Film screening: Film series concludes with “Magnificent Obsession” on Mon., Aug. 8

The Best Video Film & Cultural Center film series “5 Great Directors—5 Great Moral Dilemmas,” wraps up Monday, Aug. 8, with a screening of director Douglas Sirk’s 1954 melodrama “Magnificent Obsession,” starring Rock Hudson and Jane Wyman.  The series—presented in concert with Temple Beth Sholom’s Adult Education program—has run on consecutive Mondays beginning July 8. The screening starts at 7:15 PM and admission is $7. (Temple Beth Sholom members get in for free.)

Magnificent_Obsession_poster_Web

Temple Beth Sholom Rabbi Benjamin Scolnic will introduce the movie and lead the optional post-film discussion.

In “Magnificent Obsession,” when a rich, self-absorbed playboy crashes his speedboat on a lake, the only ambulance in town saves his life rather than tending to a stricken self-sacrificing doctor. When the doctor dies, it sets in motion a journey of unexpected twists and turns leading to a higher power, including a torrid and forbidden love.

New York Times critic H.H.T., writing in 1954:

Produced in Technicolor by Ross Hunter, and co-starring Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson in the original Irene Dunne and Robert Taylor roles, the new version is unquestionably a handsome one. Better still, generally restrained performances at least dignify a moist text, which may seem inspiration to some, pure corn to others. It all depends. Here, again, is [novelist Lloyd C.] Douglas’ own compound of retribution, philosophy and love. Deleting one major character and a few incidents, Robert Blees’ scenario tenderly develops the relationship of a fine young woman and the millionaire rake indirectly responsible for both her widowhood and her blindness.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Thursday, July 28. DIY/EXPERIMENTAL: PAINTED FACES, BIG NURSE

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Monday, Aug. 1. FILM SCREENING: “THE TRAIN”

• Wednesday, Aug. 3. INDIE ROCK: JELLYSHIRTS

• Thursday, Aug. 4. ECLECTIC ACOUSTIC: THE NAMELESS TRIO

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND, JULIE BEMAN & ERIC BLOOMQUIST

• Monday, Aug. 8. FILM SCREENING: “MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION”

• Wednesday, Aug. 10. BLUEGRASS: EAST ROCK RAMBLERS

• Thursday, Aug. 11. INDIE ROCK: ZOO FRONT, AN HISTORIC

• Friday, Aug. 12. INDIE/DIY/QUEERCORE: LADY QUEEN PARADISE, ADULT MOM, SPACE CAMP

• Wednesday, Aug. 17. SINGER-SONGWRITER POP: THE SHELLYE VALAUSKAS EXPERIENCE, TINY OCEAN

• Thursday, Aug. 18. ROCK: THE RIGHT-OFFS

• Friday, Aug. 19. SINGER-SONGWRITERS: PONYBIRD, FRANK CRITELLI, CHRISTOPHER BOUSQUET

• Sunday, Aug. 21. INDIE ROCK: WALTER, ETC.; BLOWOUT, 1 more TBA

• Wednesday, Aug. 24. OLD-TIMEY/BLUES: THE ZuZAZZ STRING ORKESTRA

• Thursday, Aug. 25. JAZZ: BRIAN JARAWA GRAY

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Wednesday, Aug. 30. BLUES/FOLK: CODA BLUE, THE RED HOTS

• Friday, Sept. 2. JAZZ: JOVAN ALEXANDRE

• Friday, Sept. 9. ROCK: THE FURORS

• Thursday, Sept. 15. FOLK/SOUL: CHRISSY GARDNER & ROBERT MESSORE

• Friday, Sept. 16. ROCK: LA TUNDA

• Saturday, Sept. 17. BLUEGRASS/SWING: TOO BLUE

• Thursday, Sept. 22. PIANO MUSIC: DONALD ALFANO

• Friday, Sept. 23. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SETH ADAM

• Sunday, Sept. 25. SURJ FILM SCREENING: “RACE: THE POWER OF AN ILLUSION”

• Tuesday, Sept. 27. SINGER-SONGWRITER: DANIELLE ATE THE SANDWICH

• Wednesday, Sept. 28. BRAZILIAN CHORO MUSIC: ROGÉRIO SOUZA, EDINHO GERBER & STEPHEN GUERRA

• Friday, Sept. 30. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Friday, Oct. 7. BLUEGRASS/NEW ACOUSTIC: JOE WALSH & FRIENDS (A GUITARTOWN CT PRODUCTION)

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

 

Film screening: John Frankenheimer’s “The Train,” set in France during World War II, Mon., Aug. 1

The_Train_poster_WebThe Best Video Film & Cultural Center film series “5 Great Directors—5 Great Moral Dilemmas,” continues Monday, Aug. 1, with a screening of “The Train,” John Frankenheimer’s thriller set in France during World War II and starring Burt Lancaster.  The series—presented in concert with Temple Beth Sholom’s Adult Education program—runs on consecutive Mondays from July 11 through August 8. Each screening starts at 7:15 PM and admission is $7. (Temple Beth Sholom members get in for free.)

