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Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: In a Lonely Place

Gloria Grahame and Humphrey Bogart in In a Lonely Place It’s no secret that actors aren’t always acknowledged by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for their best work. Take for example Humphrey Bogart: one of America’s finest screen actors of the mid-twentieth century, Bogart didn’t win an Oscar until his late career […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: The Expendables

Jason Statham displays his range in The Expendables Every now and then I indulge myself with a good old-fashioned popcorn movie. Man cannot live on foreign films, documentaries, and Gus Van Sant movies alone after all, and when promotional teasers for The Expendables began inundating the net earlier this year, I knew I’d found my […]

Posted inArts

Where’s My DVD? The forgotten Alraune

Hildegard Knef and Erich von Stroheim in Alraune This week, Berkeleyside’s film writer John Seal looks at a movie he recommends you check out on DVD. Think of Erich von Stroheim, and you’ll probably visualize two memorable characters: stiff-collared Captain von Rauffenstein, the aristocratic Prussian officer of Jean Renoir’s Grand Illusion (1937), and Max von […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: High and Low

Toshiro Mifune inspects ladies' footwear in High and Low March 23rd marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, who died in 1998 at the age of 88. The birthday celebrations have been suitably impressive: almost every feature film he ever made screened on Turner Classic Movies in March, and Pacific […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: Breathless

Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jean Seberg in Breathless. What more is there to be said about Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless (À bout de souffle)? Probably not a great deal, but there is this: recently restored and re-subtitled, Godard’s loving tribute to Monogram Pictures is getting a theatrical re-release to mark its 50th anniversary. A new print of […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: Metflopolis

Lino Ventura (center right, in overcoat) in Illustrious Corpses By the time this is published, the 15th San Francisco Silent Film Festival will have concluded. So consider this a warning for next year: if you plan on taking public transportation to the Castro Theatre for an evening show, don’t bother going. Last Friday night’s screening […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: The Mattei Case

Luigi Squarzina and Gian Maria Volonte in The Mattei Case Francesco Rosi is probably not one of the first names you think of when you hear the words ‘Italian cinema’, but the director—who turns 88 later this year—has created an impressive body of work nonetheless. Beginning Thursday, July 8, Pacific Film Archive’s new series, Modernist […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: The Killer Inside Me

Kate Hudson and Casey Affleck The knives are out for Michael Winterbottom’s latest film, The Killer Inside Me, which opens this coming Friday July 2 at the Shattuck Cinemas. An adaptation of hardboiled novelist Jim Thompson’s most famous work, Winterbottom’s film stands accused of looking kindly upon violence against women, and (worst of all) suggesting […]

Posted inArts

Big Screen Berkeley: The Oath

Abu Jandal in The Oath The case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld resulted in one of the most important Supreme Court decisions of the last decade. Laura Poitra’s outstanding new documentary, The Oath (currently screening at the Shattuck Cinemas), examines the events that precipitated the decision, the people involved in the case, and the sometimes appalling, […]