Stratford Festival on Film: The Tempest

Stratford Festival on Film presents: THE TEMPEST

“Magic is in the air” (Broadway World) in the Stratford Festival’s latest production of Shakespeare’s final masterpiece, The Tempest, “an elaborate production with eye-popping costumes” (The New York Times). “The real magic and grandeur come from Martha Henry as Prospero” (The New York Times). She is “one of the true greats” (Chicago Tribune), giving a performance full of “passion and power” (The Globe and Mail). “She’s riveting from her first moments on stage” (Postmedia). “The poetry emerging from her lips is something to behold” (Now Magazine).
This “elegant production” (amNewYork) is “embarrassed with fine performances” (Toronto Star). Befitting the play’s origins as the original sci-fi story, the production features “spectacular stagecraft” (Postmedia) and is filled with “giant monsters and sparkling special effects” (The Globe and Mail). “Seeing it is a joy” (Toronto Star).

Podcasting 101 Boot Camp


Podcasting has grown from a niche subculture into a full-blown phenomenon. But how do you turn your idea for a podcast into a successful reality? Audio storytelling has been around for longer than visual media and is experiencing a resurgence – learn from the pros what makes a good podcast and how to make and distribute your own. In this day-long boot camp from IFC Center, we’ll hear from podcast experts sharing best practices and examples. Ticket price also includes admission to and a free drink at a post-workshop happy hour!



You have an idea for a podcast – how do you get started? Hear from this panel including Jacquelyn Landgraf (It Makes A Sound), Jen Lee and Tim Manley (Just Between You & Me), Lizzie Stewart and Arden Walentowski (Let’s Get Civical), and Leah Walsh (The Compass) about how they did it and how you can too!



Jacquelyn Landgraf is the creator, writer, co-director, and star of It Makes A Sound, a serial fiction podcast on the Night Vale Presents Network/PRX. She and sound engineer Vincent Cacchione produced the original soundtrack album of the show, Wim Faros: the Attic Tape, which is the first of its kind in audio fiction, and charted on iTunes/Amazon when it debuted in January 2109. She is in development for the second season, which had a live read sneak-peek at the Austin Film Festival and is set to premiere in 2019.


Jen Lee is a GrandSLAM storytelling champion whose narratives have been featured on the Peabody Award-winning Moth Radio Hour as well as on New York City stages and movie screens across the nation, Jen Lee is a writer, director and producer of celebrated independent films. Her directorial work includes the 2017 Manhattan Film Festival and 2017 Adirondack Film Festival Official Documentary Selection Bright Lights, an intimate look behind the scenes of live storytelling in New York through the chronicling of six storytellers, Gather and Indie Kindred, a documentary about creative collaboration among independent artists. Her company, Jen Lee Productions, is based in NYC.


Tim Manley is the co-director, writer, and star of The Feels, a web series about a bi guy with way too many emotions. Covered by TeenVogue, Salon, and BBC World Service, The Feels won Best Web Series at NYC Web Fest and at Stareable Fest. Tim is the writer and illustrator of Alice in Tumblr-land, published by Penguin and optioned for TV by 20th Century Fox. He is also the storytelling coach for the NYC Department of Education’s Showcase Schools. See more at, and watch The Feels at


Lizzie Stewart is an NYC based actor/comedian who has been working in NYC for the past seven years. She performs all over the city and has been featured at venues such as Gotham, Broadway Comedy Club, Greenwich Comedy Club and was invited to perform at the Burbank Comedy Festival as a producer’s pick last year. She is the proud co-parent of the political/comedy podcast Let’s Get Civical produced by More Banana Podcasts, which focuses on breaking down how our government functions in a fun and accessible way. For more updates you can follow her on Twitter at @Lizzie_The_Rock or on Instagram at @LIzzie_The_Rock_Stewart.


