Tag Archives: Nuart Theatre

British Noir at the Nuart

This is not a post about Betty Blue, but this was the only shot of the Nuart I have. Forgive me French film fans.
This is not a post about Betty Blue, but this was the only shot of the Nuart I have. Forgive me French film fans.

Not to be outdone by the Hammer, the Nuart starts its own British noir series tomorrow. If you missed seeing The Third Man at the Hammer, you’re in luck. Thanks to the Nuart, you have another chance. It’s playing tomorrow and Saturday in a double feature with Brighton Rock, a Graham Greene thriller starring Richard Attenborough as a “psycho teenage gang leader.” 

Me, I’ll be hitting the Sunday double feature of Peeping Tom and It Always Rains on Sunday because I can’t resist a film described as “a masterpiece full of dread, raw with vulgarity.” Other films in the series include the Red Riding trilogy and The Fallen Idol (which screens in a double feature with The Third Man on the 10th).

And then, if that doesn’t already secure the Nuart as your favorite theater (with apologies to Kevin), they are screening the Oscar nominated short films beginning on the 19th of February. (The screening at the Academy is sold out.)

Definitive New 35mm Restoration of RASHOMON at the Nuart

RashomonI try not to take for granted the vast number of cool events that happen in Los Angeles. I know that a screening of an almost 60 year-old Japanese movie doesn’t sound like the sort of thing that you can only find in L.A., but it is! The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences is presenting a stunning new restoration of Akira Kurosawa’s classic “Rashomon,” taken from a 35mm print created in 1962 from the original camera negative.

The truth of the matter is that because the heart of the film industry is here in Los Angeles, so is the heart of film restoration efforts. Film restoration is extremely tedious and costly, and many of our film treasures are being lost at a rapid rate. Because are we lucky enough to be in a city where much of the restoration is done, occasionally beautifully restored films are publicly screened here!

In this case, we’ll get to see the groundbreaking Kurosawa masterpiece Rashomon, starring Toshiro Mifune in the role that catapulted him to stardom. The film depicts the rape of a woman and the apparent murder of her husband through the widely differing accounts of four witnesses, including the rapist and the dead man (through a medium). The stories are mutually contradictory, leaving the viewer to determine which, if any, is the truth. Rashomon has become synonymous with the unknowability of truth, and spawned the term the “Rashomon Effect.” regarding the subjectivity of perception on recollection.

Regarding this particular restoration:

While the [35mm print from 1962] print itself was in good physical condition, the source material from which it was made was extremely battered. Due to the extensive printing and handling it had received over its lifetime, many shots were already starting to shrink and warp, and there were numerous scratches, dust, and dirt in the damaged negative. Scanned at 4k resolution, that 47-year-old print has been meticulously cleaned both digitally and by hand, complete with a new, seamless soundtrack. This essential restoration has been made possible by the Academy Film Archive, the National Film Center of the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo and Kadokawa Pictures, Inc., with funding provided by Kadokawa Cultural Promotion Foundation and Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation.

Rashomon opens Friday, October 2, 2009 at Landmark’s Nuart Theatre, showing through Thursday, October 8 for an exclusive one-week engagement. Showtimes: Fri-Sun at 12:00, 2:30, 5:00, 7:30 & 10:00; Mon-Thu at 5:00, 7:30 & 10:00. Landmark’s Nuart Theatre is at 11272 Santa Monica Boulevard, just west of the 405 Freeway, in West Los Angeles. Program information: 310-281-8223; www.landmarktheatres.com

Betty Blue Director’s Cut–Two More Nights

betty_blue_new_poster_final_low_resWho even knew there was a director’s cut of Betty Blue? I didn’t. In fact, I’ll go so far as to admit I didn’t realize that’s what I’d bought a ticket to see Monday night at the Nuart, until at some point there was one too many moments where I thought “I don’t remember this part…” As it turns out, the director’s cut is a full hour longer than the original theatrical release, clocking in at 185 minutes (the 1986 release was 120 minutes). It was sort of a surreal experience to rewatch a movie after decades and have it be so memorable and yet also new.  If you haven’t seen Betty Blue, you have two more nights–tonight and tomorrow–to catch it at the Nuart. If you have seen it, do yourself a favor and go anyway. This is the first time the director’s cut has been released in the US and it’s just as great a movie as you remember. (More on the surreal-ness of Monday night and the greatness of Beineix after the jump.)

Continue reading Betty Blue Director’s Cut–Two More Nights

The French Are Coming! The French Are Coming!

In addition to the fine slate of Oscar nominees gracing screens around town, LA is hosting a mini-French invasion it seems. A Louis Malle double feature screens tonight at the New BevThe Fire Within and Murmur of the Heart. Truffaut’s The Wild Child is one of the Nuart’s movies this week and the Aero is having an all-Truffaut-all-the-time weekend with a half dozen films running the 16th through the 18th, capping off with Confidentially Yours on the 21st. And then my favorite bit of news: Godard’s Made in USA, which, ironically enough, was never officially released in the US, will be at the Nuart for a week beginning the 16th. Magnifique!

(Eiffel Tower picture courtesy martinos79)