussion. Presented by and benefiting Marin Health & Wellness Center - $25 This is a presentation by Marin Health & Wellness Center. No Rafael passes may be used.
$15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
OPENS MAY 4 Acclaimed at its debut at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival (under the watchful eye of its subject and star), this crowd-pleasing documentary about US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg casts light on her exceptional life and career. At the age of 85, Ginsburg has developed a breathtaking legal legacy while becoming an unexpected pop culture icon. But many observers don’t know about the unique personal path that this diminutive, quiet warrior pursued before she rose to the nation’s highest court. This entertaining, often humorous portrait of Ginsburg illuminates several key cases that she meticulously pursued in the interest of advancing gender equality. Producers/Directors: Betsy West, Julie Cohen. (US 2018) 97 min
THE YOUNG KARL MARX
© The Orchard
© Sony Pictures C;assics
OPENS APRIL 27 After a near-fatal rodeo fall, Brady (Brady Jandreau) is advised never to ride again. However, this gifted young horse trainer and saddle bronc rider will find it difficult to follow doctor’s orders, even with a metal plate in his head. Filming on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation (Jandreau is Oglala Lakota Sioux), filmmaker Chloé Zhao crafts her unique drama out of the real lives of her non-professional actors, who include Jandreau’s real father and sister, as well as his friends. As a result, the film has a remarkable authenticity. We can observe what a whiz with the horses Brady really is, and the incidents and relationships ring solidly true. Writer/Director: Chloé Zhao. (US 2017) 103 min
SUNDAY, APRIL 29, NOON This year marks the 100th anniversary of Leonard Bernstein’s birth. As a classical composer, Bernstein was eclectic in his influences, drawing on jazz and modernism, the traditions of Jewish music and the Broadway musical, and many of his scores are remarkably well suited to dance. The Royal Ballet honors him with works by three different choreographers, including world premieres from Wayne McGregor and Christopher Wheeldon, as well as a revival of The Age of Anxiety, created by Liam Scarlett from Bernstein’s soul-searching Second Symphony, inspired by W.H. Auden’s modernist poem. Anticipated running time is 3 hours, including intermissions.
© Magnolia Pictures
© The Media Education Foundation
THE GREAT WHITE HOAX: DONALD TRUMP
SATURDAY, APRIL 28, 8:00 A larger-than-life entertainer, an androgynous and glamorous pop diva, an unpredictable media presence—Grace Jones is all these things and more, and filmmaker Sophie Fiennes’ documentary goes beyond the traditional musical biography to offer a portrait as stylish and unconventional as its subject. Including spectacular stage performances of “Slave to the Rhythm,” “Pull Up to the Bumper” and “Love Is the Drug,” among others, the film becomes an electrifying journey through the public and private worlds of this icon, on the road in Paris, Moscow, London, Tokyo and New York, and on a road trip with family members in her native Jamaica. Director: Sophie Fiennes. (UK/Ireland 2017) 115 min
THE ROYAL OPERA
© Trafalgar Releasing
© Trafalgar Releasing
© Zinc Films
ROBERT BLY: A THOUSAND YEARS OF JOY
MAY 7-10 In 1844, after decades of the Industrial Revolution, 26-year-old journalist and radical Karl Marx (August Diehl) has been exiled from Germany to Paris with his wife Jenny (Vicky Krieps of Phantom Thread), when they meet Friedrich Engels (Stefan Konarske), well-to-do son of a factory owner, whose research has exposed the poor conditions of the English working class. Filmmaker Raoul Peck (I Am Not Your Negro) crafts a fascinating and accurate period drama from the history of ideas, as Marx and Engels become “the Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the European left, rock stars for an age of revolution” (A.O. Scott, The New York Times). In French and German with English subtitles. With Olivier Gourmet. Writers: Pascal Bonitzer, Raoul Peck. Director: Raoul Peck. (France/Germany 2017) 118 min
© Kamea Meah
A QUEST FOR MEANING