Arden Walentowski is a former Senate intern and campaign staffer. Primarily based in NYC, she has spent time in the Office of U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, was Chief of Staff for the Jonathan Lewis Campaign for Congress and has worked on numerous other city and state races. She co-hosts the podcast Let’s Get Civical from More Banana Podcasts, a comedy and civic education podcast that breaks down political and government processes, but in a fun way! It’s as if My Favorite Murder and Pod Save America had a pod-baby! Follow her on IG/Twitter @ardenjulianna for political commentary and hate tweets directed at the MTA.


Leah Walsh is a New York actor and the creator/host of The Compass Podcast, documents the lives of artists navigating the waters between art and commerce and is a space for those conversations with peers about living a creative life. The Compass Podcast has an archive 133 episodes strong and partners with, has been featured by The Artists Co-op, and Backstage. Originally from Michigan, Leah is a graduate of the University of Evansville and The Juilliard School. She and her husband, actor Frankie J. Alvarez, are new parents and reside in Queens. Updated website coming soon to



Your podcast is produced – now what? Experts in PR and marketing including Adam Cecil (Welcome to Nightvale) and Ashley Lusk (WNYC) will share tips and tricks about how to get your podcast trending.



Adam Cecil is the Director of Marketing at Night Vale Presents. In addition to promoting Night Vale Presents shows, he also manages a growing selection of merchandise and membership programs.


Ashley Lusk is a content and marketing strategist known for her work with leading nonprofits, foundations and NGOs. In her work at New York Public Radio, Ashley develops forward-thinking audience development strategies for shows like Radiolab, Nancy, and More Perfect. Prior to joining WNYC, Ashley worked with organizations like the Smithsonian, United Nations, Girl Scouts, and Amtrak.


12:30PM-1:30PM    BREAK



Hear from the team of CRIMETOWN, a podcast about the culture of crime in  different cities, including co-producers and co-creators Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier and host John White. We’ll discuss how and why they created their work, and the obstacles and challenges they’ve faced on the way. Moderated by Tom Jennings (Frontline).



Zac Stuart-Pontier won two Emmys in 2015 for THE JINX as the editor and a producer of the highly lauded miniseries, directed by Andrew Jarecki and produced by Marc Smerling. THE JINX was also awarded a Peabody Award and the Outstanding Miniseries by the Television Critics Association. Zac was the producer of MARKIE IN MILWAUKEE (Slamdance 2019, Blue Sky). He was the editor and co-producer of the documentaries CATFISH directed by Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost (Sundance 2010) and BEAUTIFUL DARLING (Berlinale 2010, New Directors/ New Films 2010). Currently, Zac is the co-host and co-creator of the true crime podcast CRIMETOWN which just released a special season called THE BALLAD OF BILLY BALLS, and which is currently in development at FX Networks as a series.



We’ll talk to the team from WNYC and ProPublica, including senior producer Meg Cramer, about the hit podcast TRUMP INC. Who’s profiting from this administration and at what cost?



Meg Cramer is the Senior Producer of Trump Inc., a podcast collaboration between WNYC and ProPublica that investigates who is profiting from the presidency and how. Before launching Trump, Inc., she was Deputy Director of Audio at BuzzFeed, where she worked on shows like Another Round and See Something Say Something, and helped to launch BuzzFeed’s first news briefing for smart speakers. She has also worked for Marketplace, and got her start in journalism at Michigan Radio, where she covered the changing Midwest economy.

4:00PM-5:00PM     HAPPY HOUR

Funding Your Doc Boot Camp

Click here to get a discounted ticket to both “Funding Your Doc” on April 30 and “Launching Your Doc into the World” on May 13. Save 25% off individual tickets— $150 for both events, or only $120 for IFC Center members.

You have your documentary idea ready to go – and now the biggest question is where is the money coming from? Don’t be scared – be informed! In this day-long boot camp from IFC Center and DOC NYC PRO, we’ll hear from documentary experts about how to find and talk to funders, how to create a budget that works for you, and more! Ticket price also includes admission to and a free drink at a post-workshop happy hour networking session!

