be had hired him for his height -- and the fact that he could put his recently drama school-graduated vocal prowess to use, making announcements in the lobby, while herding the unruly crowds into line for the sellout programs. "Up against the wall, movie-lovers!" he would command, putting a "cinema spin" on a much-loved slogan of the day. During those first few fests, he fell head-over-
heels for Bo Widerberg's Elvira Madigan but wondered why the programmers had included Alexander Kluge's Yesterday Girl. Now, he suspects, he'd feel pretty much the reverse -- or at least he'd better understand the merits of both movie-makers.
Time moves on, tastes change (or grow, one hopes) but the days of seeing every film in a fest like this are long gone. Not if one wants to keep up with little -- but important -- movies like The Blue Tooth Virgin, at least -- and speak with their filmmakers and performers. This year, I'll take in maybe half a dozen of the NYFF roster; at this point I've already seen three: Vincere by Bellocchio; Corneliu Porumboiu's Police, Adjective; and La rabbia di Pasolini, reconstructed by Giuseppe Bertolucci, which is part of the fest's sidebar showcase Views from the Avant-Garde.
Vincere plays Saturday, September 26, at 8:30 & Sunday, September 27 at 6. Marco Bellocchio will appear in person for a conversation with Phillip Lopate on Sunday, 9/27 at 2pm. If tickets elude you during the fest, despair not: IFC Films has picked up this one for theatrical release sometime in early-ish 2010.
Police, Adjective, like The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, is another top-of-the-line movie from Romania. IFC Films has picked it up for distribution, and it plays at the NYFF on Monday, September 28, at 9:15 and Tuesday, September 29, at 6.
I'll have more on the Pasolini "Rage" (as well as on Sally Potter's new Rage, plus an interview with the director) in the coming week....