Lives of Performers begins, fittingly, with a rehearsal. Cinematographer Babette Mangolte’s roving camera arcs across the bodies of dancers as they commit a pattern of movement to memory, and this image—of a work in the process of becoming—serves as an emblem of sorts for Rainer’s film, which stages a familiar story of infatuation and uncertain feeling in an unorthodox fashion. As a love triangle between a man and two women plays out as a series of tableaux against an austere backdrop, the particulars of its development are revealed largely through off-camera line readings and fragments of on-screen text. Pulling the viewer in and pushing them out with equal force, Lives of Performers is a beguiling example of anti-illusionism, coolly revealing the mechanics of melodrama while illustrating the power and potential of its appeal to sentiment. Introduced by Douglas Crimp. Opening Night reception following screening, co-hosted with Dance Films Association. Don’t forget to mark your calendar for Dance on Camera Festival’s 2018 dates: July 20–24.