Museum of the Moving Image’s Introduction on Le Bonheur: In Varda’s exquisitely colorful movie, a seemingly happy married carpenter takes a mistress. Though set in bucolic landscapes and filmed with a vividly stylized and vibrant palette, Le Bonheur is sharply analytical beneath its sunny exterior, as disturbing as it is beautiful. Describing the film, Varda said “I imagined a summer peach with its perfect colors, and inside there is a worm.”
BAM’s Introduction on Lynne Ramsay’s Retrospective Series: Through her complex layering of sound and visuals, transformative use of pop music, and knack for capturing lightning-in-a-bottle performances, Ramsay creates senses-shattering spectacles of hallucinatory beauty and raw psychological power.
New Directors New Films 2018’s Introduction on An Elephant Sitting Still: Sure to be remembered as a landmark in Chinese cinema, this intensely felt epic marks a career cut tragically short: its debut director Hu Bo took his own life last October, at the age of 29. The protagonist of this modern reworking of the tale of Jason and the Argonauts is teenage Wei Bu, who critically injures a school bully by accident. Over a single, eventful day, he crosses paths with a classmate, an elderly neighbor, and the bully’s older brother, all of them bearing their own individual burdens, and all drawn as if by gravity to the city of Manzhouli, where a mythical elephant is said to sit, indifferent to a cruel world. Full of moody close-ups and virtuosic tracking shots, An Elephant Sitting Still is nothing short of a masterpiece.