This year’s retrospective is twofold in nature, and oriented around one man: Bertrand Tavernier. We’re showing his magnificent epic documentary My Journey Through French Cinema and complementing it with several titles featured in the film, including those by Jean Renoir, Robert Bresson, Jacques Becker, Julien Duvivier, Jean-Pierre Melville and, in addition, Tavernier’s own 2002 film about Occupation-era filmmaking, Safe Conduct.
Tavernier has also been passionately devoted to American cinema throughout his career, so we’re taking this opportunity to show a selection of films by a director he has always greatly admired and championed, Henry Hathaway. Born near the turn of the last century, Hathaway started during the silent era as an assistant to directors like Josef von Sternberg and Victor Fleming, and he directed the first of his 52 films at the dawn of the sound era. Very quickly, he developed into one of Hollywood’s greatest craftsmen and most respected artists, taking on every genre from western to film noir, adventure stories to rural melodramas; pioneering the docudrama and the practice of shooting on location; creating technically complex visual effects that are still surprising; and building one of the most satisfying bodies of work in American movies, from the celebrated Kiss of Death and Niagara to the relatively unsung From Hell to Texas and Down to the Sea in Ships, all of which we’ll be showing. We owe a debt to Jim Giaopulos and Schawn Belston from Fox for their invaluable help with this retrospective. Additional thanks to Paul Ginsberg at NBC-Universal.
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Q&As with Bertrand Tavernier
Bertrand Tavernier is truly one of the grand old men of the movies, and his magnificent and deeply personal epic history of his native cinema has been a lifetime in the making.
Robert Bresson’s first feature, made during the Occupation, was this emotionally overpowering melodrama about a nun from a wealthy background who zeroes in on the distressed condition of a poor young female prisoner sent to the convent for rehabilitation.
This postwar comedy about a young Parisian couple (Roger Pigaut and Claire Mafféi) who buy and lose a winning lottery ticket sings with the energies of working-class life.
Julien Duvivier’s final collaboration with Jean Gabin is the gut-wrenching and ultimately tragic story of a Parisian restaurant owner who one day finds a young woman (Danièle Delorme) claiming to be the daughter of his ex-wife on his doorstep.
This adaptation of Jean Cocteau’s 1929 novel by Jean-Pierre Melville is an unlikely, incongruous mesh of two vastly different sensibilities.
Jean Renoir’s 1938 film about the beginnings of the French Revolution is, in François Truffaut’s words, a “neorealist fresco” that continually shuttles between characters throughout the social spectrum.
Introduction by Bertrand Tavernier
Bertrand Tavernier’s vigorous and varied portrait of Occupation-era filmmaking in France is a story told by a director deeply in love with his subject.
In this ingenious, light yet genuinely suspenseful mystery, Van Johnson plays a blind American playwright living in London who sits down for a drink in his neighborhood pub and overhears a casual plan to commit murder.
This 1946 melodrama, about a Manhattan P.I. (Mark Stevens) whose adoring secretary (Lucille Ball) helps to clear him of a false murder accusation, is the essence of
This lovely film, about a sea captain (Lionel Barrymore) who sets out on a final whaling voyage from New Bedford in 1878 with his grandson (Dean Stockwell) and his young successor (Richard Widmark), is a perfect blend of Hathaway’s special artistry and Fox’s meticulous period craftsmanship.
Unfortunately, this screening has been canceled due to a technical issue. All ticket holders have been refunded. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Based on the true story of William Warde, who jumped to his death in 1938 after a policeman had spent hours trying to talk him down from a 17th floor ledge at the old Gotham Hotel (now the Peninsula), Fourteen Hours is an exciting low-budget film shot on the streets of lower Manhattan.
A peaceful cowboy (Don Murray) who kills a man in self-defense is stalked across Texas by the man’s father, a powerful cattle baron (R.G. Armstrong). This unheralded film, one of Hathaway’s very best, has much in common with Peckinpah’s work, but it has a hard-edged relentlessness of its own.
Gary Cooper, Richard Widmark, and Cameron Mitchell are a trio of gold hunters approached by a desperate woman (Susan Hayward) with a generous offer to find her husband (Hugh Marlowe), who is trapped in their gold mine.
This 1947 film, about a jewel thief (Victor Mature) targeted by the mob when he cooperates with the DA, was shot all over New York, from the criminal courts building on Centre Street to the Bronx, and became one of the most influential of the postwar docudramas.
This 1953 suspense melodrama about matching crimes of passion, produced and co-written by Billy Wilder’s former partner Charles Brackett and shot in vibrant Technicolor, is set in the very particular world of honeymoon cottages on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls.
A gold prospector (John Wayne) goes to Seattle to retrieve his partner’s fiancée and comes back to Nome with a good-time saloon girl (Capucine) in this buoyant, funny film, perfectly keyed to its glorious natural settings.
Unfortunately, this screening has been canceled due to a technical issue. We will be contacting ticket holders about refunds.
This tightly structured nail-biter, about the siege of a desert relay station by a group of escaped convicts, launched a long-running TV show with Clint Eastwood and set a template for the western suspense film for years to come.
This beautifully crafted Technicolor film, about two warring families in the Ozarks and the benign stranger who appears in their midst, crosses paths with John Ford in its casting, its rural setting, and its careful attention to community and the passage of time.
George Raft, Henry Fonda, and Dorothy Lamour star in this boisterous action film about rival fishing crews fighting for dominance of the Alaskan seas, with support from John Barrymore, Akim Tamiroff, and a wondrous mix of technical wizardry and stunning second-unit work.