O P E N I N G N I G H T F I L M + PA R T Y
THURSDAY, MAY 10, 7:15 IN PERSON: FILMMAKER MARC DE LA MÉNARDÌERE & CASSANDRA VIETEN, INSTITUTE OF NOETIC SCIENCES The makers of this French production are two childhood friends, reacquainted after 10 years, who embark together on a life-changing journey around the world. They encounter philosophers, activists, spiritual leaders, scientists and searchers, including Vandana Shiva, Satish Kumar, Pierre Rabhi, Samdhong Rinpoche, Frédéric Lenoir, Hervé Kempf, José Luis Tenoch Perez and Xuan Thuan, to name a few. As the filmmakers begin to question the workings of the world on the search for what gives us meaning, their trip becomes an inspiring journey that connects personal growth and social change. In French with English subtitles. Directors: Nathanaël Coste, Marc De La Ménardière. (France 2015) 88 min. plus discussion. $15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
C L O S I N G N I G H T F I L M + PA R T Y
© Sky Bergman
LIVES WELL LIVED
Climate change is no abstraction to the people of Kiribati, a series of low-lying atolls in the central Pacific Ocean that are being swallowed by the rising sea. Photographer-ethnologist Matthieu Rytz’s exquisitely shot film portrays the slow, dignified demise of an entire culture—soon to be global refugees—while sounding a clarion call for meaningful political action. CALIFORNIA PREMIERE
In Sam Bathrick’s transformative film, Todd “Speech” Thomas of hip-hop group Arrested Development, instigates a unique rehabilitation program in Richmond, Virginia, helping prisoners write and record their own songs. The filmmaker lovingly follows four inmates battling cycles of incarceration and addiction. Through superbly produced recording sessions, the men reach out from behind bars to bring their poignant stories to life through music. WORLD PREMIERE
CANADA 2018, 77 min Director Matthieu Rytz
© Amy Hart
US 2018, 93 min Director Sam Bathrick
Preceded by WATER TOWN US 2017, 24 min Director Maya Craig
THE DESERT BRIDE
MAY 3, 7:00pm | SMITH RAFAEL FILM CENTER PROGRAM $35 / $30 CFI members | PROGRAM & PARTY $55 / $50
MAY 5, 6:30pm | SMITH RAFAEL FILM CENTER PROGRAM $20 / $15 CFI members | PROGRAM & PARTY $35 / $30
OPENING NIGHT PARTY
ENVIRONMENTAL YOUTH FORUM SCREENING OF ANOTE’S ARK MAY 4 1:00pm SEQUOIA (Tickets available for purchase.) Sponsored by The Academy of Integral Humanities and New Media
9:00-11:00pm | ART WORKS DOWNTOWN / GREEN CHILE KITCHEN 1335–1337 Fourth Street, San Rafael
© Strand Releasing
CLOSING NIGHT PARTY
9:00-11:00pm | ELKS LODGE, MAPLE LAWN TERRACE, 1312 Mission Avenue, San Rafael
THURSDAY, MAY 17, 7:00 | WEST COAST PREMIERE IN PERSON: FILMMAKERS AMY HART & JEFFREY SMITH While the debate rages on about GMOs, as well as Roundup and other pesticides, this new film shares compelling stories of people who regain their health and transform their lives after identifying the “secret ingredients” in their food and making the bold commitment to avoid them. We meet Kathleen and her family of five, who were collectively struggling with 21 chronic diseases. Everything changed when she identified the ingredients hidden in the foods they were eating. Her discoveries are backed by physicians and scientists who explain how GMOs and pesticides can disrupt our biological systems and compromise our health. Producers/Directors: Jeffrey Smith, Amy Hart. (US 2018) 75 min. plus discussion. $15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
SPECIAL GUESTS: Director Sam Bathrick Film Subjects Todd “Speech” Thomas, Teddy Kane
SPECIAL GUESTS: Director Matthieu Rytz Film Subject Anote Tong
OPENS MAY 11 This warm documentary celebrates the incredible wit, wisdom and experiences of adults aged 75 to 100 years old. Through their intimate memories and inspiring personal histories encompassing over 3,000 years of experience, 40 on-camera subjects share their secrets and insights to living a meaningful life. These men and women open the vault on their journey into old age through family histories, personal triumphs and tragedies, loves and losses, and seeing the best and worst of humanity along the way. Their stories will make you laugh, perhaps cry, but mostly inspire you. Producer/Director: Sky Bergman. (US 2018) 72 min.
