Fellow Film Club Members and Movie Buffs:
Spring has been drizzle-happy, wet and wild, and now we can all look forward to June and hopefully milder temperatures and the start of Summer. The TFC is excited about presenting our first two films on our “Great Directors/Romance” theme, this weekend, June 4th and 5th. Both films will be screened at 924 Broadway.
First up will be BREATHLESS (1960) on Friday June 4th. It was the first feature film directed by controversial director Jean-Luc Godard, who helped to launch the French New Wave film movement, moving away from the more structured European cinema of the 1950’s, this film is breezy, ambiguous, audacious, and premiered the idea of jump-cut editing, and wonderful innovative tracking shots before there was technology to support the concepts. Godard never had a finished script for the film. He would write a scene in the morning and then shoot it that day—feeding the actor’s their lines while filming. Jean-Paul Belmondo did the film as a lark, and it made him a super star. Jean Seberg was able to salvage her career after a disastrous start in two American films directed by Otto Preminger. Godard was a big fan of American director Nicholas Ray. He was offered a chance to direct BONNIE AND CLYDE (1965), after Francois Truffaut had declined it—on the strength of BREATHLESS. Godard has directed 94 films since 1954, but until 1959, spent most of his career being a film critic. Some of his later films included CONTEMPT (1963), ALPHAVILLE (1965), PIERROT LE FOU (1965), WEEKEND (1967), and PASSION (1982).
Jean-Luc Godard wrote: “I don’t think you can FEEL about a movie. You should feel about a woman. You can’t kiss a movie.” And “If movie making were building airplanes there would be an accident every time one of them took off. But in the movies, these accidents are called Oscars.”
BREATHLESS (1960) Written and Directed by Jean-Luc Godard @ 90 minutes. In French with sub-titles, from a story by Francois Truffaut.
Starring Jean-Paul Belmondo, Jean Seberg, Liliane David, Daniel Boulanger, with cameos by Francois Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard, and Claude Chabrol. Synopsis: A young Parisian criminal, who, accompanied by an American girl are chased by the police after stealing a car and killing a cop. Groundbreaking, influential New Wave tale with a classic romanticized gangster hero and great candid scenes of Paris life.
Tagline: “The film that was banned for 4 years….why?” Pauline Kael wrote, “A witty, romantic, innovative chase picture.”
Roger Ebert wrote, “There is a direct line through BREATHLESS to BONNIE AND CLYDE and BADLANDS, and the youth upheaval of the 1960’s.”
Second up will be CHOOSE ME (1984) on Saturday, June 5th, and it was directed and written by Alan Rudolph—who had been an assistant director for Robert Altman on THE LONG GOODBYE (1973), CALIFORNIA SPLIT (1974), and NASHVILLE (1975). He has directed 21 films since 1972, including WELCOME TO L.A. (1976), SONGWRITER (1984), TROUBLE IN MIND (1985), MADE IN HEAVEN (1997), THE MODERNS (1988), AFTERGLOW (1997), and THE SECRET LIFE OF DENTISTS (2002).
Mickey: “You have perfection about you. Your eyes hold music. Your heart is the best part of your body. And when you walk every man, woman and child is forced to watch.”
Roger Ebert wrote: “CHOOSE ME is a deliberate throw back to film noir of the 1940’s—to those movies made up of dark streets and wet pavements, hookers under street lamps, pimps in shiny post-war Studebakers, and people who smoke a lot.”
CHOOSE ME (1984) Writtten and Directed by Alan Rudolph @ 104 minutes.
Starring Genevieve Bujold, Keith Carradine, Leslie Ann Warren, Rae Dawn Chong, John Larroquete, Patrick Bauchau and John Considine. Synopsis: A comedy-drama about various relationships, truths, and lies that link a radio talk show hostess, a nightclub owner, and a mental hospital escapee–with a wonderful midnight-to-dawn LA feel to it, and good performances by all. Tagline: “Laughter, tears and telephone calls. Love is the true adventure.” “…offbeat, original and entertaining…a truly novel film.” Variety.
Roger Ebert also wrote: “At the end of this movie we haven’t learning much of anything in particular, but we have met these people and their loneliness and punch-drunk optimism and we have followed them a little time through the night.”
Some come on downtown this weekend folks, and fall in love twice, first with BREATHLESS (1960), on Friday June 4, 2010, and next with CHOOSE ME (1984)—both are being screened at our meeting place, 924 Broadway, in Tacoma’s Theater District, across the street from the Theater on the Square, kitty-corner from the Pantages. Arrive early, and enjoy the meal that will be prepared by the Phantom Director and Farishta. Anyone who would like to add to the meal can bring along bread, cheese, wine, or desserts. As well as intense conversations about movies and life, enjoy the club fellowship and family atmosphere, and take a chance with the Club Raffle at one buck per ticket. Winners get 40% of the revenue collected, or a marvelous DVD from my personal collection. We might have a lap top hooked up to the projector so that you can see what the ratings were on last month’s films. There will be announcements and then a short film to warm us up, followed by BREATHLESS. It runs about an hour and forty minutes, so we will be finished around 9:30pm.
Then take advantage of an almost double-bill, and return to 924 Broadway the next night, Saturday, June 5, 2010, to see CHOOSE ME. The agenda will be the same, but the meal will change. See you all at the movies!