NEXT MONDAY DECEMBER 10, 2018…
Near the end of the Korean War, a platoon of U.S. soldiers is captured by communists and brainwashed. Following the war, the platoon is returned home, and Sergeant Raymond Shaw (Laurence Harvey) is lauded as a hero by the rest of his platoon. However, the platoon commander, Captain Bennett Marco (Frank Sinatra), finds himself plagued by strange nightmares and, together with fellow soldier Allen Melvin (James Edwards), races to uncover a terrible plot.
When Randle Patrick McMurphy (Jack Nicholson) gets transferred for evaluation from a prison farm to a mental institution, he assumes it will be a less restrictive environment. But the martinet Nurse Ratched (Louise Fletcher) runs the psychiatric ward with an iron fist, keeping her patients cowed through abuse, medication and sessions of electroconvulsive therapy. The battle of wills between the rebellious McMurphy and the inflexible Ratched soon affects all the ward’s patients.
“Jean-Pierre Melville, perhaps the least known French film director of his generation is steadily moving into the ranks of the greatest directors… He was not much honored in his lifetime. We now know from his gangster film “Bob le Flambeur” (1955) that he was an early father of the New Wave — before Jean-Luc Godard, Francois Truffaut and Louis Malle…
He used actual locations, dolly shots with a camera mounted on a bicycle, unknown actors and unrehearsed street scenes…
In “Le Samourai” (1967), at a time when movie hit men were larger than life, he reduced the existence of a professional assassin (Alain Delon) to ritual, solitude, simplicity and understatement.
And in “Le Cercle Rouge” (1970), he showed police and gangsters who know how a man must win the respect of those few others who understand the code.
His films, with their precision of image and movement, are startlingly beautiful…
With “Army of shadows”we have the Cinematiki premiere of perhaps his greatest film…”
“Melville, who was himself a member of the Resistance, is not interested in making an action film. Action releases tension and makes it external. His film is about the war within the minds of Resistance members, who must live with constant fear, persist in the face of futility, accept the deaths of their comrades and expect no reward, except the knowledge that they are doing the right thing. Because many die under false names, their sacrifices are never known.” – Roger Ebert
Jean-Pierre Melville’s 1969 French Resistance Masterpiece is “The Best Film og 2006!” – New York Times
Melville creates a world that rewards you looking at the details.
“An elegantly stylized masterpiece of cool by maverick director Jean-Pierre-Melville, Le Samouraï is a razor sharp cocktail of 1940 American Gangster Cinema and 1960 French pop culture – with a liberal dose of Japanese lone-warrior mythology.”
– Criterion Collection
Yo Yo is a 1965 French comedy film by Pierre Étaix. The story follows the son of a millionaire from the 1920s to the 1960s. After losing his fortune in the stock-exchange crash, he teams up with an equestrienne and becomes a circus clown.
This elaborately conceived and brilliantly mounted comedy is Pierre Etaix’s most beloved movie, as well as his personal favorite. Beginning as a clever homage to silent film, complete with intertitles, Yoyo blossoms into a poignant family saga (in which Etaix plays both a father and his grown son) and a celebration of the circus Etaix adored. Chock-full of nimble sight gags and ingenious sound effects, Yoyo is very sweet, a little bit melancholy, and wholly imaginative.
Pierre Étaix co-directed one of Jacques Tati’s great hits, “Mon Oncle” and many folks think his style is very close to Tati’s–which it is.