OPENS MAY 18 Paulina Garcia (Gloria) stars as Teresa, who has worked for 30 years as a live-in maid for a family in Buenos Aires. When her employers sell their house, she is forced to take a job in a distant town and embark on a long bus journey through the desert. Along the way, she loses her bag with all her belongings. However, after enlisting the help of gregarious traveling salesman El Gringo (Claudio Rissi), what seemed like the end of her world ultimately proves to be her salvation. The charm of the two lead actors fills the vast desert landscape with warmth and color. In Spanish with English subtitles. Writers/ Directors: Cecilia Atán, Valeria Pivato. (Argentina/Chile 2017) 78 min
“His influence on me is unending.” Terry Gilliam Czech wizard Karel Zeman (1910-1989) was one of the most distinctive of fantasy filmmakers. His screen adventures combined live action, animation and fanciful set designs derived from 18th and 19th century engravings. In his Jules Verne adaptations, his dazzling effects often resembled watching an illustrated Victorian novel come to life. He was sometimes called the “Czech Méliès.” In Prague there is a museum in his honor, and the Karel Zeman Museum is a partner in these beautiful new restorations, screened at the Rafael in their original Czech-language versions.
T H U R S D AY S , M AY 1 0 - J U N E 7 , 1 : 0 0
EVERYTHING GOES WRONG Presented by Eddie Muller
MAY 10 | ADAPTATION
THE GREAT SILENCE Presented by Jasmyn Wong
MAY 17 | COMPOSING
© Karel Zeman Museum
This season the Rafael Film Club explores the Art of Filmmaking, and we’ll look at international movies of the 1950s and 60s and discuss them from different perspectives. A guest speaker will attend each session and, following the screening, engage in conversation with club participants and series programmer Jonathan Marlow. A reception follows with complimentary food and drink. Also known as The Madness of Youth, this juvenile-delinquent thriller was one of legendary Japanese director Seijun Suzuki’s earliest successes. Eddie Muller, founder and president of the Film Noir Foundation, will discuss the film as an adaptation of the original story by Akira Ichijo. In Japanese with English subtitles. (Japan 1960) 71 minutes plus discussion. One of the greatest of the Spaghetti Westerns, and screened in a new restoration, Sergio Corbucci’s The Great Silence makes the most of its cast—notably Klaus Kinski and Jean-Louis Trintignant as villain and hero, respectively—and its stunning snow-bound setting in an allegorical tale of good and evil. Bay Area musician Jasmyn Wong discusses the film’s extraordinary score by Ennio Morricone. In Italian with English subtitles. (Italy 1968) 105 minutes plus discussion.
DAISIES Presented by Gina Leibrecht
Banned in 1966 Czechoslovakia, Vera Chytilova’s surrealistic new-wave comedy follows two young women (both named Marie) who gladly cause havoc wherever they go. Bay Area filmmaker Gina Leibrecht discusses the film’s innovative editing and director Chytilova’s groundbreaking techniques (she wasn’t allowed to make another film in her homeland for nearly a decade). In Czech with English subtitles (Czechia 1966) 74 minutes plus discussion.
INVENTION FOR DESTRUCTION Presented by Stacey Steers
INVENTION FOR DESTRUCTION
SUNDAY, JUNE 3, 4:15 A worldwide hit that was released in the US as The Fabulous World of Jules Verne, this picaresque tale of an inventor exploited by pirates draws from several of Verne’s novels and is chock-full of fanciful “steampunk” creations, as director-animator Karel Zeman breathes life into the black and white engravings of Verne’s early illustrators. In Czech with English subtitles. (Czechoslovakia 1958) 78 min.
SUNDAY, JUNE 3, 7:00 | THURSDAY, JUNE 7, 7:00 In adapting the whimsical 18th century book about the world’s most extraordinary liar, director-animator Karel Zeman took his inspiration from the 19th century engravings of Gustave Doré. Zeman adds lovely color effects and introduces a live-action astronaut (or cosmonaut?) who accompanies the boastful Baron back to Earth from the Moon. In Czech with English subtitles. (Czechoslovakia 1961) 83 min.
© Trafalgar Releasing
This early masterpiece from French filmmaker Agnès Varda stars Corinne Marchand as a young singer awaiting a medical diagnosis. Featuring a fabulous music score by Michel Legrand and cameos from Anna Karina and Jean-Luc Godard, Varda’s landmark film continues to have an impact more than 50 years after it was made. Los Angeles-based filmmaker Nina Menkes, a CalArts faculty member, discusses Varda’s exceptional work. In French with English subtitles. (France 1962) 89 minutes plus discussion.
THE FABULOUS BARON MUNCHAUSEN
THE ROYAL OPERA
Originally released in the US as The Fabulous World of Jules Verne, this unique blend of live action and animation (presented in a new restoration) offers a great introduction to the work of Czech filmmaker Karel Zeman, who brought Victorian engravings to life to depict Verne’s fantastic inventions. Colorado-based animator Stacey Steers will discuss Zeman’s revolutionary integration of live actors with animated backgrounds. In Czech with English subtitles. (Czechia 1958) 83 minutes plus discussion.
