Dedicated to screening rare & significant films in their original format.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run film society.

We hold screenings at The Australian Centre for the Moving image every Wednesday night for most of the year.

Admission is by membership, which can be obtained on a monthly or yearly basis.


August 28

6:30pm – A NEW LEAF
Elaine May (1971) 102 mins G

In May’s debut as writer-director, she also stars as a klutzy botany professor who falls victim to a petulant, gold-digging playboy on the hunt after bankrupting his inheritance – played marvellously against type by Walter Matthau. This wry comedy with a misanthropic slant is balanced by an unexpected tenderness even for its most abhorrent characters. Despite the studio’s interference in its final cut and the reported removal of May’s original ending, this is a corrosive yet charming exploration of New York social privilege. With Jack Weston, George Rose and Doris Roberts.

To be introduced by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, co-editor of ReFocus: The Films of Elaine May, published 2019 by Edinburgh University Press.

Sexy Smart Women in A New Leaf by Martyn Bamber.

Elaine May (1972) 106 mins M

Scripted by Neil Simon and wittily directed by May, this darkly funny film about a likeable schmuck (Charles Grodin) who ditches his galling but well-meaning wife (Jeannie Berlin, May’s daughter) after becoming infatuated with a perky mid-Western college girl (Cybill Shepherd) while on his honeymoon, is one of the great American comedies. Through barbed humour that oscillates between hilarious parody and painful discomfort, May takes swipes at Jewish identity, male egotism and the unattainable American Dream.

35mm print courtesy of the British Film Institute Archive.

Close to You: Elaine May’s The Heartbreak Kid by Danica van de Velde.


The Melbourne Cinémathèque started out as the Melbourne University Film Society (MUFS) in 1948 and changed its name to Cinémathèque in 1984.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque aims to present films in the medium they were created and as closely as possible to screen films the way they would have originally screened (i.e. big screen, celluloid prints, not video or DVD).

Programmes include a diverse selection of classic and contemporary films showcasing director retrospectives, special guest appearances and thematic series including archival material and new or restored prints.

We have on occasion hosted numerous seminars featuring renowned film scholars such as David Bordwell, Adrian Martin and Ian Christie. We are also dedicated to providing new annotations on the films we screen via the CTEQ annotations, hosted as a part of the quarterly online film journal Senses of Cinema.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque is self-administered and membership-driven relying on support from individuals, foundations, corporations and government funding to maintain its high standard of excellence. If you would like to be involved, or to offer donations or sponsorship, please contact us.

Presented by The Melbourne Cinémathèque with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Curated by the Melbourne Cinémathèque.

Curatorial Committee: Michael Koller, Adrian Danks, Eloise Ross and Cerise Howard, with Associate Curator Michelle Carey

Supported by Film Victoria, RMIT University & The City of Melbourne


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