10:00 AM – 11:15 AM    BUDGETING

Where to even start with a budget for your project? In this session, we’ll talk to filmmakers and budgeting experts Alice Henty (One Day In September), Beth Levison (Lemon) and Maureen Ryan (Man on Wire) and others about how to create a budget that works for you, from analyzing logistics of your project, to managing expectations, and intricacies like insurance. Co-presented by Documentary Producers Alliance.


Alice Henty is a British transplant based in New York. She has worked with many of the leading producers and directors in the field for over 20 years. She line produced, among many other, big hitting award winners One Day In September [Dir: Kevin Macdonald], The Tillman Story [Dir: Amir Bar-Lev] and Buck [Dir: Cindy Meehl], and she co-produced Beware Of Mr. Baker [Dir: Jay Bulger] and Skyladder [Dir: Kevin Macdonald] before producing her first documentary feature, The Work, in 2017. Heralded as a masterpiece in verite cinema The Work garnered deep and wide critical acclaim as well as the Grand Jury prize at SXSW, the Audience Award at Sheffield and a nomination for a Gotham Award. Most recently, she produced The Dog Doc, with director Cindy Meehl, which will premiere at Tribeca Film Festival 2019 and is currently producing a feature documentary with David France.

11:15AM-12:30PM       GRANTS

Where do you find out what grants might be available for your project, and once you do, how do you get one? We’ll discuss best practices for grant applications with Lucila Moctezuma (Chicken & Egg Pictures) and Kat Vecchio (Fork Films), including what the competition is looking like, and what grantors are looking for.


As Program Director of Chicken & Egg Pictures, Lucila Moctezuma oversees the planning and implementation of the organization’s programs in support of women nonfiction filmmakers. Lucila is originally from Mexico City. Previous to joining C&E, she was Executive Producing Director at the internationally renowned UnionDocs, Manager of the Production Assistance Program at Women Make Movies, Director of the Media Arts Fellowships for the Rockefeller Foundation, and founded and was Coordinator of the Tribeca Film Institute’s Latin America Media Arts Fund. She was Vice-President of the Board of Trustees for The Flaherty. Lucila is a member of the documentary selection committee of the Morelia International Film Festival.

12:30PM-1:30PM    BREAK


We’ll examine case studies around how to set up your deal, get funding, and get appropriate payment for your work. Jennifer Besada, Marketing and Business Development Director at Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard LLP will share case studies with best tips for structuring deals.


Adam Beasley primarily counsels clients in entertainment and intellectual property matters. His practice focuses on film and television, publishing, and music. In film and television, Adam advises a variety of scripted, reality, and documentary productions in financing, production, and distribution matters. Services include negotiating financing, rights acquisition, music licenses, and talent deals; advising on clearance and fair use issues; and negotiating distribution and foreign sales agreements ranging from “all rights deals” to complex digital and hybrid deals. Adam also provides packaging services for film and television productions.

Simon N. Pulman is a transactional attorney primarily counseling clients in entertainment and media law matters, focusing on television, film, and interactive entertainment transactions, including representing digital influencers and esports teams. Simon also acts as outside business affairs for several high level television studios and production companies, negotiating all forms of development, production, financing, and licensing deals. Simon has significant experience in structuring and negotiating digital distribution agreements and other cutting-edge transactions at the convergence of traditional media and emerging technology platforms, with a special interest in digital video, streaming platforms, and SVOD. He has worked on a wide range of high profile and award-winning television and motion picture productions, both scripted and unscripted, including many projects intended for exploitation via High Budget SVOD and AVOD platforms such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Apple, YouTube, and Facebook.


What if you decide to take fundraising into your own hands? In this final panel, co-presented by Kickstarter, we’ll hear from Kickstarter’s Director of Narrative Film Elise McCave, as well as Kickstarter filmmakers who have successfully crowdfunded, about how to build a campaign that will get you the money you need.


Elise McCave joined Kickstarter in 2016 after a good long stint with Doc Society (formerly BRITDOC) in London and New York. She works with filmmakers & organizations worldwide to bring film projects to life, build communities of support, and ensure the creative voices on Kickstarter come from all areas of the industry, ?producing work that explores the form to the fullest.