Best Video founder Hank Paper will introduce the movie and lead the optional post-film discussion for “The Train.”

Based on a true story, “The Train” depicts the efforts of French Resistance fighters to stop a Nazi colonel (played by Paul Scofield) from spiriting away a host of the nation’s cultural patrimony. The philosophical subtext is: Is art worth more than the human lives that may be sacrificed to save it? Burt Lancaster plays a French railroad worker in league with the French Resistance who vows to stop the train.

From Bosley Crowther’s 1965 New York Times review: “Such movement of railway equipment, chases and collisions with trains, throwing of switches, and derailments as used to make for vivid action in silent films is brought to mind with fondest feeling by John Frankenheimer’s The Train, which piled up a beautiful, hissing tangle at the Astor and the Plaza yesterday.”

Remaining schedule:

August 1: John Frankenheimer’s “THE TRAIN” • What is worth more: a masterpiece of art or a human life? Like “The Swimmer,” this Burt Lancaster film is unforgettable. A stationmaster and resistance leader is asked to stop — at any cost — a heavily guarded Nazi train filled with France’s best paintings. Non-stop suspense, ingenious plotting and a philosophic context keep this film on track as a celluloid masterpiece. With Jeanne Moreau and Paul Scofield as the equally determined, art connoisseur commandant of the titular train.

August 8: Douglas Sirk’s “MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION” • When a rich, self-absorbed playboy crashes his speedboat on a lake, the only ambulance in town saves his life rather than tending to a stricken self-sacrificing doctor. When the doctor dies, it sets in motion a journey of unexpected twists and turns leading to a higher power, including a torrid and forbidden love.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Wednesday, July 27. DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS PRESENTS THE MUSIC OF ENNIO MORRICONE

• Thursday, July 28. DIY/EXPERIMENTAL: PAINTED FACES, BIG NURSE

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Monday, Aug. 1. FILM SCREENING: “THE TRAIN”

• Wednesday, Aug. 3. INDIE ROCK: JELLYSHIRTS

• Thursday, Aug. 4. ECLECTIC ACOUSTIC: THE NAMELESS TRIO

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND, JULIE BEMAN & ERIC BLOOMQUIST

• Monday, Aug. 8. FILM SCREENING: “MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION”

• Wednesday, Aug. 10. BLUEGRASS: EAST ROCK RAMBLERS

• Thursday, Aug. 11. INDIE ROCK: ZOO FRONT, AN HISTORIC

• Friday, Aug. 12. INDIE/DIY/QUEERCORE: LADY QUEEN PARADISE, ADULT MOM, SPACE CAMP

• Wednesday, Aug. 17. SINGER-SONGWRITER POP: THE SHELLYE VALAUSKAS EXPERIENCE, TINY OCEAN

• Thursday, Aug. 18. ROCK: THE RIGHT-OFFS

• Friday, Aug. 19. SINGER-SONGWRITERS: PONYBIRD, FRANK CRITELLI, CHRISTOPHER BOUSQUET

• Sunday, Aug. 21. INDIE ROCK: WALTER, ETC.; BLOWOUT, 1 more TBA

• Wednesday, Aug. 24. OLD-TIMEY/BLUES: THE ZuZAZZ STRING ORKESTRA

• Thursday, Aug. 25. JAZZ: BRIAN JARAWA GRAY

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Wednesday, Aug. 30. BLUES/FOLK: CODA BLUE, THE RED HOTS

• Friday, Sept. 2. JAZZ: JOVAN ALEXANDRE

• Friday, Sept. 9. ROCK: THE FURORS

• Thursday, Sept. 15. FOLK/SOUL: CHRISSY GARDNER & ROBERT MESSORE

• Friday, Sept. 16. ROCK: LA TUNDA

• Saturday, Sept. 17. BLUEGRASS/SWING: TOO BLUE

• Thursday, Sept. 22. PIANO MUSIC: DONALD ALFANO

• Friday, Sept. 23. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SETH ADAM

• Sunday, Sept. 25. SURJ FILM SCREENING: “RACE: THE POWER OF AN ILLUSION”

• Tuesday, Sept. 27. SINGER-SONGWRITER: DANIELLE ATE THE SANDWICH

• Wednesday, Sept. 28. BRAZILIAN CHORO MUSIC: ROGÉRIO SOUZA, EDINHO GERBER & STEPHEN GUERRA

• Friday, Sept. 30. BRAZILIAN MUSIC: SAMBELEZA

• Friday, Oct. 7. BLUEGRASS/NEW ACOUSTIC: JOE WALSH & FRIENDS (A GUITARTOWN CT PRODUCTION)

