February 6

Opening Night 2019

The opening night of our 2019 program features a recent restoration of one of the great “last works” of any director in the history of cinema, Sergio Leone’s (1929–1989) truly monumental, deeply cinephilic and profoundly knowing final film, Once Upon a Time in America. Notoriously cut down to a length of 139 minutes for its botched US release, in the year the Melbourne Cinémathèque was launched, this gangster epic is one of the great accounts of the hopes of migration, the corruption of unfettered capitalism and the wasted opportunities and distorted perspectives of the “American Century”. Drawing on many of the themes, ideas and motifs found in Leone’s celebrated Spaghetti Westerns, and tapping into the sensibility of the Italian crime films of the 1970s, this 2012 restoration is truly one of the defining post-classical genre films, a movie whose vaunted reputation has continued to gather momentum over the last 35 years and that provides a perfect opening to our 2019 calendar.

February 6

7:00pm – ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA
(Extended Version)

Sergio Leone (1984) 251 mins Unclassified 18+

A crime saga truly unparalleled in scope, Leone’s audacious gangster epic traverses five decades in the lives of David “Noodles” Aaronson (Robert De Niro) and Max Bercovicz (James Woods), from their hardscrabble beginnings in the milieu of a Brooklyn Jewish ghetto to the peak of their Prohibition-era bootlegging empire. Leone is at his most daringly experimental as he jumps freely through time and space, deeply probing themes of greed, violence, betrayal and the inexorable passage of time. The Italian master’s final – and perhaps greatest – film presents an outsider’s perspective on the immigrant experience and the grand illusion of the American Dream. Famously mutilated by an overly cautious distributor for US release, this 2012 restoration is the closest contemporary audiences are likely to come to Leone’s original vision.

Featuring one of Ennio Morricone’s greatest and most affecting scores, and an extraordinary gallery of supporting performances from Elizabeth McGovern, Treat Williams, Tuesday Weld and Joe Pesci.

CTEQ ANNOTATION
‘Fractured images and tainted dreams: Sergio Leone’s Once upon a Time in America by Danica van de Velde.

February 5
OPENING NIGHT

February 12 – February 26
VITTORIO DE SICA: CINEMA, ITALIAN STYLE

March 4 – March 18
LIGHT AND SHADOW: THE MERCURIAL STARDOM OF MARLENE DIETRICH

March 23 – April 6
CAST A DARK SHADOW: THE BEAUTIFUL SADNESS OF DIRK BOGARDE

April 13 – April 29
THE BIG CARNIVAL: THE FILMS OF BILLY WILDER

May 6 – May 20
“LIFE’S PARADE AT YOUR FINGERTIPS”: DOUGLAS SIRK

May 27 – June 10
WILDFLOWERS: DANCING, DESIRE AND FREEDOM IN THE FILMS OF GILLIAN ARMSTRONG

June 17 – July 1
DRIFTING STATES: THE FILMS OF APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL

July 8
AT HOME IN THE WORLD: CECIL HOLMES, ACTIVIST FILMMAKER

July 15 – July 29
HIROSHI SHIMIZU: FORGOTTEN MASTER

September 2 – September 16
JEAN COCTEAU: THE POETRY OF DREAMS

September 23 – September 30
QUEERING THE ARCHIVE: THE CINEMA OF BARBARA HAMMER

October 7 – October 14
GALLOWS BACCHANALIAS, FRACTIOUS FAIRY-TALES AND THE RULE OF THREE: THE CINEMA OF JURAJ JAKUBISKO

October 21 – November 4
REACHING BEYOND THE FRAME: THE POETIC CINEMA OF ABBAS KIAROSTAMI

November 11 – November 25
BORSCHT, SAUERKRAUT, GOULASH AND LEMONADE: AN INTRODUCTION TO OSTERNS AND RED WESTERNS

December 2 – December 16
THE LAND IS OURS: YOUSSEF CHAHINE