CLÉO FROM 5 TO 7 Presented by Nina Menkes
© Karel Zeman Museum
Admission by Subscription Only | $120 (CFI members $90)
SUNDAY, MAY 20, NOON Composer Giuseppe Verdi’s lifelong love affair with Shakespeare’s dramas began with Macbeth and a music score bristling with theatricality and demonic energy. This tragedy of a great Scottish warrior who attains the throne and is undone by ruthless ambition is stylishly directed by Phyllida Lloyd (Mama Mia!, The Iron Lady) and designed by Anthony Ward in rich hues of black, red and gold. Singers: Zeljko Lucic (Macbeth), Anna Netrebko (Lady Macbeth), Ildebrando D’Arcangelo (Banquo). Conductor: Antonio Pappano. Sung in Italian with English subtitles. Anticipated running time is 200 minutes, including intermission. $15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
© Cohen Media Group
GODARD MON AMOUR
EVERYTHING GOES WRONG
THE GREAT SILENCE
INVENTION FOR DESTRUCTION
OPENS IN MAY With his romantic, sexy and slyly funny new film, Oscar-winning director Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist) once again transports us to a singular time and place in cinematic history: France in the late 1960s. Based on an autobiographical novel by actress Anne Wiazemsky (played here by Stacy Martin), the film recounts the ups and downs of her marriage to renowned filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard (Louis Garrel). As Godard’s increasingly radical and iconoclastic work divides his audiences, artistic ferment channels into the social activism surging in France, and their married life includes street protests, political debates and a possible shutdown of the Cannes Film Festival. In French with English subtitles. Also starring Bérénice Béjo. Writer/Director: Michel Hazanavicius.
CLÉO FROM 5 TO 7
— 11 —
PRESENTED BY B U D D H I S T F I L M F O U N D AT I O N & CALIFORNIA FILM INSTITUTE The Rafael again partners with the Buddhist Film Foundation to showcase three new programs from the International Buddhist Film Festival, which will be screened on Sunday afternoons in June. $15 general, $13 seniors, $10 CFI members ZEN FOR NOTHING
© Susan Marks
OF DOLLS AND MURDER
THURSDAY, JUNE 14, 7:15 Angela Rhoades, who teaches forensics, will give a talk about this particular branch of science in relation to a screening of this unique documentary. Narrated by John Waters, Of Dolls and Murder is filmmaker Susan Marks’ story about Frances Glessner Lee (1878-1962), a Baltimore socialite and grandmother who aided police with her “Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death,” dollhouse miniatures that depict scenes of violent murder and other crimes. Her detailed dioramas helped train detectives to sharpen their investigative skills, earning her the nickname “Patron Saint of Forensic Science.” Director: Susan Marks (US 2012) 70 min. plus discussion. This program is part of Science on Screen, a series matching the art of film with experts in scientific fields addressing topics that affect our lives. Science on Screen is an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theatre, in partnership with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
SUNDAY, JUNE 10, 4:15
IN PERSON: FILMMAKER WERNER PENZEL & OTHERS
HONEYGIVER AMONG THE DOGS
SUNDAY, JUNE 17, 4:15
IN PERSON: GAETANO KAZUO MAIDA & Skype with FILMMAKER DECHEN RODER The first feature by Bhutanese Dechen Roder is her feminist twist on film noir. It’s also a beautiful and provocative journey into contemporary Bhutan, the last Buddhist kingdom, making the case that a creative cinema community is growing there. When the abbess of a Buddhist nunnery goes missing, policeman Kinley gets on the case, and his number one suspect is sexy Choden, who regales him with legends about enlightened female deities fighting social oppression. He dismisses her stories as “rumors,” given that he eyes Buddhist murals with suspicion rather than awe. In Dzongkha with English subtitles. Camera: Jigme Tenzing. Writer/Director: Dechen Roder. (Bhutan 2016) 132 min
MY SON TENZIN
WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?
© xxThe Fred Rogers Company
The title may be provocative, but this masterful documentary immerses us in life at a Japanese Zen monastery over three seasons of a year. Swiss novice Sabine arrives at Antaiji and her learning process begins: how to bow, sit, move, behave. But there’s more to life in the monastery than meditation, farming and maintenance—there are also picnics, music and Wi-Fi! Beautifully photographed, this film could be described as Into Great Silence meets Enlightenment Guaranteed, with Oakland-based composer Fred Frith performing an elegant score. In Japanese and German with English subtitles. Director: Werner Penzel. (Germany/Japan 2016) 100 min. plus discussion.