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

 

Film screening: “Ace in the Hole,” Billy Wilder’s corrosive exposé of sensationalist journalism Mon., July 25

Ace-in-the-Hole1_WebThe Best Video Film & Cultural Center film series “5 Great Directors—5 Great Moral Dilemmas,” continues Monday, July 25, with a screening of legendary director Billy Wilder’s exposé of sensationalist journalism in the 1951 film “Ace in the Hole,” starring Kirk Douglas.  The series—presented in concert with Temple Beth Sholom’s Adult Education program—runs on consecutive Mondays from July 11 through August 8. Each screening starts at 7:15 PM and admission is $7. (Temple Beth Sholom members get in for free.)

Best Video founder Hank Paper will introduce the movie and lead the optional post-film discussion for “Ace in the Hole.”

In a 2007 review at the time of the movie’s Criterion DVD release, critic Roger Ebert wrote, “There’s not a soft or sentimental passage in Billy Wilder’s ‘Ace in the Hole’ (1951), a portrait of rotten journalism and the public’s insatiable appetite for it. It’s easy to blame the press for its portraits of self-destructing celebrities, philandering preachers, corrupt politicians or bragging serial killers, but who loves those stories? The public does. Wilder, true to this vision and ahead of his time, made a movie in which the only good men are the victim and his doctor. Instead of blaming the journalist who masterminds a media circus, he is equally hard on sightseers who pay 25 cents admission. Nobody gets off the hook here.”

Remaining Schedule:

July 25: Billy Wilder’s “ACE IN THE HOLE” • A scrabbling and ambitious journalist exploits the sufferings of the victims of a coal mine disaster in order to jump-start his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus. This brilliant un-Hollywood film, with white hot acting by Kirk Douglas, was way ahead of its time in 1951. In an era of social networking and the 24 hour news cycle, this film’s time is now.

August 1: John Frankenheimer’s “THE TRAIN” • What is worth more: a masterpiece of art or a human life? Like “The Swimmer,” this Burt Lancaster film is unforgettable. A stationmaster and resistance leader is asked to stop — at any cost — a heavily guarded Nazi train filled with France’s best paintings. Non-stop suspense, ingenious plotting and a philosophic context keep this film on track as a celluloid masterpiece. With Jeanne Moreau and Paul Scofield as the equally determined, art connoisseur commandant of the titular train.

August 8: Douglas Sirk’s “MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION” • When a rich, self-absorbed playboy crashes his speedboat on a lake, the only ambulance in town saves his life rather than tending to a stricken self-sacrificing doctor. When the doctor dies, it sets in motion a journey of unexpected twists and turns leading to a higher power, including a torrid and forbidden love.

Film screening: Hitchcock’s “Lifeboat,” a great moral dilemma, Mon., July 18

Poster - Lifeboat_01_WebThe Best Video Film & Cultural Center film series “5 Great Directors—5 Great Moral Dilemmas,” continues Monday, July 18, with a screening of legendary director Alfred Hitchcock’s 1944 film “Lifeboat,” starring Tallulah Bankhead.  The series—presented in concert with Temple Beth Sholom’s Adult Education program—runs on consecutive Mondays from July 11 through August 8. Each screening starts at 7:15 PM and admission is $7. (Temple Beth Sholom members get in for free.)

Rabbi Benjamin Scolnic from Temple Beth Sholom will introduce the movie and lead the discussion for “Remember” and “Magnificent Obsession;” Best Video founder Hank Paper will do the same for “Lifeboat,” “Ace in the Hole,” and “The Train.”

From Bosley Crowther’s 1944 New York Times review: “That old master of screen melodrama, Alfred Hitchcock, and Writer John Steinbeck have combined their distinctive talents in a tremendously provocative film—indeed, a surprisingly unique one—titled “Lifeboat,” which came to the Astor yesterday. With only nine characters under scrutiny within the limits of a standard ship’s lifeboat—an area from which the camera never at any time departs—they have peeled off a tense and vital drama of survivors adrift from a torpedoed ship, absorbing in its revelations of character and its brilliantly pictorialized details. However, they have also given us an allegorical film with a theme which is startling in its broad implications, especially in this critical time.”

UPCOMING EVENTS:

• Monday, July 11. FILM SCREENING: “REMEMBER”

• Wednesday, July 13. ROCK: HOLIDAY PING

• Friday, July 15. SINGER-SONGWRITER: KATH BLOOM, BOP TWEEDIE

• Monday, July 18. FILM SCREENING: “LIFEBOAT”

• Wednesday, July 20. BLUEGRASS: DUDLEY FARMS STRING BAND

• Thursday, July 21. JAZZ: BRETT BOTTOMLEY

• Friday, July 22. FOLK: HOMEMADE JAM

• Sunday, July 24. INDIE, HIP-HOP: RUNNING LAPS & NATHAN CORP, THE FOREST ROOM, CHEF THE CHEF, ZAK G.