4:00PM-5:00PM     HAPPY HOUR

Now it’s time to join fellow filmmakers for a free drink at a neighborhood bar, details TBA at the event!

Launching Your Doc Into the World Boot Camp

Click here to get a discounted ticket to both “Funding Your Doc” on April 30 and “Launching Your Doc into the World” on May 13. Save 25% off individual tickets— $150 for both events, or only $120 for IFC Center members.

After you’ve made your film, it’s time to begin the important step of getting it seen. What does it take to get your film in front of audiences? From getting into festivals, to securing an agent, to making a deal, this daylong boot camp at the IFC Center, co-presented by Impact Partners, will cover it all! Ticket price also includes admission to and a free drink at a post-workshop happy hour!


Do you really need an agent? At what stage should you seek one out? Does having an agent really give you a leg up on your competition? Agents and experts  Graham Fine (The Film Sales Company) and Alexis Galfas (Cinetic Media), and Diana Holtzberg (East Village Entertainment) and others lay it out in this panel.


Graham Fine is Manager of Acquisitions at The Film Sales Company, where he focuses on discovering new projects, conceiving festival strategy, and otherwise aiding the sales team in closing deals. He also regularly represents The Film Sales Company on film festival juries and various regional and national producing labs. The Company is unrelenting in securing distribution for independently produced narrative and documentary features, with over 200 titles sold since 2002 to a diverse group of domestic and foreign buyers.

As a senior executive at Cinetic Media, Alexis Galfas works with the Finance, Management, Domestic Sales and International Sales teams to identify and bring in filmmaker-driven projects that are creatively unique and commercially viable. Her responsibilities include establishing relationships with emerging filmmakers, building Cinetic’s film festival slates, assessing potential financing opportunities, and tracking film festival, market, and industry trends. Recent films she has been involved with include RBG, KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE, GREEN BOOK, WE THE ANIMALS, SCIENCE FAIR, AMY, STRONG ISLAND and BOYHOOD. Prior to joining Cinetic in 2013, Alexis worked at Maximum Films & Management, where she assisted in scouting literary properties for clients such as DreamWorks, Illumination Entertainment, and NBC TV.


Why do some films seem to get in to all the festivals? How do you break through the noise? Hear from our panel of programmers including Megan Costello (Hamptons International Film Festival), Dominic Davis (Rooftop Films), Tom Hall (Montclair Film Festival), and Lucy Mukerjee (Tribeca Film Festival) about what they are on the lookout for.


Megan Costello is a Brooklyn-based film curator. As a Programmer and the Program Manager for the Hamptons International Film Festival, she programs short and feature films, oversees the annual Screenwriters Lab, and assists in the curation of HIFF’s year-round programs. Megan has previously worked with the Tribeca Film Festival, Tribeca Film Institute, and the Rubin Museum of Art, and has served on the screening committees for the Nantucket Film Festival, Montclair Film Festival, and Rooftop Films.

Dominic Davis has a degree in mass media studies and political science from the University of Kentucky. In 2011, he took a job with the film office of the Sundance Film Festival, where he discovered film programming as a profession. He has previously programmed for the American Museum of Natural History and the Tribeca Film Festival. He has served on advisory panels and grant and film juries across the globe. When not watching movies, he goes for very long runs.

Lucy Mukerjee is a Senior Programmer at the Tribeca Film Festival where she is dedicated to championing underrepresented voices. A queer bi-racial activist, she has been empowering storytellers for two decades as a fiction editor, film producer and curator. Previously, Lucy was the Director of Programming for Outfest, the leading LGBTQ+ media arts organization, where she oversaw the curation of their trio of film festivals for four years and founded the now annual Trans Summit event. Before that, she produced feature films for Lionsgate and Warner Bros.  Over her career, Lucy has built a reputation as a connector and changemaker.

12PM – 1PM    BREAK


There’s tough competition out there for distribution. How do you get your film noticed and what will make you stand out in the crowd? Experts such as Justine Nagan (POV) break it down for us and share the nuts and bolts regarding what they are looking for.


