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The New York Film Festival (September 28 – October 14, 2012) at Lincoln Center (165 West 65th Street, and various locations) is putting on one hell of a show this year. As the 50th installment of the NYFF, exemplary films, both classic and new are being shown in this colossal event.
Opening the NYFF is Ang Lee’s technical marvel, Life of Pi, based on the novel by Yann Martel. It’s safe to say the film will be visually stunning, but can Lee deliver the emotional goods in this story of a young boy living on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger?
Lee Daniels’ Nicole Kidman vehicle, The Paperboy, starring the waifish Zac Efron, is a coming of age story mixed with a sexualized thriller as the titular paperboy (Efron) gets wrapped up in an affair with Kidman, who has a fiancée on death row. Nicole Kidman, director Lee Daniels, and star Macy Gray will also be at the screening in person to discuss the film.
Caesar Must Die, directed by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, shows inmates in an Italian prison putting on a production of Julius Caesar, while their rivalries have to be kept in check to prevent bedlam from breaking. Already a winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, Caesar has been attracting attention because several of the cast members are actual former inmates and gangsters.
Considered one of cinema’s greatest achievements (or a teaching tool in moral ambiguity if you saw Prometheus) Lawrence of Arabia is being screened with a new 4K restoration which Sony worked on laboriously and premiered earlier in Cannes to much aplomb. Another classic being shown is Walt Disney’s Snow White, which is also being opened with a new animated short by director John Kahrs, Paperman, which has been a hot topic among animation fans.
Cinema Reflected is a special block of documentaries focusing on the men and women behind great films. Casting By looks at the complex world of casting films (natch), Celluloid Man is about P.K. Nair, the founder of India’s National Film Archive.
Room 237 is the new and hotly debated analysis of Kubrick’s The Shining and how the enthusiasts have been attaching different meanings to the film for decades. One of the stranger entries of Cinema Reflected is Final Cut- Ladies and Gentleman, a sort of experimental large scale clip show, it assembles scenes from over 450 films to create its own narrative.
Holy Motors, directed by Leos Carax, is a stream of consciousness film described by Carax as “a film about a man and the experience of being alive.” A man taking on multiple identities over the course of a day as he is shuttled around Paris by Edith Scob from Eyes Without a Face and an appearance by Kylie Minogue, Holy Motors defies description.
Childhood favorite of 80’s kids, The Princess Bride is celebrating its 25th anniversary at the NYFF with a special reunion of director Rob Reiner with Billy Crystal, Cary Elwes, Carol Kane, Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Wallace Shawn and Robin Wright, who will be having an onstage conversation after a screening of a 35mm print of the quotable classic.
Typical only for being exemplary, the NYFF’s selection this year is quite possibly it’s most varied and celebrates not only the modern movie darlings, but also the entirety of cinema history.
To learn more, go to: http://www.filmlinc.com/nyff2012
The 50th New York Film Festival September 28 – October 14, 2012
The Walter Reade Theater 70 Linclon center plaza, 165 West 65th Street #4 New York, NY 10023
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