The trailer for Albert Lewin’s The Living Idol (1957) offers a taste of the film’s otherworldly tone and shows why it deserves cult classic status. Lewin, a former critic who worked for Samuel Goldwyn in the 1920s and served as Irving Thalberg’s right-hand man in the 1930s, directed six films later in life, among them a 1945 adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray. The Living Idol was his final film and is based on his own novel about an archeologist who comes to believe that a jaguar in captivity is the physical manifestation of a Mayan god. Newly restored by the Cohen Media Group, the film will screen in the Revivals section of the 54th New York Film Festival.

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