Justine Nagan is the Executive Director of American Documentary, Inc., and an Executive Producer on its two signature series, POV (PBS) and America Reframed (World Channel in partnership with WGBH). POV is the longest running independent documentary series on television. Prior to coming to AmDoc, Justine led Kartemquin Films (KTQ) as Executive Director for seven years, as well as being an Emmy Award-winning Executive Producer on KTQ films including Abacus, Life Itself and The Interrupters by Steve James, Minding the Gap by Bing Liu, and The Trials of Muhammad Ali by Bill Siegel. With Kartemquin, she also directed Typeface, an award-winning documentary on American typography and graphic design which aired on PBS and internationally on the Sundance Channel, and the doc short Sacred Transformations. Justine has a certificate in Non-Profit Management from Harvard Business School, and a Masters from the University of Chicago in the Humanities/Cinema and Media Studies. She is active in the media community and was one of the founding board members of Good Pitch Chicago. Justine lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband Matt and two young sons.


Developing a solid strategy for creating an engaged community for your film is necessary to maximize your film’s exposure. Hear from experts in publicity and social outreach Anna Barnes (Cinetic Media), Sara Keiner (Cinereach), Kristin McCracken (Hamptons International Film Festival), George Nicholis (Magnolia Pictures), and Susan Norget (Susan Norget Film Promotion) who provide the tools and show the way.  


Sara Kiener oversees distribution strategies and audience development for Cinereach-supported films and productions. Most recently, she oversaw the theatrical and digital release of Matangi / MAYA / M.I.A. and has contributed to the campaigns for We The Animals, Beach Rats, I Am Not Your Negro and Wild Nights with Emily. Sara has been championing audience-based distribution strategies since 2010 when she co-founded Film Presence. There she implemented grassroots theatrical campaigns for films like CitizenFour, Obvious Child, The Hunting Ground and Twenty Feet from Stardom. Prior to launching Film Presence, Sara was Exhibitor Relations Manager at Magnolia Pictures.

Kristin McCracken is a social media and content strategist who works with filmmakers, film festivals, and other organizations to build their profiles, community reach, and engagement through social and digital media. She provides editorial content across platforms, and has contributed filmmakers interviews to select outlets. Formerly VP of Digital Media at Tribeca, her current festival clients include Hamptons International Film Festival, Montclair Film Festival, Maui Film Festival, and Naples International Film Festival.

Named one of Variety’s Hollywood’s New Leaders, George Nicholis started his publicity career at Picturehouse, where he worked on award-winning films such as Guillermo del Toro’s PAN’S LABYRINTH, Robert Altman’s A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION, and Marion Cotillard’s Oscar-winning breakout LA VIE EN ROSE. Nicholis next moved to PMK|BNC, where in addition to attending the annual film festival circuit, he spent several years managing publicity campaigns for a diverse slate of films. He currently is the co-head of publicity for Magnolia Pictures, where he has overseen a variety of prominent releases including Oscar-nominated and box office documentary hits I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO and RBG.


Jenny Raskin (Impact Partners) leads this discussion with filmmakers Jessica Devaney, Howard Gertler, and Amanda Lipitz, exploring the ups and downs and the lessons learned from the journey of launching their documentary film projects.


Jessica Devaney is a Brooklyn-based producer and the founder of Multitude Films. Her latest film, ALWAYS IN SEASON, premiered in competition at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and won the Special Jury Award for Moral Urgency. Jessica also produced THE FEELING OF BEING WATCHED (Tribeca 2018), ROLL RED ROLL (Tribeca 2018), LOVE THE SINNER (Tribeca 2017), and Critic’s Choice-nominated SPEED SISTERS (Hot Docs 2015). She has been a Women at Sundance fellow and Sundance Creative Producing Lab advisor.