OPENS JUNE 15 For over 30 years, Fred Rogers, an unassuming minister, puppeteer, writer and producer, used his program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood to communicate with America’s children about some of life’s weightiest issues. This charming (and disarming) documentary by Oscar-winner Morgan Neville (Twenty Feet from Stardom) reveals how the soft-spoken, cardigan-wearing TV host’s career represented a coherent view of how to speak to children about important matters and how to use television as a positive force. Neville’s film illustrates Rogers’ legacy with impressive clips as well as extensive interviews with family and associates. When it’s over, you’ll agree that there hasn’t been anyone like Mr. Rogers on television before or since. Producer/Director: Morgan Neville. (US 2018) 93 min.
SUNDAY, JUNE 24, 4:15
IN PERSON: FILMMAKER TASHI WANGCHUK & ACTOR/MUSICIAN TSERING BAWA
© Sunset Piano
This Bay Area production in English is a warm-hearted and clear-eyed look at life in exile for a new generation of Tibetans separated from their homeland by more than distance. Tsering Dorjee Bawa (who will also give an live performance of Tibetan songs) stars as a monk who arrives in the US in search of his grown son Tenzin, sent away years earlier to get an education. Co-director Wangchuk is a veteran radio producer for Voice of America Tibetan, and he brings to his film an intimate knowledge of the dilemmas of the exiled confronting cultural, political, familial and spiritual challenges. Directors: Tsultrim Dorjee, Tashi Wangchuk. (US 2017) 70 min. plus music performance and discussion.
THURSDAY, JUNE 28, 7:15 IN PERSON: FILMMAKER DEAN MERMELL Filmmaker and musician Dean Mermell will present and discuss a special screening of his documentary about Sunset Piano, his ongoing collaborative project with fellow multi-disciplinary artist Mauro ffortissimo. Mermell and ffortissimo have brought pianos to the cliffs of the California coast, the streets of San Francisco and, for their notable Flower Piano events, the Botanical Garden in Golden Gate Park. It all began in 2013, when ffortissimo rolled an old grand piano onto the bluffs of Half Moon Bay, and continued with surprise public appearances of pianos that could be played under the open sky by both professionals and passersby. Director: Dean Mermell. (US 2017) 64 min. plus discussion.
TROUBLE IN PARADISE THE ROYAL BALLET
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SUNDAY, JUNE 10, NOON Set to the music by Jules Massenet, this ballet version choreographed by Kenneth McMillan tells the tale of the capricious Manon and her struggle to escape poverty. McMillan’s source was the 18th century French novel already adapted for opera by Massenet and Puccini. Since its premiere in the 1970s, McMillan’s ballet quickly became a staple of The Royal Ballet’s repertory and a touchstone of adult, dramatic dance. Anticipated running time is 155 minutes, including intermissions.
© Universal Studios
© Trafalgar Releasing
SUNDAY, JULY 1, 4:15 IN PERSON: AUTHOR JOSEPH MCBRIDE This masterpiece of sexy and sophisticated comedy from director Ernst Lubitsch will be presented and discussed by film historian Joseph McBride, who will also sign copies of his new book How Did Lubitsch Do It?, available for sale at the Rafael. Known in his day for the “Lubitsch Touch,” this German-born filmmaker invented the Hollywood romantic comedy, challenged American attitudes toward sex and employed innuendo to circumvent the censors. One of his finest films, Trouble in Paradise stars Herbert Marshall and Miriam Hopkins as two high-class thieves whose plan to fleece beautiful perfume heiress Kay Francis morphs into a triangular escapade. Also starring Charlie Ruggles and Edward Everett Horton. Joseph McBride is a professor in the School of Cinema at San Francisco State University. (US 1932) 83 min. plus discussion.
$15 general, $13 seniors/youth, $10 CFI members
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A unique interactive learning experience that uses film to foster environmental awareness and activism, highlighting innovations and solutions Free to Bay Area students, grades 1-12, featuring: Screenings with discussions
MAY 2-4, 2018
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PROGRAMS AT THE SMITH RAFAEL FILM CENTER IN DOWNTOWN SAN RAFAEL
Schedule of programs at the Smith Rafael Film Center in San Rafael, CA