The lineup for the continuing international film series has been announced. Members of the Missouri Southern faculty made this spring’s selections and will provide an introduction before each screening.
“The Orphanage” (Spain): 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 25, Plaster Hall’s Cornell Auditorium. Introduction by Dr. Michael Howarth
In this acclaimed Spanish thriller from producer Guillermo del Toro, a woman brings her family back to her childhood home, which used to be an orphanage for handicapped children. Soon, her young son begins to communicate with an imaginary new friend.
“Elevator to the Gallows” (France): 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 1, Bookhouse Cinema. Introduction by Dr. Steve Wagner
Taking place over the course of one restless Paris night, this richly atmospheric crime thriller stars Jeanne Moreau and Maurice Ronet as lovers whose plan to murder her husband (his boss) goes awry, setting off a chain of events that seals their fate. With a now legendary jazz score by Miles Davis.
“3 Idiots” (India): 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 8, Cornell Auditorium. Introduction by Dr. Jody Jensen
Based on Chetan Bhagat’s novel “Five Point Someone,” this film is a comedy-drama that satirizes the pressures of family expectations and college life. Narrated through parallel stories, one in the present and the other 10 years in the past, the story follows two friends as they search for their long-lost college companion – a friend who inspired them to think differently, even as the rest of the world called them “idiots.”
“Roma” (Mexico): 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 15, Bookhouse Cinema. Introduction by Dr. Bill Fischer
The film is about an indigenous domestic worker named Cleo who lives in an upper-middle class household in the Colonia Roma neighborhood of Mexico City in 1970-71. Autobiographical in nature, director Alfonso Cuarón’s film examines the not-quite-familial relationship that crosses ethnicity and class between Cleo and her employers.
“Chocolat” (France): 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, Cornell Auditorium. Introduction by Michelle Holt
The film tells the story of a complicated friendship between a white girl named France and Protée, her family’s black adult servant, during the years leading up to the country’s independence in 1960. Protée is France’s only companion, and through their asymmetrical alliance, we feel the creeping evil of colonialism. Like water, it finds its way into even the most hidden interpersonal crevices, which no amount of good will or innocence or even love can caulk.
“Wings of Desire” (Germany): 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 1, Bookhouse Cinema. Introduction by Dr. Amy Gates
Set in West Berlin a few years before the fall of the Berlin Wall, the film follows two angels, Damiel and Cassiel, as they wander the city, observing humankind, hearing humans’ inner monologues from hopeful to mundane to despairing, and pondering eternity, which they have witnessed. They see the world in grayscale, unable to know the sensory aspects of physical beings or share fully in human emotions. Damiel’s desire to become mortal and experience for himself what he has merely witnessed is crystalized when he falls in love with Marion, a trapeze artist with a financially failing circus.
“Soldier of Orange” (Netherlands): Tuesday, 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 8, Cornell Auditorium. Introduction by Dr. Galen A. Irwin (visiting professor)
Based on real events, the films tells the story of Erik Lanshof and a small group of students as they struggle to survive the Nazi occupation to the end of the Second World War. The destinies of the characters range from joining the German army to making for England, the OSS, and the Resistance. Across a canvas lasting almost three hours, director Paul Verhoeven unfolds a saga of friendship, espionage, and romance with almost documentary realism.
“The Battle of Algiers” (Italy): 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 15, Bookhouse Cinema. Introduction by Dr. Zak Watson
One of the most influential political films in history, it vividly re-creates a key year in the tumultuous Algerian struggle for independence from the occupying French in the 1950s. As violence escalates on both sides, children shoot soldiers at point-blank range, women plant bombs in cafés, and French soldiers resort to torture to break the will of the insurgents. Shot on the streets of Algiers in documentary style, the film is a case study in modern warfare, with its terrorist attacks and the brutal techniques used to combat them.