Howard Gertler’s credits include David France’s How to Survive a Plague; in addition to an Oscar nomination, the film collected New York Film Critics’ Circle, Peabody, IFP Gotham, IDA and GLAAD Media Awards. He’s an IFP/Gotham and Film Independent Spirit Award winner, the latter for John Cameron Mitchell’s Shortbus. With See-Saw Films, he produced Mitchell’s adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s How to Talk to Girls at Parties, released by A24. Upcoming projects include Rhys Ernst’s Sundance ’19 debut feature Adam, John Cameron Mitchell and Bryan Weller’s musical podcast Anthem, and Nicole Newnham and Jim LeBrecht’s documentary Crip Camp.


Now it’s time to join fellow filmmakers for a free drink at a neighborhood bar, details TBA at the event!

Female Trouble

New 4K Restoration!

“Sex offenses that would shock the Marquis de Sade!” sniffed critic Rex Reed in the Daily News, reviewing John Waters’ follow-up to the notorious Pink Flamingos. The perversities pile up in the tale of high-school delinquent and meatball sandwich-lover Dawn Davenport (played by Waters muse Divine), whose number one Christmas wish is for a pair of cha-cha heels. But her parents fail to heed her request, and her rage leads inexorably to stripping, prostitution, disfigurement, tabloid fame and mass murder.

Shot in Waters’ beloved native Baltimore on 16mm and featuring his regular Dreamlanders troupe–including Mink Stole, David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Edith Massey, and Cookie Mueller–this endlessly quotable, gloriously lurid satire was Divine’s favorite of his own films.

“The sordid tale of Dawn Davenport, who rises from high school hoyden to mistress of crime… A true original.” – Variety

Screening as part of our ongoing midnight series, “Late-Night Favorites: Spring 2019.”

Pee Wee’s Big Adventure

35mm print!

“Fed by comic tributaries perhaps, but Pee-Wee Herman comes over as a delightful original. It’s a balancing act, and he doesn’t put a ’50s preppy white buckskin wrong. He lives in a house which is a Heath Robinsonish turn in itself, and responds to his environment with all the restraint of a streaker in a carwash. A nasty boy steals his beloved bicycle. Pee-Wee gives chase, taking in a lot of America’s tourist map and winding up in Hollywood (which buys his adventure, and we see their version too). Dreamlike situations hover on the edge of unease (a meeting with a waitress in the mouth of a model dinosaur, pursuit by her giant boyfriend waving a caveman’s bone), and there’s a wonderfully sustained gag in which Pee-Wee rescues animals from a burning pet shop, nervously stalling the snakes. The score works edgily against the comedy, and the dream sequences are just this side of Dali. Pee-Wee himself comes from the school of acting that usually sits under a bubble – Rage, Foiled, Idea – in a cartoon. Truly weird and wonderfully addictive.” – Time Out (London)

Screening as part of our ongoing midnight series, “Late-Night Favorites: Spring 2019.”


The Squid and the Whale

“Exquisitely painful, root-canal-jabbingly uncomfortable, this black comedy from writer-director Noah Baumbach based on his parents’ breakup is bittersweet without the sweet. It lets you know in a big way what people mean when they say divorce is ‘traumatic.’ The unhappy tale is set in Brooklyn, New York City, in 1986, a pre-mobile-phone, pre-internet era of typewriters and being unable to contact your teenage kids when they are not home. Baumbach has perhaps remembered this time via Woody Allen movies and Philip Roth novels from the same period and before. Or perhaps, scarily, he has just taken it directly from real life.

Jeff Daniels plays Bernard Berkman: an insufferably pompous, bearded novelist and creative writing professor, whose books are not selling any more. His wife Joan (Laura Linney) is on the verge of leaving him and has chosen this moment to become a successful novelist herself, with a piece of work about to be published in the New Yorker magazine, a distinction that has always eluded Bernard.

Their elder son is the 16-year-old Walt, played by Jesse Eisenberg – a callow young man who has mastered his father’s bogus air of authority in talking about literature, and who calls Kafka’s books ‘Kafkaesque.’ Walt instinctively takes his father’s side, while his younger brother, 12-year-old Frank (Owen Kline), sympathises with his mother, and has developed a precocious habit of covertly masturbating in public. The boys are old enough to be sexually aware, old enough to argue and to confront their parents and feel desperately hurt, yet not old enough to move out, to disobey effectively, or fully to understand what is going on. Just to compound the horror, Bernard’s sexy student Lili (Anna Paquin) moves into his bachelor establishment in which the boys spend half the week, and naturally father and elder son lust after her equally – though without any emollient comic resolution.

