Cornell Cinema regularly premieres new international films from the festival circuit that otherwise wouldn’t screen in Ithaca, and this Fall is no exception, with films from Algeria, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, Korea, Peru, and the United Kingdom included in the Contemporary World Cinema series, two of which are doing double duty in our Cine con Cultura Latinx American Film Festival. Most of the films are from emerging talents, so you can expect to see more from the directors of these films, especially after these strong debuts!
A fourth French language film (in addition to the Algerian film Papicha, which includes Arabic, the lovely Belgian film Ghost Tropic and New French Shorts 2020), can be found in our Global Animation series: Marona’s Fantastic Tale, about one dog’s extraordinary life.
Cornell Cinema also carries its long tradition of screening recent film restorations and rediscovered masterpieces into the virtual realm with the series Restorations & Rediscoveries, which includes six foreign language classics, featuring Boccaccio ’70 (1962), the legendary Italian omnibus film with works by Luchino Visconti, Mario Monichelli, Federico Fellini, and Vittorio De Sica, starring Romy Schneider, Anita Ekberg and Sophia Loren!
The series also features new restorations of Portuguese filmmaker Paulo Rocha’s first two films, The Green Years (1963) and Change of Life (1966), both starring the enigmatic Isabel Ruth and a cast of non-professional actors. Winner of Best First Film at the 1964 Locarno Film Festival, The Green Years is set in Lisbon and examines the clash between working-class values and the bourgeois trappings of modern urban life. Change of Life (pictured) is set in a coastal Portuguese fishing village and recalls Visconti’s epic La Terra Trema (1948), about Sicilian tuna fishers. The films have “aesthetic roots both in Italian neorealism and the French New Wave” (New York Times) and feature stunning black and white cinematography.
And we’d be remiss not to mention the upcoming screening of a recent restoration of Zhang Yimou’s Shanghai Triad (1995), starring the luminous Gong Li as a gang world mistress in 1930’s Shanghai. It’s truly stunning!
To supplement Restorations & Rediscoveries, we’ll be showing three films produced in 1920s–30s Germany, offered by distributor Kino Lorber as Pioneers of Queer Cinema: Carl Theodor Dreyer’s Mikaël (1924); Leontine Sagan’s Mädchen in Uniform (1931), and Reinhold Schünzel’s Viktor und Viktoria (1933).
Finally, we highly recommend these three international documentaries released in 2019: Patricio Guzmán’s The Cordillera of Dreams, Halina Dryschka’s Beyond the Visible: Hilma af Klint, and Rita Andreetti’s The Observer, the latter about China’s Hu Jie, a maker of films, woodcuts and paintings that courageously document the years of the Great Famine and the Cultural Revolution. Guzmán's The Cordillera of Dreams completes his trilogy (with Nostalgia for the Light and The Pearl Button) investigating the relationship between historical memory, political trauma, and geography in his native country of Chile. It won the Best Documentary award at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and is a must-see. Beyond the Visible: Hilma af Klint is about Sweden’s Hilma af Klint, an abstract artist before the term existed, a visionary, trailblazing figure who, inspired by spiritualism, modern science, and the riches of the natural world around her, began in 1906 to reel out a series of huge, colorful, sensual, strange works without precedent in painting.
All of these films will be offered free of charge, but as there are a limited number of free views, reservations will be taken starting one week in advance of a film’s first playdate, when a reservation link will become available on the individual film’s website page. Films currently available for reservations can always be found on our virtual-cinema-order-form. To stay on top of upcoming films, we recommend signing up to receive Cornell Cinema’s weekly e-blast, which is sent out every Friday. You can sign-up for the e-blast on the homepage.
To learn more about what Cornell Cinema does when it’s in full swing, presenting in-person screenings of films and related live events, watch our Virtual Orientation & Open House video.