• Monday, July 25. FILM SCREENING: “ACE IN THE HOLE”

• Wednesday, July 27. DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT CLAPTRAPS PRESENTS THE MUSIC OF ENNIO MORRICONE

• Thursday, July 28. DIY/EXPERIMENTAL: PAINTED FACES, BIG NURSE

• Friday, July 29. ART-ROCK: FE FI FO

• Monday, Aug. 1. FILM SCREENING: “THE TRAIN”

• Wednesday, Aug. 3. INDIE ROCK: JELLYSHIRTS

• Thursday, Aug. 4. ECLECTIC ACOUSTIC: THE NAMELESS TRIO

• Friday, Aug. 5. INDIE ROCK: THE LYS GUILLORN BAND, EARTHLINGS

• Monday, Aug. 8. FILM SCREENING: “MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION”

• Wednesday, Aug. 10. BLUEGRASS: EAST ROCK RAMBLERS

• Thursday, Aug. 11. INDIE ROCK: ZOO FRONT

• Wednesday, Aug. 17. SINGER-SONGWRITER POP: THE SHELLYE VALAUSKAS EXPERIENCE, TINY OCEAN

• Friday, Aug. 19. SINGER-SONGWRITERS: PONYBIRD, FRANK CRITELLI, CHRISTOPHER BOUSQUET

• Tuesday, Aug. 30. BLUEGRASS: STACY PHILLIPS & HIS BLUEGRASS CHARACTERS

• Sunday, Sept. 25. SURJ FILM SCREENING: “RACE: THE POWER OF AN ILLUSION”

• Friday, Oct. 7. BLUEGRASS/NEW ACOUSTIC: JOE WALSH & FRIENDS (A GUITARTOWN CT PRODUCTION)

• Saturday, Oct. 8. THE NEW ENGLAND UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL

New film series—”5 Great Directors, 5 Great Moral Dilemmas”—begins Mon., July 11

Directors_Dilemmas_flyer_WebThe next Best Video Film & Cultural Center film series begins Monday, July 11, with a screening of Canadian director Atom Egoyan’s recent thriller “Remember,” starring Christopher Plummer. The series, presented in concert with Temple Beth Sholom’s Adult Education program, features five films by great directors that eal with pressing moral dilemmas. The series runs on consecutive Mondays from July 11 through August 8. Each screening starts at 7:15 PM and admission is $7. (Temple Beth Sholom members get in for free.)

Rabbi Benjamin Scolnic from Temple Beth Sholom will introduce the movie and lead the discussion for “Remember” and “Magnificent Obsession;” Best Video founder Hank Paper will do the same for “Lifeboat,” “Ace in the Hole,” and “The Train.”

The schedule:

July 11: Atom Egoyan’s “REMEMBER” • A resident with dementia, played by Christopher Plummer, escapes from his nursing home to track down and assassinate the former Auschwitz guard who killed his family during World War II. Martin Landau is his fellow resident and plotter who aids his search across the country in this suspenseful, twisty tale from the director of The Sweet Hereafter.

July 18: Alfred Hitchcock’s “LIFEBOAT” • Nothing stretches the boundaries of morality and suspense like people in a lifeboat. In this masterpiece of twists and ongoing perilous decisions, Tallulah Bankhead gives a career-defining performance in the good company of Hume Cronyn, William Bendix, Walter Slezak, and Henry Hull. But Hitchcock’s artistry is the true star.

July 25: Billy Wilder’s “ACE IN THE HOLE” • A scrabbling and ambitious journalist exploits the sufferings of the victims of a coal mine disaster in order to jump-start his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus. This brilliant un-Hollywood film, with white hot acting by Kirk Douglas, was way ahead of its time in 1951. In an era of social networking and the 24 hour news cycle, this film’s time is now.

August 1: John Frankenheimer’s “THE TRAIN” • What is worth more: a masterpiece of art or a human life? Like “The Swimmer,” this Burt Lancaster film is unforgettable. A stationmaster and resistance leader is asked to stop — at any cost — a heavily guarded Nazi train filled with France’s best paintings. Non-stop suspense, ingenious plotting and a philosophic context keep this film on track as a celluloid masterpiece. With Jeanne Moreau and Paul Scofield as the equally determined, art connoisseur commandant of the titular train.

August 8: Douglas Sirk’s “MAGINIFICENT OBSESSION” • When a rich, self-absorbed playboy crashes his speedboat on a lake, the only ambulance in town saves his life rather than tending to a stricken self-sacrificing doctor. When the doctor dies, it sets in motion a journey of unexpected twists and turns leading to a higher power, including a torrid and forbidden love.