…Before this, Baumbach was the screenwriter on Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou – Anderson in fact produces this movie, too – and his family issues found indirect expression in that whimsical comedy. Here they are agonisingly direct, and also very funny. All four family members give wonderful performances, especially Daniels as the monstrous novelist, desperately failing and flailing in confusion and fear.” – The Guardian (2006)

Screening as part of our Spring 2019 season of “Weekend Classics: Love, Mom and Dad.”

The People Under the Stairs

“Black ghetto child Fool (Adams) joins a pair of neighbourhood burglars planning to steal a legendary hoard of gold coins from the Old Dark House of weirdo couple McGill and Robie. Once inside, things go badly wrong: Rottweilers go for the throat, mutant children lurk beneath the stairs, and while maniacal Robie invokes the wrath of the Lord, wigged out McGill rampages in leather fetish gear, firing a shotgun at the brats in the walls. Trapped with tongue-less mutant Roach (Whalen) and abused stepdaughter Alice (Langer), Fool barely escapes being fed to the voracious People Under the Stairs.” – Time Out (London)

Part of our Spring 2019 season of “Waverly Midnights: Parental Guidance.”

The Kid

Charlie Chaplin was already an international star when he decided to break out of the short-film format and make his first full-length feature. The Kid doesn’t merely show Chaplin at a turning point, when he proved that he was a serious film director—it remains an expressive masterwork of silent cinema. In it, he stars as his lovable Tramp character, this time raising an orphan (a remarkable young Jackie Coogan) he has rescued from the streets. Chaplin and Coogan make a miraculous pair in this nimble marriage of sentiment and slapstick, a film that is, as its opening title card states, “a picture with a smile—and perhaps, a tear.” – Janus Films

Screening as part of our Spring 2019 season of “Weekend Classics: Love, Mom and Dad.”

Postcards from the Edge

“In her first novel, ‘Postcards From the Edge,’ Carrie Fisher showed how famous parents, plus lovers, shrinks, drugs and a career in the shadows, nearly finished a fictional actress named Suzanne Vale. That Fisher, the actress daughter of Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher, knows the territory is evident from the novel and this fiercely witty and moving film version, scripted by Fisher and incisively directed by Mike Nichols. Fisher jettisons most of the book’s rehab-center material and focuses on the mother-daughter relationship. It’s a wise move, especially with Meryl Streep on hand to portray the wisecracking but insecure Suzanne and Shirley MacLaine to play her iron-butterfly mother, Doris. Both deliver knockout performances. After a near-fatal overdose, Suzanne is told she can’t be hired for a new film unless she puts herself in the care of a responsible party. So she moves into the Beverly Hills mansion of her mother, an alcoholic star who won’t admit her own problem.

On Suzanne’s return home, Doris throws a party. Coaxed to perform, Suzanne warbles “You Don’t Know Me” — Streep’s singing is surprisingly affecting. Doris beams with maternal pride until her professional jealousy flairs, and she belts out a version of Stephen Sondheim’s “I’m Still Here” that blows away the room and her daughter’s small moment. MacLaine is magnificent, but the beauty of the scene is the brilliantly economical way Nichols uses it to set up the film’s conflicts.

Fisher neatly skewers Hollywood pretension. And Nichols enlists a first-rate cast in cameo roles, including Dennis Quaid as an oversexed producer, Gene Hackman as a compassionate director and Richard Dreyfuss as a smitten doctor. By the end, Suzanne forges a tentative truce with her mother instead of defining herself through a man. Judged on the sexist terms of most recent Hollywood fare, POSTCARDS is revolutionary.” – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone (1990)

Screening as part of our Spring 2019 season of “Weekend Classics: Love, Mom and Dad.”