STAYING IN TOUCH WITH OUR AUDIENCE WITH SAG HARBOR CINEMA @ HOME
Creating a strong relationship with the audience has always been a priority for the Sag Harbor Cinema. For the past three years, we were able to build towards that through programming the film series and special screenings that were held at Pierson High School Auditorium, Bay Street Theater, and other East End venues like Guild Hall, Southampton Arts Center, and the Ross School.
We remain fully committed to the unsurpassable magic of “big screen viewing” and the notion of moviegoing as a collective physical experience. Yet, to keep our audience engaged in the time before restrictions are lifted and the Cinema will be able to open, we have embraced the generous offer made by a handful of distributors to art-house cinemas all over the country. These distributors have enabled us to stream a selection of first run films, recent releases and restored classics through our website, (www.sagharborcinema.org).
For the past two weeks our “virtual cinema” has been accessible through SHC’s website. This made 24/7 streaming available, enabling our audience to view the restored version of a beloved, crowd pleasing Latin American comedy (Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands ), a documentary about a great photographer (The Times of Bill Cunningham), and a stylish Chinese noir that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, in 2019 (The Wild Goose Lake).
To complement the screening of Dona Flor, we reached out to the film’s director – Bruno Barreto in Sao Paolo, for a live conversation with Artistic Director Giulia D’Agnolo Vallan on Sunday April 19th. Organized in collaboration with Cinema Tropical, the recorded Q&A is now available on our website.
Starting May 1st, we will introduce three new titles. Among them is Jules Dassin’s Rififi (1955), a film that Francois Truffaut called, “The best film noir I have ever seen.” Also included is Alex Rivera and Aldo Velasco’s docu-thriller The Infiltrators (2019), a Sundance Film Festival NEXT Innovator Prize winner in which a group of Dreamers infiltrates the operations of a for- profit immigration detention center. The last title of this new selection is What She Said: the Art of Pauline Kael, Robert Garver’s portrait of the legendary “New Yorker” film critic.
“Until we are able to welcome the public at the theater, I am very grateful that this collaboration with film distributors such as Oscilloscope, Film Movement, Kino Lorber, Greenwich Entertainment, Juno Films and Rialto Pictures allows us to bring exciting new programs to our viewers, at home,” says Artistic Director Giulia D’Agnolo Vallan.
D’Agnolo Vallan adds, “The virtual cinema selections reflect only a portion of what we’ll be able to show when SHC is open; but it is a good way to keep in touch and to create something special for our audiences. To that purpose, we have also introduced in our Thursday newsletter a Movie of the Week initiative, and more recently Good Reads, where we’ll share the most interesting articles that are being published about film and cinemas, within the context of the lockdown.”
A portion of the proceeds from our virtual cinema tickets sales goes in support of the Sag Harbor Cinema. Ticket prices may slightly vary according to each distributor’s policy
ABOUT THE FILMS
New Titles Starting May 1st
Directed by Jules Dassin (France 1955, 118 mins. In French with English subtitles)
In the words of Francois Truffaut:
“Out of the worst crime novel I have ever read, Jules Dassin has made the best Film Noir I have ever seen. In fact, this is not a minor genre. Dassin shot the film on the street during high winds and rain, and he reveals Paris to us [Frenchmen] as he revealed London to the English (Night in the City) and New York to the Americans (Naked City). It would be unfair not to credit also the chief cameraman, Agostini, who truly worked miracles under very unusual conditions…Everything in Rififi is intelligent: screenplay, dialogue, sets, music, choice of actors…Beyond that, the real value of the film lies in its tone.
The characters in Rififi are not despicable. The relative permissiveness of the French censors allowed Dassin to make a film without compromises, immoral perhaps, but profoundly noble, tragic, warm, human. Behind the smiles of the three actors – Jean Servais’ bitter, Robert Manuel’s sunny, and Jules Dassin’s sad though with bursts of gaiety – we divine the filmmaker, a tender, indulgent man, gentle and trusting, capable of telling us one of these days a more ennobling story of characters who have been better served by their destiny.” *
*Quoted from: The Films of My Life (1975, Simon and Schuster)
Directed by Alex Rivera and Cristina Ibarra (USA 2019; 95 mins. in English and Spanish)
A docu-thriller that tells the true story of young immigrants who are detained by Border Patrol and thrown into a shadowy for-profit detention center—on purpose. Marco and Viri are members of the National Immigrant Youth Alliance, a group of radical DREAMers who are on a mission to stop unjust deportations. And the best place to stop deportations, they believe, is in detention. However, when Marco and Viri attempt a daring reverse ‘prison break,’ things don’t go according to plan. By weaving together documentary footage of the real infiltrators with re- enactments of the events inside the detention center, The Infiltrators tells an incredible and thrilling true story in a genre-defying new cinematic language.
What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael
Directed by Robert Garver (USA 2018; 95mins)
Arguably one of the most powerful film critics in American history Pauline Kael was admired as much as she was feared. Kael was famous for the passion and intellect she brought from the screen to the page, as well as for her fierce partisan spirit. Her “New Yorker” reviews helped the career of directors like Robert Altman, Walter Hill and Brian De Palma, and ruthlessly panned works by David Lean and Stanly Kubrick. Robert Garver’s love letter includes interviews with filmmakers such as Francs Coppola, Quentin Tarantino, Paul Schrader and David O. Russell as well as with films critics like David Edelstein, Michael Sragow and James Wolcott that were influence by her work.
Films available for streaming since April 10th
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands,
Directed by Bruno Barreto (Brazil, 1976 117mins. In Portuguese with English subtitles)
Based on the novel by Jorge Amado, this Brazilian comedy follows the strange events that befall Doña Flor (Sonia Braga) after she is left a widow by the death of her wild, irresponsible husband. He died after one too many wanton nights of carousing. Determined to marry more wisely the second time around, Doña Flor weds a stable, but boring pharmacist who has no interest in sex. When she discovers that her new sex life is less than satisfying, Doña Flor is visited by the sexy ghost of her late husband. When it was first released, Doña Flor became the most successful film in Brazilian history. Internationally, Doña Flor received nominations for a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award.
The Times of Bill Cunningham,
Directed by Mar Bozek (USA, 2020, 74mins)
Bill Cunningham, the legendary New York Times photographer and fashion historian, shares his life story in his own words with photographs from his remarkable archive of over 3 million images. Narrated by Sarah Jessica Parker, The Times of Bill Cunningham features incredible photographs chosen from previously unpublished images and documents from the iconic street photographer who captured the whims and trends of fashion on the streets of Manhattan. Told in
Cunningham’s own words from a recently unearthed 1994 interview, the photographer chronicles, in his customarily cheerful and plainspoken manner, a life of moonlighting as a milliner in France during the Korean War, his unique relationship with First Lady Jackie Kennedy, his four decades at The New York Times and his democratic view of fashion and society.
The Wild Goose Lake
Directed by Diao Yinan (China, France 2019, 111mins. In Chinese with English subtitles )
When small-time mob leader Zhou Zenong (Chinese superstar Hu Ge) accidentally kills a cop, a dead-or-alive bounty is placed on his head, forcing him on the lam from the police and some dangerous gangsters out for the reward. Hiding out in China’s densely populated (and deeply divided) Wuhan province, Zhou becomes entangled with a beautiful, enigmatic woman, who has mysterious intentions of her own. Featuring gorgeous, neon-drenched cinematography and bursts of shocking, expertly choreographed action, THE WILD GOOSE LAKE is “spellbinding” (Rolling Stone), “brilliant” (Indiewire) and “downright Hitchcockian” (AV Club).