Isabelle Huppert and John Waters at the Film Society (Photos: Barbara Anastacio and Eugene Hernandez)
The Film Society of Lincoln Center has announced “An Evening with Isabelle Huppert,” which will take place on Wednesday, July 30 starting at 6:00pm. The event will be moderated by filmmaker John Waters, who has called Huppert his “favorite actress in the world.” The evening will include an advanced screening of Huppert’s latest film, Catherine Breillat’s Abuse of Weakness, which had its New York premiere last fall at the 51st New York Film Festival. The screening will be followed by an extended conversation between Huppert and Waters. After that, Huppert will introduce a screening of Michael Haneke’s The Piano Teacher, for which she won a Best Actress prize at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival.
John Waters, in the December 2013 issue of Artforum, wrote of Abuse of Weakness: Huppert “plays a crazy director (Based on Breillat) who recovers from a massive brain injury by falling for the convict swindler she casts in her film. Their nonsexual, obsessive relationship is sheer perfection to watch, especially when Huppert keeps falling down in those weirdly glamorous orthopedic shoes.”
Widely regarded as one of the best and most daring French actors working today, Huppert made her screen debut in 1972 and went on to become the most nominated actress for the César Awards. She received her first César nomination in 1975 for the film Aloïse, then won the award for La Cérémonie in 1995. Huppert won Best Actress twice at both the Cannes and Venice Film Festival, for Violette (1978), The Piano Teacher (2001), Story of Women (1988) and La Cérémonie (1995), respectively.
Isabelle Huppert in Abuse of Weakness (Catherine Breillat, 2013)
Abuse of Weakness will open for an exclusive one-week theatrical run on Friday, August 15 at the Film Society. Huppert will also be appearing at the Lincoln Center Festival in the Sydney Theater Company’s production of The Maids opposite Cate Blanchett, recipient of a gala tribute at NYFF51.
“An Evening with Isabelle Huppert” will be held at the Walter Reade Theater and tickets will go on sale at noon on Thursday, July 17. Tickets for the screening of Abuse of Weakness include the conversation between Huppert and Waters and are $25 for the general public and $20 for students, seniors, and members. Tickets for the screening of The Piano Teacher are $13 for general public and $8 for students, seniors, and members. Tickets to both screenings can be purchased together for $30 for general public, $25 for members.
Check out the film schedule and descriptions below:
Abuse of Weakness
Catherine Breillat | France | 2013 | DCP |105m
French with English subtitles
In 2004, at the age of 56, Catherine Breillat suffered a serious stroke. Her left side was initially paralyzed and after five months in the hospital she worked like a demon to walk again. Not long after, she prepared a screenplay of her novel Bad Love and decided to cast the notorious “swindler of the stars,” Christophe Rocancourt, fresh from a jail term for fraud. Over the next several months, Rocancourt took advantage of Breillat’s condition and stood by her side as she wrote him checks amounting to €650,000. She later took him to court, won her case, and chronicled the experience in a book that she has now adapted into a haunting film, which features a bold, tough performance by Isabelle Huppert as the Breillat figure and French/Portuguese rapper Kool Shen as the con man. A selection at the 51st New York Film Festival. A Strand Releasing release. Abuse of Weakness opens theatrically at the Film Society for an exclusive one week run on Friday, August 15.
Wednesday, July 30 – 6:00pm. Conversation to follow screening with Isabelle Huppert and moderator John Waters.
The Piano Teacher
Michael Haneke | Austria/France/Germany | 2001 | 35mm | 131m
French and German with English subtitles
Isabelle Huppert rushes in where most movie stars fear to tread as Erika, a brilliant, middle-aged instructor at a Viennese music conservatory whose icy domination of her pupils belies desperate, masochistic urges. When she meets Walter (Benoît Magimel), a brash 17-year-old student, his infatuation leads Erika to explore her most dissolute fantasies. Adapted from Elfriede Jelinek’s novel, the film pairs Haneke’s rigorous formalism with Huppert’s singular blend of fire and ice for an unnerving treatise on cruelty, repression, and the kinky underside of elegance. Winner of the Grand Prix and both acting prizes at Cannes, The Piano Teacher was described by Manohla Dargis as “a harrowing story of sex, fascism, and the ties that bind and sometimes throttle.”
Wednesday, July 30 – 9:00pm. Introduction by Isabelle Huppert.