This July at the Film Society was filled with intriguing programming that included the works of international cinema, festival favorites, and legendary filmmakers.
The month kicked off with the 16th annual New York Asian Film Festival. With over 50 contemporary films from countries including China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and across South East Asia, there was plenty to watch. Several films made their New York and North American debuts, with the opening night film, Bad Genius, holding its International Premiere. Additionally, the festival involved an awards ceremony with actress Chutimon “Aokbab” Chuengcharoensukying, star of Bad Genius, receiving the NYAFF 2017 Screen International Rising Star Award, as well as actor Eric Tsang, who received the NYAFF 2017 Star Hong Kong Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in Mad World. Additionally, many of the films, such as Blood of Youth, Extraordinary Mission, Dealer/Healer, Wet Woman in the Wind, and Close-Knit, were followed by in-person Q&As.
There were also a handful of sneak previews, including Landline, a nineties-set portrait of a New York family in crisis and the second collaboration by the team behind Obvious Child. After the screening, director-writer Gillian Robespierre, writer-producer Elisabeth Holm, star Jenny Slate, and newcomer Abby Quinn (who plays Slate’s younger sister) sat down for a Q&A, which can be seen here. Additionally, Film Comment presented a sneak preview screening of Good Time, directed by the Safdie Brothers and starring Robert Pattinson in a career-defining performance. Following the film, co-writer Ronald Bronstein joined Pattinson and the Safdie Brothers for an extensive Q&A. See the whole conversation here!
The Film Society also held a retrospective on choreographer and filmmaker Yvonne Rainer. Talking Pictures: The Cinema of Yvonne Rainer included the filmmaker’s diverse body of work, such as Trio A, Privilege, and MURDER and murder, as well as films by artists who served as an inspiration to Rainer, such as Andy Warhol, Maya Deren, and Charles Atlas. The series came to a close with a free HBO-sponsored talk between Yvonne Rainer and novelist-critic Lynn Tillman.