NEW ARRIVALS TO METROGRAPH AT HOME
SHIRLEY CLARKE X3
Dance was Shirley Clarke’s first creative outlet of choice, and even after she discovered a new vocation in cinema she would continue to think in terms of the expressive possibilities of rhythm, choreography, and free movement. A standout in the overwhelmingly male New American Cinema Group that was coming together in New York City under Jonas Mekas in the 50s and ’60s , Clarke was also one of its great organizers and creators, helping to develop the verité style while raising difficult questions about the potentially exploitative relationship between observer and subject. Three films show Clarke’s cinema in all its nimbleness and its gravity, bringing together Beat Generation bebop tempo with an interrogation of the Beats’ romance of the Other.
Portrait of Jason, The Connection, Ornette: Made in America
ALAIN ROBBE-GRILLET X5
Provocateur, pornographer, tireless deconstructor of stereotypes, and cunning devisor of narrative traps, Robbe-Grillet was one of the leading theoreticians and practitioners of the objective French “New Novel” that would act as a wellspring of inspiration for several New Wave filmmakers of the “Left Bank” school. Like fellow New Novelist Marguerite Duras, he came to cinema through a collaboration with Alain Resnais—Robbe-Grillet wrote the screenplay for Resnais’s 1961 Last Year at Marienbad—before eventually turning to directing movies himself. This program brings together five of the finest of Robbe-Grillet’s enigmatic, erotic films, works which operate according to their own strict, secretive sets of rules while also demonstrating a sense of sensual abandon and stylistic liberation.
The Man Who Lies, Successive Slidings of Pleasure,
The Immortal One, Eden and After, Trans-Europ-Express
Joaquim Pedro de Andrade x6
Across his life, the Rio de Janeiro-born Andrade produced only five fiction features, a bevy of shorts, and a single essay film, 1962’s Garrincha: Hero of the Jungle, but altogether these comprise an insurgent body of work more than sufficient to mark him as a giant of Brazil’s stylistically daring, status quo-shaking Cinema Novo revolution. Leaving university to pursue a filmmaking career, Andrade came to international attention via his second feature, 1969’s Macunaíma, hailed as one of Cinema Novo’s masterworks, but his other films are no less vital, showcasing a heady combination of political provocation, verboten subject matters, and modernist experimentation. Admirers of John Waters, Pedro Almodóvar, and the chromatic exuberance of the Tropicália movement will find something to enjoy here, though in the end, Andrade defies comparison.
Conjugal Warfare, Brazilwood Man, The Conspirators
Macunaíma, The Priest and The Girl, Garrincha: Hero of the Jungle
LIONEL ROGOSIN x6
An innovator in nonfiction filmmaking, a tireless advocate for justice who traveled the world in its cause, and a champion of alternative cinema in his role as the founder of New York’s Bleecker Street Cinema, Lionel Rogosin was a dynamo of activity and against-the-grain enterprise who fought tirelessly for people and artworks that had little other support or attention. After making his feature debut with On the Bowery (1956), a docufiction portrait of Skid Row NYC that’s like the missing link between Italian neorealism and cinéma vérité, Rogosin reeled off a series of extraordinary films that took him from South Africa to the Deep South, looking and listening as he did to the faces of the unseen and the voices of the voiceless. Too often Rogosin’s filmography is reduced to his debut and his anti-apartheid follow-up Come Back, Africa (1959), but now it can be viewed nearly complete, in its variety, vitality, and moral courage.
Black Roots, On The Bowery, Come Back, Africa
Arab-Israeli Dialogue, Woodcutters of the Deep South, Good Times, Wonderful Times
08/05 - 08/18
Part of Metrograph’s series Hong Kong Heroes, Chan’s second feature uses elements of documentary and fictional reconstruction—including visions of the possible future—to describe the Hong Kong of today and tomorrow, a city that’s been wracked by protests against the fading of the autonomy promised by the “One Country, Two Systems” deal struck with its 1997 Handover to the People’s Republic of China. A sui generis, boots-on-the-ground portrait of the city and its disillusioned-but-unbowed people, in which contemporary student protestors recreate the struggles of another generation, including the citywide strikes of 1967, suggesting not only the cyclical nature of history but the long deferral of revolutionary change.
08/14 - 08/28
“Overcoming institutional and personal lapses to give attention to little-seen works in a variety of formats—some quite recent, some surviving decades of loss and decomposition—this program collects loose parts in motion, a series of bangs, or kalampag in Tagalog, exploring how these 13 films might resonate off each other in the context of a screening program and a contemporary audience. These are some of the most singular, fragile, and striking films and videos from the Philippines and its diaspora from over the past three decades.”—Merv Espina and Shireen Seno, curators
SHORTS PROGRAM INCLUDES
Droga! by Miko Revereza, Once Upon a Time by Melchor Bacani III, ABCD & Johnny Crawl by Rox Lee, Riddle: Shout of Man by RJ Leyran, Very Specific Things at Night by John Torres, Chop-chopped First Lady + Chop-Chopped First Daughter by Yason Banal, The Retrochronological Transfer of Information by Tad Ermitaño, Ars Colonia by Raya Martin, Class Picture by Tito & Tita, Anito by Martha Atienza, the moon is not ours by Jon Lazam, Rust by Cesar Hernando, Eli Guieb III & Jimbo Albano, & A child dies, a child plays, a woman is born, a woman dies, a bird arrives, a bird flies off by Shireen Seno
08/12 - 09/12
Donna (Sandoval), a transgender sex worker in Manila, moves back to her small hometown in search of a new life. Once there, she reunites with her only child, a son, who knows her only as his aunt, and becomes caught up in the intrigues surrounding a critical local election, working to unseat the corrupt mayor. A political thriller and a study in sexual subterfuge and transfemininity, Sandoval’s noir-inflected debut feature parallels the everyday deceptions that exist in both public and private life in the Philippines, and displays the filmmaker’s stated interest in “marginalized women who are forced to make intensely personal decisions in a fraught sociopolitical context” already well in place.
08/01 - 08/15
As part of Hong Kong Heroes, we present a spotlight of the experimental moving-image works of Wong Ping. Founding his Wong Ping Animation Lab in 2014, Hong Kong-based Wong rapidly established an unmistakable signature style that combines vibrant neon palettes; crude, flat, pseudo-corporate visual language and subject matter; and paradoxically sophisticated narration tracks that take on sex, politics, and personal observations.
Wong Ping's Fabes 1, Wong Ping's Fables 2, The Modern Way to Shower
08/01 - 09/01
Éric Rohmer is a filmmaker for all seasons, but there’s a particular pleasure to Rohmer in the summertime. This isn’t just a matter of his films favoring the warm months—of the trio playing in our “Summer of Rohmer,” two could be called partly “summery,” though he scarcely limits himself to filming people on holidays. It speaks instead to some tonic quality in his cinema: the crispness of his dialogues; the airy cleanliness of his images; the unhurried way he has of letting characters stretch out and reveal themselves instead of rushing them along to accommodate a narrative timetable, as though they have all the time in the world. Rohmer is refreshing, restorative, bracing, a tall glass of ice water for a wilting mind and spirit. And that’s nice anytime, but in the summer, it’s doubly nice.
Boyfriends and Girlfriends, The Aviator's Wife, Four Adventures of Reinette and Mirabelle