• + Google Calendar
  • + iCal Export
Cold Case Hammarskjöld

August Films: Beach Reads on Screen and a Virtual Tour of Cuba

 

Never more topical, “Another Country: Outsider Visions of America” shows America as the foreign-born see it—among them documentarians Agnès Varda and Chantal Akerman, spaghetti western maestro Sergio Corbucci (The Great Silence), avant-gardist Werner Schroeter (Willow Springs) and the irrepressible Paul Verhoeven (Showgirls). Lincoln Center, August 2–14. 

*

“Acuérdate: The Films of Paz Encina” is a rare opportunity to see the work of a radical film artist whose installations and documentaries address the history of her native Paraguay. Encina’s approach has analogies to Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet, as well as Claude Lanzmann, creating fugitive monuments that will make an absence present. Spectacle, August 5–30.

*

Desperately seeking AC? “Beach Reads: From Sand to Screen” offers adaptations of ten best-selling potboilers by the likes of Harold Robbins, Sidney Sheldon, and Jacqueline Susann. Mark Robson, Orson Welles’s editor (and re-editor) and a director for Val Lewton, made the two movies that defined the genre, Valley of the Dolls (1967) and Peyton Place (1957). Quad, August 7–15. 

*

Turning his attention from North Korea to equatorial Africa, the Danish documentary-provocateur Mads Brügger readdresses the highly suspicious 1961 plane crash that killed United Nations secretary-general Dag Hammarskjöld at the height of the Congo crisis. In addition to presenting the considerable circumstantial evidence that Hammarskjöld was murdered by a conspiracy of Western interests, Brügger’s engrossing and weirdly playful Cold Case Hammarskjöld uncovers additional largely new material on Western neo-colonial intrigue and crimes that have plagued Africa for decades. IFC Center, opens August 16.

*

Vincente Minnelli’s mid-career CinemaScope musicals and juicy melodramas get pride of place in “Minnelli Widescreen.”  Notable among the latter are the quintessential rat pack movie and James Jones adaptation Some Came Running (1958), with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Shirley MacLaine, and his poisonous late career valentine to Hollywood, Two Weeks in Another Town (1962). The former include Brigadoon (1954), Gigi (1958), and the underappreciated Bells are Ringing (1960), a vehicle for Judy Holliday, the Jewish-American missing link between Fanny Brice and Bette Midler. Metrograph, August 16–22.

*

As difficult as it is to visit Cuba, “Quo Vadis Havana” provides a virtual tour. The week-long series encompasses studio productions (John Huston’s political thriller We Were Strangers, Carol Reed’s political comedy Our Man In Havana); Cuban classics (Tomás Gutiérrez Alea’s Memories of Underdevelopment, Sara Gómez’s culturally radical One Way Or Another); and the avant-garde city symphony The New Art of Making Ruins by Florian Borchmeyer. Anthology Film Archives, August 23-30.

Category: Film